I remember very few childhood outings in the 1960s with my rather sickly grandfather Charlie, but I do remember Norms. For a rare treat he’d take a few of his many grandkids to the now-gone Norm’s in Los Feliz, and we thought it was just swell. Today 17 branches remain, most notably the parent in West Hollywood, and I’m here to tell you — if you haven’t been since you were a kid, consider returning. It’s an L.A. coffee-shop classic, it’s open 24-7, and it’s a bargain in a high-rent neighborhood.
The food is coffee-shop standard, nothing transcendent but a solid notch above the IHOP norm, with house-ground beef, homemade vanilla ice cream and homemade soups. And there is something profoundly satisfying about finding a clean, well-lighted, professionally staffed coffee shop that will serve you a well-made meal for less than $10 at any hour — and on La Cienega, no less.
Although I most love the original (ask for the waitress named, what else, Norma), all the branches (from Anaheim to Riverside) deliver the bargain goods — and they’re all open 24 hours a day.
470 N. La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood, 310.657.8333, normsrestaurants.com. B, L & D 24 hours daily. American. No booze. AE, MC, V. $