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America's Oldest Restaurants Slideshow

America's Oldest Restaurants Slideshow


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A look at the nation’s longest-running dining establishments

Dreamstime

America’s Oldest Restaurants

Dreamstime

What can you expect from one of America’s longest-running restaurants? A timeless design and a menu concept that’s build to last, a roster of famous clientele (often including former presidents), and sometimes even a history that includes a disaster or two, such as a devastating fire or flood.

But more than these quantitative characteristics, the oldest restaurants in the country have lasted this long due to unique qualities that are much harder to define.

For instance, Breitbach’s Country Dining opened in Balltown, Iowa, in 1852 and is one of the oldest family-run restaurants in the nation. Breitbach’s suffered a fire in 2007 that destroyed the building, and immediately, the community rallied to help rebuild the structure. Exactly 10 months later the restaurant burned down again, and again the community rebuilt Breitbach’s. Clearly, the livelihood of this restaurant is extremely important to the people of Balltown.

While not a definitive list, the following restaurants are some of nation’s oldest. From White Horse Tavern in Newport, R.I., to The Buckhorn Exchange in Denver, consider this a checklist for dining in some of America’s most time-honored spots.

White Horse Tavern (1673) Newport, R.I.

Wikimedia Commons/Swampyank

A must-visit if you're ever taking a trip to Newport, the building that houses the White Horse Tavern was constructed earlier than 1673, but it didn’t open as a tavern and restaurant until that year, when William Mayes bought the property. The name "White Horse Tavern" didn’t come along until Jonathan Nichols bought the restaurant in 1730 and renamed it. It is registered as a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service.

Fraunces Tavern (1762) New York, N.Y.

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The first building constructed on this property (currently located in New York City’s Financial District) was the home of New York mayor Stephanus Van Cortlandt in 1686. Cortlandt gave the house to his son-in-law in 1700, who eventually sold it to Samuel Fraunces. Fraunces renovated the building and turned it into a tavern and restaurant in 1762. Fraunces Tavern was a frequent meeting place of the Sons of Liberty before the American Revolution. Perhaps the most famous historical event to take place in the restaurant was on the evening of December 4, 1783, when the tavern held a congratulatory dinner for George Washington and his troops after they pushed the British army out of New York.

Griswold Inn (1776) Essex, Conn.

The Griswold is one of the oldest continuously run restaurants in the nation. The restaurant and inn was founded in 1776 to provide shelter and sustenance for shipyard workers building vessels for the war. The Griswold has served such esteemed guests as George Washington, Mark Twain, Albert Einstein, and Katharine Hepburn. The restaurant continues to serve rustic American fare and is decorated with many of the building's original fixtures.

Union Oyster House (1826) Boston, Mass.

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Before turning into a restaurant in 1826, this building held "At the Sign of the Cornfields," a formal dress store — in 1771 a printer named Isaiah Thomas used the second floor to publish a newspaper called The Massachusetts Spy. The original name of the restaurant was the Atwood and Bacon Oyster House, but quickly changed to the Union Oyster House. The Boston restaurant claims that the toothpick was popularized here after a businessman imported the picks from South America and hired eager Harvard University students to dine at the Union Oyster House and request the convenient teeth-cleaning tools. Union Oyster House is registered as a National Historic Landmark.

Durgin-Park Café (1827) Boston, Mass.

The Durgin-Park Café originally opened in Faneuil Hall Marketplace in 1827 and catered only to men (particularly market merchants and ship crews from Boston Harbor). Today, as always, Durgin-Park is known for its infamously sassy waitresses, as well as for traditional Yankee recipes for clam chowder and baked beans, which are eaten at the restaurant's long communal tables.

Antoine's Restaurant (1840) New Orleans, La.

Located in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Antoine’s has been serving up authentic Louisiana Creole fare since it opened in 1840. The restaurant was founded by Antoine Alciatore and has been run by his family ever since, making it the oldest family-run restaurant in the country. Alciatore claimed to have invented Oysters Rockefeller in the Antoine’s kitchen. The original location of the restaurant was one block away from the current spot; they moved in 1868 due to popular demands for expansion.

Tadich Grill (1849) San Francisco, Calif.

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The Tadich Grill opened in 1849 during the height of the Gold Rush in California, when thousands headed west in hopes of striking it rich. Initially opening as a coffee stand, Tadich Grill has been a full-service restaurant since employee John Tadich bought it in 1887. The eatery claims to be the first U.S. restaurant to grill seafood over mesquite charcoal, a cooking method the Croatian owner used while growing up.

Breitbach’s Country Dining (1852) Balltown, Iowa

Breitbach’s, the oldest restaurant in Iowa, was established in 1852 in Balltown under a permit issued by President Millard Fillmore. Employee Jacob Breitbach bought the restaurant from the original owner in 1862 and it’s been run by the family ever since (now on the sixth generation of ownership). The first of two fires that destroyed the building happened in 2007, and the restaurant was rebuilt immediately with the help of hundreds of volunteers from the community. Ten months later, the second fire struck, but the community rallied together once again to rebuild Breitbach’s.

Old Ebbitt Grill (1856) Washington, D.C.

The Ebbitt was first a boardinghouse hosting famous military heroes and statesmen — it was a favorite of Presidents Teddy Roosevelt, Grant, and Cleveland. The restaurant and bar moved in the early 20th century into the current National Press Building, which was home to two other bars at the time, one Dutch and one Old English. Old Ebbitt combined with the other two bars in the 1920s and moved once again down the street. The final move came in 1983, around the corner into the Beaux-Arts building.

Gluek’s Restaurant and Bar (1857) Minneapolis, Minn.

In 1857, Gottlieb Gluek, who moved from Germany to Minneapolis in 1855, opened the Mississippi Brewery (which he quickly renamed Gluek Brewing Company). They brewed a handful of beers on the premises and served traditional German fare. Gluek sold the building in 1933 and it operated as Fransen’s until 1979 when the owners restored the original name and design. A fire destroyed the building in 1989, but the restaurant was rebuilt immediately.

McGillin’s Olde Ale House (1860) Philadelphia, Pa.

The oldest continually operated restaurant and tavern in Philadelphia, McGillin's opened its doors the same year Lincoln was elected (in 1860, just a few years after the Liberty Bell cracked). The spot was originally called The Bell in Hand, but patrons began calling in McGillin’s after the owner, William McGillin. He and his wife raised their 13 children upstairs from the tavern, but eventually the restaurant expanded to include their living space as well as the oyster house next door.

Pete’s Tavern (1864) New York, N.Y.

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The building that houses this bar and restaurant located in Manhattan’s Gramercy Park neighborhood was originally built in 1829 as the Portman Hotel. The spot first became a bar and restaurant in 1864. Writer O. Henry is known as one of Pete’s most loyal and famous customers; some even believe that he wrote The Gift of the Magi from the second booth.

Jacob Wirth Restaurant (1868) Boston, Mass.

Jacob Wirth grew up in Prussia and moved to the United States in 1868, the same year he opened the original location of his namesake restaurant. Ten years later, he moved the establishment across the street to the Greek Revival building, which was built in 1844. Jacob Wirth Restaurant has been serving up draught beer and hefty servings of wiener schnitzel and bratwurst for more than 100 years.

Claudio's (1870) Greenport, N.Y.

Claudio's Restaurant/Yelp

In the 1800s, Greenport was a thriving whaling town that served as a destination for large ships and vessels. A whaler named Manuel Claudio would sail in and out of Greenport on voyages and eventually saved up enough money to open his own restaurant in 1870, which he named Claudio’s. The building (now a registered National Historic Landmark) was constructed in 1845.

Commander’s Palace (1880) New Orleans, La.

A slice of New Orleans dining history — it opened in 1880 — this culinary landmark has long been collecting accolades for everything from its service to its wine list to its "haute Creole" cuisine. It’s still going strong, now with chef Tory McPhail at the ovens. The gold standard of family-run restaurants, Commander's Palace offers a dining experience that could win you over on its Southern charm alone — and you'd be remiss to not order the turtle soup that's practically synonymous with the place.

Keens Steakhouse (1885) New York, N.Y.

Keens is known as the home of the "Mutton Chop," an enormous portion of mutton (though in the past decades the restaurant has switched over to serving lamb). The restaurant is also home to the largest collection of churchwarden pipes in the world — there’s an estimated 50,000 or so on display.

Katz’s Delicatessen (1888) New York, N.Y.

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This Jewish kosher deli has been making converts with its salami, pastrami, hot dogs, and more since 1888, when it was opened by a Russian immigrant family. You can get a taste at the counter from one of the expert slicers, and marvel at how great it is that a place like this exists. Then you dive into pickles and a huge pastrami sandwich with mustard and a big price tag. It's worth it. And the pastrami and eggs "made like the boss likes it," with eggs cooked on the hot dog grill to get that greasiness? Not many things better for breakfast. Just don't lose your ticket; you don't want to know what happens.

Peter Luger Steak House (1887) New York, N.Y.

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Peter Luger is a Brooklyn classic — an institution, even. Serving steak since 1887, the restaurant presents a simple menu. Single steak, steak for two, steak for three, or steak for four. In other words, how many people are you going with? Okay, so there's a little more selection than that, but the point here is high-quality, expertly prepared beef, along with the famous house sauce, sliced tomato and onion salad, and of course, the celebrated thick-cut bacon appetizer. Many imitators, one original.

The Buckhorn Exchange (1893) Denver, Colo.

Buckhorn Exchange Restaurant/Yelp

Henry "Shorty Scout" Zietz opened the Buckhorn Exchange during a time when cattlemen, miners, railroad workers, silver barons, Indian chiefs, drifters, and businessmen all dined under the same roof. The restaurant was given the first liquor license in the state of Colorado and the food menu remains mostly unchanged to this day.

Louis' Lunch (1895) New Haven, Conn.


7 Oldest McDonald’s in America

McDonald’s is one of the biggest and most successful fast food franchises in the world. Created by brothers Maurice and Richard McDonald and franchised by Ray Kroc, this food chain has grown to serving 68 million customers across over 120 countries daily.

But like all mega-successful brands, McDonald’s had humble beginnings. Here’s a list of the first and earliest McDonald’s outlets!

7. Kroc’s Second McDonald’s Outlet

Year: 1956-Unknown
Still active?: No
State: Illinois

image credit: chicagoist

While continuing to search for more franchisees for his McDonald’s chain, Kroc discovered that the McDonald brothers had given a license to their franchise in Cook County, Illinois to the Frejlach Ice Cream Company without telling him. This move greatly angered Kroc and made his desire to build his fast food chain alone.

Kroc bought those rights off of the ice cream company for five times the initial value – $25,000 – and continued building his brand, cutting ties with the brothers in the process. By 1959, he had opened 102 McDonald’s restaurants. And that, as they say, is history.

6. Kroc’s First McDonald’s Outlet

Year: 1955-Present
Still active?: Yes
State: Illinois

image credit: Chicagoist

The McDonald brothers had been using Ray Kroc’s Multimixer milkshake machines, which he sold for the Price Castle brand, in their San Bernardino outlet. News travelled to Kroc, and he was immediately interested. He and his friend Charles Lewis visited the outlet, and Lewis made a number of suggestions that would potentially improve the recipe for the McDonald’s burgers.

Kroc felt that the McDonald brothers’ ideas could create huge success and wanted to franchise the restaurant around the whole country. The brothers were skeptical, but Kroc said he would take on the majority of the responsibility of that task and offered them 0.5% of the gross sales.

Kroc opened his first McDonald’s in 1955 in North Lee Street, Des Plaines, and had the interior painted by Eugene Wright of Wright’s Decorating Service. He decided to design the restaurant in yellow and white, with dark brown and red as secondary colors. This cemented the color scheme that McDonald’s would use till today.

In 1990, the McDonald’s Corporation acquired this particular outlet and rehabilitated it, returning it to its original condition but with more modern infrastructure, and set up a gift shop and museum next to it.

5. Oldest Surviving McDonald’s in USA and the World

Year: 1953-Present
Still active?: Yes
State: California

image credit:Lucas Peterson

The second franchisee to pick up on the new design and ideas was actually Fox’s brother-in-law, Roger Williams, and a friend, Burdette “Bud” Landon. The three of them worked with the same company, and the second new McDonald’s was opened in Lakewood Boulevard, Downey, on the 18th of August 1953.

Today, this very same restaurant is still operational and is officially the world’s oldest surviving McDonald’s. It is even considered a tourist attraction now, complete with its own museum and gift shop.

At the time of its creation and for several decades after, this McDonald’s was quite different from other existing McDonald’s outlets, as it was the only one that was franchised with the McDonald brothers and not with Ray Kroc, meaning it was not given any modernization requirements following Kroc’s takeover of the franchise. As such, it had a different menu and didn’t even implement the famous Big Mac into it.

However, this joint almost didn’t survive. In the mid-1970’s, a new corporate McDonald’s opened very nearby, and the menu difference caused this older outlet to have a bad dip in sales. In 1990, it was finally taken under Kroc’s McDonald’s Corporation but then was damaged by the Northridge earthquake in 1994.

Due to all this, the corporation wanted to demolish it, but the outlet was listed on the National Trust for Historic Preservations’ 11 Most Endangered Historic Places that very year, causing many to demand that it was saved. The corporation decided to restore and repair the restaurant, and after two years, it was reopened successfully.

4.The Birth of the Golden Arches

Year: 1953-Unknown
Still active? :No
State: Arizona

image credit:Wikipedia

The McDonald brothers continued to long for improvement in their restaurant and decided to construct a brand new building that would be more appealing to the eye. They took this decision seriously and were careful about searching for and hiring the right architect. Eventually, after interviewing a few different options, they hired Stanley Clark Meston from Fontana.

With the new design, the McDonald brothers aimed to create and set up new equipment that would make their operations more efficient. Meston worked with the brothers in a quaint and unorthodox way – he drew out the measurements of the restaurant-to-be’s equipment with chalk on the ground of a tennis court behind their home.

Plans were made to change McDonald’s into a fast food chain instead of the sit-down diner it had been formerly, and the brothers came up with marketing techniques to make this happen. They planned to turn off the heating and have angled, spaced out seating that would discourage customers from staying for too long. They also wanted to serve drinks in cone-shaped cups, forcing customers to have to hold on to their drinks while eating. These ideas served as inspiration for other fast food chains later on, such as Subway and Burger King.

Aside from the added, improved equipment, the new McDonald’s was also set to have a better design. Bright colors – red and white tiles, colored sheet metal, and bright neon signs in red, white, yellow, and green – were set to make the restaurant even more attractive. They also drew up plans for two yellow sheet-metal arches in a bright, neon yellow that would run across the roof this was the birth of the famous golden arches. They also created a mascot – a chubby character in a chef’s hat called “Speedee”.

With these ideas and drawings, the McDonald’s brothers set out to find franchisees. Their first was Neil Fox, who worked as a distributor for General Petroleum Corporation. His first stand opened in May 1953 and was officially the first McDonald’s fast food outlet and the first to have its famous golden arches.

3. The First McDonald’s

Year: 1948-Unknown
Still active?: No
State: California

image credit:BusinessInsider

When the McDonald brothers reopened their restaurant in December 1948, they greatly simplified their menu’s contents, only serving hamburgers, cheeseburgers, apple pie, potato chips, soft drinks, and coffee.

A year later, the brothers changed the menu again, removing the chips and pie and replacing them with French fries and milkshakes. They also made alterations to their operating system by removing carhops and setting up a self-service system – one that would continue to be used till this day.

The brothers, by this point, had learned much about operating a restaurant and worked to focus on their kitchen’s operations, making them more streamlined and setting up an assembly line to make orders go out faster and more smoothly.

2. McDonald’s Bar-B-Que

Year: 1940-1948
Still active?: No
State: California

image credit:Amusingplanet

About 40 miles to the east of The Airdrome’s original location, the McDonald’s brothers opened up a restaurant in the style of a carhop drive-in on West 14th and 1398 North E Streets in San Bernardino. The restaurant focused on serving barbecue food and had twenty-five items on the menu.

Their restaurant saw a good amount of success, but a few years into their operations, the McDonald’s brothers realized that a majority of the profit they were earning came from the sale of hamburgers, not the other barbecue items on the menu. They decided, once more, to close down the restaurant temporarily and reopen with new branding and a new menu again.

1. The Airdrome

Year: 1937-1940
Still active?: No
State: California

image credit: amusingplanet

While technically not the first actual McDonald’s by name, The Airdrome was the McDonald family’s first venture into the food and restaurant industry. Opened by Patrick McDonald, the father of the family, The Airdrome was a simple food stand situated on Huntington Drive, Monrovia, California.

At first, The Airdrome only served hot dogs, but gradually expanded its menu to include hamburgers and orange juice. The stall did well, but eventually, the McDonald’s brothers decided to close it down and move it to change up their menu and branding in 1940.

References

1. Skrabec, Quentin R. Skrabec Jr., Quentin R. (2012). The 100 Most Significant Events in American Business: An Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. p. 206.
2. Bryson, Bill (1994). Made in America. p. 338.
3. Hess, Alan (March 1986). “The Origins of McDonald’s Golden Arches”. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. 45 (1): 60–67.


9 Oldest Sodas in the World

Although soda has come under fire in recent years for being extremely bad for people’s health, it is still one of the most popular drinks in the world. Soda or soft drinks trace their origins to late 18 th century, when scientists began replicating naturally carbonated mineral waters. Joseph Priestly is credited with discovering a method for infusing water with carbon dioxide to created carbonated water, the base of all sodas. After Priestly’s discovery, the first carbonated drinks were manufactured and several pharmacists, primarily in the United States, began adding flavorings to carbonated water. They developed their own recipes that were initially touted as medicines and tonics, but eventually became known as sodas. All of these soda brands have survived and some of them are the largest brands in the world.

9. Barq’s Root Beer

Year Created: 1898
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: Edward Charles Edmond Barq

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Barq’s Root Beer was invented by Edward Charles Edmond Barq in 1898. Before moving to Biloxi, Mississippi in 1897, Edward Barq owned and operated the Barq Brothers Bottling Company in New Orleans with his brother Gaston. They bottled carbonated water and created their own sodas. In 1898, Edward opened the Biloxi Artesian Bottling Works and started selling root beer.

The drink was not initially called “root beer” to avoid legal conflict with Hires Root Beer. Around the 1970s, Barq’s moved back to New Orleans and a sugar-free version of the drink was launched. Over the next few decades, Barq’s becomes a national brand and in 1995, the company is purchased by The Coca-Cola Company, which still owns the brand today.

8. Pepsi

Year Created: 1893
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: Caleb Bradham

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Pepsi, which is and probably will always be Coca-Cola’s main rival, was first invented in 1893 by pharmacist Caleb Bradham. He introduced the soda as “Brad’s drink”, which was a mixture of sugar, water, caramel, lemon oil, kola nuts, nutmeg, and other additives. Bradham changed the drink’s name to Pepsi-Cola in 1898 after the dyspepsia and kola nut used in the recipe. As the drink grew in popularity, Bradham trademarked the name and moved manufacturing from his drugstore to a rented warehouse.

Although the company was initially very successful, Pepsi-Cola went bankrupt in 1923 because of the fluctuating sugar prices during World War I. Bradham lost the company and its assets were sold to various investors. The company eventually went to Charles G. Guth who reformulated the soda and started selling 12 ounce bottles for 5 cents. Pepsi bounced back and even survived the Great Depression. Today, Pepsi is one of the most popular soda brands in the world.

7. Coca-Cola

Year Created: 1886
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: John Pemberton

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

John Pemberton created the prototype version of Coca-Cola in 1885 as a substitute for morphine, which he became addicted to after his was wounded in the American Civil War. Pemberton came up with his own version of a coca wine, an alcoholic beverage containing wine and cocaine, at Pemberton’s Eagle Drug and Chemical House. According to some accounts, Pemberton may have been inspired by Vin Mariani, a French coca wine as well as a Spanish drink called “Kola Coca” that was shown at a contest in Philadelphia in 1885. Coca-Cola bought the rights for this Spanish drink in 1953.

Pemberton registered his French Wine Coca nerve tonic in 1885, but Atlanta and Fulton County passed prohibition legislation the following year. He developed a nonalcoholic version of the coca wine and named it Coca-Cola. Pemberton died two years later in 1886, but sold portions of his business varies people, with a majority of it going to Asa G. Candler. Under Candler’s leadership, The Coca-Cola Company was founded and started selling the drink outside of Atlanta. Since then, Coca-Cola has become the largest beverage company in the world.

6. Dr Pepper

Year Created: 1885
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: Charles Alderton

photo source: Flickr

Of all the major soft drink brands in America, Dr Pepper is the oldest. The drink was invented by pharmacist Charles Alderton in 1885 at Morrison’s Old Corner Drug Store in Waco, Texas. The U.S. Patent Office recognizes December 1, 1885 as the first time Dr. Pepper was sold. Alderton often created recipes for soft drinks and the one made with 23 flavors ended up being the most popular.

Customers initially called the drink a “Waco”, and the owner of the drug store Wade Morrison is credited with naming the drink Dr Pepper after his friend Dr. Charles Pepper. Alderton gave the formula to Morrison, who eventually formed the Artesian Mfg. & Bottling Company (which later became the Dr Pepper Company) with Robert S. Lazenby. Dr Pepper has grown into an international brand and its distributor, the Dr Pepper Snapple Group, owns several other popular soda brands.

5. Moxie

Year Created: 1885
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: Augustin Thompson

photo source: Flickr

Depending on where the information comes from, Moxie’s founding date differs. However, according to the brand’s official website, despite other accounts, there is no evidence that Moxie was ever commercially produced before 1885. Additionally, Moxie’s creator – Augustin Thompson – was never a pharmacist (like most early soda inventors), but was a homeopathic physician who wanted to make a cure-all that did not contain harmful ingredients like cocaine and alcohol.

Thompson eventually came up with “Moxie Nerve Food” in 1885 and its secret ingredient is now known to be gentian root. A few years later, Thompson added soda water to the drink and changed its name to “Beverage Moxie Nerve Food.” Over the next few decades Moxie became a widely popular around the country and at one point, was outselling Coca-Cola. Around the 1940s, Moxie’s sale began to decline and the company has never really recovered. Today, Moxie is a relatively unknown brand outside of New England and Pennsylvania.

4. Fioravanti

Year Created: 1878
Country of Origin: Ecuador
Inventor: Juan F. Fioravanti

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Although Fioravanti is not as widely known outside of South America and Spain, it is one of the longest surviving soda brands in the world. Fioravanti’s original flavor is strawberry, but apple flavor was added to the permanent lineup. According to lore, the drink was introduced in 1878 in Ecuador by Italian immigrant Juan F. Fioravanti. In 1901, the original factory was destroyed by a fire, but the Fioravanti rebuilt and continued to manufacture the fruit-flavored soft drink.

The company changed ownership a few times before José Peré and later his son Luis Peré Cabanas modernized Fioravanti’s bottling plants and distribution networks, eventually positioning the soda as a national favorite in Ecuador. Today, Fioravanti is owned by Coca-Cola and manufactured in Ecuador as well as Spain.

3. Hires Root Beer

Year Created: 1876
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: Charles E. Hires

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Hires Root Beer is known as America’s original root beer. According to the brand’s official history, Philadelphia pharmacist Charles Hires first tasted root beer in 1875 while he was on his honeymoon. However, historical accounts vary and the actual time, place, and how Hires invented his root beer is unknown.

What is known is that Hires began selling his version of a root beer in 1876. Initially, the root beer was sold as a powder and in 1884, Hires began making a liquid extract and syrup for use in soda fountains. In 1890, the company started selling bottled root beer and claims that they sold over a million bottles by the end of the next year.

Although Hires was the first and oldest root beer on the market, it is not widely available today. The company is owned by Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and other Dr. Pepper root beer brands like A&W Root Beer are more popular.

2. Vernors Ginger Ale

Year Created: 1866
Country of Origin: United States of America
Inventor: James Vernor

photo source: Flickr

Vernors is the oldest surviving ginger ale brand in the United States and one of the oldest sodas overall. The drink was accidentally invented by James Vernor, a Detroit pharmacist, in the 1860s. Around the early 1860s, Vernor was working on a medicinal tonic of vanilla and spices, with the addition of ginger to calm the stomach.

When he was called to fight in the Civil War in 1862, he left the concoction in an oak barrel for the next four years. Vernor returned home in 1866 and was surprised to find that his tonic was not only good, but had developed a better flavor from being aged in the wooden barrel. He initially sold the drink from his soda fountain, but started selling bottling franchises to people who agreed to stick to his recipe. Eventually a factory was built to mass produce the ginger ale. Vernors is currently owned by the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group.

1. Schweppes

Year Created: 1783
Country of Origin: Geneva, Switzerland
Inventor: Johann Jacob Schweppe

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Although several brands claim that their soda is older, Schweppes is widely considered the oldest soda in the world. The company’s founder, Johann Jacob Schweppe was the first person to manufacture and sell carbonated mineral water. Schweppes founded his company in Geneva in 1783, but moved to London in 1792 to further develop his business. Schweppes was able to sell carbonated water at such a large scale because the original container was the first bottle of its kind to retain carbonation.

In 1836, Schweppes received a Warrant of Appointment from King William IV of England. This helped the brand become even more popular. In addition to carbonated mineral water, Schweppes sells ginger ale – which was first introduced in 1870 – and tonic water, which came out the following year and was the first carbonated tonic. Schweppes has changed ownership a few times since it was first founded and today, the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group owns the Schweppes trademark.


7 Of The Oldest Recipes In History

How old is the meal you're eating right now? No, I'm not asking "how long has it been in the fridge" I want to know how ancient the recipe for the food that you're consuming right now is. For some common foods, the answer is "extremely" — some of our favorite recipes have been used by human beings for thousands of years. And it isn't always the most basic foodstuffs that have the longest pedigree. Alongside staples like beer and roast boar, some of the most ancient recipes in human history involve elaborate instructions for foods like almond milk, hangover cures and fancy cakes. Which makes sense: we've always been a species that enjoys stuffing its face and passing down the knowledge about how to do it properly.

The archaeology of food is a genuine area of scholarly study, and for understandable reason: food is the cornerstone of any human civilization, with ties to class divides, technology, crops, religion, ceremonies and morals. So, no, that meat pie is not just a meat pie. The audience for recipes has changed radically throughout history, too one of the oldest recipes on this list was made to be read only by cooks for medieval nobles, while another was concealed in an abbey library for hundreds of years food knowledge hasn't always been easily available to the masses. Now, however, you can enjoy the fruits of scholarly labour by making a 10th-century hangover stew or an 8,000-year-old pudding. They may taste faintly disgusting to your modern palate (and, considering that many of these recipes were created before modern hygiene standards, I'd not necessarily advise you to try to whip them up on your own) but hey, it's real history brewing in your crockpot.

1. Beer, 3400-2900 BC

The oldest beer recipe in the world was only discovered this week, but it wasn't entirely a "recipe" in the traditional sense: it was a breakdown of ingredients found in a beer-making facility uncovered in a dig site in China. Archaeologists exploring the site found brewing equipment dating back to around 3400 BC, in very early Chinese history, and sent off leftover traces from the jugs they'd found. The result? A very modern-sounding malted combination of millet, barley, Chinese pearl barley and tubers.

Ancient evidence of brewing has popped up all over the world, from Iran to Egypt — but for now, this particular facility has been crowned the oldest in human history. While the makers didn't write down their secret formula per se, you can bet a company will probably be marketing "the world's oldest beer" as soon as possible.

2. Nettle Pudding, 6000 BC

Nettles, while edible, aren't usually seen as tasty fodder, though foragers across Britain in particular say they're lovely as a soup or in a risotto (as long as they're prepared in some way that takes out their famous sting). But the oldest recipe in the United Kingdom, dating back 8000 years, involves them as the prime ingredient. I know, I'm not really envying ancient Britons much either.

The nettle recipe was uncovered as part of a 2007 investigation by the University of Wales Institute, which labeled it the oldest in the history of Britain: while it was only recorded in 6000 BC, it may actually be as much as two thousand years older than that. That's one hell of a pedigree for a dish that's pretty no-fuss: the researchers say it's essentially nettles boiled with barley and water. "Pudding," in this context, is used in its older sense as a savory term.

3. Meat Pie, 1700 BC

I'm Australian, and our nation is very devoted to the art of the meat pie. So it is thoroughly unsurprising to me to know that this delicacy has been enjoyed for over three thousand years. The source for the earliest meat pie recipe comes from ancient Mesopotamia specifically, from tablets dating to 1700 BC, which were only translated from ancient Assyrian by French academic and chef Jean Bottero in 1985.

The three tablets, which are currently held by Yale University, contain detailed recipes for stews (there's a gazelle one, if you're interested), plus the ancient pie recipe. We're not entirely sure what kinds of birds the recipe requires, but with its emphasis on the gizzards as well as the rest of the bird, it's a testament to nose-to-tail eating:

4. Roast Boar, 4th-5th Century AD

This is one of the most famous ancient cookbooks in history: the De Re Coquinaria,a Roman recipe collection also called Apicius after a famous Roman gourmet. (He himself only contributed about three-fifths of the recipes, and the copies we have date from long after his death.) It's divided into ten sections on various culinary topics, from "The Careful Housekeeper" to "The Quadruped," and contains hundreds of recipes, many of which are the earliest examples of their kind.

Along with more exotic fare for Roman audiences like roast dormouse and the liver of sows, the De Re Coquinaria contains less challenging stuff like straightforward roast boar. It tells you a lot about Roman cooking that Apicius gives two ways of cooking boar and seven different sauces to serve with it, but here's the mainstay:

5. Hangover Cure Stew, 900 AD

The oldest Arabic cookbook was published in ancient Baghdad by Ibn Sayyar al-Warraq under the name The Book Of Dishes , and he didn't leave anything to chance: it contains a whopping 600 dishes for a variety of occasions. But the most famous one is the kishkiyya, otherwise known as the "hangover stew".

al-Warraq's book likely contains a lot of recipes that are older than him (he died in 961 AD), but we have no way of knowing just how ancient the kishkiyya really is. Regardless, it's full of goodness, including meat, chopped green vegetables and large amounts of herbs, and simmers into a rich broth. The full recipe is rather complicated, but if your head is aching after a night on the tiles, it likely won't hurt you.

6. Frumenty, 1381

Frumenty is one of those dishes that underpinned an entire society for ages— in this case, medieval European communities — and has since vanished without a trace. It was essentially boiled wheat cooked in almond broth with sweet flavorings and added fruit, and was eaten alongside savory dishes like meat, because the sweet/savory divide is in many ways essentially a modern invention. We have several recipes for frumenty, but the oldest dates from The Forme Of Cury, a medieval recipe collection dating back to 1381.

To the modern palate, frumenty tastes closest to porridge, and some contemporary chefs have tried to recreate the 14th century recipe for their own restaurants. If you feel inclined, you can try too, but The Forme Of Cury is maddeningly imprecise, so don't get out your kitchen scales in readiness. It's also in Middle English, so you'll need a translation:

Nym clene Wete and bray it in a morter wel that the holys gon al of and seyt yt til it breste and nym yt up. and lat it kele and nym fayre fresch broth and swete mylk of Almandys or swete mylk of kyne and temper yt al. and nym the yolkys of eyryn. boyle it a lityl and set yt adoun and messe yt forthe wyth fat venyson and fresh moton.

[Take clean wheat and crush it in a morter well that the hulls go all by them selves. Take fair fresh broth and milk of almonds or sweet milk of cows and temper it all. and take the yolks of eggs. Boil it a little and set it down and present it forth with fat venison and fresh mutton.]"

7. Linzer Torte, 1653

If you're looking for the oldest known confection in the world, you needn't look further than the linzer torte, a tart with jam and a lattice pastry top. Its reputation as the most ancient of the cake recipes is down to the fact that its lineage has been traced back further than any other. It shows up not only in a 1696 recipe, but in a Veronese manuscript dating back to 1653, which was found in the Admont Abbey in Austria in 2005, causing shockwaves in the admittedly small world of historical pastry.

If you want to make the exact linzer torte of the Admont manuscript, you'll likely find something very different to the ones you'd get today. The book that broke the news, Wie mann die Linzer Dortten macht (How To Make The Linzer Torte), explains that linzer torte recipes have changed massively over the centuries, sometimes not even including the typical jam and lattice top. If you'd like to make one, it's probably best to stick to the version on Austria's national website.


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"I have made this before and this recipe is absolutely incredible. I would recommend using the marscapone cheese if you can find it for the taste and texture."

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Oysters Rockefeller Recipe and History

1850 – Antoine Alciatore, the original owner of Antoine’s Restaurant in New Orleans, Louisiana, made a specialty dish of snails called Snails Bourgignon which was very popular. The restaurant, located on Rue St. Louis in the New Orleans French Quarter, was opened in 1840, and Antoine’s is the country’s oldest family-run restaurant.

According to Antoine Restaurant’s web site:

In 1874, Antoine being in ill-heath, took leave of his family, with the management of the restaurant in his wife’s hands. He felt he had not much longer to live and wished to die and be buried in his birthplace in France. He told his wife he did not want her to watch him deteriorate and said as he left “As I take boat for Marseilles, we will not meet again on earth.” He died within the year.

1899 – When Jules Alciatore took over the business, the taste for snails had subsided, and also there was a shortage of French snails. He wanted to use a local product in order to avoid any difficulty in procuring it. He choose oysters and adapted the snail recipe in 1899 to use the gulf oysters.

Jules Alciatore is known as a pioneer in the art of cooking oysters (as they were rarely cooked before this time). According to legend, it is said that a customer exclaimed with delight after eating this dish, “Why, this is as rich as Rockefeller !”

The dish was given the name Rockefeller because the green was the color of greenbacks and the whole dish was so rich that he wanted a name that would signify the “richest in the world.” The first name to come to his mind was John D. Rockefeller (1839-1937), a name once connoted the absolute pinnacle of wealth and position. No other American dish has received so much praise and attention as Oysters Rockefeller.

1980 – Roy F. Guste, Jr., the great-great grandson of Jules Antoine, writes in his book Antoine’s Restaurant Cookbook that “the sauce is basically a puree of a number of green vegetables other than spinach.”


The 10 Oldest Restaurants in Houston

Houston has been heralded as 𠇊merica’s next great food city” (Washington Post) and the cultural and culinary capital of the South. But the city’s diverse culinary scene was built on the back of a rich history of family-owned restaurants still in existence today.

Three Brothers Bakery - 1949

The Jucker family has been baking for nearly 200 years. It was in Chrzanow, Poland where brothers Sigmund, Sol, and Max learned the family baking business. But as WWII broke out in Poland in 1941, the Jucker family was sent to a Nazi concentration camp. Miraculously, the family survived and started a new life in Houston. In May 1949, Three Brothers Bakery opened just outside downtown on Holman Street.

Over time, and after a few relocations, the bakery developed a loyal following of Houstonians and visitors alike. Savory selections like their signature rye bread, challah, biales, bagels, gingerbread, danishes, cheese pockets, onion boards, and Kaiser rolls are all baked using the original Eastern European recipe. Three Brothers has also become quite the cakemaker over the years. The bakery specializes in epic cake designs and delicious pastry creations. The bakery has won numerous awards over the years from publications like Country Living, The Daily Meal, the knot, and Food Network.

Barbecue Inn - 1946

Barbecue Inn was founded in 1946 by Louis and Nell Skrehot in Northwest Houston. Originally it was solely a barbecue pit, but the restaurant expanded its menu to include a wide variety of southern comfort food. In fact, Barbecue Inn is most famous for it’s crispy golden-fried chicken and country-gravy fried steak.

The menu and restaurant appearance hasn&apost changed much since those early days but it’s devoted following has! Be sure to get to the restaurant early to avoid the lines and a long wait. It’s closed for business on Sundays and Mondays, so plan accordingly. The restaurant has been featured in Southern Living and Travel + Leisure as one of America&aposs best fried chicken dishes.

Molina’s Cantina - 1941

Raul and Mary Molina brought their culinary expertise from Laredo, Mexico to Houston in the 1920s and opened the Old Monterrey in 1941, a precursor to Molina’s Cantina. At the time, it was one of only 5 Mexican restaurants in Houston. The family business has since spent seven decades serving up some of the best Tex-Mex in town. The Molina family is considered one of the pioneers of Houston’s unique take on the Tex-Mex tradition.

Molina’s offers a variety of popular southwestern dishes at affordable prices. The location is the perfect place to start or end an evening out on the town. Don’t miss the Buenos Tiempos Platter, a 4-person sampling of flautas, quesadillas, nachos, guacamole and chili con queso. Their Enchiladas de Tejas (cheese enchiladas with chili con carne) was named one of the greatest "guy" foods in America by Men&aposs Health magazine (2010). Finish the meal off with a delicious selection of sweet desserts. From traditional flan to decadent homemade tres leches cake, you can’t go wrong.

Lankford’s Grocery & Market - 1938

Lankford Grocery & Market opened as a grocery store in Houston’s historic fourth ward by Nona and Aubrey Lankford. The grocery store eventually added a menu of deli sandwiches that quickly made the location a hotspot for the lunch crowd. It wasn’t until the 1970s that Lankford added its most famous menu items, delicious all-beef burgers. Widely regarded as one of the best burgers in the city, Lankford offers signature creations like the Red, White and Blue burger and Grim burger, acclaimed for being loaded with jalapenos, bacon, a fried egg and macaroni and cheese.

The classic diner features old fashioned booths and �s-style decor along with an expansive outdoor patio full of picnic tables. Lankford is extremely popular so plan accordingly and be prepared to wait in line for some of the best burgers in town. The restaurant has been featured on The Food Network&aposs Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and Gourmet magazine&aposs list of 20 Burgers to Eat Before It&aposs Too Late.

Brenner’s Steakhouse - 1936

Herman and Lorene Brenners opened Brenner’s Cafe in 1936 after working for years as a waiter at the historic Rice Hotel. An immigrant from Germany, Herman Brenner worked hard to save up the $30 it would cost to buy the land and begin construction on his dream restaurant just outside of downtown. Brenner’s continued operating as a cafe until the 1950s when prime beef filets were added to the menu for $3.50 each. The cafe soon became a hugely popular steakhouse specializing in exceptional steaks, chicken, and seafood. The restaurant has still kept it’s 1950s flair over the years and includes a beautiful back garden reminiscent of Herman’s hometown in Germany.

Brenner’s offers classic steakhouse menu items like wedge salads, shrimp cocktails, and French onion soup. The menu also includes German favorites like homemade apple strudel, wiener schnitzel a la Holstein, and potato pancakes. Of course all meats are expertly prepared by an acclaimed team of chefs. In 2003 Houston restaurateur Tilman Fertitta acquired the steakhouse with a vision of renovating the property while still keeping its classic style. Diners can now appreciate beautiful views of the fountains, waterfalls, and landscape of the signature gardens.

Pizzitola’s BBQ - 1934

Texas pit master legend John Davis and his wife Leila created the recipe used in Pizzitola’s signature barbecue. The Davis’ ran their own neighborhood barbecue for years and the Pizzitola family has continued the tradition to this day. The kitchen staff boasts over 100 years of pitmaster experience and serves up some of the best brisket, pork and beef ribs, and smoked chicken in the city. The open-pit direct heat cooking method has kept Houstonians and visitors coming back loyally for over 70 years.

Finish off with Mama Pizzitola’s signature line of homemade desserts. From her classic banana pudding to pineapple coconut cake and chocolate fudge cake with pecan icing, you’ll leave full and happy.

Prince’s Hamburgers - 1934

Doug Prince discovered his first hamburger the State Fair of Texas in the early 1920s. He was so impressed with the dish that he decided to make it his career perfecting and selling them. Prince’s Hamburgers started as a small one man operation in Dallas. After a trip to Houston in 1932, Prince decided it was there that he would build his hamburger restaurant empire. He prided himself on making everything from scratch. From the burgers to freshly made Root Beer, the homemade traditions still carry on to this day. Prince even developed the round hamburger bun along with Fairmade Baking Company.

Prince’s went on to become a Houston classic. His recipes for everything from fried shrimp to homemade shakes won him awards and critical acclaim. The restaurant was even featured in Life Magazine. Prince’s still operates in various locations around town but primarily acts as a concession company at NRG Park, Rice Football Stadium, Reckling Park, Robertson Stadium, The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and The Sam Houston Race Track.

Yale Street Grill - 1923

Originally a pharmacy in the historic Heights neighborhood, Yale Street Grill is the oldest restaurant north of downtown. Abel and Mildred Dupuis, both pharmacists, founded the business in 1923. Early on they installed a soda fountain and began selling sandwiches and breakfast for those who came to pick up their prescriptions. Over time, the shop added a post office and gift shop. When Yale Street Grill was acquired in recent years, it became a full service restaurants and soda shop. Stop by for great homestyle hamburgers, turkey burgers, onion rings, and milkshakes.

James Coney Island - 1923

Grilled franks are the top dogs at this casual spot for a quick lunch or affordable dinner.
Founded in 1923, this locally owned and operated fast-food chain serves up hot dogs and other quick-serve favorites. Customers can choose to drive through, take out or dine in. The restaurant is best known for its Coney Island hot dog: a grilled all-beef wiener, chili, mustard, onions on a fresh-baked bun. Other favorites include chili pie with Fritos, cheeseburgers, cheese fries, Italian sausage sandwiches and tater tots. For dessert, choose from apple pie, brownies, milk shakes and cheesecakes.

Christie’s Seafood & Steak - 1917

Christie’s Seafood & Steak is the greater Houston area’s oldest restaurant. The family-owned steakhouse has been around for 100 years serving gulf coast seafood and Texas-sized steaks. Christie’s started as a small food and drink stand along the Galveston coastline. The family then moved the establishment into what is now the Texas Medical Center just outside downtown Houston in 1934. The restaurant quickly became a local favorite, selling 10,000 fish sandwiches per week. The restaurant made another move in 1979 to the popular Westheimer restaurant row.

After three generations, the Christie family still uses all the same recipes and hand make all the soups, salad dressings, and sauces daily. Christie’s takes great pride in using locally sourced ingredients and produce. You won’t likely find a fresher piece of meat or seafood in Houston.


Los Angeles’ Oldest Restaurants

Cole’s opened in 1908 on the ground floor the Pacific Electric building and is L.A.’s oldest public house. Henry Cole, who opened the restaurant and saloon and hung three Tiffany glass lampshades over the massive 40-foot mahogany bar, built tables from the sides of old trolley cars. These tables still stand today. Adding to the mystery of the origin of the French dip, legend has it that a customer came in and asked that the chef to put some sauce on his sandwich to make it easier to bite into, as he had a tooth ache. The chef dipped the sandwich in au jus and the rest is history. In 1989, Cole’s was designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument and after serving continually for 99 years, Cole’s briefly shut down in 2007 and re-opened in 2008 to much acclaim. Along with still serving their classic French dip sandwich, you can get a great cocktail in their backroom speakeasy The Varnish.

(credit: Philippe the Original)

Philippe Mathieu opened one of L.A.&rsquos most historic restaurants Philippe The Original (known as Philippe’s) in October of 1908, but it wasn’t until 1918 when true history happened. While making a sandwich for a customer, Mathieu inadvertently dropped the sliced French roll into the roasting pan filled with juice still hot from the oven. And, so was born the French dip sandwich. The origin of the name has been lost in history, but it either came from Mathieu&rsquos French heritage, the French roll the sandwich is made on, or because the customer’s name who happened to be a policeman was French. In 1951 Phillipe’s relocated to their present location and today the Martin and Binder family, including some 4th generation managers and partners, run the landmark restaurant. The house specialty consists of either roast beef, roast pork, leg of lamb, turkey, ham or pastrami and is served on a lightly textured, freshly baked French roll which has been dipped in the natural gravy of the roasts. Guests can add cheese and ask for it single or double-dipped, or wet. The restaurant serves somewhere around 2,000 to 3,500 French Dipped Sandwiches a day while about 100 gallons of Philippe&rsquos Hot Mustard is prepared weekly for patrons to enjoy at the restaurant, or buy from the candy counter or online.

(credit: Musso & Frank Grill Co., Inc)

Musso & Frank Grill has been a Hollywood mainstay since 1919, four years before the iconic Hollywood sign was built. Passed down through three generations, Hollywood’s elite of past and present have made Musso&rsquos a Hollywood staple. They are known as much for their commitment to tradition as they are for its superior food and classic ambiance. In fact, Musso&rsquos looks the way it did when Charlie Chaplin used to dine there and their classic menu has gone virtually unchanged for nearly 100 years. When you step into the restaurant, you are set back into another time of classic Hollywood. At Hollywood’s oldest eatery, guests sit back in red booths and choose between some of their classic dishes like the Grenadine of Beef Filet Mignon served Au Jus and the Chicken Pot Pie.

(credit: Pacific Dining Car)

Fred and Grace “Lovey” Cook opened the original Pacific Dining Car restaurant in 1921 in a railway train car parked on a rented lot in downtown Los Angeles. The restaurant is now in their fourth generation of ownership and has a second location in Santa Monica. Among many other unique features in the restaurant, they are the only fine dining restaurant in Los Angeles to serve guests 24 hours a day. Pacific Dining Car serves only the best U.S.D.A. Prime American Corn-Fed Beef and all of their steaks are aged on the premises to enhance their flavor and tenderness. Along with the steaks which are cut by their butcher and then uniquely grilled under a specialized open flame, other specialties include their breakfast menu which includes a plethora of egg dishes like the Eggs Blackstone.

(credit: Lawry&rsquos Restaurants, Inc.)

Established in 1922 by Lawrence Frank and Walter Van de Kamp, Tam O’Shanter is Los Angeles’ oldest restaurant. Operated by the same family in the same location, the Scottish inspired restaurant serves pub fare with Scottish influences while family tartans decorate the walls of their several dining rooms. In the early days of the restaurant, Walt Disney was a frequent patron and in 1968 the restaurant was renamed the Great Scot after a revamping of the menu and a major remodeling. In 1982, in honor of their 60th anniversary they decided to change the restaurant’s name back once again to Tam O’Shanter. The restaurant is now run by second, third and fourth generations of the Frank and Van de Kamp families who remain Scots by affection and serve guests popular items like the hand-carved roasted prime rib, a brisket sandwich, the Toad in the Hole, CC Brown&rsquos Hot Fudge Sundae and an amazing chocolate soufflé.

(credit: The Original Pantry Cafe)

The Original Pantry started with five employees in 1924 in a one room / 15-stool counter restaurant. The restaurant, which claims to have never closed its doors since opening, expanded a few times between 1930 and 1950 and moved into its present location at the corner of 9th and Figueroa street after 1950. The casual diner offers guests an atmosphere rich in character and history. From having the same specials for decades to being a cash only restaurant where you pay the cashier in a secure glass booth, it’ll definitely bring back memories of the olden days. While history is paramount here, the menu is nothing to scoff at. With delicious items, the menu includes everything from breakfast selections to steaks, sandwiches, cakes & pies. All items are served 24 hours a day with thick-cut sourdough bread and a saucer of coleslaw, too. And, on their blackboard, specials include the roast beef hash, country-fried steak, pork chops among other items.

Whether you’re a local of L.A. or not, chances are you’ve eaten at the legendary Canter’s Deli. The Deli originally opened in 1931 in Boyle Heights, and later moved to the Fairfax District of Los Angeles in 1948 taking over the old Esquire Theatre. Since then, it has remained and aside from its delicious deli food, it is known for its old decor. Since 1953, they have expanded a few times and it is now one of the largest delicatessens in the country measuring over 14,000 square feet. The Deli is open 24 hours a day and 363 days a year, (closing only on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur) and has fed many of Hollywood&rsquos elite over the years. Widely known as the most famous Jewish Delicatessen in LA serving its classic chicken matzah ball soup, the bakery goods are prepared fresh twice daily on the premises and favorites such as potato salad, coleslaw, egg salad, knishes and more are also prepared daily. Along with an expanded menu, other special items include the &ldquoBuck Benny&rdquo and a &ldquo7 for 1&rdquo lox platter and most popular items include the huge delicious pastrami and corned beef sandwiches and the irresistible Reuben sandwiches.

February 11, 1935 marks the day in which a lawyer named Tom Bergin unlocked the doors on the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Fairfax Ave.. With a liquor license on the wall – the second oldest in Los Angeles County, he opened Tom Bergin&rsquos Old Horseshoe Tavern & Thoroughbred Club. Drawing on his family roots from Boston, Bergin sought to create an authentic pub, defined by warmth, great food, and exceptional hospitality. It became a nexus for the LA community and has been popular ever since. In 1949 the restaurant moved down the block to a larger space, which they still occupy. Over the years, Tom Bergins became a Hollywood hangout which can be seen by the thousands of shamrocks affixed to the ceiling commemorating friends and loyal regulars. Today, it is a regular hot spot for sporting events, theater and art lovers looking for a dinner spot that is is both centrally located and offers great food. The restaurant makes everything in house including their pastas, cheeses, ice creams, breads, meats and more. Items including the Duck, Duck, Goose, the lamb t-bone, and the Not-Your-Father’s Root Beer Float have become fan favorites.

credit: Lawry&rsquos Restaurants, Inc.)

In 1938, Lawrence L. Frank and his brother-in-law Walter Van de Kamp opened the first Lawry&rsquos The Prime Rib on La Cienega Boulevard in Beverly Hills. Today, it remains in the same spot as a testament of time and of its popularity. Initially created to serve just their famous prime ribs of beef, Lawrence designed special carts to come tableside and let guests watch as it was carved. He also began to experiment with how to properly season the beef he served, and today the formula he created, Lawry&rsquos Seasoned Salt, is the world&rsquos most popular blended seasoning. After achieving much success, restaurants soon copied the menu of Lawry’s, including the sides of baked potato, creamed spinach, and whipped cream horseradish. While roasted prime ribs of beef continue to be the centerpiece of their menu 78 years later, they also offer lobster, fresh fish and vegetarian specials daily.

(credit: The Beverly Hills Hotel)

Since its christening in 1941, the iconic Polo Lounge at The Beverly Hills Hotel, has always had deep roots in Hollywood and its golden era. From Charlie Chaplin, and Marlene Dietrich to Elizabeth Taylor, Hollywood royalty has long held court at this power dining spot in LA. The Lounge features three dining areas complete with their signature pink and green motif and features an American cuisine from Chef Kaleo Adams. The menu reflects a culinary philosophy centered on sustainable cooking and sourcing from local farmers markets. Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, as well as a delicious Sunday brunch, long-time patrons can spot fondly-remembered dishes as the Polo Lounge &ldquofavorites.&rdquo Included are The McCarthy salad, the beef sirloin burger, steak tartare, the tortilla soup. For dessert the Chocolate Soufflé is a must!

The Dresden has been a family owned and an iconic, Hollywood landmark since the 1954. Along with cocktails served at the bar with live entertainment, they also present classic food and drink options in the formal dining room. In the lounge there is music from 9pm – 1am throughout the week, while the dining room gives patrons an old school dining adventure in an retro-style period setting. Resident musicians Marty and Elayne Roberts recently celebrated their 35th anniversary of performing at The Dresden. Not a lot has changed at this Hollywood lounge since it was remodeled in the &lsquo60s. It’s the way Angeleno’s love it. While you sit in the lounge, try a Dresden’s Old Fashioned, which is one of the more popular drinks, while the chateaubriand is highly recommended in the dining room.

Tito&rsquos Tacos is an iconic fast-food restaurant which has been serving up traditional Mexican Food cuisine to hungry Los Angelinos since 1959. It&rsquos Mexican Food is made fresh everyday and is based upon original recipes which have been improved upon over the past years. Tito&rsquos Tacos longstanding popularity is attributable to the fact that the industrious employees at the eatery are knowledgeable on how to properly prepare each and every menu item in such a way as to achieve the utmost flavorsome results for the restaurant&rsquos beloved and loyal patrons.

Since opening its doors in October of 1966, La Dolce Vita has served fine Italian cuisine in an intimate atmosphere giving the feel of a nostalgic club. Originally owned by George Raft, George Smith, and Jimmy Ullo, the restaurant became a favorite hot spot for Hollywood&rsquos royalty, including the the Sinatra family (Frank&rsquos favorite dish was the veal Milanese), the Reagans (Nancy has a dish named The Reagan Sand Dabs dedicated to her), the Fondas and many more. In 2003, the new owner Alessandro Uzielli gave the restaurant a face lift, but made sure to keep the old Hollywood glamour and charm of La Dolce Vita alive. For its 50th anniversary, the Beverly Hills Hollywood Commissary will be offering a 3-course anniversary menu celebrating the restaurant&rsquos most classic dishes. Those include the caesar salad, their spaghetti bolognese, a delicious tiramisu and a glass of Chianti.

(credit: Dan Tana’s and Peter Valli)

After finding himself in Hollywood playing bad guys in movies, Dan Tana, a former professional soccer player from Serbia, founded Dan Tana’s in West Hollywood in 1964. The Italian restaurant, which is famed for its celebrity clientele and being open late, has been and continues to be an insider’s place for Hollywood royalty. Located just two doors down from the legendary Troubadour nightclub, the old-school Italian restaurant is known for its dark red booths, checkered table-cloths and Chianti bottles hanging from the ceiling. The restaurant is also known for its delicious cuisine, including the famed chicken parmigiana, New York steak, white fish and Caesar salad. Chef Neno has been serving stars from Frank Sinatra to Richard Burton and Liz Taylor as well as valued regulars since 1967. In 2009, Dan Tana sold the restaurant to his good friend Sonja, and she has preserved all its traditions while also adding some personal touches.


America's Oldest Restaurants Slideshow - Recipes





41 Union Street
Boston, MA

America's Oldest Restaurant
On the Freedom Trail
One Block from Faneuil Hall



HOURS
Sun–Thurs: 11 am – 9:00 pm
Fri–Sat: 11 am – 10 pm
Union Bar open 'til Midnight

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The Union Oyster House, located on the Freedom Trail, near Faneuil Hall, enjoys the unique distinction of being America's oldest restaurant. This Boston fixture, housed in a building dating back to Pre-Revolutionary days, started serving food in 1826 and has continued ever since with the stalls and oyster bar, where Daniel Webster was a constant customer, in their original positions.


Watch the video: 15 EXTREME Wild Animal Fights (June 2022).