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Beleagured Cafe Stanley's Officially Shutters in Sherman Oaks After 32 Years

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A loss for the neighborhood.

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Stanley's in Sherman Oaks
Stanley's in Sherman Oaks
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

As was thought to be the case, it seems that Stanley’s in Sherman Oaks is now permanently closed. In fact, they’ve been shuttered up for just about two weeks now, after dealing with an infestation issue that saw them shut down by the health inspector.

As commenters, tipsters and Yelpers have written, the trouble seems to have begun around August 5, when the longtime cafe space suddenly got buttoned up tight for a "temporary closure." It didn’t take long (what with the health department notice on the window and all) for folks to realize the problem: multiple violations, including one apparently major infestation and several cleanliness issues.

The only word from the restaurant itself, which had been dutifully serving the neighborhood for more than three decades, came buried in a Facebook comment thread, and offered no details other than a hope to eventually reopen. Since then, despite being inundated with comments, the place had remained silent — until a "thank you for 32 good years" sign apparently popped up on the front door overnight. No more, no less.

And so ends a 32 year run for the once-popular Stanley’s. Some staff members have taken to cursing out the place online for offering no notice whatsoever, but overall Stanley’s was seen as a fair place to grab a casual bite in that stretch of the Valley, especially as prices nearby skyrocketed. It’s also worth noting, though perhaps it’s just a coincidence, that the brother of Stanley’s owner Greg Sadofsky, one Jay Sadofsky, also just experienced his own recent restaurant shutter — his being the Continental in Toluca Lake, which went under the knife for a serious remodel, only to reemerge and then shutter seven weeks in.

Luckily for the neighbors, the dining scene in the Valley only continues to improve, meaning even as one well-liked local stalwart folds, there are still plenty of great options nearby.

Update: Greg Sadofsky writes in to Eater with this closing statement for Stanley's:

To All of Stanley's loyal clientele,

Not enough can be said to adequately convey my thanks to you for your many years of support and loyalty. Stanley's has been a part of our collective lives and memories for 32 years!

First of all, I will truly miss those who have, over the years, been a part of the Stanley's staff. Many of these individuals have been part of the fabric of Stanley's from its inception.

I will always be grateful for the energy of the young people who worked together and how enjoyable it was day in and out. So many nicknames and laughs emanated from memories. It was rewarding to witness the baby boom that originated at Stanley's from my staff; most recently, this includes: Connie, Bethany, Annie E., Carrie Jo, and Cupcake!

I don't want to leave anyone out because there are so many special people who worked at Stanley's throughout the years, but a special thanks to the bartenders, and to my managers! Our clientele loved you all! What will New Years be like without Steve Dewinter's ritual with the mic? A special prayer for Kirk (our faithful bartender) and for Habib (who ran the Valet for the patrons).

Last but not least, to you, our faithful following... the Stanley's clientele! Generations of loyal customers have come through our doors for years... Be it for a cocktail or a salad! So many people (including myself) have met their spouses at Stanley's! I thank you for your patronage and support throughout the years.

Please know that the closing of Stanley's was premature for me. I may make a return to our Boulevard...

A toast to you all, and again, thank you! Greg