Wrestling's favorite restaurant: The oral history of Ribera Steakhouse

Page 3 of 5
August 07, 2013

CABANA: I have two jackets. I have a silver one with black trimming and a black one with red trimming. I first got one in 2006 when I went to Japan for ZeroOne. Years later, I went back to Japan for Pro Wrestling NOAH and they gave me another jacket. On my last tour, they gave me the Zubaz pants. So, hanging on my wall is the Ribera jacket and the Zubaz pants together as a piece.

JERICHO: I have about five of them in my closet. This last time we went, I didn’t even get one. There’s only so many Ribera jackets that you need. The first one I had, I actually wore it all the time.

REGAL: I probably got mine in 1994. They gave me one as I was leaving, and it turned out to be XXXXXL.  It was silver and it’s never been worn. It’s still in my house.

BARRETT: At the end of my meal, the owner came and picked up the plates and brought out about four different jackets and asked me which color I wanted. I went for the light blue with red writing. That was the one I’d seen Brody Steele wearing years ago. I’m not a big memento collector, but that’s something I will save.

ANIMAL: I don’t have any right now. I either outgrew them or wore them out, but at one time I must have had 100 different ones. We had every color.

DREAMER: When I went back with ECW, I got my first jacket. I was really, really happy about it. I still have it. I have eight Ribera jackets. My first one was blue and it had Japanese writing on it. They told me it said “Tommy Dreamer” and I thought it was really cool that they went out of their way for me, but it turned out that it said “Road Warrior Animal” on the back.

ROBERTS: They brought out some Ribera jackets that weren’t real ones. They just stuck the logo on a gym jacket. Luckily, I was with Chris Jericho, who spoke up on my behalf, because he could see I was dying on the inside and fake smiling on the outside. The guy went back and got us the real black satin jackets. Seventeen years in this business and that was definitely one of the highlights.

ANTONIO CESARO: Justin, you have a Ribera jacket, really? What has this world come to?

JERICHO: Did [Justin] tell you that they gave him one jacket and he was sad because it wasn’t the one he wanted so he made the guy go all the way across the street to the warehouse to get the one he wanted?

DREAMER: Justin’s been on television for a long time. He’s paid his dues. I heard he complained because he wanted a different color. I would have loved if Justin Roberts had caused the tradition of Ribera jackets to be dismissed.

REGAL: In the last 20 years or so, it’s been watered down. This may offend a few people, but unless you worked for one of the two big Japanese companies — New Japan or All Japan — you hadn’t made it.

PUNK: Somewhere along the line, it got a little bit soiled because — just like anything — it lost its luster after a while. Everybody wound up going to Japan for a hot minute, so everybody wound up getting a Ribera Steakhouse jacket. I actually refused to get a Ribera Steakhouse jacket because of it.

CABANA: Nowadays, so many guys have them, it’s almost like kitsch to wear it.

PUNK: I have one because the last time we went to Japan, I went and they insisted. I’m not going to reject a gift. I also, in turn, insisted they give me a pair of Zubaz.

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