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Jan 23, 2010 05:05 AM

Restaurants that have never changed

First of all, credit goes to Givemecarbs for the idea for this post. The merits of another Italian restaurant taking over the hallowed halls of Rizzo's in Glenside prompted comments about memories of past establishments and the dearth of places still in operation that never seem to change. Now well into my 50's, I had a hard time coming up with even a few. Those that I could recall from Sundays out with parents and grandparents were the Wm. Penn Inn, the Blue Bell Inn, Otto's on 611 and The Pub in Pensauken. I've been to all within the past five years and each is like entering a time warp. While the first three have done some sprucing up, The Pub looks the same as it did in 1960. Are there any other survivors out there that still maintain the ambiance of 30+ years ago?


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  1. I waitressed at The Pub when I was in college. Those were the days at that particular restaurant! Sadly it was sold a number of years ago and I have not ventured over there since.

    8 Replies
    1. re: crazyspice

      No worries, crazyspice. Whoever bought it didn't change a thing. The same 1950's red carpet, the lounge furniture, the salad bar and that brass deposit box where you can leave a coatroom tip for your favorite charity are all still there. Washrooms are kept clean but were never updated. And the menu still has the same items. Remember the hickory smoked shrimp? Go check it out (if you dare negotiate that pernicious traffic circle!)


      1. re: crazyspice

        Remember the revolutionary salad--the wedge of iceberg lettuce with your choice of dressing (I loved the Russian)? Whoever thought of such an attractive way of presenting empty calories?

        1. re: gtnsteve

          I served many! The Roquefort was definitely the most popular. Then came the salad bar with the zucchini bread! I used to laugh at the people shoving napkins filled with it into their bags.

          1. re: crazyspice

            And the people hovering by the Caesar Salad waiting for a new bowl to come out so they could grab all of the anchovies.

            1. re: Philly Ray

              Indeed! Do you remember Lillian on the hearth?

              1. re: crazyspice

                My experiences at The Pub were mostly part of my childhood. We would go maybe 2-3 times a month (and my dad used to hover by the Caesar Salad and my mom would stuff zucchini bread into her purse).

                Fond memories!

          2. re: gtnsteve

            My fave, especially with bacon bits (or were they Bac-o's?) and croutons. And I was never hesitant to pile on the Russian dressing, until I discovered Roquefort. Empty calories or not, our mom and dad were always pleased to see us eat our salad.

        2. The only two places I can think of that fit this category are diners - The R&S in Sellersville and The Melrose in South Philly.

          1. I nominate the Towne House in Media.

            Towne House Restaurant
            117 Veterans Sq, Media, PA 19063

            1 Reply
            1. re: daisygirl

              You're right about that. I hadn't been to the Towne House in about 25 years, until we went to a wedding reception there about a year ago. It looked exactly the same. And, it's still a pain in the butt trying to find a place to park!

            2. The Warsaw Cafe (on S. 16th Street below Pine) is very much as it was when I discovered it in 1980 when I was selling radio time for WMMR.

              The atmosphere is still Continental, Mamma's in the kitchen, and son is the manager. A City Paper review called it "Cosmopolish."

              Still my go-to spot for a quiet lunch or dinner.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Seeker19104

                "Cosmopolish" - best neologism! Love that! :)

              2. Thanks Chefpaulo! I mentioned DeLorenzos in Trenton and the Candlewyck in Buckingham but how could I forget about the R and S Keystone? I'm going to try some of the other places mentioned on this thread. Cosmopolish he he! I used to go to Otto's a long time ago with my mom. One time we had a late lunch and the waitresses had enjoyed their lunch at a table nearby. They were just starting to clear the table when one waitress asked who is going to finish up all this beer? They had a big pitcher that was still half full. A moment later one of the other waitresses sounded the alarm warning them all "he's up early from his nap!" That table got cleaned off Fast!!!

                1 Reply
                1. re: givemecarbs

                  I wonder who "he" was - the boss or a baby?