Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Ryan Bailey and Shawn Zambrows are currently pastors in Indiana. Ryan, at First Baptist Monticello, is an Indiana native and a huge Purdue fan. An alum of The Found (2003), he attended seminary in Pasadena from 2004-07. Shawn is the pastor at The Baptist Student Foundation at Purdue. She was born in Los Angeles and lived in Eagle Rock which is right next to Pasadena (where she, too, attended seminary) for the majority of her life before moving to Indiana in 1999. She goes back to the area periodically. Recommendations by Ryan are marked by “R” and those by Shawn are marked by “S.” Recommended here are establishments that are local to the area or to the southwestern part of the US. Page 5 of the Biennial Program Book has a helpful map of the area around the Convention Center and was used in the development of this guide.

Within walking distance of Convention Center: The Paseo Colodado, Old Town Pasadena, Fuller Seminary

The Paseo Colorado is a nice mall across Green Street from the Convention Center on the north side (The mountains are north). There are many different places to eat, have coffee and shop. There is also a movie theater. The website listing restaurants at Paseo is at
Check this out because you will find familiar chain restaurants (not on this list) that will be ideal for lunch or dinner or ice cream.
- Islands Fine Burgers and Drinks: Lunch and dinner. Kind of an island/Mexican feel. This is a chain but only in the southwest. Burgers of all types, tacos, Shawn especially likes the nachos and the tortilla soup. The passion fruit ice tea is great (fruity but not sweet). $7-10 (S, R)
- Rubio’s: Sort of fast food, but not at all like Taco Bell, Rubio’s is a Mexican place known for fish tacos, which are $1.25 on Tuesdays. Rubio’s is perfect if you need something quick and/or inexpensive. $5-10. (R)

Old Town Pasadena is the revitalized part of downtown Pasadena. It has shops, all different kinds of coffee and tea houses, pubs, and restaurants as well as two movie theaters. It is a great place to walk around any time day or night. Again, you will want to check the website because you will find familiar chains as well as many restaurants that we have not tried. http://www.oldpasadena.org/gc_searchResults.asp?cat_id=3
- Il Fornaio Italian Restaurant and Bakery: located in the “One Colorado” shopping alley, on the north side of Colorado Blvd, north and west of the Convention Center. A chain restaurant that serves only lunch and dinner, it is in the $11-30 price range. The bakery around the side has pastries and coffee with some tables outside and inside. (Also in One Colorado is a Johnny Rockets and a movie theater). (S, R!)
- Crocodile CafĂ©: On the south side of Colorado Blvd, east of the Convention Center, west of DeLacey Street. This is technically called “California Cuisine” which is taking foods from the southwest and Asia and pizza making up new stuff. It is in the $11-30 range (you can make it for less at home, if you would have thought of it, but hey, that is also what California Cuisine is) Serving lunch and dinner its stays open late. (S)
- Kabuki Japanese Restaurant: located on the south side of Colorado Blvd., east of the Convention Center, west of DeLacey Street. Shawn’s husband likes the sushi here. Shawn likes the tempura and other non-sushi items. It may not be the very best sushi in LA, but it is pretty good and there is a lot of variety on the menu for those who are not so brave. Between $11-30 (depending on how much sushi you eat!). This is also a chain located in the southwest, serving lunch and dinner. (S)
- Twin Palms: This restaurant used to be owned by Kevin Costner and his brother, but the story goes he lost it in the divorce. Really nice atmosphere, a lot of outdoor seating. $11-30, it is located south of Colorado Blvd. at the corner of DeLacey and Green Streets. From the Convention Center one can go east on Green Street (street on the north side) about 4 blocks. Serving lunch and dinner and Sunday brunch, food is described as “New American Cuisine.” (S, R)
- Mi Piace: Excellent local Italian restaurant open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Arrive a little early for dinner, if possible – there is usually a line. If nothing else, simply stroll by and take a look at the dessert case from the sidewalk. Mi Piace, as well as most other restaurants in this district, has sidewalk seating available. 25 E. Colorado Blvd. (just east of Fair Oaks Ave.) $11-30. (R)
- Louise’s Trattoria: A local Italian chain (10 SoCal locations) located at the corner of Colorado and Fair Oaks. $11-30. Just a nice place, maybe a little less expensive than Mi Piace or Il Fornaio. They have a menu online with prices. Can you tell Ryan likes Italian? (R)
- Jake’s Diner and Billiard Club: Just walk in, have a seat at the counter or in a booth, and build your own burger. Play some pool, too, if you like. The base price of a burger is $5.99. 38 W Colorado (west of Fair Oaks Ave.) . (R)
- Malagueta: This is a very unique restaurant and probably Ryan’s favorite in Old Pasadena. The sign describes the cuisine as “Brazilian with a Mediterranean Flair.” His favorite dish is the Spinach Ravioli. $11-30. 43 E. Colorado (west of Raymond Ave). (R!)
- Barney’s Beanery: Best described as a neighborhood bar and grill, Barney’s has a huge menu of burgers, sandwiches, salads, seafood, breakfast, whatever, and 132 or more domestic and imported beers. The original is located in West Hollywood at the end of Route 66. The Pasadena location is at 99 E. Colorado (west of Arroyo Parkway). Great place to hang out and relax surrounded by all sorts of Americana (and a red double-decker bus that you can eat in). $10-20. (R)
- Marston’s: North edge of Old Pasadena at 151 E Walnut (west of Marengo across from Memorial Park), Marston’s is, along with Green Street Restaurant, the best sample of local flavor on this list. Open for all three meals, Marston’s is a fantastic choice for breakfast if you’re up early. Get there early or be prepared to wait. The restaurant is housed in a small cottage and is very popular with locals. $11-30. (R!)

Near Fuller Seminary are several restaurants and Fuller’s own coffee place next to its bookstore.
- California Pizza Kitchen: Yes it is a chain that occasionally can be found outside of California, but this is a nice location, at the northwest corner of Walnut and Union, northeast of the Convention Center and just south of the Westin Hotel. Indoor and outdoor seating. Prices are $11-30, featuring variations on pizza, salads, wraps, etc. Shawn likes the side by side soups – two soups in one bowl, but each soup stays on its side of the bowl! Lunch and dinner. (S, R)
- Ricks Drive-in: Fast food burger joint. They also have burritos and other stuff. A small chain of 4 or 5 in the So. Cals's San Gabriel Valley, these burgers made Shawn give up being a vegetarian when she was in seminary. Prices are under $10, all outdoor seating, cash only. (S)
- Coffee by the Books: Coffee and tea shop next to the Fuller Seminary Bookstore. Good coffee next to a seminary bookstore, what more is there to say? Some indoor and outdoor seating, on Oakland, across Walnut, north of the main part of the Fuller campus. (S, R)

For those who really like to walk, or maybe you should find a car:

South Lake Avenue District has some of Shawn’s all time favorite restaurants.
- Green Street Restaurant: Shawn remembers when this restaurant was a little place on Green Street (telling how long ago would reveal information about her age). It is now south of Green Street on Shoppers Lane, an alley east of Lake Avenue, accessible from Mentor Street (east of Shoppers Lane) or from Cordova on its south. There is garage parking (for a price) but sometimes one can find parking on Mentor. It is about 7 blocks east of the Hilton (on Cordova). Now that you know where it is… This restaurant was started by a few former Catholic nuns and priests who left (there were marriages involved). They serve great breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner in the $11-30 range. Shawn especially likes the Diane Salad and the zucchini bread. Indoor and outdoor seating. (S!, R!)
- Burger Continental: Greek/Mediterranean. You have never seen a salad bar like this one. Breakfast, lunch and dinner, indoor and outdoor seating, price in the $11-30 range. Family-owned and operated, it is located on the west side of Lake Avenue north of California. One can enter from Lake or from California, where there is a parking lot (it is a strip mall with a grocery store and other shops – it’s free) sometimes one can find street parking on Lake Avenue. And if you hit it on the right night, there is belly-dancing. Ryan notes: When I was at Fuller (’04-’07), BC had a special on Monday and Tuesday nights that included a cheeseburger, fries, and unlimited soft drink refills all for $1.99. There was karaoke, too! Definitely a great local place. (S!, R)
- Pie and Burger: A local place, small and basic, cash only. They have burgers and pie (duh) but they have a really good breakfast – nothing fancy, but they have great cinnamon rolls. They are also open late, until 10 pm (Sunday 9 pm). They are located on the north side of California Blvd., just east of Lake Avenue. (S)

Places off the map (the one in the biennial program book, p. 5):

Still in Pasadena but you probably don’t want to walk:
- In-n-Out: You must not leave California without going to the famous In-n-Out Burger!! Their menu is basic and has been that way since they opened the first one in So. Cal more years ago than anyone can count (though they are all over California, Nevada and Arizona they are still family-owned). There are various versions of the burger; the “double-double” is two patties and two slices of cheese. You can have any combination of tomato, onion, lettuce with a sauce. You have to ask for pickles if you want them. There are also versions not on the menu. You can get as many as six patties on a burger with an equal number of slices of cheese: you would ask for this by saying “six by six.” You can also get the burger “animal style” which means they grill the onions first. You can get your fries “animal style” and they will come with grilled onions, dressing and cheese. Shawn always orders a double-double with pickles (not animal style) and a shake. They make everything while you wait. When you get your beverage be sure to look inside the rim on the bottom of the cup. The Pasadena In-n-Out is an older one. You can drive through or walk up. There is only outdoor seating. Under $10. From the Convention Center go north on Marengo to Walnut and go east until Walnut forks. Take the left street which is Foothill. In-n-Out will be on the right within a block. (If you take the shuttle to the Saga Motel, it is .8 miles – east on Colorado, north on Allen, east on Walnut to Foothill- still a bit of a walk, but if you are desperate you can get to In-n-Out without a car). (S!, R!)
- El Cholo Pasadena: The original El Cholo is a famous L.A. restaurant west of downtown which has been there since the 1920’s. The Pasadena El Cholo was started by the grandson of the original owner. It is a similar if not the same menu. Mexican food in the $11-30 range. From May to October they serve sweet corn tamales. They are like dessert (Shawn can only eat one). Take Green Street west to Fair Oaks and go south. On the east side of the street past Hurlbut Street. Street parking and valet. (S!)

Still on Colorado Blvd, but a few miles west, in Eagle Rock:
- Cindy’s: It’s a diner, a frequent location used in commercials and film. It is owned by Loretta, who is usually there. Don’t expect much – it is a diner! Good, especially for breakfast. Lots of “regulars” eat there. Under $10. Take Colorado west until you have the choice of taking the 134 Freeway or the Colorado Street Bridge. We recommend the bridge (veer to the left). The bridge is known to locals as the “suicide bridge” and has been the location of many shots in film and television. While looking left while crossing the bridge you can see what looks like Wayne Manor from the original Batman TV show. On your right you can see the Rose Bowl. From there you still have a couple of miles to go. Cindy’s is on the south side about 4 miles total from the Convention Center. (S, R)
- Casa Bianca Pizza Pie: This place is a favorite of LA food critics. It is old-style Italian, family-owned and operated since the 50’s, probably is the original decor. No reservations, cash only, open only for dinner 4-midnight Tuesday-Thursday, 4-1:00 am Friday and Saturday (closed Sunday and Monday). $11-30. Street parking only and you may have to walk a bit. It is worth it! On the south side just a couple blocks west of Cindy’s. (S!)
- Oinkster: Called “Traditional American,” this place can only be called that in L.A.! They have great, juicy hamburgers, pastrami sandwiches and pulled pork sandwiches. Their fries are very popular. It is technically “fast-food” but a step above. There is indoor and outdoor dining. The twist is that it is also Pilipino, so be daring and try the Ube Shake. (It’s purple! And Shawn loves it.) $11-20 range. Located on the north side of Colorado Blvd a few block beyond Casa Bianca. They have a parking lot. (S)
- Colorado Donuts: A family-owned donut shop to which everyone in Eagle Rock goes. Great donuts! What else can be said? Of course, they have coffee and other beverages one would expect at a donut shop. They also have sandwiches and ice cream. And the last time Shawn was there they also had Thai Ice Tea. On the south side of Colorado, just past Cindy’s but before Casa Bianca. (S)