|Brown Derby on Wilshire, Ansel Adams|
Thanks for your great section on restaurants of L.A. past. As a child, I too was taken to many of the places mentioned and several other favorites.Also, if you haven't checked out Facebook's Vintage Los Angeles group yet, do not delay, it's full of movies and photos of departed restaurants and wonderful street scenes.
At the Brown Derby, my favorite meal was a plate of mini-hamburgers topped with various sauces, with plenty of pumpernickel toast for starters. My favorite meal of all was eggs Benedict and fresh raspberries with cream in the garden room of the Polo Lounge.
After Sunday school with Jimmy Stewart's children at Beverly Hills Presbyterian, we always repaired to Linny's Deli, the deli of choice in the dark ages before Nate 'n' Al's.
For my birthday, I usually wanted to go to the Luau and throw money in the lagoon. After downing a copious selection of fried appetizers covered in duck sauce, my father always joked that we didn't need to order anything else, but of course we always did.
In the 1970s my boyfriend, no doubt seeking to corrupt an innocent 16-year-old, introduced me to Nanki-Poo's on La Cienega. It was a "waterfall Chinese" place, as Jonathan Gold says, but its main attribute was its willingness to serve multiple daiquiris to teens out for a night on the town.
Another favorite spot was Chez Puce, a quirky creperie in a ramshackle part of Pico Boulevard (across from Santa Monica High). I seem to recall Madame Puce boisterously presiding over the kitchen, a generally raucous atmosphere, and a huge pan of free brownies at the door. Puce's crepes were enormously doughy things stuffed with garlic butter or ratatouille. Madame surfaced briefly at the Mayfair Music hall when it was still open, but where is she now?