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Oct 15, 2013 07:42 AM

Remember these Restaurants?

Swiss Echo on Pico in West L A
Great American Food & Beverage - Santa Monica
Jacks at the Beach - S M
Café California - S M
Meyera - Vegetarian in S M that was way ahead of its time
Tepparod (sp) Thai - Hollywood
Martoni's - Hollywood

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  1. I loved the Swiss Echo! Best calves liver & onions.

    2 Replies
    1. re: budlit

      My grandparents' next-door neighbors owned Swiss Echo. They moved up to Goleta in the early 80s and opened a Swiss restaurant up there (someone else took over the Echo).

      1. re: budlit

        Swiss echo had the best salads and...

        Gooseberry Pie!

      2. In the 70's a group of us met at a friend's business in Hollywood to play cribbage and kibitz. Afterward we would go to Martoni's to drink and once in a while eat. Very "rat packy" type of place for sure.

        15 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          Are cribbage and kibitz card games? I have never heard of them.

          1. re: bringiton

            Cribbage is a card game. Kibitz (alt. "kibbitz") is another type of game (in the hands of a master, even an art), sometimes with only one player and an audience (sometimes unwilling) that is engaged in the subject of the kibbitzing. Several chowhounds are adept at this game. One could argue that kibbitzing is the raison d'etre for Chowhound.

   or, better still, look for it in "The Joys of Yiddish."

            1. re: New Trial

              New Trial -- Thanks for your hilarious response. I am not SURE that CH is the raison d'etre for Chowhound, but your idea is certainly fuel for thought.

                1. re: New Trial

                  Hoppe's Old Heidelberg
                  Fiori d' Italia
                  Moskva Cliff
                  La Serre
                  Jean's Blue Room
                  I especially miss Jean's!

                  1. re: Fru

                    Loved Jean's Blue Room! Did you ever actually eat at Fiore d'Italia? I never once saw anyone go in or come out of that place! How about Stromboli? It was on Ventura Blvd. about a few blocks west of Van Nuys Blvd.

                    1. re: Kate is always hungry

                      I loved Jean's Blue Room! I miss everything about them. And yes, we ate at Fiore d' Italia on special occassions...Shrimp Scampi was my dish! They used Deruta pitchers in the form of chickens to pour wine. We used to call them the 'Spit-Up Chickens'. Gosh, it's been 40 years? I don't think I have ever been to Stromboli.

                      1. re: Fru

                        I got to Jean's Blue Room only twice. It wasn't my parents' type of place. I was always intrigued by Fiore d'Italia as I went past on Ventura but my family's go-to Italian place was Dino's Pizzeria on Victory and, after it closed, Mazzarino's on Riverside. I can't even remember where Fiore d'Italia was anymore.

                        1. re: Kate is always hungry

                          As far as I can recall Fior d'Italia was at 14928 Ventura Blvd, sherman oaks 91403

                      2. re: Kate is always hungry

                        I was at Fior d'Italia maybe a half dozen times over the years because it was my then girl friend's grandmother's favorite place for dinner (and her grandmother lived about a 1/2 a mile from it in Sherman Oaks). It was charming and old fashioned in a good sense, but the food was nothing beyond solid.

                        1. re: Servorg

                          Do you remember where it was located? I'm on Ventura everyday and I don't recall where it was. I just remember being intrigued by it since I never saw anyone go in or come out of the place! I was sorry they closed up before I got to go there.

                          1. re: Kate is always hungry

                            I'm mostly in the SGV now so this is based on memory only, but I believe it was either Travelini's or Fiori that Mitchell Litt Antiques replaced.

                            1. re: Fru

                              I think there was a Travaglini's farther west on Ventura in Encino. I just looked it up. It says 17500 Ventura Blvd. and it's now the home of Buca di Beppo.

                        2. re: Kate is always hungry

                          OMG Stromboli! I lived in Sherman Oaks when I first moved to LA 36 years ago, and Strom's was our default place to go whenever we wanted good Italian food. My now ex and I went there so often that when we got married, our regular waitress Kathleen comped us a bottle of champagne to celebrate. I think we even had our "rehearsal" dinner there (it was spur of the moment, we were pretty casual about those things). After we left LA in 1984, we went back once or twice. I think they had moved by then (1986), and it wasn't the same.

                          I just remembered something else about Stroms. One night we were seated in the back room and noticed Marilyn Chambers with her manager/husband/boyfriend (whatever his status was, and he was wearing a black satin jacket with her name on it--it was the '80s after all). There was a large group nearby celebrating an older gentleman's birthday. Marilyn went up to him, draped her arms around him and wished him a happy birthday. Most of the room realized who she was and it was interesting to see the reaction from all the diners.

                          We ate at Fiore d'Italia a few times but it was a splurge over Stroms. Very stuffy, more formal. I think the location is now Panzanellas where I dined last winter with my son.

                          1. re: alwayshungrygal

                            Was just talking with an old friend about Stromboli.....(home made breadsticks)...Kathleen was our waitress, really enjoyed eating there....

                2. Yes, my mom used to bring me to Swiss Echo, they had the best soup.
                  Another addition would be Pickle Bills on pico on eastern edge of Santa Monica, best hot beef sandwiches and gravy. Disappeared in late 60's or early 70's.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: malibumike

                    So nice to see a mention of one of my favorite meals--hot beef sandwich and gravy. Where is your favorite hot beef these days? :)

                    1. re: Kate is always hungry

                      Kate, unfortunately I have never found anything to compare to Pickle Bills, especially the gravy. I smoke a brisket at home but Never come close to the gravy.

                      1. re: malibumike

                        Have you given the Gravy (or Dirty) Fries at Top Round in Hollywood a "taste drive?"

                        1. re: malibumike

                          I haven't had a hot beef sandwich in quite a while. The last one I had was at Rae's in Santa Monica on Pico. I like mine with an extra bowl of gravy on the side. It comes with homemade mashed potatoes. Yum!

                    2. Remember Staks, upscale, googie style coffee shop on Century, close to LAX? It had a small creek around it with fish & tadpoles.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: budlit

                        I remember a Staks (or was it Stax) near Fashion Square in Sherman Oaks in the very early 70s. I think I remember they had really good char-broiled hamburgers and kosher pickles.

                      2. I'll add Cafe Casino in Encino...with a conveyor for the trays!

                        Magic Pan is also just a memory.

                        4 Replies
                          1. re: laxfoodfeedback

                            It was great fun with kids because of all the activity with the trays. It was cafeteria style, as I remember???

                            1. re: liu

                              Correct. My kids loved it too and the pastries were not bad.

                              1. re: wienermobile

                                Oh! I remember the pastries!
                                Thanks for filling in some of the blanks, wienermobile.
                                It was even more fun than I remembered!