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IN BRIEF

Nonfiction

June 30, 1996|SUSAN SALTER REYNOLDS

CHASEN'S: Where Hollywood Dined, Recipes and Memories by Betty Goodwin (Angel City Press: $18.95; 98 pp.). Richard Nixon, Madonna, Nancy Reagan. You know they have something in common, but you can't put your finger on it. It's not politics. It's Chasen's, the Hollywood restaurant that one New Yorker piece--published when word of the restaurant's closing in 1995 got out--likened to Maxim's in Paris and 21 in New York. It's not the food; it's the clientele and Chasen's was the symbol of an era. This brief history evokes some of the glamour, although I suspect that it was not produced to Betty Goodwin's usually faultless aesthetic specifications. The old photographs and the type are green on cream-colored pages, which is fine for the creamed spinach recipe (don't even think about making it) but murder on the photographs.

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