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10/10/17 02:50 PM #32    

George Henderson

Greg, I don’t know what the cost to move it, but it maybe worth since you wouldn’t have to rebuild from scratch. But I hate to say it, but in today’s market it may be very hard to open a VS using the same business model. Since the VS in Salam MA is still operating that may be something you may want to copy. I would think it would be nice to have at least a caboose and 1 car for the theme. You may also talk to the owner of that VS as they may know who owns the naming rights. 

10/25/17 06:56 PM #33    

Joe McGoff

I was a college sophmore looking for a way to pay my rent.  I was on my way home from an Economics class at Bellarmine College in Louisvile, KY one afternoon when I came upon what I initially thought was a train wreck.  A couple of boxcars and a caboose sitting on a vacant lot with another boxcar on a flatbed truck and a crane standing by.  There was also a trailer on that vacant lot with a huge banner with "Victoria Station Interviewing Soon".  I had no idea who or what Victoria Station was but interview = job and job = rent money.  They hired me as a bartender.  What else?  ......   After all my Father was Irish/Catholic and my Mother a Lebanese-Jew.  Bartender was a perfect fit for my personailty.  We were young, we were optimistic, energetic, over sexed and overindulged and we worked our asses off and loved it.  As I recall we went to the VS in Indianapolis to train and helped open the Cincinnati VS.  I joined the management team and spent time at 150 the Embarcadero and the Tahoe City training restaurant.  I was assigned as an Assistant Manager in Memphis, TN was then moved to the Chicago area as a "Floating Manager" to fill in for managers in Northbrook, Villa Park,Schaumberg and Indianapolis when needed.  Eventually I was offered the General Manager job in Birmingham, Alabama.  Also assited at Quinn's Mill and the VS in Atlanta occasionally.  Nothing but the best of memories for Victoria Station.  I am now 66 and a 5+ year survivor of stage 4 throat and larynx cancer.  I work part time for the Greater Houston YMCA in Membership Services and work 3 days a week at Home Depot.  Formerly I was an underwater structural engineer in the oil and gas industry but that is no longer an option.  Cheers to All  JM

11/16/17 03:41 PM #34    

Tom Blake (Blake)



Wow, great VS resume. And an interesting post. Just thought I'd mention I still have new copies of the book, "Prime Rib & Boxcars. Whatever Happened to Victoria Station?" which I wrote a few years back. Will be happy to autograph a copy and snail mail to you (or anyone for that matter). $15 including shipping and tax. (list price is $32.95). Email me at if interested.


Tom Blake

Dana Point, Ca 92629

12/03/17 10:47 AM #35    

Joe McGoff

I worked at several VS as a bartender through college and later joined the management team in the mid to late '70's.  Next week I am making an early Christmas dinner for my daughter, grand kids and son-in-law.  Prime Rib is on the menu.  Also plan on making the "Shrimp Victoria".  Came across a recipe posted by Jack on the web site for this dish.  I have ordered 3#'s of the U-12 to 15, green headless, shell on shrimp.  I need to know the measurements for the ingredients used including the bread crumbs, parmensan and garlic powder.  Here is Jack's recipe:

"I was looking for the old VS shrimp recipe to refresh my memory.  The

ones I saw posted on your web site are incorrect.  I worked at the VS in

Sunnyvale, CA  in 1972 as a cook.  I've cooked the recipe several times

over the past 35 years, and am pretty sure the recipe is close to this:

Shrimp U15's - peeled, deveined and butterflied

Mounted in sautÈ pan -  butterflied side down bent over and tail spar

hooked into back side of another shrimp in front of it.  Making a chain

of 6 shrimp

Poached in a mixture of lemon juice, butter, white wine and garlic powder.

Presented on the plate as one chain of shrimp.  Sauce poured over the

shrimp then a combination of bread crumbs and parmesan cheese shook over

the shrimp.

It's been a long time, but this is much much closer that the receipes I

saw on your site.  I know the recipe didn't contain any of the

following: sour cream,  mushrooms ( they were a side dish order) or  onions.

Hope this helps,

Regards, Jack"




12/04/17 07:26 AM #36    


Andy Pratt

That's the recipe as I remember it!

12/04/17 06:54 PM #37    

Steve Freidkin (Freidkin)


This is page 5-42 right out of the Operation Manual dated February 1980

Straight from the horses mouth:

Inline Image Not Displayed

12/04/17 06:58 PM #38    

Steve Freidkin (Freidkin)

Evidently my attachment would not post.  Is there an attachment function on this site?  Or another way to post a pdf file?

12/05/17 11:51 AM #39    

Tom Blake (Blake)


Not sure how to post that file. But I can remember, Jim Thomson, the original chef at 50 Broadway, yelling at waiters and anybody within his range to put the damn bread crumbs and parmesan to the shrimp and deliver the plate to the table while the entree was still hot. Of course, Jim yelled about everything else as well. But, he was a loveable guy in spite of his grumpiness. R.I.P. Jim, also known to some as "Cookie."

Tom Blake

12/06/17 10:21 AM #40    


Andy Pratt

In Atlanta (1971), we referred to Jim as "The Snake!" He was an interesting piece of work, indeed-- as long as you weren't a waiter!!

12/06/17 05:56 PM #41    

Steve Freidkin (Freidkin)

I never once heard anyone refer to Thomson as "COOKIE". 

12/07/17 12:47 PM #42    

Bill Haider

Hi Bill Haider bartender from VS Villa Park 1975-1980. I serve the Shrimp Victoria every New Years. Make sure the white wine is a dry wine...either a dry sherry or Sauv Blanc are the best. Also its best if you use chopped or minced garlic instead of the powder. Bon appetit.

12/14/17 05:25 PM #43    

John Overland

As I remember the Srimp Victoria, we boiled the shrimp in saultern cooking wine in a large covered pan for two to three minutes. The other ingredients in above rescipe are good. We did not peel the shrimp, but cut the back shell halfway and devained and cleaned with water. We arranged the six shrimp in a circle with tails in on the plate. Also, added a small bowl of clarified butter with a lemon wedge. The waiter would bring a hot water napkin with lemon wedge to the table at the end.

12/16/17 09:15 AM #44    

Tom Blake (Blake)

Responding to Steve Friedkin's comment re: Jim Thomson being called "Cookie." Mike Nevin called him that. The nickname didn't catch on, but a few people referred to him that way. I remember when we were in other cities outside of S.F., opening a restaurant or for some other reason, when we would go out for dinner at another restaurant, if he liked the place, he'd say, "Good groceries." I heard him say that alot. 

04/04/20 01:00 PM #45    

Dennis Martin

Hey Joe Mcgoff, I opened Quinn' Mill in Atl March '76 and left Nov. '77. I have been in Atl since, having moved up from Tampa, Opened VS41 in Jan. '75. I work with George McKerrow still at Ted's Montana Grill in Buford, after 26 years at Longhorn with him and Bill Norman. Any Memories you think we may have in commom, some old names...


04/06/20 08:01 PM #46    

Joe McGoff

Cheers Dennis,  

Hope all is well particularly with this pesky COVID-19 business going on.  I started with VS Louiville, KY as a bartender while I attended Bellarmine College.  I was accepted in the management program and spent time at VS The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA.  Got assigned to the VS training restaurant in Lake Tahoe, CA.  Sent to VS Memphis, TN as Assiatant Manager, then sent to the Chicago area, VS Schaumberg, Villa Park and Northbrook including VS Indianapolis, IN   Assigned as General Manager in VS Birmingham, AL.  That is when a few of us headed out one weekend for Quinn's Mill in Atlanta.  Quinn's Mill, at the time, was an entirely new concept for VS.  I don't remember the details but we did have one hell of a good time!  I will check my files and see if I can find any folks we may have in common.  But it has been a few years.  I am on FaceBook.  Joe McGoff, Houston, Texas.  Cheers!  JM

04/07/20 09:49 AM #47    

Doug Scott

Hi Joe,
Seems our paths should have crossed at some point. I was the opening Kichen Manager at both Northbrook and Schaumburg and was there for the opening of the fifth boxcar in Schaumburg.

Doug Scott






04/08/20 10:20 AM #48    


Andy Pratt

Either of you guys work with George Mortensen or B.J. Wakefield?

07/05/20 05:54 PM #49    


Patrick Hynes

I am trying to plan a reunion of VS Woodland Hills (VSWOD 26) crew from 1972 onwards. Location will be the Sagebrush Cantina in Calabasas ... on the porch. When the coast is clear.

Still trying to contact the following:

Waiters: Brian Beck, Bill Beddow, Paul Bryant, Jeff Chambers, Tom Crawley, Gary Goldman, Kirby Hamman, Mickey Kaufman,Tom MacManus, Jeff McClure, Mark McGinnis, Mike Newman, Alan Pinto, Mark Rogers, Curt Wells,

Bussers: Pat Brady, Greg Jackson, David Jones, Pat Manis, Jack Murray, Joe Ofria, Steve Paul, Jim Rice, David Stark, Peter Tuohy, Rick Vasta, Dewey Wright

Cocktailers: Colleen Blackmer, Debi Pagano, Barbie Hendricks, Crishon Paul, Linda Phillips, Mary Soltwedel, Janet Tanner, Lynn Watson

Hostesses: Nancy Devore, Carol Foldvary, Chris Talavera

Cooks: Shirley Edwards, Luis Gonzalez, Ron Hamilton, Jim Roberts, John Scott, Mike Sorensen

Bartenders: Steve Bailey, Rob Brook, Joe Goebel, Terri Hutchinson

Please contact me at with any ideas.

07/19/20 05:11 PM #50    


Patrick Hynes

No responses yet.  Does anyone read these posts?

07/20/20 09:03 AM #51    


Andy Pratt

There's a facebook group "Victoria Station Restaurant Chain."  Have you tried posting on their page?

07/20/20 11:08 AM #52    

Mike Roberts

Hi Pat,

This is Mike Roberts and I worked at VS Woodland Hills from '76 to '81, first as a salad man, then busser, and then waiter. Many of the names you mention in your post, I worked with.

The experience working at VS was one that I enjoyed a lot and we were a tight work family. It would be interesting to see if you get any other responses from the other alumni. I have made past contact with Mike Hickerson, but that is about it.

l look forward to seeing how this progresses.


Mike Roberts

07/21/20 03:46 PM #53    


Patrick Hynes

HI Mike,

Thanks for the reply. Seems like the VS Woodland Hills crew have scattered to the four winds.

It may be a lonely reunion ...Hickerson, you and me !

I believe the Sagebrush Cantina can handle us on their front porch ... even social distancing !

Let's wait for some others to emerge from the Valley's underbelly.

Patrick Hynes

07/21/20 03:50 PM #54    


Patrick Hynes


Thanks. I will try that , too.

How about a national reunion ... when the air clears a bit ?

Patrick Hynes

11/04/21 02:16 AM #55    


Patrick Hynes

.Hi All, 

Another year, the memories fade ... and the candle flame in the cheap red glass holder is flickering.

I'm still hoping for that Reunion of all VS Woodland  Hills  before it is too late..  Where are you all ?                         

I'm at Please contact me.

(Also still trying to find Strickland, Pilgrim, Bombay and Claire Cunningham from VS Vancouver)

It was a time, it was .....







11/04/21 09:09 AM #56    

Carter Spohn



Just wonder who is out there who used to work at Universal City. Universal City seemed so seperated from all the other locations. I was the disco manager, good stories to tell from the top of the hill. Like the wrap party for the Blues Brothers, where we had to build wooden walls 8 feet tall b/c John Bellushi didn't want anyone to see in. John needed an private office so the GM let him use his office where John ended up snorting coke of the GM's family photo. Lots of stories, so whose out there?



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