10 Old-School L.A. Restaurant Exteriors

What better way to experience bygone visions of Los Angeles than through its restaurants? As these photos of old-school eateries reveal, L.A. has long been a great place to get good ol' American classics like burgers and sandwiches, but its roots are deep in cuisine imported from the rest of the world as well. Here's a look at ten L.A. restaurant exteriors as photographed between 1924 and 1949.

Airplane Café, circa 1924. The nearest window reads "Girl Wanted." Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


The Candy Maker, Long Beach, circa 1930s. The window of the 253 East Seaside Boulevard shop advertises hoarhound stick candy. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


Carl's Drive-In, circa 1930s. A snappily dressed carhop delivers a meal on a tray. LAPL Photo Collection


Unnamed restaurant in Little Tokyo, circa 1937. Long before it was officially christened, the neighborhood was serving up delicious Japanese cuisine. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


Kewpie Café, circa 1937. The window advertises, among other dishes, fried rice and egg fu yung. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


The Palomar Ballroom, circa 1938. Dining, dancing and cocktails were on the menu at the 245 South Vermont hotspot until it burned down in 1939. LAPL Photo Collection


Simon's Drive-In Restaurant, 1939, at 5171 Wilshire. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


Ernie's 5 Cent Café, 1939. A nickel at this 805 E. 5th Street eatery would get you a sandwich, spaghetti, a burger, or three cookies, among other options. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


El Adobe Café in Sonora Town, today the Chinatown District, 1940. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


Yee Hung Guey Chinese restaurant, circa 1949, with large crowds headed for the New Chinatown plaza. Image courtesy LAPL Photo Collection


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Professional word nerd, amateur francophile, home cook, carbohydrate enthusiast and person who is obnoxious about yoga.
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