Seeing Stars: Where the Stars Dine..  



2321 Westwood Blvd.,
Westwood / (310) 475-4521

When Frank Sinatra wanted a taste of Hoboken, he came to Matteo's in Westwood. In fact, they kept a corner booth here (station 8) permanently reserved for Sinatra, who was in the house on most Sundays. An abstract painting by Frank hangs near his former booth.

But "old-blue-eyes" wasn't the only celebrity to patronize Matteo's.

Regulars have included Milton Berle, Phyllis Diller, Tony Danza, Robert Blake, Rodney Dangerfield, Henny Youngman, Shecky Greene, Raiders' owner Al Davis and even mobsters Mickey Cohen and Sam Giancana.

      

Three U.S. Presidents, Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford and Bill Clinton, have dined here. (President Clinton even had Matteo's fettuccine delivered to the Beverly Hills Hotel when he was staying there.)

Once, back in 1995, when Ronald Reagan made one of his rare late appearances at Matteo's, he was sent off with a standing ovation as he left. According to Army Archerd, Milton Berle, who was entering the restaurant at the same time, jokingly pretended that he thought the applause was for him. "Hi, Miltie," Reagan said.

Original owner Matty Jordan (born Matteo Giordano) grew up across the street from Frank Sinatra. In fact, he was delivered by Frank's mother, who was a midwife back in Hoboken, New Jersey. He worked as a trucker, owned a hot dog stand, and worked at several other prominent L.A. restaurants before opening his own place on Westwood Blvd in 1963

They've been catering to celebrities for almost 40 years at this old-style, Southern Italian restaurant. And they haven't stopped yet. The new owners brought in a new chef in 2007 to update the Italian menu, away from the usual red sauce - but the Matteo 'classics' are still on the menu.

In January of 2000, Steven Spielberg threw a surprise 80th birthday party at Matteo's for his mother (who owns a restaurant herself, called the Milky Way.) He hired opera singers to entertain, passed out Groucho Marx-style nose-glasses for guests to wear, and even arranged for Matteo’s kitchen to be rabbinically supervised to prepare a Kosher birthday dinner for his mom.

On Father Day of 2001, Bob Newhart's family took over the banquet room to salute him.

And in March of 2002, Muhammad Ali performed some magic tricks to the delight of customers at the bar.

In July of 2002, Army Archerd reported seeing Courteney Cox and David Arquette at Matteo's, as well as Lucie Arnaz and brother Desi Arnaz Jr., Stephanie Zimbalist, Suzanne PleshetteTom Poston, Loretta Swit, and Tony Martin & Cyd Charisse.

(We warned that the menu here is a bit on the expensive side.)

Getting there: Matteo's is located on the west side of Westwood Blvd., between Pico (on the south) and Olympic (on the north).not in the Village, but just one block north of the Westside Pavilion mall.


[You can see Matteo's menu online at:http://www.cuisinenet.com/cnet/los_angeles/menu/5212.shtml]



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Copyright © 2014-Gary Wayne
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