Friday, February 18, 2011

Scandia Restaurant located on Sunset Strip / Beverly Hills

                               

"There's Ma Maison, La Scala and Scandia. And of the newer ones, I hear that Le Dome is quite nice.” – Dialogue from American Gigolo, 1980. 



 

                                    Scandia. 9040 Sunset. 1946-1989.

Some of my earliest memories are at Scandia. It was one of my parents favorite destinations.  (I was lucky they never left me with baby sitters). We settled into regal red leather chairs in the nearby bright, glass-walled dining room that seemed to float over lit-up Los Angeles. We drove into Scandia’s huge driveway where you knew Warren Beatty or Natalie Wood would soon emerge from a sleek black car and into this mid century modern building. Near the entrance was a moody, rat pack wooden bar. The Scandia chefs served perfect Swedish meatballs in silver platters and beer mugs with names of notable Scandia ‘Club of the Vikings’ guests such as Errol Flynn were displayed.


Scandia was very elegant with paneled woods, copper and brass fixtures,  royal blue and white china and crystal vases. The principal decorations were coats of arms. Specialties here included "Lammesaddel", "Viking Sword", "Hamlets Dagger" (fresh lobster pieces non-greasily fried with exquisite tartar sauce) , and Danish pastries. Scandia Restaurant had an award winning wine cellar with over 30,000 bottles of wine in the '80s. From 1950 through 1980, this restaurant received Holiday Magazine awards. Scandia Restaurant also received many other accolades for the cuisine. They served their last meal on May 4th. 1989. The restaurant tried to open a few times as other residencies, but have failed. The structure is still standing vacant today on the corner of Sunset and Doheny, but rumored to come down in the next few years for a massive development. 




                    The building today at Sunset and Doheny




This is a very rare 1940's wall sconce that once hung inside Scandia. (You can see a few rows of these old wall hangings in the photo at the top of this post!) Hard to believe it survived after all these years and now hanging in my kitchen! Makes me want to play Duke Ellington and cook some Swedish Meatballs!


This is one of the Original Door Handles a friend of mine is fortunate to have. 


Original Letter that once hung on the facade. This is currently owned by a resident it Palm Springs.


Original cigarette holder I picked up an estate sale.


Ashtray circa 1960s  - Ebay score!







 
This porcelain tea cup was submitted from a Vintage Los Angeles, Carly Shay. "I was was hoping you'd do a tribute to Scandia. My dad worked there from 1979-1989. My sisters and I enjoyed their food often but especially looked forward to their chocolate-covered strawberries...they were huge!
 
 


The Machbooks I personally found in a jar at my parents house located in their bar. And I uncovered the 1960's Postcard in my fathers desk years back.


Original Menu!









18 comments:

  1. Looking for a dessert served at Scandia with Lingonberries. I would love the recipe for this parfait which was served in a tall glass with a wonderful creme and Lingonberries layered.

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  2. I have a menu from Scandia! I will have to look to see if this desert is on the menu! Thanks!

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  3. I have an old picture from the Scandia's 5th anniversary that I was going to post a link to but it doesn't look like I can. It's nice to see an article about Scandia though, my grandfather was the chef there for a few years and I enjoy reading about places that he worked. If you have any information on the Bit Of Sweden I would love to read about it too, as he worked there prior to working at Scandia. I think those were the only two L.A. restaurants he worked at though, before moving on to Santa Anita Racetrack and places in Orange County and Las Vegas.

    Sorry, I've gotten a bit rambly but the main point is to say thank you for the lovely article :)

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    1. The Bit of Sweden was owned by Fred Glow. At the time of hid death in the late 1950's ownership passed to his wife (my aunt) Lillian Glow. She died in 1959 and the restaurant was closed. The wife of my fathers twin brother, Alice Broude was a waitress.

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  4. Ali

    PLEASE scan and post the Scandia menus! Biff med log - Kadellomar - all the goodies - and yes the Lingonberry Pudding! Doug

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  5. The closest I could find to a recipe for the Lingonberry pudding is found at http://scandinavianfood.about.com/od/dessertrecipes/r/Rodgrod-Med-Flode-Danish-Red-Berry-Pudding-With-Cream.htm

    An instand form of it is made by junket and can usually be found in the jello section of the supermarket in Rasberry or Strawberry flavor.

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  6. I have all the letters from the Scandia sign out front which were given to me by one of the later residents I knew that had attempted to re-open the restaurant and call it "Legacy." Lasted 5 minutes... but I have the iconic letters and I treasure them.

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    1. Good for you! I am envious. Treasure them, maybe find a way to display them safely in your home, and NEVER let them go. I spent many happy evenings there with my family, and it makes me very happy to know the sign still exists in substantial part.

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  7. Thank You for the article, and great pictures of Scandia. For my Senior High School Prom, back in May of 1970, my date, and other friends had a wonderful time there.

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  9. Hi Alison thank you a very cool blog im in Nor Cal for vacays it was SoCal Scandia was a family fave as was Bit of Sweden

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  11. My dad, Edward Brown, was a sous chef at Scandia's when I was a little girl. I was too young to remember it, but he has a lot of fond memories and good stories about the movie stars he would meet. They had a hamburger which had shredded beets and capers in it, then topped with a fried egg. He met George Fisher at Scandias, who hired him to be the chef at the Witchburners Restaurant, which I guess shared location with Agnes Morehead's studio business.

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  12. So great to see this - my grandfather was a chef at Scandia's.

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  13. I loved Scandia! My parents took me there too. It knocked my socks off.

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  14. LA Public Library has old menu archives online ; SCANDIA WAS EXPENSIVE!!

    http://dbase1.lapl.org/dbtw-wpd/exec/dbtwpub.dll?AC=GET_RECORD&XC=http://dbase1.lapl.org/dbtw-wpd/exec/dbtwpub.dll&BU=http%3A%2F%2Fdbase1.lapl.org&TN=menus&SN=AUTO22676&SE=1903&RN=2&MR=20&RF=web+tab+report+maya&DF=Pin&RL=0&DL=0&NP=3&ID=&MF=&MQ=&TI=0

    Archive search page:
    http://www.lapl.org/collections-resources/visual-collections/menu-collection

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  15. I remember a Scandia Sunday brunch drink served in a large wineglass filled with champagne, and a full peach that had been marinated in some kind liquor. Yum!

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  16. My family lived in West Hollywood from 1963 - 1967. My mother worked at Scandia during that time. I can remember her coming home saying "Diana Ross came in for dinner tonight. She was dripping in white furs even though it was summer." She met many other celebrities during her time there. I miss her coming home every night telling us who she had met, who was nice (and who was not!). We lived just a few blocks away. Ah the good old days.

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