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Since we were in Eureka, California, I insisted on experiencing Samoa Cookhouse, the last surviving cookhouse in the US.

A cookhouse is a building used for cooking, as in a camp. And it was built to serve lumberjacks and their families. The concept of a cookhouse still exists here. So there’s no menu to choose from. There are no small tables exclusive for your party alone. There are long tables with checkered tablecloths, and you get to share the tables with strangers. So in our case, we happened to sit beside a businessman and we talked to him the entire dinner time! Interesting way to get to know a stranger.

The food comes automatically. The waitress serves what there is in the kitchen: soup, sallad, bread, main dish, dessert and drinks.

How it looks now is more or less how it looked when lumbermen ate there when the timber business was in in its heyday.

Eureka is in the region of the giant Redwoods. That’s why the timber business was big there in the old days.