Mel's Drive In is taking you back to 1947, when it all began.
This weekend, the family-owned restaurant chain is bringing back its classic carhop service to give Californians a taste of some classic diner and home style cooking during the state's stay-at-home period.
"Seeing all my grandfather's old photos, it's always something I've thought of bringing back," said Colton Weiss, the grandson of the original Mel and the current owner/operations manager. "This is the most fun we could have given what's going on."
On Saturday and Sunday, just pull into one of Mel's participating locations (Santa Monica, West Hollywood, Sherman Oaks or Geary/Lombard in San Francisco) and put the car in park. A Mel's Drive In server will take your order. In Santa Monica, servers will be rocking retro roller skates from noon to 3 p.m.
Then and Now: See Photos of the Carhop Service at Mel’s Drive In
The classic American diner's full menu will be available to order. Their burger, fries and drink special will run you $9.99. Want to upgrade to a classic milkshake? That'll be $13.99. Children under 10 eat free and milkshakes will be half off with the purchase of an adult entree.
When your food's ready, the servers will bring it on a tray that clamps to your car window. Just like the carhop service in the '40s, '50s and '60s, you can enjoy the full Mel's experience right from your vehicle.
In-room dining is not currently allowed in Los Angeles County due to the spread of the novel coronavirus, but Mel's Drive In is taking steps outlined in Gov. Gavin Newsom's guidelines for the reopening of restaurants. Face coverings will be worn by the employees and trays and dishes will be properly sanitized. Mel's is also allowing customers to use Apple Pay for contactless payment or you can order online for pickup.
"We want it to be safe, but we also want it to be fun," Weiss said.
Hours vary by location, so click here for Mel's Drive In hours before you roll up in your classic Thunderbird and take a bite out of your Melburger under that iconic neon sign.