I went on a first date with a nice young man when I was about 20 years old. He was trying to impress me, so he took me to Lawry’s The Prime Rib in Century City, CA. That location is no longer there,
but there was a larger than life portrait of a Scottish Beefeater in a red tartan kilt and full royal regalia watching like a sentry over the very stately lobby. Being of Scottish and British heritage, his presence captivated me for the entire wait (it was a long one, even back then). In a perfect story, I would have married the guy from the first date and we would have lived happily ever after. As it turns out, the relationship never blossomed from the first date for me and the guy–but it did for me and Lawry’s!
At to my first visit at Lawry’s, I have to admit as a snarky young adult (who may have gotten carded and denied the wine I ordered), I was shocked by the wait staff’s uniforms. Then, I did not have words for their starched shirtwaist frocks and caps. Today, I would say it was like a cheerier version of the uniforms on Downton Abbey. The staff were called by their surnames: “Mr. Carson” or “Mrs. Bates.” They served a spinning salad table-side, the likes of which I have never been able to duplicate. Admittedly, I haven’t really tried because I’d rather eat it at Lawry’s! Their stainless steel carving station was wheeled over and just the right amount carved off for each person’s order, and side dishes were available on the spot.
Today, nothing has changed. The ambience is stately and classic. The food is still impeccable. Mrs. Bates still takes your order and spins your salad. And she’s still wearing the same starched uniform as the first time I visited Lawry’s! Mr. Carson still wheels the stainless steel trolley table-side to carve dinner to your liking.
My husband Ed and I visited the Lawry’s location in restaurant row off the Las Vegas strip. We celebrated our anniversary and Mrs. Bates gave us a fancy decadent dessert. We left very full, very grateful for our blessings, and thinking all nostalgic thoughts.
How does a traditional place appeal to younger generations?
A few weeks later, my anniversary at Lawry’s was a downloaded memory, when we received a tiny box via snail mail. It was a gift from of Lawry’s! Seasoned Pepper to thank us for choosing Lawry’s as the place to celebrate our anniversary. It was packed by AbilityFirst., an organization that looks beyond disabilities, focuses on capabilities, and expands possibilities.
As a student of generational study, I am fascinated by this partnership. Restaurants provide free meals for good causes with little recognition or return on their investment. But in this partnership, Lawry’s has made an investment in a cross-section of our population that may never patronize them. Lawry’s has become more than a restaurant. They have become life changers.
And that is very much a millennial characteristic, not traditional. Kudos to you, Lawry’s!
If you are ever in the vicinity of a Lawry’s, please go eat dinner and just pretend you are at Downton Abbey! Their food, their ambience does not disappoint. And your dinner will help them change lives.
This is not a paid endorsement. This is me gushing over my favorite restaurant.
No matter how old or young you are,
Lawry’s The Prime Rib
Bridge Builders’ Best Place
for a ‘special occasion dinner.’