Elaine's: The Rise of One of New York's Most Legendary Restaurants from Those Who Were There

Elaine's: The Rise of One of New York's Most Legendary Restaurants from Those Who Were There

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A celebration of legendary restaurateur Elaine Kaufman and her renowned Manhattan creative melting pot. Have dinner and drinks with Woody Allen, David Black, China Girard​, and more . . .

Elaine’s was a world-famous New York restaurant that became home to writers and celebrities. Owner Elaine Kaufman was known to be “New York feisty,” controversial, often rude, always blunt, with the flare of Gertrude Stein and Dorothy Parker.

Elaine was highly respected and also frequently feared, and Elaine’s the restaurant received the public’s love and praise time and time again. Woody Allen held a regular table there, and Elaine’s was even featured in Allen’s Manhattan and Billy Joel’s song “Big Shot.” Throughout the years, Mick Jagger, John Lennon, and countless celebrities, politicians, socialites, private eyes, athletes, artists, and the biggest names in Hollywood became Elaine’s regulars.

Most emphatically, Elaine’s raison d’être was to nourish “starving writers” with encouragement, introductions to Pulitzer Prize winners, and free food and alcohol. These struggling authors responded to Elaine’s support with profound gratitude.

Elaine passed away in 2010, forcing the restaurant manager to close shop shortly after. “There is no Elaine’s without Elaine,” she decreed. However, the memories remain and are recalled by a variety of Elaine’s regulars in this moving, oftentimes amusing, collection of personal essays.

Spend a night or two at Elaine’s with . . .
  • Woody Allen, award-winning director
  • David Black, award-winning author
  • Per Bjurman, Sweden’s leading music writer turned sports writer
  • Steve McPartlin, television host and radio sportscaster
  • China Girard, former Ford model and Grammy-nominated musician
  • Jessica Burstein, award-winning photographer
  • Jodi Garner, Broadway producer
  • Elaine Madsen, Emmy Award–winning director
  • Curt Block, sportswriter and publicist
  • Ash Bennington, reporter and editor
  • And many more!


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781510760233
Publisher: Skyhorse
Publication date: 10/27/2020
Edition description: Critical edition
Pages: 152
Sales rank: 783,162
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Amy Phillips Penn is a renowned society columnist. Her career began at the New York Post as an assistant to the legendary society columnist Eugenia Sheppard. Penn followed in her mentor’s path with her own byline. Her column, Around the Town, was syndicated in the Palm Beach Daily News. Ms. Penn’s credentials as a writer and a native New Yorker, coupled with a curriculum vitae as an Elaine’s regular, gave her access and a unique insider’s perspective into the world of Elaine’s. She resides in Indio, California.

Liz Smith is a popular gossip columnist also known as the Grande Dame of Dish. Her work has appeared in the New York Daily News, Newsday, New York Post, and Chicago Tribune. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller, Natural Blonde.

Table of Contents

Foreword Liz Smith ix

Introduction xiii

So … Who Was Elaine Kaufman? Amy Phillips Penn 1

There's No Elaine's Without Elaine Amy Phillips Penn 7

Take Four: Customer, Publicist, Columnist, And "Let's Do Lunch, Elaine" Amy Phillips Penn 11

"Marry Me, Marry Me" At Elaine's David Black 17

Elaine Empties the Stanley Cup Per Bjurman 21

"Give Him Table Six, He Says He Has Money." Steve McPartlin 26

When Elaine Socked Me China Girard 30

How Elaine Became My Photo Agent Jessica Burstein 33

Travels With Elaine Jessica Burstein 37

My Last Night At Elaine's Jodi Garner 47

"I'm a Fucking Icon." Elaine Madsen 49

Elaine Was My Dating Coach Ken Pliska 52

My Home Away From Home Dana Moyles 55

The Good Penny Curt Block 58

"Elaine's Was Really Three Different Places." Ash Bennington 61

Woody Allen On Elaine's A O&A: Amy Phillips Penn 67

Top Ten Reasons Your New Hangout Will Never Replace Elaine's Charles Kipps 69

Shooting Elaine's (But Not Elaine) Ron Galella 71

When Spinelli Met Plimpton As Told To Amy Phillips Penn 73

"Not Only Did You Share A Meal Or A Drink, But You Shared Yourself." Mark Rossini 76

Elaine's, A Tribute Photographs: Larry Fink 79

Dabney Coleman Does The Godfather Gig At Elaine's. Just Guess Who's Listening. Dabney Coleman 86

Elaine Kaufman: Friend and Investor Esther Margolis 90

"I Was Married To My Restaurant: Elaine Was Married To Elaine's." Steve (Pally) McFadden 96

Elaine Was An Interesting, Tough Lady. (I Saw Her Punch Out A Guy.) Ken Moran 100

The Era Is Over Al Sapienza 104

Still "Anchored" At Elaine's Bob Drury 108

"Who's Da Poet?" Taki Theodoracopulos 111

Elaine As Mama Earth Fred Morton 114

There's "Nothing Like Gedempte Flaische." Steve Walter 118

People Soup Tony Hendra 121

Who's on First? (In Elaine's Bathroom) Richard Johnson 127

"I Would Not Be the Person I Am Today if I Had Not Gone Into Elaine's." Libby Schoettle 129

Afterword 133

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