Tuesday, August 21, 2007



Fraulein Tania gets her German on.

I’m a published food writer now. My friend Josh Tyson is an editor over at Dining Out magazine and while we were chatting about Thomas Keller’s restaurant in Vegas, he said, “You want to write an article about it?” I did. And they loved it. Apparently the editor said, “Now that’s what I’m talking about!” after she read it. So the following restaurant review was written by a PROFESSIONAL. Yes.

Lowenbrau Keller restaurant in Los Angeles: HOLY FUCK! Why have I never heard of this place before? Our friend Dave Peters told us about it. “It’s crazy in there,” he said. Now that we’ve been there, that’s an understatement. Apparently the owners had something to do with a Hollywood set designer. Boars heads, wine kegs, suits of armor, antlers, there’s so much shit crammed in there. But that’s just the half of it.

The chandelier above the piano. And oh that bar (right.)

The “staff” is the other part that makes this place so delightfully crazy. There’s just two of them. Two old ladies: the owner (not sure what she does, she seated us and that was that) and Fraulein Olga, the cook and waitress. I knew I was getting into something crazy when I called and I spoke with the owner. She didn’t really seem like she wanted us to come. But she grudgingly said we could come at 8:30. I hung up without even giving her a name or anything for the reservation.

We decided it would be fun to show up early. We arrived at 8. “Oh you’re lucky,” she said when we walked into the Black Forest. “There’s supposed to be a party of five, but they haven’t shown up.” Meaning if they had shown up we wouldn’t be allowed in. It was even funnier when, after we were seated, we realized there were only two other people in the whole restaurant.

After ogling at our extremely German surroundings for a few minutes, a giant hulk of a German woman arrived. I later learned this was Fraulein Olga. She told us, in a very annoyed way, that there were no menus, “I will tell you what I have.” I think there were three things to choose from: chicken schnitzel, veal schnitzel, and sausage. “And you have to hurry up.” Okay, okay. Tania took the veal, so I went for the chicken. After she poured us a couple Spaten’s, she disappeared into the kitchen to make our dinners.

Dead animals provide the light.

Tania’s father is German and she’s fiercely proud of her heritage. She explained that that wasn’t unusual at all, but typical of the Hofbrau style. Didn’t bother me. And when the food finally arrived, it was amazing. It was your typical German fare, but it was done very well.

I make funny faces.

Suddenly the party of five arrived. They were scolded. And they had an extra person. “You did not tell me it was a party of six!” she boomed at them. GASP! They don’t tolerate that kind of inaccuracy in Germany.

Tania wants her bday party there, and while it looks like a fine place to have a party, I’m not sure it would work in practice. They don’t seem to like customers. Although I left a rather handsome tip, and when we were leaving, Fraulein Olga said, “Good night. And thank you for being so generous.”

I read that the Lowenbrau Keller was one of Elvis’ favorite places to eat in LA. And it is now one of mine. Apparently it really goes off during Octoberfest. Can’t wait.

Out back in the parking lot are a bunch of movie props.


yes kwistefe is back. this one makes me want to make a tshirt that reads, "that is at the limit of close to the gay." as sean cliver said, "that describes just about everything that was ever in jackass and big brother." anyway, a letter from belgium:

Hello David,

what is by you? good?

sorry for the retard in response but i know you were not concerning
about it. I have sporadically the access to internet. It is
pleasureful that you give your news to me.

Hey, i joke hey when i say you are the gay! we are not the pink team!
(but i see the photo of you and your dick with mustard or such on the
blog somewhere...that is at the limit of close to the gay;)

That remembers to me when you send at me some Big Brother stickers and
i receive of rollerblades with the gay colors, it was such crazy laugh
(and i still have them). Every sonday, near a park where i live, the
rollerbladers come and exhibition their gayness moves and i film that
sometimes with my camera in ridicule ==> maybe i will do the "montage"
someday of the rollerbladers doing such with a Slayer background

you have not the portable phone? that is unbelievable crazy cool!
today every has the phone in their ear and they talk blablabla to the
others. and i too, so maybe i am the gay without aknowledge!

Hey you say about my brother BK. It is the bad news with him often.
He is now in the St Gilles prison: it is the tough nut to residate
there, you must believe. Sorryly enough, he does the stupid acts
without thinking. And so done he does 3 years for stealing homes and
the cars, and for the drugs he possess at the arrestation (somewhat of
cocaine). He did by example also to break a window shop to get the
bottles of beer, and all was taked on video surveillance! the idiot
thing, not? I will not elongate the other further things because the
police service has a long listing!

But hey, if not, have you listenend to the band? Maybe you do not
like. we have other songs but must record.

I read you soon.



Secret Headquarters said...

Here is a hint for your next visit to the Lowenbrau:

Have a seat at the bar. There you will find the menus. They might not want to serve everything listed but at least you can see what you are missing out on. Get those ladies talking (they seemed to really enjoy Dancing With the Stars when we were there last) and you might get a little back rub. Finish your plate completely and you'll usually get a "good job!" out of them...

(labbe-) duddel said...

dear mr. carnie
feeling uncomfortable and unwanted in a german restaurant is a common experience. only people from the "stammtisch" and longtime guests will be heartly welcomed.
i worked for 4 years in a taditional german (hesian) Äbbelwoi-Lokal (appelwine-pub) in frankfurt and the worst thing you could do as a stuffmember was being friendly to random customers. only the ones who come regular for more than 3 years were treadted kindly. i witnessed that even longtime customers had been mocked when they have left.
you have to consider, that "service" in germany is a completely diffrent concept over here than it is in the u.s.a. the thought of making a customer feel good is not as much focused. especially in the gastronomy this seems to be contraproductive but somehow it works out. it seems that people want to be treated that way.
so far with my anthropological informations for you.
best wishes and a "hau rein" from germany to your fiancee and you, guten appetit und schönen sonntag

the real murphy said...
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