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Just moved to Monrovia - what's good?

I just moved to this little burb about a month ago. We've tried a few of the local establishments, plus a few we were familiar with before like Rudy's. The other day we happened upon a sushi bar called Mikomi. It was closed at the time, but we looked inside and it appeared to have some potential. The chef said they opened a few months ago. Anybody try this place or have other recommendations? No Thai or Indian; I'll try just about anything else.

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  1. I like Los Gueros Grill, esp. their guacamole.

    Only sushi joint I've been to is Kiku, which was decent, not spectacular.

    Los Gueros Grill
    313 W. Huntington Drive
    (626) 358-0200

    Kiku Sushi
    670 W Huntington Dr
    (626) 357-9971

    6 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      I've been to Kiku. I didn't mention it because it was probably the worst sushi I've ever eaten. The tuna they took out of the case was frozen solid, and they cut it into small pieces. Realy awful, and it wasn't cheap either.

      1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

        Actually, for sushi in that neck of the woods, I've had good experiences at Mako in Arcadia, just a skip and hop from Monrovia.

        Mako Sushi
        506 E Live Oak Ave
        Arcadia, CA 91006
        (626) 447-6150

          1. re: SauceSupreme

            I like Mako too. Its close and consistent for me. Lots of chowhounders have opinions about the place but none are really bad. Its pretty good. Also Basil Thai on Huntington.

      2. re: ipsedixit

        Finally tried Los Guerros and loved it. The wife even liked it and she's usually hypercritical of mexican food, so anyplace that merits a return visit is a major achievement!

        1. re: ipsedixit

          Two doors down from Kiku Sushi is Aloha Boba Tea House. Great little gem in the plaza; known more as a tea/coffee shop and but also serves sandwiches. Fresh, tasty fare that's a real solid option in addition to their outstanding teas.

        2. Hi,

          We live in the area and here are some of our favorite places:

          For sushi, Maki & Sushi on Huntington Drive in Arcadia, close to the AAA office (not sure of the exact address, sort of across from the Souplantation. Our favorite sushi place used to be Futami in the Pavilions shopping center on Myrtle and Foothill, but they closed relatively recently and we haven't tried the new place that opened up there yet.

          Chinese - Wang's Palace on Myrtle in downtown Monrovia.

          Diner, breakfast - LeRoys, on Huntington and Mayflower, we love this place. Great breakfasts, burgers, sandwiches, and they have tater tots!

          Pizza - Zelo, on Foothill in Arcadia, much discussed on this board!

          Fish tacos - Senor Fish, in Duarte next to the WalMart on Mountain Ave.

          Mediterranean - Mediterranean Garden Grill, on Foothill.

          We also like the Canadian Cafe, off of Myrtle, try the poutine!

          You're not far from Donut Man in Glendora, also widely discussed on this board. Other than that, there are lots of places in Pasadena, which is not too far away...

          11 Replies
          1. re: Michelle

            I second Zelo and Mediterranean Garden Grill (one of my new favorites - I love their frog legs.)

            1. re: Michelle

              Maki & Sushi is way too fusiony for me. I will have to check out the Meditteranean Garden Grill, Canadien Cafe, and Wang's Palace.

              I agree about Futami, the owner is supposed to be opening a new place in South pasadena soon.

              1. re: Michelle

                What Michelle said. We go to the same restaurants, plus Din Tai Fung on Baldwin in Arcadia for dumpling. Chang's Garden for Chinese in the next Plaza on Duarte. Garden's Cafe for HK style food on Baldwin. You can venture out a little further in San Gabriel for more Chinese/Vietnaminese/Dim Sum choices.

                1. re: Liz

                  For Clarification there are 2 Garden Cafe's in Arcadia. Theres Arcadia Garden and Tasty Garden. You want to go to the one just south of Duarte across from Yong Dong Korean Tofu House and BCF( this is a good spot for you to try too if you like soon-do-boo).

                  Everyone I know of that goes to the one that used to be Chez Sateu ( aka next to Marie Calendars says its horrible.

                  1. re: Mando

                    That would be Tasty Garden by Duarte Road. Garden Cafe is located next to Marie Calendar.

                2. re: Michelle

                  Michelle, in case you missed my other post, Sam from Futami is now at Toros in Alhambra!

                  1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

                    No way! - calabasas_trafalgar - thank you so much for this info! It will be great to see Sam again!!!

                    1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

                      Thanks! I did miss your other post, and only saw this response yesterday. As a result, we went to Toros for dinner last night. Never been there before. Didn't see Sam (Anyone know if he is still there? Or maybe it was just his night off?), but the place was beautiful and the food was delicious, a tad on the pricey side but well worth it for the quality...we enjoyed it.

                      1. re: Michelle

                        Michelle - I looked up the R.I.P Futami post and CT mentions Sam is only there on Sat/Sun.


                        1. re: The Oracle

                          Thanks! I hadn't seen that post. Guess we'll have to try again!

                    2. re: Michelle

                      No way! I didn't know I could get poutine so close... I grew up in Canada :) I've been wanting to go to the Canadian Cafe sometime...

                      For sushi near Monrovia, I don't think you can beat Mikomi on Myrtle. It's had time to settle in and the selection is nice. Try the Mon-ROLL-via Roll! It's california rolls with a sashimi salad and a great deal to boot!

                    3. I would travel over to Arcadia (5 to 10 minutes) for good Japanese and Chinese food.

                      For Japanese,
                      1) I would go to Kiyosuzi on Baldwin Ave between Duarte Ave/Huntington Drive. It is very reasonably priced, fresh fish, and yummy cooked foods.
                      2) Maki & Sushi on Huntington, mentioned above, is okay. I think it's Korean owned, and the fish is mediocre (not extremely fresh), but they have nicely priced combos.

                      For Chinese,
                      1) Din Tai Fung for soup dumplings, located on Baldwin Ave/Duarte Ave. Go early, like before 5 for dinner and before 10:30 for lunch on weekend, because it's that crowded.
                      2) Full House on Duarte Ave/Golden West for dim sum or Cantonese seafood.
                      3) Tasty Garden for HK-style chinese. (Baldwin/Duarte)
                      4) Chang's Garden (Baldwin/Duarte) for Mandarin style cuisine (in Arcadia Supermarket plaza).

                      For American food:
                      1) Moffett's for chicken pot pie is the best (Baldwin Ave/Naomi Ave) next to CVS.
                      2) Sesame Grill is an okay Cal-fusion place, if you are into that kind of food. The food has gone downhill.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: WHills


                        My experience at Maki & Sushi is that the fish has always been fresh and wonderful, with generous servings. They have many types of rolls and they are all large and very good as well. The only down side is that the place is often very busy!

                        1. re: Michelle

                          I agree. This is my default when I don't want to spend an arm and a leg for sushi. This are very decently priced and I've never had bad fish here. Also have very good tempura when i've felt like ordering it.

                        2. re: WHills

                          Maki and Sushi has become my default sushi place in Arcadia/Monrovia. The last couple of visits to Kiyosuzi had been extremely disappointing-- meddling sashimi and oily tempura-- while I have never had a bad meal at Maki. Their lobster roll is to die for.

                        3. http://www.sangabrielvalleymenus.com/

                          Petrillos for Pizza
                          Claros Italian Deli for Sandwiches, Cannoli and Italian stuff

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Burger Boy

                            The ONLY downside to Claro's is that they're closed on Wednesdays - as to why that is, I do not know. But their ready-made sandwiches are an incredible bargain, and always good.

                            1. re: Will Owen

                              Wednesday was traditionally the day that bakeries closed, you never bought bread on wednesday, maybe that has something to do with it. Like restaurants being closed on mondays. I almost went today also, I was gonna get some meats and cannoli shells, I remembered just as I was driving towards the freeway.

                          2. Now you have to change to monrovia_trafalgar!! Welcome to our side!! ;-)
                            The Peach Cafe is wonderful for breakfast. Try their Monte Cristo which is on a Croissant. If you go to their website you can see the review I wrote on CH when we first went (it is identified as "review on CH" (or something like that). I also love Cafe Mundial - so good. Poutine Fries at Canadian Cafe (already mentioned). You just missed the best Chilaquiles - at El Matador which was on Huntington, but has now relocated to Irwindale (not that far of a drive if you want some). Zelo's pizza is right there as well.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: WildSwede

                              Sorry, no name change in the offing! What is Chilaquiles? I'll go to Irwindale.

                              1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

                                I have posted a link which will explain all you ever wanted to know (or not) about Chilaquiles! At El Matador, I prefer the red sauce version and always get the eggs cooked over-easy and on top of the chips vs. scrambled into it which is how they normally serve it. They also have a version that comes with chorizo, which I always get. The service is always great and prices good.
                                210 East; exit Irwindale, right; El Matador is a couple miles down on the left side before you get to Arrow Highway.

                            2. Here's some information about restaurants I've compiled: http://www.geocities.com/raytamsgv

                              5 Replies
                              1. re: raytamsgv

                                I've been to Bella Sera Trattoria right in Old Town twice, both experiences were at least above average. Some things better than others, but a nice atmosphere. Owner is very funny, and proud of his beautiful kitchen. I don't know if there has been anything on CH on the place. Servings were fairly substantial by my standards (maybe not Claim Jumper large), but I seem to remember it is all a la carte.

                                1. re: MaryT

                                  Yes! I have been to Bella Sera once and had a very pleasureable experience. I think I remember noticing a great patio in the back when I went to the restroom.

                                  1. re: MaryT

                                    We went last night. I thought it was overpriced and the portions were kind of skuimpy. Food was ok, but I doubt it will make my regular rotation. And the waiter was annoying(think Bruno from Dancing with the Stars without the charm).

                                    We also tried Mikomi. Big sushi bar with high prices run by Koreans. I would say "rolls only"

                                    1. re: MaryT

                                      You may or may not know, but Bella Sera is run by the owner of Stoney Point near Old Town Pasadena on Colorado. Bella Sera tends to project a higher end feel though. I like Stoney Point more...

                                      1. re: tonicart

                                        I didn't know. I've been meaning to try Stoney Point for a while. Now I'm not sure if I want to.

                                  2. Many CHers have already made some great suggesstions. Peach Cafe and Zelo's are places you ought to try out. Paco's isn't a bad place to check out either. Their portions are quite large. You're near a plethora of Chinese food places- Chang's Garden, Sinbala, Din Tai Fung, and the many offerings of SGV. Jim's Burgers is a great burger joint with a large menu- their sides are the best, a small order of fries is quite a large pile. Roma's Pizzeria near Arcadia High School serves up a good slice and they're very friendly.

                                    1. For Vietnamese food, it's worth that drive:
                                      Vietnam House
                                      710 W Las Tunas Dr
                                      San Gabriel, CA 91776-1156

                                      Or Golden Deli across the street
                                      815 W Las Tunas Dr
                                      San Gabriel, CA 91776-1071

                                      1. This isn't a restaurant recommendation but lucky you, you have a wonderful little grocery store in your neighborhood called Dogwood's Community Market on Foothill Blvd.
                                        I make a weekly trek there every weekend from Pasadena for their wonderful fruit and veggies at really great prices. I think they carry some of the best grapefruit in town there. Enjoy!

                                        1. Welcome to the Eastern side of L.A. County!

                                          Guess the biggest question is how far did you want to travel? Pple above have left you with a good amount of options but theres toms more to see and do just a little further west when you move into Pasadena, So. Pas, and San gabriel

                                          I live right over in Arcadia.

                                          Places I frequent are

                                          Jim's Burgers on Duarte and 6th Right by the Super A. Foods. Its just your Classic Neighborhood Burger joint. Great Fied Zucchini. Some of the best fries in the area in huge portions. Great Patti Melt and chili cheese fries.

                                          Lo Chile's Locos - 88 cent tacos after 5pm and a pretty good chile relleno burrito. This place is where i go when i get the late night mexican cravings i picked up living in san diego.

                                          T Burgers - Good burger Joint as well. I tend to go to jims cuz i grew up on it but this place has great burgers and stuff as well.

                                          Din Tai Fung - XBL (aka soup dumplings)
                                          Tasty Garden - HK style cafe.
                                          Beard Papa's - Its a chain you may have tried it before
                                          Young Dong - Good korena tofu soup w/o having to drive to K town.

                                          If you like Hard shell picadillo/ground beef tacos try taco lita. I've never been a fan of these types of tacos but if you like them they do them well here.

                                          Royal Hawaiian BBQ - In the Pavillions shopping center. its pretty good for Hawaiian. Def better than L & L though i've had better.

                                          5 Replies
                                          1. re: Mando

                                            I'm not new to the area; I only moved from El Monte. I'm familiar with somne of these places(Young Dong, Taco Lita), and Lo Chile's is within walking distance, altho I haven't tried it yet.

                                            1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

                                              oh ok. the Calabasas thing totally threw me off

                                            2. re: Mando

                                              Also Taco Treat on Live Oak east of Baldwin. Love their deep fried burritos and hard tacos with that salsa!! YUMM-O!! Also the taquitos with guac!

                                              1. re: WildSwede

                                                where's taco lita in monrovia? also, heard a mention of mediterranean garden grill before is it really good what's good to get and how do they prepare those frog legs?

                                                also, isn't there an old fashioned ice cream parlor somewhere on myrtle in monrovia?

                                                lastly, is restaurant devon still there? heard they had a blue cheese ice cream there back in the day. along with some other dessert oddities, and lots of wild game.

                                                1. re: kevin

                                                  Taco Lita is actually in Arcadia on Duarte near First St.

                                                  Mediterranean Garden Grill is tasty and reasonable. My husband and I will usually share the kebab combo. The lule kabobs are outstanding. Haven't had the frog legs, but the menu says they are "sauteed in Olive Oil with Garlic, Cilantro and Lemon Juice."

                                                  Restaurant Devon is still around, but there have been some recent downhill reports.

                                            3. some links

                                              Din Tai Fung Restaurant
                                              1108 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Le Roy's Highland Restaurant
                                              523 W Huntington Dr, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Zelo Pizzeria
                                              328 E Foothill Blvd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              Full House Seafood Restaurant
                                              1220 S Golden West Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Chang's Garden
                                              627 W Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Taco Lita
                                              120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              Diron's Canadian Cafe
                                              125 E Colorado Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Tasty Garden
                                              1212 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Young Dong Tofu
                                              927 E Las Tunas Dr, San Gabriel, CA 91776

                                              Jim's Famous Quarterpound
                                              915 W Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Petrillo's Pizza Restaurant
                                              833 E Valley Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776

                                              Donut Man
                                              915 E Rte 66, Glendora, CA 91740

                                              Los Gueros Mexican Restaurant
                                              313 W Huntington Dr, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Mako Sushi
                                              506 E Live Oak Ave, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              Wang's Palace
                                              423 S Myrtle Ave, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Mediterranean Garden Grill
                                              335 W Foothill Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Moffett's Family Restaurant and Chicken Pie Shoppe
                                              1409 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Claro's Italian Markets
                                              19 E Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              Peach Cafe
                                              141 E Colorado Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Cafe Mundial
                                              516 S Myrtle Ave, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Bella Sera
                                              422 S Myrtle Ave, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              T Burgers
                                              226 W Foothill Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Morrow's Taco Treat
                                              74 E Live Oak Ave, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              Beard Papa Arcadia
                                              860 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                              Royal Hawaiian BBQ
                                              158 W Foothill Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Dogwood's Marketplace
                                              245 W Foothill Blvd, Monrovia, CA 91016

                                              Roma Pizzeria
                                              33 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                                              2 Replies
                                                1. re: WildSwede

                                                  Very cool. I also enjoy Rigo's now and again, although I haven't been there in a few months actually. I like it better than Paco's and most of the other non fast food Mexican places in that area.

                                              1. For something sweet, I love Monrovia Bakery! Their little chocolate cupcakes are simple and perfect, with the sprinkles. It's like being back in kindergarten.

                                                1. My wife and I really like Mundial. It is consistenly good. If you like steak, try the porterhouses--very nice. Also, if you like Mexican, Rigo's on Foothill is good. The Mediterranean Grill has excellent hummis. Try their combination plate--the kebobs are excellent.

                                                  1. I had lunch at Mikomi soon after it opened. I'm not a sushi afficianado but had no complaints with my meal.

                                                    1. I live at Duarte and 6th Ave and discovered that the scary looking "Korean BBQ and Tofu" place (in the same plaza as Jim's Burgers) is actually very posh inside, with polished wood floors and an authentic looking Korean menu. It says it's under new management (Myung Dong Soon-Tofu, I believe)...has anyone eaten here? They seem to have zero customers every time I pass by, but I'm eager to try it--they look very inviting.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: doug424

                                                        That should be:

                                                        Myung-Ga Soon Tofu
                                                        933 W. Duarte Rd., Monrovia, CA 91016
                                                        Mon-Thurs: 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
                                                        Fri-Sat: 11:00-10:00

                                                        1. re: doug424

                                                          One of my co-workers said it was the worst Korean restaurant he had ever been to. But that was a while ago. If it has new management, perhaps the food would be better.