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pasadena discovery

Just returned from a visit to the Pasadena Rose Bowl and checked with Chow before leaving only to be dismayed at the reports of bad food in Pasadena. While roaming the streets looking for a place to eat came across DAISY MINT, 1218 E.. COLORADO BLVD., (626)792-2999. It's been open for 3 weeks and is run by refugees from the art design and product marketing fields. It's Asian fusion cuisine and from this 40 year resident of Northern Ca. who's had much asian food I can't begin to tell you how impressed I was. Liked it so much that ate there a 2nd night with relatives from the Irvine area who came up to visit. . Try the tofu appetizer, the salmon curry, the thai noodles. Visit and let me hear your comments.

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  1. Hmm, thanks! Never noticed it. Will definitely have to try.
    I am sad to see that you only heard bad things about the food offerings in Pasadena. There are many places in my town that I enjoy eating at.

      1. re: mbh65

        The couple who owns it is very hands on and very friendly. Also no corkage.

      2. Thanks for the review, wish I had seen it before i made lunch today! Unfortunately, most of what is said about Pasadena being lacking in food is somewhat true, but there are a few places. Sounds like you might have found one. My husband loves pho and we usually go to Pho 79 in Alhambra, but I have yet to find a good Korean BBQ place around w/o having to go to K-town.

        1 Reply
        1. re: kchangambrose

          cerritos/buena park and garden grove have good korean places. rowland heights/diamond bar have a couple.

        2. would you say that this place is more of thai place?

          4 Replies
          1. re: rickym13

            Here's the problem with Pas and why it gets a bad rap. The food in Pas is as good and varied as any other town in LA: that said, it gets it bad rap because it IS a tourist stop over and the majority of the restaurants cater to that experience. However, if you get out of Old Town there are LOTS of solid choices that equal many of the best mid level-high level eateries in LA. Gales / Bistro 45 / Dereks / Parkway Grill / Tre Venezia / Mike and Anns / The Raymond House / The Dining Room are all less than a mile from each other and I would challenge anyone in the SGV to match it...maybe even Melrose and 3rd street too. Agree...disagree ?

            1. re: thomtompkins

              I think you hit the nail on the head thomtomkins. So many just get to Old Town and base the Pasadena experience on some of the lesser restaurants in that area. Regarding Daisy Mint. We had dinner their last night and really enjoyed it. It is run by the couple that had the “Wild Ginger“ restaurant in Monrovia. The husband was wandering around the dining room, chatting with customers. Says they plan to expand the menu soon.

              1. re: thomtompkins

                I agree. I live in Pasadena and rarely, rarely go to Old Town (except to get my pedi).

                1. re: thomtompkins

                  The food at Daisy Mint is refreshing its great to see a couple with the courage to create outside of the main stream. I've eaten there only a couple of times, Its fantastic reasonable price and quality food. Pasadena is slightly overpowered with much of the same cuisine. if you are bored with "same old, same old" give them a shot its hard to be disappointed they do most everything right from atmosphere, service, variety, freshness, MMMMMMMMMM hungry now must go. Cheers for listening

              2. Friends took me to Daisy Mint last night, and have to agree - food is very good! The food is a mix of the owners' korean and thai tastes - and I think you can really tell when people have taken a lot of care with the food, as with this place.

                We had: Crab & cheese wontons, the peanut dumplings (steamed rice wrapped around a savory peanut fill, & served atop little tiny lettuce cups), the beef noodle soup, chicken panang curry, grilled eggplant salad, spaghetti w/ black mussels. we were also served hot barley tea, which i could not get enough of. the beef noodle soup, although it resembles pho, has a thicker linguini-sized rice noodle, and thick slices of melt-in-your-mouth brisket - the broth is really flavorful, they don't seem to hold back at all - nicely beefy, a little anise, with a lovely bright herbal thing going on. this may have been my favorite dish, and i can't wait to go back for a bowl on one of these cold rainy days. it beats driving all the way out to sgv for golden deli! okay, enough about the noodles - the panang curry (we had w/ chicken) was mmm....smack! good! the panang is made with small chunks of tender pumpkin (kabocha squash) and sweetens the curry - thick w/ coconut, bright w/ basil leaves, we spooned the sauce over lemongrass rice and went to town. the spaghetti w/ black mussels, is served tossed w/ a dry chili sauce, bright red & green peppers - also very good. the eggplant dish - really very simple array of vegetables served w/ a really bright lime dressing that the eggplant soaks up very nicely - i'm no vegetarian but i were, i'd be a happy camper. we overdid it and left no room for dessert, unfortunately, but it's close enough for many future visits.

                i live out here in pasadena, and the great thing is discovering these small neighborhood establishments serving up really solid food - for the most part, interesting friendly people serving up food they love to make. i'm thinking bulgarini, europane, even the folks at dervaes gardens & that white-haired, rosy-cheeked italian man w/ the unbelievable prosciutto at roma deli. and the taco truck at nishikawas on fair oaks. but i digress - my point being, that pasadena may not have a french laundry or a mozza hot spot, but if you're willing to look beyond the cheesecake factory, pasadena is full of good people serving good food. lucky for us!

                2 Replies
                1. re: yoyomama

                  "my point being, that pasadena may not have a french laundry or a mozza hot spot, but if you're willing to look beyond the cheesecake factory, pasadena is full of good people serving good food. lucky for us!"

                  Thank you! This is precisely how I feel about Pasadena - lots of good places, with solid, crave-worthy food, created and served by people who actually like feeding others - such as the people at Milano's Deli, Dan at Fredo's Phillys, the ladies at Sarkis on Washington, etc.

                  We may not have Mozza or Grace or AOC or places along those lines, but I'm fine with that - they don't appeal to me anyway. The local offerings are far too delicious and diverse for me to be lured afar :)

                  1. re: ElsieDee

                    hey, don't get me wrong. mozza, grace, AOC - in my opinion they are all great places serving really really great food too - and, though they may be in the fancy dining category, they are still establishments run by extremely talented people who are passionate about the food they serve. some of my favorite places and worth the trek, absolutely!

                    let me clarify my point here once again - territorial prejudice is what i can't get behind here. prejudice from the westsiders that prevents them from appreciating the lovely neighborhood finds here is no different from eastsiders dissing some of the spectacular goods to be found out west. i think it's all good, why not just be open to great food wherever it may be found?

                2. I'm new to Pasadena, and have only been to 9 or 10 places here, but being a lover of Afghan food ( a taste cultivated in the Bay Area which has the largest population of Afghani's in the US) we recently tried Azeen's on Union Street. The best Afghan food I have ever had. Make sure you try the squash "side dish" which combines about 7 different flavors in one dish...a firm block of butternut squash covered in a bit of yogurt and a tomato-type sauce and who knows what else. Another chowhound and I who ate there decided it was one of the best foods we have ever tasted. Everything on the menu is good, but make sure to try to samosas and other appetizers, and if you want kabobs, order the lamb. Parking is easy, there's a homey/elegant/ Afghan atmosphere, and the staff is great

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: trowbridge

                    KADU -- Sautéed butternut squash topped with yogurt and meat sauce.

                    I've had it too and it's fantastic!

                  2. Squeezed in a very quick dinner before church Sunday night based on your rec and was very pleased. We had the stir-fry garlic string beans and the yellow chicken curry and both were delicious - service incredibly accommodating. Also, thought the restaurant was very chic - beautiful, arty decor. We will definitely go back soon when we can dine in a leisurely fashion but thanks so much for the tip. This is completely in my 'hood but I wouldn't have found the place without your review.

                    1. This place sounds great - looking forward to trying it soon.

                      Can anybody give me an idea of the price range? The problem I have with Pasadena restaurants is that while the higher-end places (such as those mentioned by thomthompkins) may be good, there are very few lower-end (well under $20 PP) options that I like.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: garvanza girl

                        it's a fairly casual place - if i remember correctly (my friends picked up the bill the night i was there) the appetizers ran about $4-6, entrees $8 and up - more, prob. for the bigger ticket items - there was a short rib entree & a steak/kim chi dish we passed up that night that probably runs on the higher end. i think the gigantic bowl of beef noodle soup was about $8.50. i think...

                      2. Thanks for posting about this find. Can't wait to try it.

                        1. Daisy Mint is a wonderful find. We've been for both lunch and dinner and love it. The food is made with fresh quality ingredients using lots of family recipes. The owners and staff are so welcoming and helpful. We're working our way through the menu and have not been disappointed yet. They're open all day which is great for off-hour dining. Highly recommend the Crab Meat Cheese Wontons and Salmon Wraps for apps and for entrees: the Daisy Back Ribs (the owner's mother's recipe) and the Daisy Salmon broiled with Creamy Cilantro Sauce. This new restaurant deserves our support. Street parking and large lot in rear. Bring your own beer and wine until their license comes through.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: pattycake

                            had the duck soup today and it was really good. generous pieces of duck and the broth was nicely seasoned along with chinese broccoli and cilantro. will try the beef soup next time since other posters raved about it.

                          2. Got take-out from here tonight - and I must add my thanks to WineFan for putting Daisy Mint on my map :)

                            Take out consisted of three apps (crab meat / cream cheese wantons, egg rolls, and spring rolls) - all incredibly tasty and they traveled home well, but be warned that they're small sizes, and a single serving of one of the soups (can't recall which one at the moment). For mains we ordered the pineapple fried rice (a good amount of curry and not too greasy) and the garlic green beans with shrimp and scallops (because the other customer in the restaurant had ordered it and when I saw it some out of the kitchen I just pointed and said "one of those, please"), and a thai iced tea. Total was about $35.00, plus tip (yes, I tip for take-out!). We'll have leftovers for at least one more meal. The food is wonderful - flavorful and fresh and a great deal. I'd happily re-order all of the dishes we chose tonight.

                            Two not-food-related comments: One, their takeout doesn't come in the ubiquitous plastic or styrofoam containers that I'm used to seeing, but rather in heavy-duty cardboard that's biodegradeable and which kept the fried items from getting all soggy during transportation. Second, once I'd placed the order and returned from a maintenance trip, I was ushered over to an empty table, served my thai iced tea, and provided with several magazines to read while I was waiting. Really, really wonderful service. We'll be returning soon to dine-in.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: ElsieDee

                              Rainy days make me crave pho! Tried the beef noodle soup today and it's a good substitute for Golden Deli's pho tai if you're not in the mood to drive to San Gabriel. Nice meaty broth and nice tender brisket with Chinese broccoli.

                              1. re: misseatalot

                                Pasadena is in SGV, (central San Gabriel or city of San Gabriel, I assume you mean.)

                                1. re: misseatalot

                                  They have PHO??!! Always looking for closer-to-home-than-Alhambra for lunchtime Pho! Thanks! ;-)

                                  1. re: misseatalot

                                    mmm...the pho here IS really tasty. last week I tried the duck noodle soup and the duck is also incredibly good here - good, meaty, well spiced broth, rice noodles, and greens. it was pretty awesome - rainy weather, 2 great noodle soups - so hard to choose!

                                2. A friend and I went for lunch today and it was great! Arrived around 12:30 to find the restaurant packed (we got the last two-top). I had written down all the recs made here so we were good to go, although once we got the menus in hand, there were many other items that were tempting.
                                  I ordered the Beef Noodle Soup $7.50 and friend ordered Daisy Salmon $9.50 (lunch special with rice and salad). They were both great! I have to say that the salmon was phenomenal and would definitely order that next time. A great bargain at the lunch special price of $9.50 (and even at the regular menu price of $10.50). For app we ordered the Crab Meat Cheese Wontons $4.50 which were stuffed with crab, cream cheese, avocado and onions. They were so good - wish we got more than the 4 that came on the plate!! I ordered a cup of the Roasted Barley and Corn hot tea. I loved the faint corn smell and taste of that tea - $2. It was packed the whole time we were there with more people pouring in the whole time. I am sure that winefan's original post has conjured up much interest in this place.
                                  We were both very impressed and have already plotted our next visit, and our next and our next.
                                  Thank you, winefan, and everyone else who recommended it!!

                                  1. Almost went to Daisy Mint (again) too, but got diverted to Tops. Daisy Mint is a delightful little place, not only because the food is delicious and inexpensive, but because the staff are so welcoming. The staff expressed their gratitude to the many chowhounds (15 or so each week) who have come by to try their dishes and show their support for the small neighborhood restaurant. The Daisy Mint salmon is my favorite, with its garlicky green (cilantro?) sauce. The garlicky green beans are fantastic as well. The spicy ribs were a little salty but tasty nonetheless, much like the spicy pork chops served at Chinese restaurants. Next time, I'll try the crab and cream cheese wontons. I may make it two orders and call it a meal.

                                    1. Does anyone know if they're accomodating about making stuff vegetarian (actually vegetarian, i.e., without fish sauce, etc.)? Is there a menu online anywhere? Menupages doesn't seem to have it yet.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: will47

                                        I do not think they have a menu posted anywhere online. When I asked for a to-go menu, they gave me the same one as the one they were giving the dine-in customers. Give them a call (626) 792-2999.

                                      2. Does anyone know if the couple who runs the place is actually Thai? I'd love to take my (Thai) parents to this place, so we can satisfy their palates yet have something new and different, and I think they would find it interesting and fun if the ownership was also Thai. For family dinners out, we almost always end up at a Thai place, and while I love the stuff, I would like to branch out every so often, even if it means well-done Thai inspired food!

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: Skorgirl

                                          The husband is Korean and the wife is Thai (most of the staff is Thai). Regarding vegetarian, they do have a dish called Daisy Noodles that I think is vegetarian. Also their kitchen seems to be the type to customize a dish upon customer's request.

                                          1. re: misseatalot

                                            Gave in and had lunch there today. Took a new recruit, who became an instant fan of Daisy Mint as well. Tried a number of appetizers, and the Krab-Avocado-Cream Cheese Wontons with White Plum Sauce were the winner by far! A delicious balance of sweet, sour, savory, creamy and crunchy.

                                            There are quite a few vegetarian-friendly items. The following dishes are vegetarian or can be prepared with tofu...

                                            Egg Rolls with Sweet and Sour Sauce
                                            Summer Rolls with Peanut Sauce
                                            Peanut Dumplings
                                            Tofu Delight (a cold tofu appetizer)
                                            House Salad (greens, egg, peanut dressing)
                                            Garden Grilled Salad (with eggplant, zucchini and other veggies) in a Spicy Lime Vinagrette
                                            Tofu Soup with Spinach (not sure about the broth)
                                            Spicy Spaghetti
                                            Daisy Noodles
                                            Thai Fried Rice
                                            Spicy Fried Rice
                                            All the Stir-Fried Vegetable dishes (only one is prepared with oyster sauce)
                                            Some of the curry dishes can probably be prepared with tofu
                                            The brown rice is perfectly steamed -- not too chewy. Or you can order sticky, herb, or lemongrass rice for a extra $1.

                                            To be certain, you may want to call ahead (626) 792-2999

                                            1. re: Waverly SGV

                                              Looks like they're always experimenting with new fusion recipes at Daisy Mint and last night was no exception. Don sold us on the his fried ice cream special. Not sure if it's on the menu but wow, it's one of the best new desserts that I've tried in a while. It looks like they take some sweet spongy Chinese bakery bread, wrap it around vanilla ice cream and then deep fry the thing. What comes out is an ice cream filled donut like creation (It's better than a donut!). Drizzled with chocolate syrup and garnished with berries. Expected to see some melted ice cream in the pastry, but that thing still frozen rock solid. Really good stuff.

                                              1. re: misseatalot

                                                Better than a donut, indeed! More like a Baked Alaska that's been deep fried and then smothered in yummy. Sounds wickedly decadent -- and I'm mint-green with envy. Next time, I'll save room for dessert!

                                              2. re: Waverly SGV

                                                I have gone a couple of times. The first time, I asked if a dish was vegetarian and was told yes, then asked if it could be made without fish sauce, and the waitress had to check. The second time, someone (I think maybe one of the owners) was very helpful, and even told me which of the pickled chilis had fish sauce in it (the small ones do, the big ones don't).

                                                I don't know if it's because I got them without fish sauce, but I thought my spicy fried rice and pad si ew both were a little too sweet for my taste, but otherwise pretty good. I thought it was odd that there was fermented ("black") bean paste in the pad si ew - normally I thought it was just black soy sauce and other stuff (it's listed on the menu as having black bean sauce, so I don't think it was just in mine).

                                                Anyway, they do seem to have some good veg options, and the food was pretty good. Since it's about 4 blocks from work, I imagine I'll be going here at least once or twice a week.

                                          2. I tried the Daisy Noodles and the Barley and Corn tea on Saturday. Very good food. What an adorable place! The staff were so friendly too. I hope they thrive.

                                            1. I tried the egg rolls: kind of bland, but wow straight out of the fryer and onto my plate! The Daisy Noodles: very good, and I've gotta say, I really really appreciate beautiful fresh white unblemished bean sprouts, and beautiful fresh unblemished basil. It comes with a salad, and on the menu it says it's dressed w/ a sesame dressing, but my salad didn't have any dressing; but like everything else on the plate: beautiful fresh lettuces. Vietnamese coffee: mmmm, coffee dripped into the glass at the table.
                                              Very friendly waitress, and even though it was pouring outside, the place was pretty full.

                                              1. I tried it too and had a great meal. The panang curry with pumpkin was to die for, I will definitely order this again. I prefer the tom kah soup at City Thai, but it was decent and the crab/cream cheese wontons were tasty, but I don't know how authentic those are. Staff was very friendly and the atmosphere charming. Too bad someone etched graffiti in the front window :(

                                                1. excellent food. thank you for the great recommendation :) i have told all my friends about daisy mint...great service as well.

                                                  1. wow! i LOVE this place. we had the crab & cream cheese fried wontons, beef noodle soup, and yellow curry chicken - sweet mother of god was it delicious!

                                                    also really liked the eclectic decor. there was japanese cheesecake souffle, but they were out when i was there. for dayam sure - i'm going back for that!

                                                    1. I finally got to check out Daisy Mint tonight and had a very nice experience! The food was tasty and the people were really nice. We got served by the owner who had a great sense of humor. We got the crab/cream cheese wontons since they seemed so highly recommended and I had the Daisy Salmon (the sauce was great). I told one of the servers I found out about Daisy Mint on Chowhound when she asked. She told us that the people from Chowhound have been so nice and the the crowd from Yelp has been less receptive which I thought was funny.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: crystaw

                                                        I got the same feeling from a conversation with the owner when a friend and I went for lunch on Friday. The owner, Jo, said that the Yelp people seem to be "younger" but all the CH people have been really great. This time, we took a really late lunch and arrived after 2:30. We had the whole place to ourselves (with the exception of 2 people coming in for pickup). We ordered the cream cheese crab wontons again and my friend ordered an eggplant (of course I cannot find my menu to tell you exactly what it was called) dish (not on the lunch menu) with tofu which had a great sauce and a lot of garlic. It was perfect - the eggplant was not at all mushy. I ordered the spicy spaghetti with tofu and it was great. Came with tomatoes and peppers and basil. Really fresh tasting. Both my friend and I ate from eachother's plates and decided next time we would get things to share. This place is lovely and I really do hope that they do well.
                                                        I am sure it was mentioned above, but I will repeat it just in case. These are the people who owned Sweet Garlic in Monrovia. I asked which space they liked better and Jo indicated she likes the Pasadena location best. She said that she is trying to keep the prices down but keep good quality. And you can taste the quality in each and every bite you take. She also said that business is picking up. I guess the first time we went in was a fluke since she mentioned that lunch on that particular day was very busy (I thought it was like that every lunch, that having been my first time).

                                                        1. re: WildSwede

                                                          The reviews I have read on Yelp have generally been very positive but I would trust CH'ers a lot more. Some of those folks on Yelp seem more interested in being cute or hip than in writing anything meaningful.

                                                      2. Thanks a lot for this recommendation. We took my aunt and uncle here for lunch last Saturday; first of all, the place is very warm and inviting. I especially liked the interesting frames hung up on the wall without any pictures in them! The four of us decided to order off their lunch menu and chose green curry w/beef, chicken curry w/potatoes, the chicken and beef satay, and finally the pork with bamboo shoots. I enjoyed the curries very much--very flavorful without being too heavy on the coconut milk, i thought. The chicken was very tender, and the beef was good too. The only dish I think we'd pass on next time is the satay--a bit on the dry side. The pork was fine but I really liked the amount of veggies and bamboo shoots that was in the dish. It was definitely enough food for the four of us (I ended up taking some home as well). The lunch specials come with a refreshing salad and choice of brown or white rice. We didn't order any appetizers this time but I plan to try that muched talked about crab/cream cheese wonton and some of the noodle dishes the next time we visit.

                                                        1. Went again today for lunch (arrived about 1:55) and saw Malcolm in the Middle's Jane Kaczmarek eating lunch with a man (could not tell if it was Brad or not and did not want to stare).
                                                          Today I ordered the Tom Yum soup (and it was delicious) and my friend had the tofu/spinach soup (which was very good). For the third time we ordered the Spicy Spaghetti with Tofu - I was disappointed with it today. It had a pool of oil swimming in the bottom of the bowl (2 tbsp!). Disgusting. I asked for another bowl and transferred the meal to the new bowl (when I held up the pasta, it was literally dripping with the stuff -drops!). The waitress said next time to tell her less oil. I told her that this was the third time I had ordered it and the first time I noticed any oil. When I finished it, there was still a lot of oil in the bottom of the new bowl. The whole time I felt my lips were in an oil slick. My friend thinks that there is a different chef than the other times. Also, the last two times we have been (including today), neither of the owners were in-house and I wonder if that has anything to do with it.
                                                          My friend ordered the green beans with garlic sauce and it was really, really good.
                                                          We are still very happy with the meals there and will definitely keep on going!!

                                                          1. Yes, I brought my girlfriend and another couple with me to Daisy Mint last week based on the CH reviews, and I have to say that this has been one of the best recommendations so far. Given the owners' background in art and design, the place has a wonderfully cool, comfortable, quirky, intimate decor (I love the wall of empty picture frames). But what really stands out here is the food. It is clear that the owners are people who care deeply and passionately about their food, and it shows.

                                                            We ordered the peanut dumplings and spring rolls for appetizers. The spring rolls were exactly as they are supposed to be, crispy on the outside, flavorful on the inside. These ones also had a little spice kick to them, which I really liked. But it was the peanut dumplings that really stole the show here. I can't really describe the flavor (except that it is peanutty), but you definitely have to try these if you go there.

                                                            For our entrees, we had the daisy noodles with tofu, the green jungle curry with chicken, the kim chee fried rice with pork, and the pumpkin stir-fry with tofu. All were absolutely excellent (although I can only personally vouch for the vegetarian dishes, I absolutely trust my co-diners' palates), but we all agreed that the daisy noodles were the standout of the bunch. Flat rice noodles with lots of veggies, perfectly fresh tofu (VERY noticeable and appreciated), and topped with an absolutely delightful red curry sauce.

                                                            We were all completely stuffed and talking about how great the meal was, at which point the husband part of the ownership came out and talked with us for a bit. He was so sweet and cool and appreciative, and his passion for food shone through. As a finishing touch, he recommended the fried ice cream for dessert. Since one of our group has a particular obsession with fried ice cream, we couldn't pass up this opportunity.

                                                            According to this friend, as well as the rest of my party, this was the best fried ice cream any of us had ever had. The owner said that they tried Italian, Japanese, and Mexican takes on the dish, and basically took the best of each to create their version. I have to say that it was a revelation. The fried crust encasing the scoop of ice cream was thick yet light and crispy, and absolutely delectable. The ice cream itself was wonderful (even though I rarely get terribly excited about vanilla), and as an added bonus, it was served with a few fresh berries on the side. You MUST save room for this if you go.

                                                            And now for the best part: For all four of us, including apps, entrees, tea and Thai ice teas, dessert, and tip, the price was just over $60.

                                                            Overall, this was one of my best dining experiences in LA, let alone Pasadena, and I can't wait to go back.

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: redteamo

                                                              FWIW, the daisy noodles are not vegetarian - all their curry sauces contain fish sauce.

                                                              Seems to me like the food is improving and getting a little more consistent.

                                                              1. re: redteamo

                                                                My friend and I had the fried ice cream after dinner Sunday night and wow-that thing is decadent!

                                                              2. the owners are setting up their back patio for tea and the new menu for tea and according to the owners the patio should debut around summertime. their teatime would have a thai flair although i wasn't sure what that meant but knowing the owners it should be something cute, inventive and fun.

                                                                3 Replies
                                                                1. re: misseatalot

                                                                  My friend chose Daisy Mint for her birthday lunch on Thursday and the owner brought her out a piece of very good carrot cake with a candle on top (and did not charge us, since we are regulars, he said). He did mention that they are re-vamping their tea menu. I ahve tried that barley tea they have and like it very well. He recommended that my friend try the jasmine (?) tea that comes as a flower and opens up in the pot as it steeps. It was wonderful. We go at least once a week (sometimes more) and with the exception of that time the Spicy Spaghetti was overly-oily (it was still delish, tho) everything has always been phenomenal and supre-fresh. We love it.

                                                                  1. re: WildSwede

                                                                    Well, I finally got to try Daisy Mint tonight with all the men in my life (father, brother, husband and son). Chowhounds, you didn't steer me wrong. We had a couple of orders of the Shanghai Dumplings which were very much like the XLB. The Chicken Sate was nice and grilled but not dry. I love Yellow Chicken Curry but tried the Panang Curry with Chicken based on their recommendation. It was delicious. It had peas and what they called pumpkin but I think it probably was something like kabocha. We also had the Waterfall Pork Salad. It had some good heat to it without having to ask. My dad asked for condiments because he especially loves the pickled thai chilis and he wasn't disappointed. They brought over a 4 jar condiment assortment. We also had Pad See Ew with beef. The noodles had a good bite-not too chewy and the ratio of noodle to meet and broccoli was good as it wasn't overwhelmingly noodles. When I go back I want to try the Sizzling Seafood, Kimchi Fried Rice and the Korean Ribeye but I know I'll want to have everything that I had tonight too! I want to go for lunch so I can try some of those interesting teas. I had the barley corn tea with dinner and it was a perfect choice. My dad had Thai Tea and it was the way it should be and in a generous glass as well. My brother was happy because he had a young coconut. My husband who is an engineer and John the owner had a nice conversation about working for yourself vs a big company. I'm glad John and his wife left the corporate world. I look forward to my next meal at Daisy Mint.

                                                                    1. re: Fru

                                                                      Yay! I am so glad you enjoyed it! I know, every time I go I usually get something I have already had since it is so good!! We try to order at least one new thing each time, but sometimes we don't succeed with that goal. I love the condiment holder that they have (the one with the four various chiles/sauces). Every time I go I try to figure out a way to steal it (but since they only have one left... all the others have been dropped!) but I figure they would notice!!

                                                                2. Is this place kid friendly? Say a 10month old baby? I really want to try this place, but I'll need to bring baby tums too.

                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                    1. re: bigtums

                                                                      i take my 20 month there all the time.... even on a busy fri night and the staff have been only friendly and accommodating for us.... it's not that quiet so a bit of baby noise shouldn't put anyone off...

                                                                      1. re: chon76

                                                                        Yeah, I have never seen a child in there - probably because I have only been for weekday lunches thus far, but can't imagine that there would be any problem with children. It is a casual place.

                                                                      2. re: bigtums

                                                                        I've seen young'uns there several times - seems like the staff likes them and I've not seen any patrons looking disgruntled. One night I saw a couple with a < 1 year old and the little one was curled-up on the banquet, sleeping, and the adults were happily eating. It looked rather sweet to me.

                                                                      3. I got to try Daisy Mint this weekend and it was only mediocre. I was starving by the time my food came, which is a good thing. The appetizer I ordered (seaweed wrap with rice and fish roe topped with a piece of avocado) was decent. The beef noodle soup was not so good. I hope no one calls it pho because other than having slices of beef and noodles in it, they're completely different.

                                                                        Like I said, I was hungry when I started eating, so I thought the noodle soup was okay at first. But as I had more to eat, I noticed that the noodles tasted a bit off in texture. They were way too overdone and soft. The soup was also too sweet for me and lacked depth. Despite those negatives, the gailan (chinese broccoli?) in the soup was pretty good.

                                                                        It's a good try at beef noodle soup, but if I really had the craving, I'd rather drive down to Alhambra for some real pho.

                                                                        1. Based on this discussion, we had lunch at Daisy Mint yesterday. We loved it. Excellent food and service, eclectic and quirky interior -- exactly the kind of restaurant we are always on the lookout for.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: JeffSD

                                                                            Ok, this is my second visit and I still love the place. They are so earnest about what they do. I want to say that in addition to all of the things we tried in my first post, we tried the spring rolls (yum) and the krab cream cheese won tons (no one could eat just one!) We also tried the Korean BBQ Rib Eye which I was a little surprised by. It was an entire rib eye steak! Now, there is nothing wrong with that (especially from the point of view of the two 9 year old boys who planned on scarfing the whole thing) but I was expecting nice thin slices with the fat pretty much rendered off-Not. Like I said I love rib eye and it was seasoned perfectly but I had a lot of work ahead of me cutting up slices for those ravenous 9 year old carnivores getting around the fat that they are repulsed by and what I sneakily consume.

                                                                          2. If food is so bad in Pasadena then why is it so hard to find a table without a wait in many of the restaurants? A few examples...
                                                                            CPK is underrated. So is Louise's Trattoria and Gaucho Grill, in Old Town, just because they're chains. Mi Piace is pretty good, though admittedly on some nights the food is spotty. Other great places are Gale's, Green Street Restaurant, Cafe Verde, Smitty's, to name just a few of my favs off the top of my head now.

                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                            1. re: malisa

                                                                              Well Cheesecake Factory has a consistent wait for tables... are you going to tell me that's because they're a 4 star restaurant?

                                                                              I think Old Town Pasadena restaurants are busy because it's an area with a lot of shopping and a lot of foot traffic, and people have to eat somewhere.

                                                                              1. re: malisa

                                                                                CPK is underrated??????
                                                                                you MUST be kidding, right?

                                                                                when a restaurant has the word 'pizza' in it's name, at least the pizza should be good, yes? cpk, imho is YUCK designed to appeal to the lowest common denominator. . .

                                                                                  1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                    I find the thin crust style actually rather good. The reg crust I really dislike but the thin crust in yummy

                                                                                1. Very reasonable, comfortable, and good food. Servings are very big. No complaints. Lunch is the best deal.

                                                                                  1. Well, I'm just down the block from Daisy Mint-pass it all the time-but always wanted to pass into it. I don't think this board has one negative review of DM yet!
                                                                                    That's a rarity.
                                                                                    So, I guess I gotta finally ck it out soon. With my luck I'll be the one exception on this board but prayerfully not.

                                                                                    1. I agree with most of the reviews on this board. On the whole, I really enjoy Daisy Mint. It is a Thai fusion place, but the thing about it is that the Thai food is very well prepared, fresh, and delicious.

                                                                                      Pad woon sen (pan-fried glass noodles with shrimp)
                                                                                      little salmon lettuce cups
                                                                                      summer rolls
                                                                                      any of the curries
                                                                                      pad see ewe
                                                                                      special pork ribs

                                                                                      Not so great:
                                                                                      Beef noodle soup
                                                                                      Duck noodle soup

                                                                                      I just hope they do well during this economic season. I want them to stick around for a long time!!

                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: brahms

                                                                                        Try their Daisy noodles sometime, brahms - the stuff dreams are made of (or something like that).

                                                                                        Regarding the economy - we've actually been rabidly dining out at our favorite local spots (including Daisy Mint) in hopes of keeping them around. I have this nightmare that one day I head out and drive by closed restaurant after closed restaurant.

                                                                                        1. re: ElsieDee

                                                                                          Hey Brahms - add the Crab Wonton appetizer (that is our favorite appetizer) and their Tom Yum with sizzling rice to the Faves list (you don't even need to taste them). I agree with the Noodle soups - yuck and would like to add the Pad Thai to it. Elsie, I had a little shock when I took my first bite into the Daisy Noodles - red curry shock. It almost grew on me, but didn't quite make it. Now the Daisy Salmon, that is a winner!

                                                                                      2. Yes, my partner and I love Daisy Mint, too. We live in Monrovia and were keeping an eye on Daisy Mint while they were preparing their current location. We've been going to Daisy Mint every couple of weeks now. They once opened in Monrovia a while back as Sweet Garlic and then poof, the place closed with a sign that they were relocating to Pasadena. I think this is another loss for Monrovia (but that's another discussion). Their cuisine has some Chinese influences but the food is still great. We love it and think their food is tons better than those twin-Thai places on Fair Oaks.

                                                                                        1. Daisy Mint is a welcomed additon to Pasadena and they have added a lunch menu that features very good entrees at very good prices. If you have friends that don't like spicy they can request "round eye girl" versions. The soups are especially good.