This restaraunt has been open continuosly, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week for the last seventy-four years. There is nearly always a line winding around the block to get a table, but this line moves quickly and it is DEFINITELY worth it. They have the best breakfast around at any hour and some of the best steaks I've ever had, well at least they still did a few years back when I was still ate red meat. They also have the best coleslaw I have ever tasted.

I know most people don't think twice about coleslaw, it's just that gloppy cabbagey mess that somehow finds its way onto your plate at every barbeque you can remember, right? Well, in my family, it's a big deal and my parents both absolutely love it and we ate it frequently as a side dish when I was a little kid. One of the only happy things I seem to remember from my parents marriage, actually. Maybe that's why coleslaw holds such a fond place in my heart today. But i digress...

The Original Pantry, or simply, "The Pantry" to us locals, is located on the corner of 9th and Figueroa, two blocks north of the Convention Center in Los Angeles. It is quite a nightime hotspot for your post drinking, dancing and general late night carousing affairs. My dad was employed there for a few months as a bus boy wayyyy back in the seventies and being big on their coleslaw as he was, he managed to finagle their top secret recipe for it from one of the chefs.

I'm sure that if my true identity ever comes to light, I will pay dearly for what I am about to expose to you, but I must take these chances and risk the dire, wrathful consequences on behalf of coleslaw lovers everywhere, few though they may be, to bring you this:

(dun dun dun)

The Pantry's Coleslaw


  • 3/4 cups mayonnaise. The Pantry uses "Best Foods" brand mayo. On the East Coast of the US this is called "Hellman's", same company different name. I don't know why they do this. So does Dryer's(west coast)/Edy's(east coast) ice cream and I imagine myriad other large food corporations. Packaging, slogans, jingles, right on down to the televison commercials, they are exactly the same with only the other name inserted. */lolaleigh boggles*. Why? we may never know.
  • 3 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon each of the following; garlic powder, onion powder, dry mustard, and celery salt.
  • a dash of black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 large head Napa (green) cabbage, chopped finely


  • Blend together mayo, sugar, vinegar and oil
  • Add garlic and onion powders, mustard, celery salt, pepper, lemon juice, half and half and salt. Whisk till smooth.
  • Pour over cabbage in large bowl and toss till well mixed.
  • Chill and serve.
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