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Beverly Hills CA: Huge Monster Invades Nate’n Al’s Deli PDF Print E-mail

No, no, there are no monsters today in the famed eatery that's known for it's monstrous corned beef on rye sandwiches. It happened in the early 1950s when your now-elderly travel4seniors.com editor worked for the Beverly Hills Citizen daily.

I lunched there regularly with other writers, and sometimes the guy in the photo joined us. It shows young James Arness made up for his movie part as a space creature. Later, of course, he became famous as Matt Dillon in Gunsmoke. One noontime, he showed up in monster make-up and scared the hell out of all the deli customers.

At the time, the deli’s famed corned beef on rye cost $1.95. Today the huge sandwich is a bargain for $20. Also, then my weekly check was for $75, and Jim Arness, fresh out of the Army, was a member of the 52-20 Club. Translated: newly-released GIs were paid $20 a week for a year to help them get started in civilian life.

A short list of the many celebs who''ve dined at the deli include Jerry Lewis, Milton Berle, Carol Channing, Groucho Marx, Doris Day, Jay Leno, Tony Curtis and Larry King. Frank Sinatra was there shooting deli scenes for his movie, Pal Joey, in 1957.

If your travels take you to or near Beverly Hills, stop by for a delicious breakfast, lunch or whatever. Nate’n Al’s Deli, 414 N. Beverly Dr. nateenal.com

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