Happy 50th, Lucy's El Adobe

The Melrose Mexican food favorite celebrates by giving back.

By Alysia Gray Painter
|  Tuesday, Feb 11, 2014  |  Updated 7:56 AM PDT
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Happy 50th, Lucy's El Adobe

Lucy's El Adobe Cafe

The Melrose Boulevard Mexican food favorite marks its first 50 years with a fundraiser for St. Vincent Meals on Wheels.

There are plenty of hefty coffee table books spotlighting the hum and buzz of a classic Hollywood studio, from the costume shop to the mill to the commissary, the on-lot restaurant where much of the deal-making got done.

But there doesn't seem to be a book -- as of yet -- that details those restaurants that sit just outside the main studio gate, the hangouts that became as starry as the studio itself.

Burbank's own The Smoke House and Warner Bros. go way back, and you can often find Fox people breakfasting at John O'Groats. Culver Studios people were known for meeting for drinks at the Culver Hotel.

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And then there's Lucy's El Adobe. The Melrose Boulevard Mexican food restaurant has sat just south of Paramount Studios for a half century, meaning that the casts and crews of dozens of movies and sitcoms have repaired there over the years, at the end of a long shooting day, for beer and enchiladas.

You can see the headshots lining the dimly lit walls of the atmospheric eatery, which is known for staples like tacos, tortilla chips, and a strong margarita.

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Lucy's, which is still helmed by Lucy Casado and her daughter Patricia, marks its 50th birthday on Tuesday, Feb. 11 with a fundraiser for St. Vincent Meals on Wheels. The buffet-style dinner will feature several Lucy's classics, and the proceeds will help out the senior nutrition program.

Tickets are $100.

If you can't stop by during the benefit/birthday party, swing by to wish Lucy and everyone a happy 50 years in the business. It is a rather special thing to operate outside a studio's gates, as the photos lining the walls can attest. Oh, yes, and Lucy's is a longtime favorite of politicians, too, including Governor Jerry Brown, who made Lucy's his unofficial campaign base camp in the 1970s.

Other celebs who've snacked on tortilla chips over the years? It's a lengthy list. Winona Ryder, Tom Selleck, Lily Tomlin, Henry Winkler...

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