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The insider’s view of Downtown’s culture, food, drinks, and the people who shape it.


Phillipe the Original

Phillipe the Original

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While you won’t find James Dean’s red jacket hanging in the corner, or a Johnny Otis album playing over the speakers, you will find a healthy dose of Los Angeles history in the Original Philippe restaurant and deli. Since it’s current location opened in 1951, Philippe’s has been serving its six signature french dipped sandwiches to customers for generations. The telephone booths, model train, and signed baseballs all compliment the walls of this family-style restaurant, all while giving patrons a taste of the rich history of LA.

Some customers have been coming to Philippes since they were children, something that co-partner, Andrew Binder, is quite proud of. “We have multiple generations of families coming in. There is an endless amount of stories here.” With a restaurant that holds so much history in it, Philippe’s is careful not to deviate much from tradition. In fact, until a few years ago, they still had their original coffee price of ¢10. Now, it’s a whopping ¢45. Even the sawdust on the floor has a story; one involving Andrew’s great grandfather, a stable, and a lot of mystery. The walls of the restaurant are filled with articles chronicling the earlier days of the establishment.

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Customers at Philippe are treated like family, something that is apparent when many are greeted by name by one of the smiling waitresses. After they receive their food, they sit at one of the long, family style tables to enjoy cheap coffee, tasty food, and some good company and conversation amongst the rest of their family.

Written by:
Justin Huft
Photographed by:
Janica De Guzman

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