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May 2, 2007 06:01 PM

Fun Place in Alhambra

Hey everyone I am looking for a fun place to do a double date in alhambra I was thinking a down and dirty crab place would be fun. But the only places I saw like that were in OC, Long Beach, or redondo. I don't want to travel farther then like 10 miles in any direction.

As far as price we don't want to spend any more then about 30.00 a person before tip so with tip about 40 bucks a person.

The clincher is it's a first date for the the other two so that's why I was thinking a place like a crab place would be interactive and fun and it will take all the pressure off for them. If there aren't any places like that around alhambra i'm open for other suggestions of course.

Thanks everyone.


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  1. No real food preference though I do know that my friend does not like very spicy food so that probably cancel's cuban and mexican places.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Ben7643

      I don't know if Rowland Heights is far from you, I think it's less than 20 miles, but try Banana Bay, they have all sorts of Asian foods, from Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, Philipines and it's a fun atmosphere, some nights maybe loud so that's an indication of fun right? Some nights, they have a live band and also have big screen televisions all around. Restaurant itself is clean and huuge, food is good quality, prices are very reasonable, you can have a la carte meals or family style.
      Here is their info
      Banana Bay Restaurant,
      18230 Colima Road, Rowland Heights, CA 91748
      Tel: 626.839.5511

    2. Down and dirty crab sounds like newspapers and hammers? In a clinch it could be a place like Joe's Crab Shack? The Boiling Crab is "coming soon" to Alhambra, but probably not this Saturday.

      How about a regular Chinese seafood place and order some live dungeness or king crab? Still can be pretty messy.

      6 Replies
      1. re: monku

        Yep that was what I was thinking newspapers and hammers. Chinese would be good....... but the girl my friends bringing is from shanghai so it needs to be real chinese.

        1. re: Ben7643

          Since she's from Shanghai, it might best to introduce her to foods other than Chinese...

          What about fondue? The Melting Pot makes it fun and shareable. It can get expensive, but if you share individual "entrees" it shouldn't be too bad. There's one in Pasadena:

          1. re: chica

            Great idea but I think thats too pricey.

            1. re: Ben7643

              What about grilling meats and veggies? Gyu Kaku is more affordable and also in your nearby Pasadena..

              1. re: chica

                I've been to one of their other locations and i thought it was poor quality beef. There is not one asian person in their kitchen either. I did go to a great Korean BBQ place down town was VERY pricey but worth every penny. Had a nice outdoor area wish I could remember the name. That place is to far away for this get together but great food. It was in koreatown I think.

                1. re: Ben7643

                  Gyu Kaku can't be all that bad since the place is crowded most nights and 90% of the people eating are Japanese (at least when I go). I've always enjoyed the meats, food, and experience. My Japanese coworker says it's very similar to the chain in Japan (aside from price). I usually go during the week for dinner when it is 50% off all meats.

      2. How about JAZZ CAT CAFE in Alhambra for individualized Taiwanese hot-pot?

        You can be communal without getting too personal ... just the right balance for a first date.

        Jazz Cat Cafe
        640 West Valley Blvd
        (626) 293-8999

        6 Replies
        1. re: ipsedixit

          Well that place sounds cool but........ and I hate to sound picky but I don't go to places unless the have an A health inspection rating.

          So far i'm thinking I may go with the first suggestion even though it's more then we were hoping to spend. Hopefully you all will have some others ;).

          1. re: Ben7643

            OK lets expand it to like a 15 minute drive from alhambra maybe this will open up some more choices.

            1. re: Ben7643

              lol! Ok, the health rating is going to rule out most good asian food places and plus, the crab/newspaper sort of places aren't A ratings either. Unless you go somewhere like Din Tai Fung, you're out of luck in that dept.

              Perhaps Clearman's? I haven't been there in years..but I hear it's fun. I have no idea what their rating is. Maybe try a Korean tofu house, there are a couple in SGV and Arcadia. Or, eat at any regular restaurant and head over to a fro-yo shop or ice cream place like Fosselman's. That'll be fun. And nothing beats homemade ice cream.

              1. re: chica

                Well i don't eat much asian food other then sushi usually and all the sushi places I frequent, Sushi Gen, Hama, Tama all have A's :). But I get your point. I was looking at Din Tai Fung before I posted this. Which Clearmans do you mean there is the steak house and the Inn I haven't been to either which is better?

                1. re: Ben7643

                  I think Din Tai Fung is too regimented and you'll feel rushed to be a date type of restaurant. Clearman's Northwoods Inn is still there, but Steak N'Stein you're referring to has been torn down (San Gabriel). I don't think Northwoods Inn is a date type of place either.

                  1. re: monku

                    Steak N' Stein is still very much around and it is in Pico Rivera, not San Gabriel. I just had a great steak dinner there a couple days ago

          2. I, too, agree that Chinese cuisine is probably not recommended for someone who's coming from China.

            In Pasadena, CrepeVine and Thaitalian may fit the bill (and don't worry, there are stuff in the latter that aren't spicy). Saladang/Saladong Song are also good Thai options that aren't too crazy spicy - and Il Fornaio, while a chain, serves Italian that's not bad and not terribly pricey.

            If you can afford an extra stop, I'd throw in Fair Oaks Pharmacy for the Soda Fountain experience -- or Fosselman's for Ice Cream.

            If going downtown, Sushi Gen, as you noted, is appropriate - as is Izayoi, Traxx or Roy's (though all four is pushing the upper-limit of the price range)


            12 Replies
            1. re: AquaW

              Here's a different direction - how about El Cholo on Fair Oaks Ave., just north of South Pasadena? I know, I know . . . some chowhounders probably don't like the food there, but it is a fun, light environment, good for a first date. You can get a big plate of nachos and all dive in.

              And go afterward to Fair Oaks Pharmacy or Buster's for coffee and ice cream. :-)

              1. re: onebite

                Does anyone know where I can see a pic of Thaitalian it sounds a bit corny but it sounds like it could be fun as well.

                Thanks for the rec :) also what is the difference between saladang and saladang song they are two different places right?

                1. re: Ben7643

                  No pix, but I ate at Thaitalia recently and, as its name suggests, it is a combination of Thai and Italian dishes, which surprisingly works okay together given each cultures' sauce-based dishes. It's a nice looking restaurant with attractive lighting and would be a good interesting choice for a first date. Entres are $10-20 and they have a full bar. Saladang and saldang song are basically the same restaurant across the parking lot from each other. One is modern and the other, the original I think, is a little more dated, but the menus are the same.

                  1. re: cfylong

                    Which would you say is more chill but romantic at the same time saladang song or thaitalia?


                    1. re: Ben7643

                      I think Thaitalian is more chill but Saladang is more romantic (both in atmosphere & location, the former is right in Old Town, whereas the latter is several block south on Fair Oaks.)


                      1. re: Ben7643

                        Saladang has more of a following, so it's noisier and more lit. It's a little of that 4/10s of one and 6/10s of another. Both are attractive affordable restaurants, in looks, lighting, and cuisine. I favor Thaitalia because I think it's quieter, more interesting, and would like to see more people support it. And, since it's in Old Town, you can walk around afterwards, drop by Leonidas, which has the best hot chocolate around. You really won't go wrong with either one, given your specifications.

                    2. re: Ben7643

                      Saladang and Saladang Song are next to each other. Saladang was the original restaurant. Saladang is more conventional Thai and Saladang Song is maybe like "new" Thai if that's the right word for it. Both are good kind of date places, maybe Saladang Song has a more romantic feel to it with a patio and Saladang has kind of an industrial feel to the interior.

                      1. re: monku

                        Saladang Song has a very nice patio - there's a patterned breeze-block wall around it so it's shielded from the street but is still well-ventilated, and it's an extremely pleasant place to be on a warm night. On not-so-warm nights they of course have those infra-red heaters. The dining room I think is too brightly lit and very noisy, but I've had some hilarious times there anyway. Get the corn fritters!!

                        1. re: Will Owen

                          I kinda like the high ceilings and "industrial" feel to the room, the building and patio used to be an electrical substation.

                        2. re: monku

                          Saladang Song specializes in the "street food" of Thailand while Saladang is the more traditional dishes.

                        3. re: Ben7643

                          BTW Thaitalian is owned by the same people as Tongdang in San Marino (in case you're familiar with it...)

                          1. re: socalqtpi

                            Thanks everyone were going to tray Thaitalia I think ;). Great recs thanks again. I just started another post about what everyones favorite japanese places around here are ;)

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