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Wahib's in Alhambra-- a little bummed on the stuffed cabbage

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I was trying to find Senor Fish in Alhambra, and I ended up at Wahib's Lebanese Kitchen instead. I have been meaning to try this place for a long time.

I'm still eating my vegetarian combo plate, as a type this. Overall, I'm a bit bummed. The pickled turnips, the olives and the stuffed grape leaves are too salty. This is coming from a person that adds salt to nearly everything I eat.

I took my first bite of the stuffed cabbage and could not continue eating it. The filling tasted bad. I love stuffed cabbage. It is a Persian dish that I eat frequently at home. I was so excited to see that they gave both grape leaf dolmehs and the stuffed cabbage variety. Stuffed cabbage is something that I barely see in restaurants.

The hummus also tasted canned. I may be wrong, but it really tasted like it was pre-made.

There is one thing that I will give this place a thumbs up for. The lentil soup was very good. It tasted very fresh and the flavors were right on. It reminded me of a soup that my dad makes. So, thumbs up on the lentil soup, but thumbs sideways to down on the rest. Too bad. :(

The price was reasonable, at least-- about $11 for the whole meal, which also came with a generous amount of pita bread.

I expected this place to be a lot better.

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  1. Kat - I feel your pain. Wahib's is closer and has longer hours, so it works when I'm in a pinch. However, when I'm trying to scratch the Mediterrean food itch, I go to Mediterrean Cafe (on Lake, in Pasadena) or Zankou. I state that in no particular order, so as not to set off the which-is-better debate.

    Do you feel like you would have been happier buying a piece of pizza at Costco? We all have days like that. :)

    6 Replies
    1. re: kotatsu

      Thanks.:-) This was one of those places on that I had been looking forward to trying for a while. I definitely like Mediterranean Cafe better. In fact, that's the place that I was thinking about as I wrote the original post.

      1. re: katkoupai

        Sorry to hear you didn't like Wahib's too much on your first visit. I am not familiar with the vegetarian entree you tried but do like their Lebanese-style soups, salads, grilled meats and shawarmas.

        1. re: Ernie

          Thank you. :)

          I noticed the grilled meats, but I opted for the vegetarian plate that came with stuffed grape leaves, stuffed cabbage, beans, rice, pickled turnips, hummus, lentil soup, olives, peppers and pita bread. The pita bread and the soup were fine, but everything else that I ordered has to go. I'm sad to say this. Maybe it was an off-day, or I ordered the wrong thing, but I'm fairly sure that I'll go elsewhere next time.

          Elsewhere will probably be Mediterranean Cafe, which you Ernie first told me about (thanks!), or home, where my mom will cook something great for me. :)

          As alternates, I'd probably go to Zankou (for chicken) or Raffi's in Glendale (for Persian kabob).

          Maybe the lesson learned here is only eat dolmeh at home.

          1. re: katkoupai

            It's been a while since I've been to Wahib's but the reason it has been a while is because I felt the food had gone downhill from when I first tried it back in the mid 90's. It seemed like the taste and quality weren't as good and the service was spotty. That said, it's still a decent place to eat but I also prefer the Mediterranean Cafe. The latter has no atmosphere whatsoever (and they shoo you out well ahead of 7:00 to make sure they close on time) but the food is better.

            1. re: monkuboy

              I expected Wahib's to be more like the Mediterranean Cafe, and I was surprised to see that it was more of a sit-down restaurant than a take-out place. There were no customers at Wahib's when I went (around 4PM). I often go to Mediterranean Cafe at around the same time, and it usually has many customers. I also think Wahib's costs a few dollars more for a meal, which in my case, was less fresh and less tasty than MC.

              1. re: katkoupai

                I still want to try it. I understand that Carousel in Glendale is really good and I personally like Mediterranean Garden on Foothill in Monrovia. Their lentil soup is awsome and I like their pickles among other things. Without naming names, I've been to many of the places in Pasadena and the Valley named by CH which are indeed good.