On my bucket list of places to visit in Las Vegas included the Huntridge Pharmacy & Soda Fountain. Located on the southwest corner of Charleston & Maryland, the Huntridge shares its name with the hard-luck neighborhood it resides in and numerous businesses about, including a popular dive bar next door, the Huntridge Tavern.
The interior is a tad worn, rather like its environs, but still facilitates a working pharmacy, and a few aisles of assorted sundries, tchotchkes, and used vinyl albums for sale. But the most eye-catching part is the soda fountain counter, complete with checkered floors, and vinyl upholstered bar stools and booth seats. Its like Arnold's Diner from Happy Days seen through the eyes of Edward Hopper.
Significantly, the soda fountain is a vegetarian/Kosher dairy establishment, in that meats and poultry are not served, but dairy such as milk, cheese, and ice cream are, along with eggs and fish. Once seated, both my tablemate and I ordered a Surfer Girl tuna melt with fries. I eschewed a can of soda for a Watusi Whopper shake.
The simple, indulgent Surfer Girl, above, features a gob of a basic salad of solid white albacore tuna, mayonnaise and pickle relish, with melted processed cheese on grilled sandwich bread. This was not a skimpy sandwich! The near perfect shoestring-cut fries were golden and seasoned fresh from the fryer with just enough salt. Nary additional salt nor ketchup was needed to put these away.
The Watusi Whopper, right, with vanilla ice cream, chocolate syrup, malted milk balls, and malted milk powder was probably not the best thing to pair with a hefty tuna melt. Even after pouring up to the very rim of the glass, the steel mixing cup was still half-full!
When all was said and done, much of the shake remained unconsumed but the sandwich and fries were history.
Recent news from Eater indicates the soda fountain will shutter by the end of August, to be replaced with a chain wing restaurant. The pharmacy will remain open.