Overview:

Mel’s Drive-In is a relatively new feature in the Santa Monica area, the family-run restaurant chain has been around for decades. 

While Mel’s Drive-In (1670 Lincoln Blvd.) is a relatively new feature in the Santa Monica area, the family-run restaurant chain has been around for decades and will celebrate its 75th anniversary this week. 

“We’re super excited about it,” grandson of founder Mel Weiss, Colton Weiss said. “It’s a big milestone 75 years, there’s not too many family businesses that have been around this long. 

Colton Weiss and his brother Chasen Weiss are co-owners of the business which has grown from the original San Francisco drive-in opened in 1947 to eight restaurants in the Bay Area and Los Angeles, all while staying in the family. 

“We’re third generation Mel’s and fourth generation restaurateurs,” Colton said. “It’s just a big milestone for us and we couldn’t have gotten here without our customers and our loyal employees that have got us to where we are today.”

The Weiss brothers said they think Mel’s ongoing success comes from the restaurants’ friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

“It’s just an easy place to grab some food and have fun,” Colton Weiss said. “You don’t have to make a reservation, people know we’re there and open and they can come in and really enjoy themselves and bring in their families and friends and have a great time.”

They also credit their unique architecture and iconic locations with making the restaurants such popular destinations, especially the Santa Monica diner which is located at the end of Route 66 at the corner of Olympic and Lincoln Boulevard. 

“We have people from all over the world driving Route 66 from Chicago and they come to Mel’s when they’re done and we give them a certificate of completion,” Colton said.

They plan to open  more locations in the future and potentially franchise the business. In the meantime, they’re celebrating the last 75 years by offering 75% off their classic food items on Wednesday Dec. 14. This includes the Mel burger, country eggs, pancakes, milkshakes, coffee and soda. 

Other Events

Several other local food businesses are celebrating milestones this week as well. McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream will be hosting a grand opening for its new Promenade location on Wednesday Dec. 14 with free single scoops of ice cream for guests. For more information visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mcconnells-fine-ice-creams-third-street-promenade-grand-opening-tickets-482646989137 

The Tavern on Main Street is hosting an official ribbon cutting on Thursday Dec. 15 after having opened early this year. The event will be followed by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professionals mixer. For more information visit: https://www.tavernonmainsm.com/events/official-ribbon-cutting-and-santa-monica-chamber-young-professionals-mixer 

Hawaiian-inspired Holey Grail Donuts will be opening its first brick and mortar store in Santa Monica on Main Street Dec. 17 serving up a unique rotation of flavors including Lilikoi and Saffron Snickerdoodle. For more information visit: https://www.holeygraildonuts.com/

Colton Weiss and his brother Chasen Weiss are co-owners of the business which has grown from the original San Francisco drive-in opened in 1947 to eight restaurants in the Bay Area and Los Angeles, all while staying in the family.

“We’re third generation Mel’s and fourth generation restaurateurs,” Colton said. “It’s just a big milestone for us and we couldn’t have gotten here without our customers and our loyal employees that have got us to where we are today.”

The Weiss brother’s said they think Mel’s ongoing success comes from the restaurants’ friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

“It’s just an easy place to grab some food and have fun,” Colton Weiss said. “You don’t have to make a reservation, people know we’re there and open and they can come in and really enjoy themselves and bring in their families and friends and have a great time.”

They also credit their unique architecture and iconic locations with making the restaurants such popular destinations, especially the Santa Monica diner which is located at the end of Route 66 at the corner of Olympic and Lincoln Boulevard.

“We have people from all over the world driving Route 66 from Chicago and they come to Mel’s when they’re done and we give them a certificate of completion,” Colton said.

The brothers said they have plans to open up more locations in the future and potentially franchise the business. In the meantime, they’re celebrating the last 75 years by offering 75% off their classic food items on Wednesday Dec. 14. This includes the Mel burger, country eggs, pancakes, milkshakes, coffee and soda.

Other Events

Several other local food businesses are celebrating milestones this week as well. McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream will be hosting a grand opening for its new Promenade location on Wednesday Dec. 14 with free single scoops of ice cream for guests. For more information visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mcconnells-fine-ice-creams-third-street-promenade-grand-opening-tickets-482646989137

The Tavern on Main Street is hosting an official ribbon cutting on Thursday Dec. 15 after having opened early this year. The event will be followed by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professionals mixer. For more information visit: https://www.tavernonmainsm.com/events/official-ribbon-cutting-and-santa-monica-chamber-young-professionals-mixer

Hawaiian-inspired Holey Grail Donuts will be opening its first brick and mortar store in Santa Monica on Main Street Dec. 17 serving up a unique rotation of flavors including Lilikoi and Saffron Snickerdoodle. For more information visit: https://www.holeygraildonuts.com/

Grace Adams

Grace Adams is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University where she studied Spanish and journalism. She holds a Master’s degree in investigative journalism from City, University of London. She has experience...