A lot of friends have piled into cars and headed out Route 66 toward California. Not all of them stop, stay, and create a legendary restaurant. That’s exactly what happened here in 1946. In that heady post-war boom of entrepreneurial spirit, three friends left Cleveland and ended up in South Pasadena. An old diner called Hamburger Mac’s was for sale on Fair Oaks Avenue. The buddies scraped together the cash, became partners and created Gus’s– simply the yummiest place for traditional BBQ in the Los Angeles area. And that tradition continues. (In fact, ABC Channel 7 agrees and included Gus’s BBQ in their top 7 BBQ joints in Southern California.)
Ribs, pork, chicken and brisket are on the menu, along with all-American favorites like burgers, chicken fried steak, flat iron steak, chili, fried catfish and a few contemporary items like a pesto chicken sandwich and jambalaya pasta. Traditional sides abound. (Did someone say sweet potato fries!?)
The original sign competes each night with the neon across the street at Fair Oaks Pharmacy and Soda Fountain making this downtown spot a comfort food lovers dream.
Needless to say, it’s kind of hard to stick to a diet in South Pas…
(Hat tip to Pasadena blogger Ben Wideman, whose series over at the sky is big in pasadena inspired today's neon sign shot...)