"Formosa Cafe" Top 5 Page for this destination Food - Drink Tip by Erin74

Food - Drink, Los Angeles: 8 reviews and 11 photos

  Formosa Cafe in West Hollywood
by Erin74

The Formosa Cafe is a wonderful bit of "old Hollywood." It may not look too exciting from the outside, but the Formosa is a place that could really tell some tales. The restaurant and bar was opened in 1925, right across from the United Artists lot. (Today that lot is simply called "The Lot" and the facilities are rented out by various studios). Over the years, virtually every major movie star ate at Formosa Cafe, tucked into one of their comfortable leather booths. James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Elizabeth Taylor... you name them, they ate here! Even some less celebrated folks, like mobster Bugsy Siegal frequented Formosa.

You'll also recognize Formosa from various movies. In "L.A. Confidential," this is the restaurant where a detective (Guy Pearce)mistakes Lana Turner for a hooker. Other movies that feature Formosa include "Swingers" and Jim Carrey's "The Majestic."

In 1991, the city declared Formosa Cafe a historical landmark. There has just recently been a huge shopping center built next door, so the neighborhood keeps changing but Formosa remains the same.

The food here isn't that great. I wouldn't eat here. Just stop in and grab a cocktail. If the roof deck is open (sometimes it is closed for private parties), head up there to enjoy the scenery.

Address: 7156 Santa Monica Boulevard; West Hollywood
Directions: Near the corner of Santa Monica Bl. and La Brea Ave.
Phone: (323) 850-9050

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Mar 30, 2004
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