In the early 1970s, Otto Lindsel left the forest of the northern west coast and moved to the Southern California area of the Antelope Valley to be nearer to his family. As he had many years of experience cooking for lumber jacks, it was natural that he would come up with the concept of opening a diner. This was the perfect retirement venture for him, thus creating the history of a great Antelope Valley tradition. Stories about Otto abound from longtime customers. Some of our favorites include his intolerance of customers who only came in for coffee, customers who took too long to eat their meals or anyone who complained about the food. All were thrown out with relish.
For almost 25 years, Crazy Otto's was located adjacent to the train tracks on Sierra Highway in Lancaster, California. The diner originally consisted of 12 counter seats and one booth.Over the years, the diner expanded in an effort to accommodate the large crowds, eventually ending up with two separate and distinct kitchens and dining rooms. Due to the proximity of the railroad tracks to Crazy Otto's, Otto devised a numbered wheel to be spun every time a train passed. The seat corresponding to the number on the wheel won a free meal. This tradition continues today. The passing of the train would cause the old building to rattle and shake to the delight of the customers