BOY, THE SWELLS HAD IT GOOD
The elite underpinnings of Yellowstone National Park are worth revisiting, if only for the nostalgic value and the lessons that can be learned.
Most visitors to Yellowstone in the early days expected that the best of contemporary civilization would be available – even in the wilderness. They demanded comforts and amenities commensurate with their station in life. The Railroads and concessionaires did their best to comply. They catered to the “upper crust” and the remunerations were commensurate with the amenities.
If you were wealthy enough to be at Lake Hotel in 1908 you would be able to enjoy the following dinner, (original spellings retained.)
Tomatoe Bouillon Sago
Potage a’la Maryland
Dressed Lettuce, Sweet Gherkins,
Baked Lake Trout a’la bordeleise,
Boiled Brisket of Beef, Fresh Horseradish Sauce
Lamb kidneys saute a’la Rachel,
Chocolate Cream Fritters,
Roast Prime Ribs of Beef au Jus
Roast Leg of Pork with Apple Sauce
Mashed Potatoes, Boiled New Potatoes
Carrotes a’la Vichy, French Green Peas
Pumpkin Pie, Apple Pie Sago, Pudding Cream Sauce,
Apricot Sherbert, Assorted Cakes
Imperiant Turkish Figs
Eastern Cheese, Toasted Biscuits
Coffee, Cocoa, Tea, Milk
Dinner was announced by the ringing of a bell in the lobby, and of course guests were expected to ‘dress.
No ‘walk-ins,’ no ‘general public,’ no decisions, no complaints, no waiting; just a perfectly planned and executed experience. (Original spellings retained.)
Cream of Tomato, Salt Wafers
Consomme in Tasse, Melba Toast
Sweet Pickles, Radishes, Ripe Olives
Fried Filet of Sole with Tarter Sauce
Boiled Ham with Green Spinach
Broiled Sirloin Steak Maitre de Hotel
Compot of Rice with Fresh Fruit Sauce
Chicken Fricassee with Steamed Rice
Mashed Potatoes, Cauliflower au Graten,
Candied Sweet Potatoes,
Carrots Saute in Butter
Sliced Tomatoes French Dressing
Heart of Lettuce Salad 1000 Island Dressing
French, Raisin, Rye, and Wheat Bread
Maple Cream Puffs, Hot Mince Pie,
Melba Peaches, Table Apples,
Chocolate Ice Cream,
American, Swiss or Cottage Cheese, Crackers
Coffee, Postum, Tea, Milk, Iced Tea,
Cocoa, Demi Tassee
Old Faithful Inn
Sunday, August 31, 1930
Lectures by Ranger Naturalist on the Geysers, history,
bears, etc., at Bear Feeding Grounds at 7:00 p.m.: at
Museum at 8:15 p.m.
Searchlight on Old Faithful Geyser
Time announced in lobby.
I really like the “searchlight on Old Faithful Geyser,” bit. Now, that was dinner. A single sitting, come dressed, just the members of your own class, hotel guests only, enough wait staff to present a seven course meal, a bit of music, lecture by a pet ranger, feed Yogi, and a stroll on the veranda.
And a delicious evening was had by all.