Famed Atwater Village Landmark’s New Signage Reflects a Rich History
As the sun set on September 23, the Tam O’Shanter, a member of the Lawry’s family of restaurants and one of Los Angeles’ oldest eating establishments, illuminated a distinctive new neon sign for the first time. Featuring a dramatic red lightning bolt and fanciful off-kilter lettering, its design reflects the legendary restaurant’s rich history while symbolizing the new energy and spirit of fun found at the Atwater Village landmark.
As times have changed so has the Tam and its signage. When the restaurant opened in 1922, the original hand-painted sign advertising “potato chips and pretzels” attracted the attention-and appetites-of passersby on the dusty road that would become Los Feliz Blvd.
A large neon lightning bolt made its debut above the Tam in the 1930s. The bolt was a direct reference to the 1791 Robert Burns poem after which the restaurant is named. In the poem, a farmer named Tam O’Shanter heads home from the pub and narrowly escapes a band of angry witches as “the lightnings flash from pole to pole’¦near and more near the thunders role.”
The restaurant’s lightening bolt was retired for a number of years, but now returns as a vivid emblem of the Tam O’Shanter’s 21st century vitality.
About Tam O’Shanter
Delighting diners for over 90 years, the Tam O’Shanter is Los Angeles’ oldest restaurant operated by the same family in the same location. Guests enjoy good cheer, warm hospitality and exceptional food in a cozy old world atmosphere. If you have some Scottish ancestry, you might even find your family tartan among the extensive collection decorating the walls! Tam O’Shanter is located at 2980 Los Feliz Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90039.