Went to the Original Tommy's a few nights ago. According to Los Angeles A to Z, none of the restaurants bearing the name "Original" are actually original and all play off the fame gained by a Tommy's that went out of business in the early 50's.
In any case, according to my fiancée, I proved myself to be a non-Angelino when I stated that I liked Wienerschnitzel's chili better than Tommy's. I found Tommy's extraordinarily bland, greasy, and too messy for the fact that it had very little flavor. The texture left much to be desired as well: t was just too thick and clotted for my taste. A disappointing food experience overall.
However, that said, the stand itself was very cool (at least at this location). You can see where it probably just started as a corner grill covered with a peaked roof, probably no bigger than 200 sq. feet, and the absolute minimum necessary to cover three workers and their implements. Tommy’s built the location at Rampart and Beverly very simply, with form slavishly following function. There is no place to sit; though Tommy’s has since provided a nice wood, elbow level shelf, complete with napkin dispensers, on the wall that surrounds the parking lot. You can stand around, chat with friends, and admire all the fancy cars people bring around late at night.
I get a kick from the weird mishmash of styles represented in Los Angeles architecture. It seems as if everything in Los Angeles was built on the cheap with disposability in mind. Nothing was built to last, so when it does, it is very surprising.