When I was very very young...we'll say maybe 8 or 9, but I'm going to check when places like Foster's Freeze started....food was always a huge focus on my life. OK...in the 40's in Inglewood. Yeah...Went there when I went to the Master Chef Competition. Didn't know that was THE one. We went to the one on Venice Blvd. WLA.
I remember going to McD's in I THINK Venice or Culver City...also need to check that out just out of morbid curiousity. BUT I do remember vividly going to Foster Freeze on Venice Blvd in So. California after church. It started out as Nesbit Orange soda and THEN we discovered malts and burgers and...it was a standard fare after recovering from getting one of the numerous flus that were just one of those things that you got back when life wasn't so dramatic and scary. You got sick, you got over it. Now it's panic city and 8 courses of antibiotics...wtf?
ANYway....In Culver City before the glitz and the Malls and all...there was an 'international food court'. Wow...how cool can you get? It housed what I THINK was one of the first Sizzlers, a 10 cent hamburger joint...hamburger hamlet...that kind of stuff. Brunos Italian Restaurant in WLA was a favorite near our house, Haji Babas was a great Mediterranian place in Inglewood. I was 11. The waitress asked everyone if they wanted a drink. I kinda remember that. Ummm...wha? Kebabs and rice...wonderful. There was a great little hole in the wall on Pico that served the most fantastic thick cut batter fried fish and chips with cinnamon rolls of all things. Also on Pico a little Mexican restaurant that was a regular for us. The most fantastic basic mexican food you could ever imagine.
One of my first memories was a little hamburger joint at the end of out block across from the Mar Vista Bowling Alley. The Bowling Alley later was a focal point of my life with Peter B's. The most fantastic cafe you could imagine. But the little joint...I don't even remember it's name. Only the little burgers with In and Out style grilled onions. Lovely.
Then there was Woody's Smorgasburger. Flame grilled burgers, steaks and fish. Open kitchen. All out there. Simple menu and the first salad/topping bar including ice cream...
I fell in love with grilled halibut sands at that point. Beautiful thick perfectly seared grilled steaks on a kaiser bun. Tartar sauce. Put your own veggies and extra sauces on but you didn't need them.
They had the most phenominal salsa. I have been trying to emulate it for the past 40 years. It's a kind of thick tomato sauce but not like a 'sauce'. Kind of chunks and a little bit clear like diced tomatoes in sauce but cooked. With maybe peppers and onions...It has been my white whale food thing. If you taste it you'll know why.
Once I saw a very pregnant woman going to the condiment bar and she grabbed a bowl of dill pickles and topped them with chocolate sauce from the ice cream bar. Wow. Thought it was a myth.
Anyway...about food...it's dinner time.
Tomorrow it's all about Farmer's Market in LA.