Christmas Lunch At Pacific Dining Car

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Pacific Dining Car Sign

Pacific Dining Car Sign

Since there isn’t very many fine dining restaurants open on Christmas Day, we decided to have lunch at the Pacific Dining Car which is a fine dining restaurant that is open 24 hours a day. I’ve heard about the Pacific Dining Car multiple times before but this was our first opportunity to try it out. The Pacific Dining opened in 1921 which as of this writing makes it couple of years short of 100 years in business.

Pacific Dining Car Business Cards

Pacific Dining Car Business Cards

There are two locations, one in Santa Monica and the original location on 6th and Witmer Street in Los Angeles. We arrived at the 6th and Witmer location a little before 12:30PM and parked our car with the valet. Parking here is not free and will cost you $9.00. After taking a picture of the restaurants iconic sign, we headed inside the restaurant where the hostess asked us how many in our party and then scrambled to find us a table.

After couple of minutes of waiting while the hostess went in and out between dining rooms, she came back to escort us to our table. The restaurant was pretty busy during lunch. It seems others decided to skip cooking at home for Christmas and just eat out. Later as we were leaving, I overheard the hostess’s phone conversation in which she told the person on the other end that the restaurant was very busy and booked for the evening.

Pacific Dining Car Place Settings

Pacific Dining Car Place Settings

My parents and I browsed the menu while we waited for our waiter to arrive. Since we were going to go visit multiple airline lounges when we arrived at LAX, we decided to order two main dishes and share them. I ordered the Pacific Dining Car’s signature baseball steak cooked medium rare and my dad decided to go with the country breakfast with bacon and sausage for the two meat options. For the table, I also ordered the lobster Mac and cheese for the three of us to share. To drink, my mom stuck with water while my dad ordered a Diet Coke and I ordered an iced tea. The Diet Coke here came in a bottle which mean no refills. I’ve noticed more and more restaurants doing this over the last couple of years and I do agree the soda tastes better, but I would rather go with the fountain version with refills.

Pacific Dining Car Iced Tea With Condiments

Pacific Dining Car Iced Tea With Condiments

Pacific Dining Car Basket Of Bread

Pacific Dining Car Basket Of Bread

Pacific Dining Car Butter

Pacific Dining Car Butter

My iced tea arrived with a small plate of sweetness and sugar along with half a lemon which was wrapped in muslin to keep the seeds and pulp out of the iced tea. All nice and fancy but it came at a cost of $5.95 for the iced tea. Shortly after the drinks arrived, toasted baguette pieces with butter arrived. The bread and butter tasted really good! So good that we asked for a second order of bread and butter.

Pacific Dining Car Country Breakfast

Pacific Dining Car Country Breakfast

Pacific Dining Car Baseball Steak

Pacific Dining Car Baseball Steak

The food seemed to take a while to arrive. Just as we were wondering what was taking so long, the table next to us who arrived before us got their food. After another couple of minutes, our food finally arrived. The country breakfast while it tasted good just wasn’t worth the $31.95 price tag. Both the sausage patty and the bacon tasted high quality but I thought the $31.95 price was a bit excessive. The Pacific Dining Car’s signature baseball steak was whatever in both my parents and my opinion. First of all the presentation was not very appetizing. It was literally a piece of meat slapped on top of a cold plate. Secondly, for a cut of meat that costs $57.95 we expected something much more tender. My mom and I both had a hard time cutting into the steak.

Pacific Dining Car Lobster Mac And Cheese

Pacific Dining Car Lobster Mac And Cheese

The lobster Mac and cheese was the one shining star out of the three items that we ordered. It was made with orecchiette pasta and the lobster was not overcooked, which is a common problem for lobster Mac and cheese and many restaurants. My parents also agreed that the lobster Mac and cheese was the clear winner out of the three dishes that we ordered for lunch.

Pacific Dining Car Bill

Pacific Dining Car Bill

Pacific Dining Car Lindor Chocolate

Pacific Dining Car Lindor Chocolate

Once we were finished with our food, we asked for the check and my dad paid the bill which came out to a total of $132.22 before tips. For a restaurant thats been around for almost 100 years, they must be doing something correctly to have been in business that long, but my parents and I will probably not be eating here again anytime soon. For the prices we paid, we expected something better than the tough cold piece of meat served to us on a cold plate. We’ve eaten at Ruth’s Chris, Lawry’s, Flemings, Mortons, Maestro’s, Taylor’s Downtown, Gibsons In Chicago and many more steakhouses where the prices are comparable or more to Pacific Dining Car but the meat was way better.

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