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In Casa Gallardo, there was a Ray Gallardo who expanded it into a chain and ran it for a number of years. Before he sold it, he opened one in Clayton. That’s where we imbibed. I commended him for the speedy mixologists and he commented, “Yes, they steal more than any other bartenders in St. Louis.”
At the Chase Club in the hotel, there was manager Henry “Hack” Ulrich. Hack enjoyed regaling guests with a reminiscence of Frank Sinatra’s no-show for his engagement. It seemed that Sinatra cancelled the morning following a spat with his gf Ava Gardner, who beat him with a shoe. Upon hearing that, Hack phoned Morris Shenker, who in turn, called his client Jimmy Hoffa. After a conversation with Hoffa, Sinatra agreed to return to complete the engagement, which he did.
The original Tony’s on Broadway was where you could count on gingham tablecloths and chianti wine bottles. Nearby was Al Barone’s Al’s steakhouse. At the Rahtskellar in the original Lenox Hotel on Washington Avenue, steaks were prepared before your eyes. Also, owner Gordon Heiss created the Mayfair salad dressing – still in use today.  Port St. Louis (seafood house) in Clayton was where servers vowed that they were to employ used seafood shells over and over.
AH, MEMORIES of other dineries that would make present eateries pale in comparison. Such was Ruggeri’s on the Hill where organist Stan Kann entertained; Kotabuki, Myron Levy’s outpost on Gaslight Square that purveyed Japanese specialities he learned while serving in Jimmy Doolittle’s Flying Tigers in World War II; Teutenberg’s marvelous bakery goods and sandwiches; Fio’s La Forquette at West County Mall; Minna Evans’ Gold Fried Chicken Loaf; Mrs. Yoest’s Hitching Post and Sam Zwibleman’s Sam the Watermelon Man.

6 Responses to “THERE WAS THE TIME WHEN. . .”

  • Eagle says:

    Myron Levy served as the adjutant of the 75th Fighter Squadron of the 23rd Fighter Group, based in Kweilin, China. The 75th was formed overseas with cadres from the American Volunteer Group of the Chinese Air Force, popularly known as the Flying Tigers. The Tigers were under the command of Gen. Claire Lee Chennault, not Jimmie Dolittle. (Source: My Magnificent Journey; My Adventures in the Army Air Corps by Myron D. Levy.)

    The Kotobuki, Myron and wife Rebecca’s labor of love, thrived during the heyday of the phenomena known as Gaslight Square. The restaurant was well-reviewed in the New Yorker and became a sight-em restaurant, just east of Wade and Lois DeWoskin’s Port St. Louis and across the street from the Jay and Fran Landesman’s Crystal Palace.

  • non-delusional says:

    Who is “Smelly Mellie” and what the H*** is (s)he talking about?
    Thanks for the info Eagle — interesting that we, here in Ole St. Lou has (had?) a real member of the famous Flying Tigers living here.

  • non-delusional says:

    PS Jerry, So sorry to hear of the loss of your sister. My condolences to you and your family.

  • Mickey says:

    Speaking of Mr Gallardo, in the early 70s when I lived in Frontenac, we would sit late at nite with Ramon after closing at his original place in Westport. He told us one nite about driving to Mexico with daughter to purchase decorative items for a new restaraunt and filling up that old car and dead heading back to the Lou.

  • TOWNCAR says:

    The late great Gordon Heiss’s granddaughter lives I’m the CWE…I tried without luck to copy his recipe…fail…so I invented my own that added to my special salad and emerged a win, of sorts. The Mayfair was the site of my late brother-in-law and the late Robert Hyland’s first location of the newly formed MEDIA CLUB. (circa 1958)

    “HACK” Ulrich was just that. If one would grease his palm with the expected gratuity, one could expect a favorable table next to or right below the entertainment of the evening. I personally disliked that approach, and one evening starring the Kingston Trio I gave HACK a wad of one dollar bills…for a table of 16. When he finally figured out that I had “stiffed him” as he was taught, never forgot. When the Tenderloin Room was up and running after a remodel, my (late) wife and myself were heading to the car passing by the Tend-Rm…HACK purposely stood in the middle of the hall with his back to us. My wife was not aware, yet mentioned such a rude display… and I gave HACK a silent finger passing by…he passed away having never seen each other again. OK HACK, how much did you kick in for a spot at your “Last Supper”? He probably expected free wine.

    Having started out at the infamous “SteepleChase Club” at age 17…I would fill out the cards for Harry Fender as employed by The Electrolux Corp. (Vacuum cleaner salesman) my beers were never denied, and my group got a laugh especially when I got the tab for the evening.

    The Chase Club was a different story…they featured rock.-n-roll bands and gave customers great service and lots of fun. Got to hand it to Harold Koplar…he liked great food, transported it to his new Lodge of the 4 Seasons, and got a tone of biz as a result. [WE] went to the Lodge 4x a year for a long weekend for many years.

    I then married, changed direction, and prospered for 41 years, and have had to live thru the sad intermission. Life goes on.

  • TOWNCAR says:

    ^^^one can spot the “spellcheck” correction changes that was recently written about in the WSJ. Sometimes advances in technology are NOT.

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