Dine Like It's '59 - Page 11

12 California restaurants that savor dishing up the mid-century experience
Retro Dine
Retro Dine

10 I Dal Rae Restaurant

Pico Rivera

Its neon sign screaming 'Dal Rae' and jutting brashly into the sky may suggest roadside architecture and roadside food—but don't be fooled. The Dal Rae is fine dining, with classic dishes your grandparents loved—their famous pepper steak (with black pepper), cherries jubilee theatrically flambéed tableside, and Oysters Rockefeller.

"With a menu scarcely changed since 1958," a Los Angeles Times critic wrote in 1998, "a menu that lists Steak Diane and all the other Continental dishes an up-to-date foodie would be embarrassed to admit knowing of, it still fills up every night."

"You get the feeling this place was retro when it opened in 1958," another critic wrote. The restaurant is actually a bit older than 1958, with roots in a place that opened in the 1940s.

Outside, the angular walls of fieldstone give a classic mid-century modern look. Inside, journalist Charles Perry wrote in 2003, "Instead of being low and cozy, the ceiling was high and even slightly peaked, giving the huge dining room a sort of dramatic grandeur that the older steakhouses never attempted."

• 9023 E. Washington Blvd. dalrae.com