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Feb 23, 2007 10:46 AM

Pasadena nightlife?

So I just moved to Pasadena and am new to the area. I want to go somewhere for dinner tonight that has good food but is also a good bar scene. I've been to the Yard House before and wasn't impressed, but I heard Old Town is kinda cool. I'm kind of tired of sushi and my boyfriend said that he wants steak tonight. Can anyone recommend a place?

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  1. Maybe JJ's Steakhouse. Food's better at Arroyo Chop House, but it's not in Old Town.

    2 Replies
    1. re: mc michael

      no contest, i don't eat meat but like their bar, drinks, fresh fish, and... those homemade chips with a nice martini are excellent after a long week. Sis-in-law always gets their filet and never has any leftovers for my dog tho' she's quite the carnivore, so not sure her tastes are that discriminating. You'd think being related to Arroyo C.H. their'd be some osmosis with the steaks, guess not.

      1. re: Local

        oops,, above meant in regards to Smitty's not JJ's.

    2. Magnolia on Lake - Great small plate stuff, fantastic burger, great french fry trio. Very lively bar scene, which is it's main draw. They play good music and the service is friendly.

      (626) 584-1126
      492 S Lake Ave
      Pasadena, CA 91101

      1 Reply
      1. re: jeffro

        Totally suggestion, Jeffro! Magnolia is one of my favorite bars in Pasadena (of couse there aren't many good one to choose from.)

        1. re: Local

          I like Smitty's but I have not been thrilled by the steaks there.

        2. I'd suggest you do your bar-hopping in old town, and your dining elsewhere. Like arroyo chop house.

          1. Bar Celona has decent enough food and is on one end of Old Pas, allowing you to traipse over to the other end. Villa Sorriso is run by the same owners, and has a Cal-French flair as opposed to tapas and a wine bar. My favorite restaurants in the area are JJ for an upscale steakhouse, Cafe Santorini for a casual Mediterranean dinner, and La Luna Negra for Spanish food, especially when a flamenco band is playing.

            There's lots of bars, and probably the most fun is Union Cattle just for the scene.

            1 Reply
            1. re: SauceSupreme

              I second La Luna Negra for pitchers of sangria and a great vibe.

              Also, and these recommendations are made strictly on drinks and social factors (not food and ambiance), I like to hop around to a few bars on the same night- maybe start with a drink at Twin Palms, migrate to Club 41 for their cheesy 50s style band and bizarre mix of twenty-somethings and middle-aged folks who like to dance and then maybe over to Union Cattle for a change of scenery and back to Twin Palms (yes, sometimes I drink a lot, but hey - I can stumble home from these spots!)

              And you can always start a card at Barney's (the original location by Barnes & Nobles)- when you drink every beer on the card you get your name on a plaque on the wall- great bar food too!