To Live and Dine in LA

Fascinating exhibit at the Downtown Library highlighting historical menus. As you walk in, the first one you see is a menu for a dinner honoring Professor and Mrs. Albert Einstein from 1931, complete with a picture of the couple.

Another one I liked was an original menu from Clifton’s Cafeteria from 1937 which stated “All food is priced at whatever it costs us to get it, together with the cost to bring it to you. We add one penny to each bill. If you can’t afford the price, please tell the cashier and you can pay whatever you can afford.”

Noticing this was from 1937, it highlights the severity of the Great Depression, and what it took to get people into your restaurant. It’s a very interesting exhibit.

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I was there a couple of months ago and really enjoyed it. Fascinating stuff, as you said.

Some of the menus:

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Clifton’s prices were set by philosophical principles, not economics. It’s hard to understand how they could have
been profitable. Given the owner’s lifestyle, it seems more likely that it was a money-losing hobby of a rich eccentric.