Old Friends

Entering these restaurants is like taking a trip in a time machine.

Bob Burns, 202 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. (213) 393-6777. Style: Where lovers of old-time American/Continental go for huge helpings. Setting: Scottish cornball. Recommended: Caesar salad; royal steak-o-bob; gravlax. Cost per person: $18-$45.

Chez Jay, 1657 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica. (213) 395-1741. Style: Funky old-fogy serving great steaks and scampi. Setting: Old nautical, with blaring jukebox. Recommended: Scampi; butter steak; New York steak. Cost per person: $15-$30.

Knoll’s Black Forest Inn, 2454 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. (213) 395-2212. Style: Standard German with a twist, and a wine list that’s a happy surprise. Setting: Tacky Teutonic--deer heads, beer steins, cuckoo clocks--ask to sit on the patio. Recommended: Smoked salmon soup; cold fried herring with marinated raw onions and cucumber pickles; sauteed calf’s liver with fried onions and apple rings. Cost per person: $20-$30.


Rangoon Racquet Club, 9474 Little Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills. (213) 274-8926. Style: Burmese food for big bwanas. Setting: Colonial gentlemen’s club, with ceiling fans and jungle-scene mural. Recommended: Woody’s world championship chili; Rangoon crab and shrimp lumpia; chicken hash. Cost per person: $25-$50.

The Tower Restaurant, 1150 S. Olive St., Los Angeles. (213) 746-1554. Style: Old-fashioned food at modern prices. Setting: A room with a view. Recommended: Louisiana crab cake; peppered Atlantic salmon; rack of lamb. Cost per person: $20-$45.