Last night the Husband and I went to a movie and decided to get something to eat afterward. “Cheap and cheerful” is our MO lately and so we thought we would throw caution the wind and eat at Norm’s on Pico in Rancho Park. This is only the second time I’ve been to Norm’s. It is a typical diner: Cashier up front, counter, and then booths and booths and booths, some tables in the back, well-worn carpet and my favorite part–paintings of other Norm’s locations on the walls.

But it’s the people who make a diner. And in West Los Angeles at only 10:00 at night, the crowd was pretty tame. Some high school kids, some college kids, a few families, a couple of older gentlemen and then, the Motorcycle Man. He was straight out of Central Casting with his leather jacket, ponytail, Fu Manchu ‘stache and Harley parked outside. He was alone, of course, and ate breakfast. One of the waiters had gone outside to have a smoke break and admire the custom Chopper, built for one. The waiter came back in and chatted with the lone wolf for a few minutes. Moto Man soon finished and left, outside going through the well practised motions of preparing himself and the bike for departure. Off they went into the night.

I had a lovely BLT (very fresh romaine lettuce, lots of nice tomatoes, and wheat bread that seemed not to be the typical industrial restaurant bread), my Husband had a bacon cheeseburger which he called “delicious.” The fries were fine. When you go to a diner, you go for the whole package, and we got a good one last night. Can’t wait to go back and try the pancakes.

10 thoughts on “Norm’s”

  1. I love Norms. DuPar’s has its moments too. They are old school corporate dining and great at what they do. None of that over the top a trying be something you aren’t at those places.

    Nice article. Maybe I’ll hit DuPar’s in TO on my way up to Ventura today.

  2. I love Norms! I used to go to the one on La Cienega all the time when I lived in Hollywood. Cheap and good. Wow, this post brought back memories and made me smile. Thanks!

  3. I was down in the OC earlier this week, and happened to see a Norm’s in Costa Mesa on Harbor Blvd. I wasn’t able to stop, but it looked tres inviting. Now I have a hankering for a BLT…

  4. i love norms. more specifically, i love that norms. i have many fond memories of that place. it was one of the few places near ucla that was open all the time and cheap enough for me to eat regularly. thanks for bringing it all back for me.

  5. Lumping DuPars and Norm’s together is criminal. Norm’s is the poor-man’s Denny’s. Next time you’re in that hood, try California Chicken Cafe. More bourgie for sure, but worth it. Lo-Cal Chicken Caesar…mmmmmmmmm.

  6. For diner food, my wife and I have decided that our great love is the Silver Spoon on Santa Monica Blvd in West Hollywood. Good food, good service and good prices. And it hasn’t become over-run with would-be hipsters.

  7. so’s now a bad time to mention that last time i went to dupar’s a 4-inch cockroach scurried out from our booth and traversed the entire perimeter wall, causing a domino effect as table after table screamed, jumped up, and left the restaurant?

    yeah, this was a couple months ago. needless to say i haven’t been back.

  8. I attempted to stop at Dupar’s in TO on my way up to Ventura on Saturday. The place was packed with a huge line so I wound up skipping it. A place doesn’t stay packed like that one if it has problems. That one always was clean, fast and decent food.

    Not all Dupar’s are the same in how they are run and general upkeep I’ll give you that. The one in TO was always better than the one in Glendale. The later has now been gone for years which it probably deserved.

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