It is credited with getting Wolfgang Puck's career off the ground, for starting the trend called California cuisine but they called "California nouvelle" and being a hot spot for celebrities. Terrail arranged for many famous artists to paint the menu covers designed by David Hockney. (One menu was featured in an art exhibition at the Los Angeles Central Library). It closed on November 1, 1985.
Their phone number was unlisted, supposedly because "If you don't have the number, we don't want you."
One source stated the “fall from greatness” began when sous chef John Sweeney strangled his actress girlfriend (Dominique Dunne) to death. Many believed Terrail supported Sweeney leading “the glamorous clientele” to stop frequenting the restaurant.
Besides being a hotspot for celebrities, they attracted “businessmen and lawyers ... for what became known as Ma Maison's "drunk lunches." Debauchery ensued, and conspicuous consumption to the highest degree was commonplace.”
Notable former employees
- Coser, Crystal (January 29, 2015). "The Epic Rise and Fall of Ma Maison, The Restaurant That Made Wolfgang Puck Famous". Eater. Retrieved 1 February 2019.
- "Ma Maison: The Clubhouse to the Stars". kcet.org. 23 September 2013.
- Harmetz, Aljean. "HOLLYWOOD: THIS WAY IN". nytimes.com.
- "The Brilliant, Bitter History of L.A.'s Fabled Ma Maison, Where Welles and Nicholson Were Regulars". hollywoodreporter.com.
- Miranda, Carolina. "L.A. stories hidden in menus, from tiki kitsch to Ma Maison" (June 11, 2015). Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 20 January 2018.
- Ryon, Ruth (10 November 1985). "Ma Maison's West Hollywood Site Sold" – via LA Times.
- "In Hollywood, Ma Maison Is 'my House' for the Biggest Stars". people.com.
- Dunne, Dominick (April 8, 2008). "Justice A father's account of the trial of his daughter's killer". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 1 February 2019.
- "Gordon Hamersley on Staying Motivated 27 Years Later". bostonmagazine.com. 24 February 2014.
- Karen Stabiner (August 24, 2013). "For a Chef, 41 Years in the Kitchen Takes Its Toll". The New York Times. Retrieved January 20, 2018.