Archive for January, 2010

Andersen’s Pea Soup

January 14, 2010

A piping-hot-bowl-of-split-pea-soup welcome to ~Postcards From The Dinner Table~ (PFTDT), the newest addition to the postcardiness Blogroll!  Karen Resta maintains this wonderful blogsite, writing with wit and imagination.  I found Postcards From The Dinner Table via Karen’s submission to A Festival of Postcards (6th ed.) — White, and had been meaning to add PFTDT to my Blogroll, and even had selected a welcome postcard to feature, but work and family obligations left little time.  However, I knew that today, January 14, 2010, was the day to make time to welcome PFTDT, because Karen features today the very postcard that I had chosen to post as a greeting:  Pea Soup Andersen’s!  So, like two peas in a pod, here is Pea Soup Andersen’s:  

Andersen's Pea Soup - obverse

Pea Soup Andersen's - obverse

Andersen's Pea Soup - reverse

Pea Soup Andersen's - reverse

But wait!  The PFTDT postcard and my postcard are not “two peas in a pod”!  The postcards are nearly identical, yes, but subtle variations can be seen.  Postcards can experience “genetic” variations, just like the variations that Gregor Mendel observed in his famous experiment with,,, you guessed it:  PEAS.  

According to the Mendelian system, the PFTDT postcard is the P or “Parental” generation postcard, since only one location is given for Pea Soup Andersen’s Restaurant:  Buellton, California,  43 miles north of Santa Barbara on U. S. Highway 101.  However, the postcard depicted above belongs to a later generation, since by the time it was printed there were three Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurants in California:  The original location in Buellton on U. S. Highway 101, north of Santa Barbara, a second location in Santa Nella, 65 miles south of Stockton on Interstate 5, and a third restaurant at Mammoth Lakes Village in Selma, situated in the High Sierras.  Since my postcard has a copyright date of 1976, the PFTDT example must be pre-1976.  

The original Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurant is located at 376 Avenue of the Flags, Buellton, CA 93427-9704; phone: (805) 688-5581.  The address of the Santa Nella restaurant is 12411 State Hwy 33, Gustine, CA 95322-9792; telephone:  (209) 826-1685.  The Mountain Springs Valley location is no longer operating as a Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurant, but leaves an enduring reminder of its former presence in Selma, California:  There is a short street named Pea Soup Andersen Boulevard, with two establishments addressed to it:  The Spike and Rail Steak House (2910 Pea Soup Andersen Boulevard) (formerly Pea Soup Andersen’s) and Holiday Inn Selma Swan Court (2950 Pea Soup Andersen Boulevard).  Update of July 24, 2010:  According to an employee of the Spike & Rail, the transfer from Pea Soup Andersen’s took place around 2001.  Some reviews on Yelp document that split pea soup is still featured on the menu!  Here is a photo of the restaurant at Mammoth Springs (taken after the name had changed from Pea Soup Andersen’s to Spike and Rail Steak House), showing the signature windmill architecture for which Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurants are noted. 

Fun facts:  Pea Soup Andersen’s has a facebook page.  The surname “Andersen” is often misspelled “Anderson”, yielding “Pea Soup Anderson’s”.   This postcard is published by Kolor View Press, based in Los Angeles, CA 90064 Printed in USA copyright 1976

There is so much more to write about this postcard, but duty calls.  Welcome Karen, of Postcards From The Dinner Table!

Update:  Karen has posted a recipe for split pea soup in the following three, consecutive posts:

Split pea soup recipe Part 1: Not Only Slow But Delightfully Lazy (Split Pea Soup)  I highly recommend a viewing of the YouTube video of Bisschen dies und bisschen das that is embedded in this post  Sheer fun!

Split pea soup recipe Part 2: On Not Being a Princess In the World of Pea Soups

Split pea soup recipe Part 3: Romancing the Pea in Any Given Soup has a simile-simmered story interwoven with the finale of the pea soup recipe.

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