Green Lake’s Food Scene Circa 1950 + 1960

February 24, 2017 5:34am

Recently the University of Washington Libraries Special Collections released some of their historic menus online and several include Green Lake. The menus give us an interesting glimpse into Green Lake life several decades ago. While there are a few from the 1980s – like Jake’s Green Lake and Green Lake Grill, two from the 50s and 60s caught our eye.

Green Lake Bowl Cafe 

Courtesy of University of Washington Libraries Digital Collection





Several things struck us about this menu, like coffee in Green Lake for 10 cents, grilled halibut for 85 cents and a Sweden Freeze (I don’t know what that is, but I’d like one.) What a time to live in Green Lake! And did you see the hours? Open until 12 a.m. The 50s were a rocking time for Green Lake. The Green Lake Bowl Cafe was on Ravenna Boulevard, which now is the home of Parks’ Pharmacy.  An interesting side note, according to a city website the Green Lake Bowl’s bowling alley floors are still intact at the Pharmacy today.

Okay, next menu – 10 years later and on the other side of the lake was a restaurant called Jerry Choi’s Cantonesia.

Jerry Choi’s Cantonesisa was located at 7850 Green Lake N, which is now the home of Duke’s Chowder House. An obituary for Jerry Choi says he owned the restaurant in Green Lake for 17 years. The 1960s menu features several interesting items, including Shark fin soup (now illegal in Washington state), a 10 course dinner cost $5.50 per person and an extensive 6 page menu of items starting at 90 cents.

To see the full menus for these and other Green Lake establishments, go to the University of Washington Digital Collections website.

And if you have any historic menus, let us know. We’d love to see them. Please share them here!