From Susan M:
It’s a place you could take a heavy drinker for lunch and know they would be well cared for! By the 70s, all those earthy type places with alfalfa spouts were in vogue and Nickodell seemed really out of the past, but it suited many still who like that type of fare and the dark ambiance. While I was still going there, they never seemed to change the menu much towards things more 70s ‘gourmet.’ It remained a flashback to earlier days. I’m not sure what it’s decor looked like after those early 70s days – I don’t think I was there past maybe ’73 or might have been ’74 – and I think the last time I was there, it was with Joe Cocker – and he LIKED his cocktails!
I think it was on that corner of Plymouth and Melrose and stretched out length wise down part of the block. That would have been the south-west corner of Melrose and Plymouth but it didn’t run as far as the next block – some other buildings were between it and the next corner. I do recall if I had come down Gower from A&M, I had to turn left onto Melrose and head down the street a block or two to catch the valet parking – by the 70s that neck of the woods was impossible for parking!
If you’ve seen photos of the tables at the various Derby restaurants, the service settings and tableware was quite similar at Nickodell to the Derbys. Nickodell had several layers of thick white table clothes – maybe 3 of them, so the ‘cush’ was there and you knew it was a ‘fine eating establishment’ from the minute you sat down. ‘Nick’ had nothing unique on the walls tho as did the Derby. I can’t really recall much about the walls other than nondescript and think they had wall-paper on them by the later 50s.