Mike Lyman’s Grill, Hollywood 1942
Mike Lyman was a former vaudeville entertainer from Chicago who opened his first Mike Lyman’s Grill in downtown LA in 1935. There he hired the chef from Maxim's in Paris hoping to ensure culinary success. Lyman opened a second Mike Lyman’s Grill in Hollywood and also created the Flight Deck, the first restaurant at what was then the Los Angeles Municipal Airport. Lyman’s restaurants were loyally populated by the A-Listers from the worlds of show biz and sports.
This eye catching tri-fold menu has an astonishing array of selections. Besides featuring Lyman’s custom cocktails on the front cover, the interior menu features “Kosher Style Dishes” including “Stuffed Kishke” and “Gefuelte Fish”, dozens of seafood options including “Catalina Sandabs” and “Baked Baby Barracuda”. There was steak, duck, capon and “Mexican Chicken Enchiladas” to dine on, plenty of sandwiches, omelettes and fine wines. For the curious there was “Farmer’s Chop Suey (sour cream)”. We think you could have dined there several times a month without having the same thing twice.
The legacy of Mike Lyman’s Grills has been further cemented by two tidbits of literary history. In Mathew J. Bruccoli’s book, “Some Sort Of Epic Grandeur”, a biography of F. Scott Fitzgerald, he notes that Fitzgerald dined out for the last time with Sheilah Graham, a mistress, at Lyman’s Grill at the Hollywood and Vine location. Furthermore, in James Elroy’s popular 1987 novel, “The Black Dahlia” inspired by the infamous unsolved LA Murder case, Elroy writes, referring to Bucky Bleichert, a boxer who later became a cop, “…his rapier jabs peppered opponents' faces until they looked like the steak tartare at Mike Lyman's Grill”, not a very appetizing image at all.
Courtesy Private Collection.
Each print is accompanied by a copy of the interior menu where available.
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