September 28, 2009

A Bit of Disney History in Atwater Village

The Tam O'Shanter Inn

NEXT TIME you venture into the Tam O'Shanter Inn, 2980 Los Feliz Blvd., ask for table 31. It's the 4-person booth in the corner by the fireplace. And it was where Walt Disney and his animators ate lunch in the 1920s and 1930s.

Back then, creating 1937's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Disney's studio was 2 miles away in Silver Lake, where Gelson's Market stands today on Hyperion Avenue.

Disney and his animators ate so often at the Tam O'Shanter (est. 1922), it became known as the studio commissary. And NBC LA includes it in its list of best Snow White spots in Los Angeles:
"And the inside? Looks just like a little nook-filled cottage, still. Is it a coincidence that Snow White was in the works around the time the artists would dine here?
"Snow White" isn't the only Disney connection with the Scottish-themed restaurant and pub, according to Jim Hill Media:
"Someone once told me that the houses around the Tam were built by Walt Disney for his employees to live in. I've also been told that the architecture of the Tam helped influence building design on the Pinocchio ride at Disneyland."
And if Walt's table 31 doesn't do it for you, see if table 15 is available. That was John Wayne's.

7 comments:

meekorouse said...

always been meaning to go there one of these days (but we're always running errands to Costco etc when we drive by). one of these days..

Ashtonian said...

I haven't been there since one Christmas a decade ago.

MrDigs said...

I heard that the Pet Store with the vaguely Fool-style mural in the middle of Glendale Blvd. was the original Disney Studio before their move to the Silver Lake location. Can you confirm this? Ever written a post on it?

AVN said...

Great question, MrDigs! I hadn't heard that, but poked around and found a comprehensive history of the early Disney studio locations:

* 4406 Kinsgwell Ave., LA, Summer 1923 (Uncle's house)
* 4651 & 4649 Kingswell Ave., LA, Oct 1923 to July 1925
* 2719 Hyperion Ave., LA, July 1925 to 1938 (where Gelson's is today)
* 500 S. Buena Vista St., Burbank (1939 to today)

So unless it served as temporary overflow, it looks like the Glendale Blvd. pet store in Atwater Village never housed the Mouse.

Michael Higby said...

Yea that's why I thought it was weird that the Disney Museum is opening soon in San Francisco and not your neck of the woods.

Will Campbell said...

An historical item that I believe is on the menu at Tam's (and all of Lawry's other eateries) is their version of the famed CC Brown's Hot Fudge Sundae. Legend has it CC Brown invented the confection in 1906 and it was served in the landmark Hollywood Boulevard ice cream shop until it was sadly closed down in the mid-90s. Lawry's eventually acquired the hot fudge recipe and the rights to market it and added to its restaurants' menus a couple years ago.

Oscar Uicab said...

Check Facebook john marshall high school,there is a pic of disney studio w jmhs in the background looks like it is from hyperion angle or from prospect current abc dont know but the rides in front are def 20s-30s chevys lacs fords didnt see any bmw or prius...