Foster’s Freeze, 418 W. Foothill Blvd. (at Grand), Glendora
In Glendora a few months ago I spotted this old-fashioned Foster’s Freeze and my Americana-lovin’ heart skipped a beat. There are said to be 88 freestanding Foster’s left in California, many of which are in classic buildings. One that I liked in downtown San Luis Obispo, I just learned, closed in 2014. The chain started in 1946 in Inglewood, and that one, at 999 S. La Brea Blvd., is said to still be in business; based on Google Street View, it looks original.
Typically, you have to go to an El Pollo Loco for Foster’s Freeze, and then all they have is ice cream. The Glendora location turns out to be the closest freestanding Foster’s to the Inland Valley.
On a recent hot Sunday afternoon, Foster’s came to mind and I made the drive. The low-slung building with the covered patio and walk-up window seems very 1960s. (Employees had no idea when it opened.) And is that a phone booth out front? Next door is an Alta Dena Dairy with an awesome sign.
As Foster’s has a small dining room, and air conditioning was desirable, I ordered and ate inside: a small hamburger and a pineapple shake ($7.56 total with tax). It was a decent burger with a crunchy sheaf of lettuce, and the shake hit the spot. In an unusual touch, a wall-sized chalkboard allows customers to scrawl a friendly message. I’d have taken a photo but someone was sitting in front of it in the otherwise-empty room.
If you like this sort of thing, by all means check out Foster’s. I’m sure I’ll go back.