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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Favorite restaurants - past & present

Does anyone out there remember Navarre's at Uptowne Plaza? My parents took me there a couple of times when I was just a sprout. Recently Jason's Mom was telling me how good their Ceasar salad was (I don't remember it) but I do remember a tasty steak or two. Rumor has it that my aunt dated someone who used to hang out there and was a member of the mafia and he proposed to her but she turned him down...?

I digress.

I was reminiscing to myself today about some of my favorite restaurants here in the Valley, past and present. Past also includes Lunt Avenue Marble Club. Remember that place? They would give the kiddos marbles and they had a drink called "the pot" and it was called so because it was served in a glass type "flower pot" with long straws and it was a fruity/rummy drink so presumably due to the size you could "get potted." Or you could order the drink for one but it was called a "Bahama Mama." What a great place. Their zucchini (fried) and mushrooms were to die for and... their pizza - don't get me started! Actually my Mom's pizza (see prior posts) reminds me of their pizza so I usually get nostalgic for Lunt when I eat it. Lunt had a brief stint about 10 years ago (am I right on that date?) when they opened again inside a resort on 26th St./Camelback (was it Crown Plaza?) but it didn't last long, alas...

Then there is Oscar Taylor's which I believe was originally owned by the same folks as Lunt. They had a "garbage" salad (like a cobb salad) and I say had but I should say have because they are still open (right?) because they opened a new restaurant on Camelback a couple of years ago but I haven't been there. They also had great zucchini muffins and sourdough rolls (I hope I am not making this up but I remember a sourdough bread they had called C-Steele that was sold at Euromarket - now known as AJ's Fine Foods). And I remember in the bar they served a roast beef sandwich that was very tender and yummy. mmmmm

Anyone remember this place? Victoria Station at the old Fish Market Location on Camelback near 16th St. (now known as Bluewater Grille). They had a caboose that you could sit in and I would order shirley temples and my Dad would have a tequila sunrise and we would share a skillet of sauteed mushrooms (mmm they were so yummy) and they had amazing french dip sandwiches and a good salad bar.

*One more - Markgraft's Pharmacy - I might be spelling this wrong. This was a little mom & pop pharmacy on Central/Camelback that also sold gifts and had a soda fountain. I remember the waitresses (sweet ladies) named Peggy and Maria. Maria made tamales every other Wednesday and my Dad would order burnt toast (jokingly) in the mornings when we would have breakfast there before he would whisk me off to school at Madison Park. I would have an old fashioned glazed donut and bottled grape juice. It was heaven. All of the people there were friendly, it was kind of like "Cheers" without the booze. And I don't think anyone missed it. It was a special place. My favorite of all of the above, I think.

Presently some of my favorite places for dining include: Mariscos Playa Hermosa, Julioberto's, Postino on Central, Tokyo Express (the gourmand I am not always - budget, budget), Tommy V's Osteria, NYPD Pizza, Chez Marilyn (my Mom's), Chez Char (my aunt's) and Chez kitchen wench (that's my place). It's always a good thing when one likes one's own cooking.

But when you go out, you don't have to clean up the pots and pans...hence this post.

Happy eating.

*recently I gained a new client who used to work at this pharmacy and she knew all of the same people I did. What a gas!

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