648 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90014
Nestled downtown is a magical hideaway of fantasy, an old friend that makes you think of Disneyland. A bear stares down at you from above and you can't stop and pause to look around and be entertained. Clifton's Cafeteria reopened after a five-year-hiatus with a grandiose interior to make you not pay much attention to your food. The state of the place starts on the third floor that looks straight out of the 1920's. Watch out, is that animal really stuffed. You'll want to party up there at some point or casually eat your meal lying to yourself that your not thinking you're totally cool eating next to the lion.
Second and first floor has the great look of nature reclaiming the building with a sort of sportsman's lodge relax feel. If there was every a called day in LA you could heat yourself up by the fireplace tree that reaches the ceiling of the second floor near the bar. There's a hidden chapel you can find when your not gazing at the stuffed animals or if the waterfall is turned on.
It is a cafeteria with pizza, burgers and everything in-between to eat. The selection is wide enough that it would requite multiple visits or at least allow a large group to get very different meals. It might be hard for you to choose with all the different eats including their well known mash potatoes and gravy.
Find a seat, every place is like stepping into a scene you want to be a part of.
For those who love photos or to have an experience for lunch head to Clifton's for a special time. If only more restaurants in LA could look this fun!
*If you haven't been reading Eater LA you might not know the head chef and Beverage director(?) just left working at it. Not the greatest sign. Though the food was plentiful, nothing sampled stood out.