Upland’s Fastfood Boulevard

Here’s a note from reader Wes Ray:

“You wrote an column a few months ago about Upland not changing the Foothill Boulevard name to Route 66. Since that time my wife and I have conducted a loose survey of Foothill Boulevard from Central Avenue to Grove Avenue.

“We have concluded that the City Of Gracious Living should rename Foothill Boulevard. Our choice would more appropriately fit the boulevard. Our choice is FASTFOOD BLVD, as we counted over 20 — as I recall, more like 30, but my wife didn’t want Upland to sound quite that trashy — fast-food restaurants on Foothill in the city.

“We saw only one restaurant, of any size, we would call a sitdown restaurant only. That was Coco’s at Euclid. We could have missed some minor sitdowns in the back of shopping centers, but if so they were unknown to us and we have lived in Upland since 1964.”

Wes, I appreciate your legwork, and I can understand your frustration at the numerous fast-food chains along the street. The days of the grand old restaurants in Upland seem to have passed: The Arbor, the Stuft Shirt, Lord Charlie’s, York’s, the Sage Hen, Noble Inn, etc., etc.

However, things aren’t as dire as you think. I can think of a bunch of sitdown restaurants along Foothill, although they may not be to your liking.

From memory, heading east from the city limits at Monte Vista:

New China, Joey’s BBQ, Buffalo Inn, Spaggi’s (which is one of the valley’s finest restaurants), Jarritos, Pho Century, Athens Gyro House, Kishi, Sizzler (still there, I think), Sushimaru, Brandon’s Diner, El Perico Ranchero and Thai Satay BBQ. Plus another three or four sushi bars whose names slip my mind.

I’m sure I’m leaving out a few more places where you order at your table rather than at a counter.

Still, Fastfood Boulevard does have a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

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  • Don J

    Thanks to the nearby factories, we lived about 4 miles from Dequindre & 12 Mile in Madison Heights/Warren, Michigan…the spot for Guinness Book of World Records for longest strip of fast food restaurants (at least in the ’70s), a solid mile of Taco Bell, Dunkin’ Donuts, White Castle, Red Barn, Little Caesar’s, Arthur Treacher’s…thanks to the economy we hardly ate at any of them, while it amused me in retrospect it reflects some poor urban planning.

  • http://www.rightnation.us/forums/blog/mr__naron/index.php? Mr. Naron

    There’s a great sitdown pizza place on the north side of Foothill and San Antonio. I think it’s called Napoli’s.

  • monty seay

    Napoli’s went out of business a very long time ago. Maybe 20 years ago? They did have the best pizza in Upland — almost as good as the Noble Inn!

    [Maybe Mr. Naron thought he was on the "Things That Aren't Here Anymore" thread! -- DA]

  • http://www.rightnation.us/forums/blog/mr__naron/index.php? chris naron

    It was there at least 12 years ago because I remember taking my young wife there when our son was just walking. He’s 13 now. I’m pretty sure we ate there since then. But time does fly, and places you think you just visited can be long gone before you know it. :)

  • Elisa (Alta Loma)

    It’s a bit strange that Upland doesn’t seem to be able to retain its sit-down restaurants. I really enjoyed eating at the Magnolia Peach located on Mountain Avenue where the Outback is now. They had some really good choices for dinner and my husband and I ate their many times over the years they were located there.

    For our first five years of marriage, we lived in South Ontario, near the dairies, and would drive to Upland to have a nice dinner locally, or out to Newport Beach to eat at Benihana’s, Tony Romas and the Warehouse Restaurant on Newport Bay. It was a while before Ontario had a nice place to dine, and about that time we moved up to Alta Loma (1987) where we had the choice of Cask & Cleaver, Magic Lamp and Sycamore Inn. Now, there is an abundance of choices, and we are seeing some in the area leave (Macaroni grill). Hmmmm…progress.

    Hey, David, how about a blog on the old Griswold’s?

    Thanks for your interesting and amusing comments. I enjoy reading your column; it brings a chuckle to my day most of the time. I really appreciate your humor!

    [Very sweet of you, Elisa. -- DA]

  • Monty Seay

    Griswold’s, don’t get me started on them. Too many great memories eating there! It was a very sad day when they closed. I did eat breakfast there before they closed.

  • Three J

    Griswold’s — Oh Griswold’s — swedish meatballs yumyum. But what I really miss is the bakery at Griswold’s. Haven’t been able to find a bakery in this area that makes anise bread. Anyone know where I can buy some?

  • Matt

    Don’t forget Lamppost Pizza at Foothill and San Antonio, which it turns out is a decent-size California chain. Oh and good pizza too.

  • monty seay

    I thought Lamppost Pizza was at the old Straw Hat Pizza location at Second Avenue and Foothill between Thrifty Drug and Builders Emporium?

  • Charles Bentley

    GREETINGS:
    As I recall, the Lamppost Pizza in Upland is on Foothill Blvd. just west of San Antonio Ave., I believe in the same shopping center as Liquorama.

    There was a Straw Hat Pizza in the shopping center on the north side of Foothill just east of Euclid, which now features a 99 Cents store, Chick’s (soon to be Dick’s) Sporting Goods and a Sizzler. I don’t remember it ever becoming a Lamppost Pizza.

    Another Lamppost Pizza was located at the corner of Central Ave. and Palo Verde St. in Montclair. I can still recall that, due to some financial circumstance, the ownership changed the name, but apparently decided to do it as cheap as possible, thus creating Lamp Pot Pizza.

    Sorry, I never went in to discover just what a lamp pot is or its relationship to pizza.

    By the way, David, nice job on listing restaurants past and present along old Route 66 in Upland. You’re really becoming well versed in locational lore. Soon you’ll be able to do a Charles Phoenix-type lecture on “the glorious past” of what was once referred to as the West End.

    [Chick's will soon become Dick's? Oh, and regarding Lamppost/Lamp Pot, there was a Straw Hat in Claremont that had to change its name, and picked...Raw Hat. -- DA]

  • Monty Seay

    Charles: You are so right, you have a great memory. Lamppost Pizza in Upland was in the Alpha Beta S/C. I remember them having a lunch buffet not as good as Shakeys. As far as Straw Hat, I don’t know what happened after they went out of business, as far as their location. Thanks, Monty Seay

  • Mike L.

    Hello David, I want to know if you or any of your 1000′s of fans know anything of the Stinky’s Burgers restaurant that was on Campus, just north of Foothill. Any ideas? Thanks!

    [Wasn't that on Mountain and Foothill? Anyway, use the blog's Search function; we've had a ton of comments about it. -- DA]

  • http://originalpechanga.blogspot.com OP

    Chicago Joe’s Pizza next to 24 Fitness at Foothill and San Antonio is good. The Buckboard BBQ is excellent farther east on Foothill.

    But if you want GREAT food anywhere close…. CAFE MONTCLAIR on Central Ave. Excellent Lamb Shank, Salmon, Chicken and Lasagna…. but the DESSERTS! Best Carrot Cake, TAPIOCA! Bread Pudding, PIES!

  • Mark

    Remember the Green Frog before it was the Buffalo Inn?

    [I don't. I always figured it had been the Buffalo Inn forever! -- DA]

  • Tino Amor

    I remember Napoli’s…it was the best and is in the Pizza Hall of Fame at Pizza Therapy .com

    I posted about it a few years back at:

    http://pizzatherapy.com/west.htm

    Long live Napoli’s and all the Motz and nice bread….

  • tino Amor

    btw:

    Napoli’s was at the Northeast corner of Foothill and San Antonio … it was in the third unit from the right of San Antonio, two doors from to the left of Ralphs Supermarket.

    Whenever I find myself in the parking lot now 20-years+ later, I still look to the unit to see if Napoli’s is open or has re-opened… and I yearn for the aroma…but 24 Hour Fitness is there now….

    Napoli’s sponsored a Pony League baseball team at Hawkins Field and a Little League team at Upland Foothill…the name of the team was Napoli’s Pizza.

    A number of my friends played on those teams. I played for Upland Block, Comupac Reac (Upland American), Woodland Products, RC Elks Lodge (Upland Pony); and, Upland Radiator (Upland Colt). What ever happened to those businesses… I often wonder. But I truly miss Napoli’s and give thanks to feeding us, some became pro athletes….

  • Bob Terry

    No, the Sizzler on Foothill in Upland (by Chick’s) is now the Sizzlin’ Restaurant…they saved money and screwed a sign company on that one. As I stated before, I mentioned that in Pomona in the ’60s there was a restaurant called Breakfast at Carl’s on Holt & East End…is that the precursor to BC Cafe? And then there was Seapy’s and the Hull House in Pomona…c’mon oldtimers…help me out!

  • WAYNE DLUGITCH

    What was the name of the restaurant on the north side of Foothill, east of where Lord Charlies was, that burnt down??

    [Anyone? -- DA]