A&W in Menlo Park

The great article on A&W Root Beer turning 100 years old in Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle brought back good memories of not only visiting the Lodi landmark restaurant over the years, but also the time in the ’60s and ’70s when A&W was one of  two “go-to” places (the other being Foster’s Freeze) for local teens as well as families.

Our good friend Alice was an A&W car hop there and whether that ever afforded us special deals is a lost  memory.

Menlo’s A&W was located where the now-shuttered Jason’s Cafe is. Before Jason’s it was Brix Barbecue — and maybe other restaurants were sandwiched in the years between the root beer restaurant and successive establishments. Does anyone know?

The Menlo Park A&W was owned and opened by Raymond Bartels and Lyle Blaine, who had 22 other A&Ws. Were you a Papa, Momma or Baby Burger fan? And has any soft drink tasted better than A&W in those frosty mugs?

Top photo from the collection of Menlo Park Planning; historical photo shows original Lodi location opened in 1919 and commemorative mug, bother courtesy of A&W.