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Scared of awful Burbank restaurants....

l
levbarg Jul 19, 2003 11:18 PM

OK, so Burbank isn't very high on the culinary ladder of Los Angeles (with a few carnivorous exceptions... the Brazilian BBQ at Picanha Churrascuria on Palm is expensive but is really good-- go for lunch or early Mon-Thurs for cheaper meal... and don't eat for at least 10 hours to get your money's worth! Also, this odd little green house on Burbank Blvd called 'The Place For Steaks' cooks really excellent meat. I don't know how they stay in business because it always looks empty when I drive by.)

I had some truly awful asian (Chinese) food in downtown Burbank at Gourmet 88 (where their sweet & sour sauce AND glaze for the 'sweet & pungent shrimp' was ketchup... even though the menu talks about 'authentic recipes with a california flair')

I've heard that another restaurant in downtown burbank called Cafe Asia (which has since gone out of business, down the road from Picanha on Palm) was owned by the *same people* and was of course similarly awful.

Here's my question... I'm really put off by the idea of asian food in Burbank now because of this apparent Gourmet 88 conspiracy.

Since then, two new restaurants have opened-- one in the old 'Cafe Asia' spot, now called 'Octopus' and another called 'Momotaro' on Glenoaks.

Has anyone tried either of these places? Any opinions would be greatly appreciated. Help me to learn to eat Burbank asian food again....

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  1. m
    Me RE: levbarg Jul 21, 2003 01:50 PM

    What's the price range at The Place for Steaks? Is it old school or is the menu at all modern.

    I sympathize with your distate for Burbank food. I grew up there and it's hard to find good restaurants in that area. Wish I could help but I've never found good Asian food there and gave up trying. :(

    6 Replies
    1. re: Me
      p
      personalcheffie RE: Me Aug 3, 2006 08:27 PM

      I grew up there in the days of Vern's, Kiko's, Grenada, and Van de Kamp's. I still crave a San Toros Submarine, are they still there?

      1. re: personalcheffie
        m
        mattesq RE: personalcheffie Aug 3, 2006 10:11 PM

        yep. still there. still good. but i grew up in the burbank rancho so i prefer Giamellas.

        1. re: mattesq
          p
          personalcheffie RE: mattesq Dec 27, 2006 12:54 AM

          I remember them. They came a bit afterward. What is Burbank Rancho? I don't believe that existed when I grew up there, or it wasn't referred to that.

          1. re: personalcheffie
            m
            mattesq RE: personalcheffie Jan 27, 2007 05:50 AM

            The Burbank Rancho is the horse property area in Burbank. It is essentially bounded by Buena Vista to the West, Western to the East, Alameda to the North and the Griffith Park to the South. Anyway Santoro's being up on Burbank Boulevard was a little to far to ride on my bike as a kid and Giamelas was much closer.

        2. re: personalcheffie
          e
          elbee3890 RE: personalcheffie Dec 21, 2007 06:17 PM

          Good lord, KIKO'S! I get misty thinking about 'em. My father and I would INHALE the salsa & chips until our brows were moist. Their son had a place in Panorama City (Jojo's) that was almost as good. My old fave at Santoro's was the Italian coldcuts (easy on the oil and pickles, thanx), but a while back they added a 'natural turkey' to the menu. It has a subtle and intriguing seasoning.

        3. re: Me
          k
          kandykane RE: Me Dec 31, 2008 05:19 PM

          The Place for Steaks is NOT the place for Good Steaks!
          This place is really bad.
          They have lots of rules.
          Kinda weird? Food Bad and the prices Way too High-
          Why are they still in Business?

        4. l
          lulamay RE: levbarg Jul 10, 2006 01:06 AM

          I know this is an old post but I thought I'd reply anyways. Momotaro is TERRIBLE!!! It still surprises me that its still in business and it packs in the crowds. Octopus Sushi is pretty good. Our "stand by" sushi place is Zono Sushi in the media center- always pretty good. Kabuki Sushi is open now too (by the AMC 16)its ok too but kinda crowded. If you like Thai food, Chadaka Thai is very good. Unfortunately my husband and I have not found a good Chinese food place to go to- we feel similarly about Gourmet 88. There's PF Changs but thats only good if you have time to wait around to be seated. Unless you want to venture out to Sherman Oaks for excellent food, we here in Burbank are stuck with pretty good to mediocre rated cuisine.

          1 Reply
          1. re: lulamay
            m
            marimelle RE: lulamay Aug 3, 2006 01:41 AM

            I work in Burbank so I've sampled many of the restaurants in the area. I have to agree with lulamay that Octopus Sushi in the Media Center area is good. In fact, it's more than good -- this sushi snob considers it one of her favorite sushi places in all of L.A county. They say the true test for good sushi is judging a restaurant by their egg and mackerel. I don't eat egg sushi (just out of preference -- when I eat sushi, I want to eat FISH) so I can't speak for Octopus' egg sushi, but their mackerel is hands down THE BEST mackerel I have ever had anywhere.

            Another reason to go to Octopus: nearly all nigiri sushi is half-price, so you can pig out and be hard-pressed to spend more than $30 per person including drink, tax, and tip. :)

          2. luswei RE: levbarg Jul 10, 2006 11:16 PM

            Burbank is sloooowly coming up the ranks.
            Bistro Provence on Pass Ave
            Joy Feast on Alameda
            Dino's Pizza on Hollywood Way
            Chadaka Thai on San Fernando
            Bacco's Trattoria on Riverside

            14 Replies
            1. re: luswei
              j
              jackattack RE: luswei Jul 11, 2006 01:05 AM

              Agree with all five of these. Actually, haven't tried Joy Feast yet but have heard lots of good buzz.

              1. re: jackattack
                Das Ubergeek RE: jackattack Jul 11, 2006 02:49 AM

                It's not bad -- and they have the crispy noodles. ("So what?" people ask. They've never lived in New York -- the noodles are compulsory.) The egg rolls aren't real NY egg rolls but they're about as close as LA gets.

                1. re: Das Ubergeek
                  Mr Taster RE: Das Ubergeek Jan 24, 2007 01:40 PM

                  Wow... thanks for bringing this post back.... this was one of my first Chowhound posts before my handle was "Mr. Taster"

                  I can hardly believe it....... I would never ask such a naive question these days about looking for good "Asian" food in Burbank!

                  Wow... thanks for a blast from the past.

                  Mr Taster
                  FKA levbarg !

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                2. re: jackattack
                  m
                  mattesq RE: jackattack Aug 3, 2006 10:13 PM

                  joy feast is neither a joy nor a feast. i tried it a couple of times and found it completely inedible, even for americanized chinese.

                  1. re: mattesq
                    luswei RE: mattesq Aug 4, 2006 10:13 PM

                    i have to agree on joy feast. it came strongly recommended by someone who has eaten Chinese food all his life but when i tried it out, i found it terrible except for the pan fried noodles. not only was most of the food terrible, we had a waitress that kept cracking tasteless jokes and fake laughing ...we couldn't wait to leave.

                    1. re: luswei
                      Das Ubergeek RE: luswei Aug 11, 2006 05:01 AM

                      Really? Our waitresses never say "boo" when we go!

                    2. re: mattesq
                      h
                      haochi RE: mattesq Jan 1, 2009 11:14 PM

                      I agree, had Joy Feast once when the owner was there and thought it was great. We went back a second time when the owner wasn't there and the staff was busy watching TV and we would've had better quality food at Panda Express.

                  2. re: luswei
                    r
                    running pig RE: luswei Jul 13, 2006 04:11 AM

                    Hmm...I have not had too much luck with Bacco's. I've been there twice for business lunches and found the food adequate but overpriced. It is also quite loud.

                    1. re: running pig
                      m
                      marimelle RE: running pig Aug 3, 2006 01:49 AM

                      I eat at Bacco's quite a bit, and while I agree with running pig that the acoustics in the restaurant is terrible (you almost have to yell to be heard), I'll have to disagree with him/her on the food quality because I actually think the food is good. It's a bit on the pricey side for a weekday lunch (around $15 per entree), but the portions are big enough for two people. If you eat half at lunch and take the other half home for dinner, you're actually getting a deal.

                      My two favorite entrees are the lasagna and the tricolore focaccia. Their tiramisu (served in a glass) is also pretty damned good.

                    2. re: luswei
                      1newyorkguy RE: luswei Mar 5, 2008 11:56 AM

                      Dino's Pizza is very low level. Soft, bready slices. Wouldn't pick it over papa john's.

                      1. re: 1newyorkguy
                        Das Ubergeek RE: 1newyorkguy Mar 6, 2008 05:52 AM

                        Northend, which is on one of those side streets by the mall (Orange Grove? Palm?) is better. But still not RIGHT.

                        1. re: 1newyorkguy
                          j
                          jillso RE: 1newyorkguy Mar 13, 2008 05:49 PM

                          Dino's is good if you eat-in, doesn't hold up so well on delivery or takeout. Service is horrendous lately, however.

                          1. re: 1newyorkguy
                            k
                            Katesoup RE: 1newyorkguy Dec 29, 2008 06:37 PM

                            I like Dino's and I like their salads, and they have Fat Tire and Sierra Nevada by the pitcher. I agrre about the service, definately could use some work.

                          2. re: luswei
                            s
                            santora RE: luswei Mar 13, 2008 06:03 PM

                            I'll agree on 4 of your selections... But Dino's Pizza? Ugh! No thanks. Although I do like North End Pizzeria in downtown. And don't forget about Granville and Lancers.

                          3. o
                            oro3030 RE: levbarg Jul 10, 2006 11:26 PM

                            There is really good Colombian food at La Maria.
                            La Maria 10516 Victory Blvd

                            1. c
                              carter RE: levbarg Jul 11, 2006 12:46 AM

                              And soon to be added to the Burbank scene is yet another corporate entity, McCormick & Schmick's seafood shop in the former Dalt's space in the media district office building at 3500 W. Olive., joining the other corporate stallwarts French 75 and Arnie Morton's Steak House in the nearby office complex.
                              Actually for decent grub in the media district, I have never had a bad meal at Prosecco on Riverside Drive which technically crosses into the LA portion of Toluca Lake, yet you won't feel any pain for the effort.
                              And for salads and burgers, Mo's just west of the Bob's Big Boy is fine, and their omelettes on the weekend are huge and tasty.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: carter
                                Muhlyssa RE: carter Jul 12, 2006 11:46 PM

                                Ok, this may not be helpful, but a few months ago, we were talking to the owner of Lashers in Long Beach (a great place) and he mentioned he was going to be opening up a steak place there. This is what his website says about it:

                                "Lasher's Burbank is on the way with a projected opening later this summer. This American steakhouse incarnation will feature many of Lasher's signature items with an expanded selection of steaks, chops, and fresh fish. A great bar with live entertainment and covered patios will be part of this new "Hollywood" venue."

                                1. re: Muhlyssa
                                  j
                                  jillso RE: Muhlyssa Mar 17, 2008 12:08 PM

                                  Lasher's opened in Burbank and then closed a few months later. I guess the City Hall area was not a good location for an upscale steakhouse.

                              2. b
                                bboy RE: levbarg Jul 12, 2006 01:38 AM

                                For Chinese, we always go to Frontier Wok (actually we go to Frontier Wok Too, which is the second location in Burbank and a nicer building.) Always good food.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: bboy
                                  l
                                  libbyland RE: bboy May 2, 2007 11:49 AM

                                  Frontier Wok (on Hollywood Way) is simply awful. I tried it three times, and have not gone back since. Three strikes, they're out. My two co-workers go there on my days off, because they know I despise their awful food.

                                2. c
                                  carter RE: levbarg Jul 12, 2006 01:51 AM

                                  What do you get that I missed on my 2 visits? The food always tasted synthetic, not even made with fresh ingredients, meaning from cans or frozen. I have never gotten Frontier Wok, but must admit that I only tried that corral-looking thing on Hwd. Way.

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: carter
                                    davinagr RE: carter Jul 19, 2006 11:08 PM

                                    The better of the two is the Hollywood Way location. I usually get the Orange Chicken, Chow Mein, Szechuan Green Beans, Chow Fun, and a giant 32 oz Thai Tea for the same price as a Pepsi. And may I add with lots of left overs....this is a ton of food meant to be shared.

                                    1. re: davinagr
                                      c
                                      carter RE: davinagr Jul 20, 2006 12:21 AM

                                      No wonder, we have different tastes.
                                      I cannot endure Orange Chicken, or most citrus/meat food combos, regardless of who is putting it out. Lemon chicken is a little better, yet I much prefer Kung Pao Bistro in Studio City for that, as well as their mango chicken, seafood specialities, and their soups, and in MUCH nicer surroundings. And any kind of tea is a turnoff, period!

                                      1. re: carter
                                        davinagr RE: carter Jul 20, 2006 02:55 PM

                                        Frontier Wok has a lemon chicken dish, but I'm less than enamored by it. Too bland for my liking. Also... I generally don't go to Frontier Wok for the ambience. It's really a bit funky. Where else in Burbank or Southern California can you go eat Chinese in a weird westerny/Saloon-ish/victorian building? I really like the orange chicken here because it's not really Panda style, it's more of a sweet and pungent chicken with a very crispy exterior and a tender and savory interior. Warning....this particular dish is not great taken out or as a leftover the next day. It loses the crunchy exterior when it sits in a take home box and becomes something not so appetizing. Just my two cents...

                                        1. re: davinagr
                                          m
                                          marimelle RE: davinagr Aug 3, 2006 01:51 AM

                                          Try the seafood noodle dish. I don't remember the name but it's served with scallops and is around $10.50 if I'm not mistaken. If I remember the name of the dish, I'll come back and post it here.

                                      2. re: davinagr
                                        Das Ubergeek RE: davinagr Jul 20, 2006 12:22 AM

                                        The other one's on Olive and Verdugo, right? Or am I thinking of something else?

                                        1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                          c
                                          carter RE: Das Ubergeek Jul 20, 2006 12:35 AM

                                          It is around Verdugo, meaning 1811 W. Olive. btw - the Orange Chicken is actually pretty good at Kung Pao, even though it is not something I think of ordering, yet have tried if in a group of 4 or more, where several want to go that direction, and I will stab a chunk.
                                          ps - going to S/city fmkt sunday? See you at Lorraine's for apricots, and maybe Ann's figs.

                                          1. re: carter
                                            Das Ubergeek RE: carter Jul 20, 2006 04:46 AM

                                            I haven't been to the Verdugo one, though it's near my office -- we tend to gravitate to Joy Feast, not because it's necessarily great but because they have fried noodles. Sad, isn't it?

                                            I may be there -- we are meeting friends for dim sum at 10.30 (which means 11.00) so I'll be there early... skipped last week because I needed sleep.

                                            Ann's figs? Already? Wow! I usually don't see her until the end of August.

                                    2. r
                                      reelcobra RE: levbarg Jul 12, 2006 02:32 AM

                                      Chadaka Thai rocks.

                                      Great room, service and especially the curries.

                                      Also the best dump in town is Yaki Bowl on Alameda at Lake. The chicken on fire bowl rocks.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: reelcobra
                                        r
                                        revets2 RE: reelcobra Aug 11, 2006 06:24 PM

                                        i agree chadaka thai is very good. the food quality is high and it's higher-end than many thai restaurants in thai town.

                                        1. re: revets2
                                          m
                                          Mando RE: revets2 Nov 12, 2007 11:34 AM

                                          I haven't been but i do remember hearing about Chadaka Thai. If i'm not mistaken they're owned by the same pple as Rambutan in Silverlake and TukTuk out west. The pedigree might explain the reason its done so well. ^_^

                                          1. re: Mando
                                            l
                                            Lmo1823 RE: Mando Nov 30, 2007 08:50 PM

                                            Am I the only person who has had a bad Chadaka Thai experience? I recently persuaded my coworker to get takeout from there instead of our usual, Exotic Thai. The takeout bowls were really cute, so that was a good sign. However, is it too much to ask to get all white meat in my chicken pad thai? And my coworker didn't like her pad woo sen. Exotic Thai is better and Talesai (one on Sunset, one on Olympic) is way better.

                                            1. re: Lmo1823
                                              Das Ubergeek RE: Lmo1823 Dec 1, 2007 03:48 PM

                                              The takeout from Chadaka is a DISASTER if you get anything saucy or syrupy -- they use those flimsy clear plastic bakery boxes! I ended up with the sauce from som tum all over my clothes, went to meetings all afternoon smelling like a night market. Not good.

                                      2. m
                                        marimelle RE: levbarg Aug 3, 2006 02:01 AM

                                        Another gem in the Burbank area is the new French 75 Bistro by Warner's. Just went there last week with my co-workers and we were all sufficiently impressed. It's pricey (especially for a weekday work lunch); the bill came out to just under $500 for 10 of us.

                                        I had escargot to start, prosciutto-wrapped scallops (amazing) for my main course, and had a bite of my co-worker's filet mignon stroganoff (the beef was delicious). For dessert, I had the chocolate-and-espresso-chip profiteroles which was also really good.

                                        Loved the decor (very Moulin Rouge). I highly recommend dining here, but not for a casual work lunch (unless you're expensing it, which we did). :)

                                        Check out French 75 online at http://www.culinaryadventures.com/res...

                                        1. o
                                          OliveBelle RE: levbarg Aug 3, 2006 03:42 AM

                                          Nobody has mentioned the Peruvian place on Olive & Alameda (the name totally escapes me right now..Mama something?) Across from NBC. The lomo saltado is really good, as are the fried plantains.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: OliveBelle
                                            j
                                            jackattack RE: OliveBelle Aug 3, 2006 08:06 PM

                                            www.chozamama.com

                                            1. re: jackattack
                                              Das Ubergeek RE: jackattack Aug 11, 2006 05:02 AM

                                              I... just can't recommend it. There are so many better Peruvian places in the East Valley. I was so disappointed after jonesing for cebiche all day to find that it was tasteless, textureless and not even a bit spicy despite my having ordered it so.

                                          2. m
                                            magerber RE: levbarg Aug 3, 2006 08:24 PM

                                            Levbarg--what I can't figure out is why you are trying to make Burbank into something it is not. I worked in Glendale, near the Burbank border for a couple of years, and there just wasn't any really good asian near there. But geez, you have the Valley within a few minutes, you are just up the road from Arcadia and then just a little further south is Temple City, Rosemead, San Gabriel, Alhambra. You're a 'hound aren't you? Get into your car and go where the good food is!

                                            But...for a yummy place in your area (at least during the day), try Pecos Bill's Pit-BBQ 1551 North Victory Boulevard Glendale, California. Phone: (818) 241-2750
                                            http://new.cbbqa.com/restaurants/Peco...

                                            Now that is good food!

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: magerber
                                              j
                                              jbullock RE: magerber Aug 7, 2008 05:19 PM

                                              I grew up in Burbank and found myself in the area of Peco's Bill's Pit BBG the other day. I ordered the Beef sandwhich and was totally disappointed. They chopped the beef to the point that it had the consistency of spam. There was very little barbacue flavor and the sauce was bland and tasteless. The sandwhiches were very inexpensive, but you got what you paid for. I have had barbacue all over the country and this was pitifull. I would much prefer the Bear Pit, Valley Ranch or Dr Hogly Wogley's Tyler Texas Barbacue, even though the quality of Hogly Wogley's food has declined enormously, since the latest owner took over. On a scale of 1-10 I would give Pecos BIll's a -5.

                                            2. m
                                              mattesq RE: levbarg Aug 4, 2006 05:56 PM

                                              Exotic Thai is pretty good. The filet of sole is great, but do not order to go because it is fried. The chicken with mint leaf is good, but make sure to order ground chicken. The nam sod and larb are also good.

                                              1212 N San Fernando Blvd Ste H
                                              Burbank, CA 91504-4276
                                              (818) 841-2555

                                              Located in the strip mall next to the Tommy's on San Fernando.

                                              1. l
                                                Laa RE: levbarg Aug 11, 2006 04:44 AM

                                                I completely disagree about Gourmet 88. My family has been eating there for years and I think the food is fantastic. They have some of the best flavors I've had at a Chinese restaurant.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: Laa
                                                  l
                                                  libbyland RE: Laa May 2, 2007 11:52 AM

                                                  Then you have not ventured out into Monterey Park, where the really good Chinese food is. After eating GREAT Chinese food, you will know how generic and tasteless Gourmet 88 is. I will not go there again. I've given it three chances. Try Wok of Fame on Olive Ave., for much better Chinese food in Burbank.

                                                2. m
                                                  mc michael RE: levbarg Aug 11, 2006 12:56 PM

                                                  You should try the Coral Cafe. It's classic. Like from a time warp.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: mc michael
                                                    NeNePie RE: mc michael Aug 11, 2006 10:14 PM

                                                    Hmm. The Coral looks like it's straight out of a time warp, but the food isn't like that at all. It's not old-fashioned nor is it home-style. The menu is huge and ambitious for a diner, and consequently there isn't much attention paid to any particular style of food. You can get mexican food or ostrich patties or wraps, or your more standard diner fare. None of it is stellar but it fits the bill at 3 a.m. when you're starving.

                                                  2. h
                                                    howard81 RE: levbarg Aug 11, 2006 05:43 PM

                                                    I'm not too big on sushi, but at Octupus, they serve a yummy chicken sukiyaki. Love it!

                                                    1. b
                                                      Burbank Gal RE: levbarg Jan 24, 2007 11:06 AM

                                                      Momotaro has great food. The quality of their Sushi is very good. So are their Teriyaki and Tempura dishes. I've lived and dined in Burbank for 6 years. This is the best Sushi place so far. Beware of Wokano, a new trendy looking and overpriced restaurant. The sushi left a fishy aftertaste in my mouth. Zono Sushi has good sushi too. Kabuki is okay. Fuji Sushi is okay.

                                                      1. r
                                                        risottoman RE: levbarg Jan 24, 2007 11:10 AM

                                                        I think momotaro is really good for the price.
                                                        Market City Caffe is nasty - terrible service and food.
                                                        I've gotta try French 75, though the prices seem high, is that just me?
                                                        Burbank's definitely getting better, but it needs to polish up (especially that Castaway place...what's up with that?)

                                                        1. t
                                                          teach RE: levbarg Jan 24, 2007 01:12 PM

                                                          Sushi Dake is great, especially if you go on a Monday (that's when they get their fish shipment) and sit at the sushi bar. If they have live abalone or live sweet shrimp, order those. They do some pretty interesting stuff for such a nondescript, tiny place.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: teach
                                                            Das Ubergeek RE: teach Jan 24, 2007 03:26 PM

                                                            Wait, they only get fish once a week?

                                                            ICK!

                                                          2. brattenheimer RE: levbarg Jan 24, 2007 03:48 PM

                                                            I've NEVER been a fan of the food selections in that Media Center portion of Burbank. I say skip Burbank and head on over to Pasadena.

                                                            5 Replies
                                                            1. re: brattenheimer
                                                              SauceSupreme RE: brattenheimer Jan 24, 2007 08:30 PM

                                                              Or Studio City or Hollywood or Los Feliz or...

                                                              1. re: brattenheimer
                                                                Das Ubergeek RE: brattenheimer Jan 25, 2007 06:13 AM

                                                                Obviously you don't have a job with a limited lunch. People do work in Burbank, and Pasadena takes half an hour to get to and park.

                                                                No, not the best selections, but we're trying to pick the best "of".

                                                                1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                                  brattenheimer RE: Das Ubergeek Jan 26, 2007 06:06 PM

                                                                  I love my two hour lunches.

                                                                  1. re: brattenheimer
                                                                    Das Ubergeek RE: brattenheimer Jan 27, 2007 06:21 AM

                                                                    I'm sure your company does too. I prefer to work when I'm at work and go home earlier... hence why I eat in Burbank.

                                                                2. re: brattenheimer
                                                                  m
                                                                  Marky David RE: brattenheimer Oct 29, 2007 02:34 PM

                                                                  Maybe if you are going to Hollywood taking Barham, you may want to try Gindi Thai at Pass Ave and Riverside. We've been regular customers. There Pad Thai is as good or even better than Thai places in Hollywood. I heard that they have a chef from Sanamluang which explains the spiciness of the dishes but I could be wrong (after all, where do you read these kinds of news from? Thai Gourment Insiders? :). In any case, Gindi Thai in Toluca Lake is an new rising star in the Valley.

                                                                3. d
                                                                  DulceDeLeche RE: levbarg Mar 25, 2007 02:44 PM

                                                                  Bistro Provence - we went there recently after hearing great things from many people. We made reservations and were seated immediately on a Saturday night. The wine and spinach goat cheese salad were wonderful. but our main dishes were mediocre. The twice cooked pork seemed to be 1/2 cooked, as it was luke-warm (with cold pieces) over a saurkraut base, even though the menu didn't mention this - and we aren't fans of saurkraut. the server was spread thin over many tables and wasn't able to check up on us, so we didn't complain. great atmosphere for a strip mall, and perhaps worth another try (with DIFFERENT DISHES).

                                                                  1. Honeychan RE: levbarg Mar 26, 2007 09:13 PM

                                                                    For a born-and-bred Burbankian like myself..The city has it's ups and downs for places to eat. Remember Bamboo Terrace, near St. Joseph's hosptal? We were convinced they didn't use real chicken for many a year. Guess they finally went under.

                                                                    Actually, the very BEST Chinese place i've ever eaten in my life is in Burbank. It's called Wok Of Fame, on Olive and Verdugo. Across the street is The Wherehouse.

                                                                    The food is super-fresh, extremely tasty. The service is nice- they are very accomodating when my wheelchair-bound Grandmother goes with us to dinner. They make good recomendations, and if you ask for something -spicy-, they make is SPICY!!

                                                                    Delicious items there:

                                                                    Sizzling 3-flavors stir-fry
                                                                    Orange Shrimp
                                                                    Shrimp and Snow Peas
                                                                    Spicy Fried-Rice

                                                                    They have great hot-and-sour soup, best i've ever had.

                                                                    Yes, Burbank is slowly getting better places to eat.

                                                                    11 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Honeychan
                                                                      justanotherpenguin RE: Honeychan Mar 26, 2007 09:26 PM

                                                                      the bamboo terrace did not go under. don dare and his wife, after sending all of their children to private colleges, decided to retire and sold it. i was a frequent lunch person in the early through late 80's. i must admit that we used to joke that we never saw any cats in the neighborhood, but we all kept eating the food and drinking the mai-tai's. we even had them cater an office opening in 1985. i miss that place! (ps: i also miss genio's!)

                                                                      1. re: justanotherpenguin
                                                                        m
                                                                        MichaelQ550 RE: justanotherpenguin Aug 22, 2007 06:41 PM

                                                                        Growing up and spending most of my life in Burbank, I remember the Bambo Terrace. It was a good place but I actually heard that cat joke not about the Bamboo Terrace, but about Chopstick Chinese Restaurant (now Joy Feast). As I recall there was even a rumor that they shut the place down because they found cats in the dumpster.
                                                                        Anyway, does anyone know what is going on with the Castway? I have not been there in years.

                                                                      2. re: Honeychan
                                                                        Das Ubergeek RE: Honeychan Mar 27, 2007 08:07 AM

                                                                        I'm glad you like Wok of Fame... but I don't agree with you. I have eaten there twice (once because I was dragged by a coworker, and once on my Great New York Egg Roll Quest), and both times have been served gloppy food with a lot of sauce that covered "off" flavours in the meat.

                                                                        1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                                          Honeychan RE: Das Ubergeek Mar 28, 2007 08:40 PM

                                                                          Awww, that's such a shame you didn't enjoy Wok Of Fame. If you come out to Vegas ever, the choices in this town for great Chinese is not as good as LA. (at least to me.) Granted- in LA, there's a million and one places to try out in San Gabriel. When I lived in Burbank, I loved trying all the little places out there.

                                                                        2. re: Honeychan
                                                                          l
                                                                          libbyland RE: Honeychan Nov 12, 2007 10:36 AM

                                                                          Sad news: Wok of Fame (the only decent Chinese restaurant in Burbank) closed its doors recently (around Sept. '07). I guess I will have to go to Joy Feast now, which I'm not thrilled about. But I work nearby, and my two coworkers seem to like it. Joy Feast is very so-so, and their employees run around like lunatics. Watch 'em...and you'll see what I mean. They drop off your food at the table, and they run. You ask for more water, they run. They drop off your bill, they run. SLOW DOWN AND RELAX all you Joy Feast employees! Maybe your guests will be able to relax, too. Sheesh.

                                                                          1. re: libbyland
                                                                            Servorg RE: libbyland Dec 22, 2007 03:40 PM

                                                                            If Toluca Lake isn't too far outside your geographic preferences then you might give Toluca Garden a try:

                                                                            http://www.tolucagarden.com/

                                                                            1. re: Servorg
                                                                              Akitist RE: Servorg Dec 22, 2007 04:55 PM

                                                                              I think Toluca Garden is directly Burbank Adjacent as they say in "real estate speak". Like across the street. Nice room, no attitude, pretty good service, food tastes good, though I'm not a connoisseur of Chinese cuisine. They have some Vietnamese specials, too.

                                                                              1. re: Servorg
                                                                                c
                                                                                carter RE: Servorg Dec 22, 2007 05:03 PM

                                                                                Toluca Garden gives Frontier Wok a real battle for the worst food in Burbank, even though it is on the line in N/Hwd, meaning across the street from burpbank. Truly awful.

                                                                                1. re: carter
                                                                                  Akitist RE: carter Dec 24, 2007 09:24 AM

                                                                                  I've had "truly awful" Chinese food. Toluca Garden isn't in that league. Not saying they represent top-end SGV-type Chinese, of course.

                                                                                  1. re: Akitist
                                                                                    j
                                                                                    jackattack RE: Akitist Jan 3, 2009 12:54 PM

                                                                                    Agreed. Have never had anything close to "awful" at Toluca Garden. They are one of our "go-to lunch places" at least once every couple of months for years now, the quality is decent, and consistent, and the value is amazing (try the shrimp egg foo yong).

                                                                                2. re: Servorg
                                                                                  j
                                                                                  jbullock RE: Servorg Aug 7, 2008 05:21 PM

                                                                                  I recently had both Chinese and Vietnamese dishes at Toluca Garden. The chinese food was very adequate, but not exciting. I was thrilled to see PHO on the menu on my last visit, and they did an excellent job. Not on a par with the SGV, but pretty decent food at a very reasonable price. The only problem that they appear to have is the lack of adequate parking.

                                                                            2. b
                                                                              bosanova99 RE: levbarg Dec 28, 2007 09:03 AM

                                                                              Thai Room on Hollywood Way is a real gem, although nothing to look at. They have great lunch specials and the Thai Salad with the peanut dressing is delicious!

                                                                              1. bgazindad RE: levbarg Mar 26, 2009 08:28 PM

                                                                                Please listen to Das Ubergeek. He knows his stuff. We both live in the Burbank area. We have dined in every restaurant enough to know what is worth while. if you want to dine on the best asian in this area, you should consult Das Ubergeek.

                                                                                1. c
                                                                                  Cinnamon RE: levbarg Mar 26, 2009 11:18 PM

                                                                                  The title of your thread brings back bad memories of a Big Boy statue and adjacent restaurant where they tried to serve what couldn't pass for chili over what couldn't pass for spaghetti. Any time ketchup would actually IMPROVE a spaghetti situation, things are bad.

                                                                                  1. j
                                                                                    jerseygirldawn RE: levbarg Mar 28, 2009 08:34 PM

                                                                                    I have eaten in Gourmet 88 and did NOT like it.
                                                                                    Tonight we tried Octopus. We ordered a "winter dinner" special which included sesame chicken (dry fried chicken) it was still pretty good though, chicken terriyaki, shrimp/vegetable tempura, salad, white rice, miso soup and a California roll!! This dinner special was $12.99!!
                                                                                    The sushi pieces were half price so we also got the crab and shrimp.
                                                                                    In addition to all this I ordered the Snow Roll.
                                                                                    With an ice tea the bill with tax came to $30!! It fed myself, my husband and our 4 year old! so this was a great deal. There was even a considerable amount of food left.
                                                                                    I will go back because we live close. However it wasn't like anything we ordered blew either of us away. The Snow Roll was ok. I do not like fishy tasting sushi and one piece of this roll was fishy. I definatly will not order it again. The California Roll was good (like any other good CR). I liked the salad dressing. Our 4 year old son ate the soup, rice and terriyaki chicken. The tempura was good. Crab and shrimp sushi both were fresh tasting and didnt have any lingering fishy taste.
                                                                                    Next time I would like to try the garlic butter edaname (I know I spelled that wrong) for $2.99! Like I said, great value and decent food. We will be back.

                                                                                    Another suggestion is "Knights" on San Fernando. It is a Greek place. Th eonly thing I have ever tried was the chicken shwarma and hummus. It comes with either a very sour salad (which is refreshing in a weird way) or lentil soup. Most times it is great. The chicked pieces are sliced thin and are crispy. I love the rice that comes with it. The hummus is also good. I have went on other occasions and I believe they were low on shwerma. The chicken was not crispy and was more rubbery. It is good thought 8 out of 10 times. They have good sized portions and the price for all that food is about $12! I find it enough to share!

                                                                                    Chili Johns is another favorite. I love their cili over speghetti! You have to mix the oyster crackers and onions in with it! lol. For dessert try a slice of their lemon pie.

                                                                                    Arnie Mortons which is down on Olive is currently offering $5 plates from 4:30-6:30. You can sit in the bar and get a variety of menu items for $5 per plate!! It is an amazing value. My husband, child and I went in and got the filet mignon sandwiches (4 to an order), cheese burgers (3 to an order with toasted bun andsliced tomato & onion) and a crab, spinach and cheese dip. We were all full to our eyeballs and we were out of there for $24 (that includes tip!!) parking is another $3. I definatly recommend this special. We've also tried their wedge salad. We are looking forward to going back to try the crab cakes and blue cheese fries!! On their speical menu they also offer $2.75 per piece collossal shrimp!

                                                                                    Hope that gives you an idea. I look forward to hearing other comments. I would like to try more Burbank places as well. I moved here only 2 months ago.

                                                                                    15 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: jerseygirldawn
                                                                                      bgazindad RE: jerseygirldawn Mar 29, 2009 09:54 AM

                                                                                      Porthos on Magnolia and Hollywood way. This bakery is always crowded. I hear that they have expanded their menu. We always get the "cheese rolls" Its cream cheese inside a roll like a apple turnover.

                                                                                      If you want a bargain in asian food, try Ohana's on San Fernando. It hawaiian style. you get a blend of chinese and Japanese foods with touches of Hawaiian like kalua pig Its very casual but you will not leave hungry.

                                                                                      For Italian, Try Tony's Bella Vista on Magnolia about 4 or 5 blocks east of Hollywood way. I like their seafood marinara over pasta. Across the street, is Pinochios (spelling?) Its a Italian deli with a small takeout. We get their sandwiches to go. They have pizza tool.

                                                                                      1. re: bgazindad
                                                                                        monku RE: bgazindad Mar 29, 2009 10:06 AM

                                                                                        It's "Portos"..........and the OP is from 2003 before Portos or Ohana's even existed.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Porto's Bakery
                                                                                        3614 W Magnolia Blvd, Burbank, CA 91505

                                                                                        1. re: monku
                                                                                          bgazindad RE: monku Mar 29, 2009 08:12 PM

                                                                                          Thank you for your corrections and input.

                                                                                      2. re: jerseygirldawn
                                                                                        a
                                                                                        alvalerio RE: jerseygirldawn Oct 16, 2009 11:39 AM

                                                                                        I agree with the Knight Restaurant review, although I haven't been there in about a couple of years due to a job relocation. I would usually get the chicken or beef shawerma, depending on what looked good on the rotisserie (you can see it when you walk into the restaurant on the right side). I really liked the hummus as well. I would also get the luleh kebab from time to time, as well. The pita served hot off the grill is excellent as well. http://knightburbank.com/

                                                                                        There was a Korean place next to it (Seoul Korean, I think) that had what really good bibimbap, bulgolgi, and spicy pork. Warning though, the ventilation in there is pretty bad, and you'll come out of the restaurant smelling like grease if you dine in. The price is pretty fair, about $10/plate if I memory serves me correctly. It usually gets busy during the lunch hour.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Knight Restaurant
                                                                                        138 N San Fernando Blvd, Burbank, CA 91502

                                                                                        1. re: alvalerio
                                                                                          Das Ubergeek RE: alvalerio Oct 16, 2009 11:48 AM

                                                                                          The Korean place is gone.

                                                                                          1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                                                            c
                                                                                            cartbaby RE: Das Ubergeek Oct 16, 2009 09:47 PM

                                                                                            wo, really? I was there just last week. Wonder what happened. It's always busy during lunch.

                                                                                            1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                                                              maxzook RE: Das Ubergeek Oct 16, 2009 10:20 PM

                                                                                              Just called to confirm they're still in business ...

                                                                                              -----
                                                                                              Seoul Korean Barbecue
                                                                                              122 N San Fernando Blvd, Burbank, CA 91502

                                                                                              1. re: maxzook
                                                                                                Das Ubergeek RE: maxzook Oct 18, 2009 12:04 AM

                                                                                                Maybe just shut down temporarily? There was a sign saying "CLOSED" -- a handwritten one, not a we've gone home for the night one -- last time I went through there.

                                                                                                1. re: maxzook
                                                                                                  n
                                                                                                  ns1 RE: maxzook Aug 22, 2012 10:06 AM

                                                                                                  re: Seoul Korean Barbecue

                                                                                                  No idea how it has a 4* yelp review.

                                                                                                  1. re: ns1
                                                                                                    Das Ubergeek RE: ns1 Aug 23, 2012 10:56 AM

                                                                                                    You know how when you want to pick up a pretty girl, you bring a wingman who's uglier than you are so you look better by comparison?

                                                                                                    Well, Seoul Korean Barbecue is right near Orochon.

                                                                                                    1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                                                                      n
                                                                                                      ns1 RE: Das Ubergeek Aug 23, 2012 11:00 AM

                                                                                                      There's a new vietnamese joint in downtown burbank. I'm not sure I'm ballsy enough to check it out.

                                                                                                      1. re: ns1
                                                                                                        l
                                                                                                        linus RE: ns1 Aug 23, 2012 03:48 PM

                                                                                                        there's a thread about it somewhere around here.
                                                                                                        it's only o.k. definitely a step down from, say, pho so 1 and pho 999.

                                                                                                        1. re: linus
                                                                                                          n
                                                                                                          ns1 RE: linus Aug 23, 2012 05:11 PM

                                                                                                          Thanks. I don't trust all chowhound reviews. ahem.

                                                                                                          1. re: ns1
                                                                                                            l
                                                                                                            linus RE: ns1 Aug 23, 2012 05:49 PM

                                                                                                            moi aussi. contra-ahem.

                                                                                                            1. re: linus
                                                                                                              n
                                                                                                              ns1 RE: linus Aug 23, 2012 05:51 PM

                                                                                                              Wasn't a jab at you btw, so don't take it that way :)

                                                                                          2. f
                                                                                            foodiemahoodie RE: levbarg Oct 18, 2009 03:01 AM

                                                                                            Daily Grill is reliable. Not cutting edge, but very good traditional food.

                                                                                            There's also that cuban place - in a former gas station? Food is good and the scene is fun.

                                                                                            1. Mr Taster RE: levbarg Aug 22, 2012 09:24 AM

                                                                                              Not sure when it happened, but The Place For Steaks has been painted maroon and is now an Italian place. I am not entirely sure why, but this makes me a little sad.

                                                                                              Mr Taster

                                                                                              1. justanotherpenguin RE: levbarg Aug 23, 2012 11:48 AM

                                                                                                I believe that there are certain instances when 9 year old threads should be allowed to die...

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