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Smoke House restaurant celebrates 65 years

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Smoke House restaurant celebrates 65 years

Post by Katiedot on Thu Oct 13 2011, 07:06

This restaurant's name is, of course, the inspiration behind the name Clooney's film production company. Thanks Henway for the link:

From Daily news

Smoke House restaurant marks 65 years in Burbank

By Gregory J. Wilcox, Staff Writer

Posted: 10/12/2011 01:00:00 AM PDT

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Smoke House owner Lee Spencer at his Burbank restaurant on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2011, will celebrate the 65th anniversary of the restaurant's opening on Wednesday, Oct. 12. (Hans Gutknecht/Daily News Staff Photographer)

Rack up another milestone for the venerable Smoke House restaurant in Burbank -- an entertainment industry hangout which today celebrates 65 years of serving up its famous prime rib, garlic bread and good times.

Owned since 1983 by Lee and Marti Spencer, the Smoke House is one of the region's oldest restaurants, out-lasting such famous eateries as Chasen's and Scandia in West Hollywood and the Tail o' the Cock in North Hollywood.

"It's pretty exciting to be one of the old restaurants left," Lee Spencer said. "We've got a great location and a great customer base."

The restaurant opened at Pass Avenue and Riverside Drive in 1946, and it was an immediate hit with the Hollywood set. Bob Hope and Bing Crosby were among the early regulars.

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Three years later, it moved to its present location at Barham Boulevard and West Lakeside Drive, across the street from Warner Bros.

The studio provided a steady stream of well-heeled producers, directors and actors, including Elizabeth Taylor, Cary Grant, Rock Hudson and the casts of TV's "Murphy Brown" and "ER."

Actor George Clooney, who starred in the medical drama, was a frequent customer and even named his film company, Smokehouse Pictures, after the restaurant. Taylor's relatives and friends held a reception there after her funeral in March.

Waitress Judy Dennis was hired three days before her 21st birthday and is now in her 50th year with the Smoke House.

"I just love my job. I don't go to work and talk about problems. I go to work and talk about the fun I have with the people," she said.

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She recalled an encounter with Grant, who is credited with reciting "Judy, Judy, Judy" in the 1939 movie "Only Angels Have Wings." Although the actual quote was actually "Judy, Judy," he would often add the third "Judy" to appease female fans - and one day whispered the famous line to Dennis on his way out of the restaurant.

"He was such a gentleman," she recalled.

The Spencers have been in the restaurant business 40 years. Lee Spencer had a simple message for the staff the day he took ownership of the Smoke House.

"I said, `Make sure you give the kids as good service as the parents because they are the future,"' Spencer recalled.

Spencer's philosophy paid off with North Hollywood resident Dorothy Moser, a retired math teacher. She started coming to the restaurant in the 1950s, bringing along her son, Paul, who was then just 6.

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"I think one parent taking a child to a nice restaurant is the best way to teach them proper behavior, how to pay the bill and remember the tip and all of that stuff," she said. "It's so important for boys that when they finally get old enough to take a girl on a date they have confidence how to handle things in a restaurant."

Paul Moser III, a musician and recording engineer, learned those lessons well, and today the Smoke House is his favorite restaurant.

"It's the atmosphere, man, it's comfortable. You go in there and it's like a time machine. It's the '50s again. It's that big old wooden bar," Moser said. "It's got all that history."

Gary Olson, president and CEO of the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, is also a longtime customer.

"It's an institution," he said. "Sixty-five years is a momentous occasion, and they deserve to be congratulated."

If you go: A 65th birthday celebration will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2011 at the Smoke House Restaurant, 4420 W. Lakeside Drive, Burbank. The restaurant will also donate 10 percent from this month's sales of its garlic bread to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles. In addition, the Smoke House will offer a certificate for a free brunch to anyone born Oct. 12, 1946. For more information, go to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Katiedot
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Re: Smoke House restaurant celebrates 65 years

Post by Cinderella on Thu Oct 13 2011, 14:10

That's cool!

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Re: Smoke House restaurant celebrates 65 years

Post by it's me on Thu Oct 13 2011, 16:59

thanks
always interesting to know things related to George alien

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Re: Smoke House restaurant celebrates 65 years

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