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Oct 14, 2009 02:01 PM

New In Rosemead

Well there may be a deep recession but this hasn't stopped SGV developers from putting up new buildings and restaurants from moving into them. Ruben's Kitchen has opened up in the new building at 8728 Valley Bl. While I had speculated pre-opening that this might be a Taiwanese restaurant (based on the installation of Taiwanese ice machines) it turns out to be more cafe style food, and with a limited menu at that. Food is very tasty, though.

More intriguing is the upcoming debut of Tip Top Sandwiches in new construction directly east of Empire Plaza (the center anchored by 888 Seafood) on Valley Bl. First of all, this is an awfully large space to be occupied by a sandwich operation--I can't imagine what they're going to do with all that footage. Secondly, only if you look carefully will you notice that there is an entire new shopping center of maybe 10 to 12 spaces built in back. Given that Tip Top Sandwiches is the only storefront easily visible from Valley Bl., I say good luck to the landlord in leasing these spaces and good luck to any tenants who move in.

Lastly, while not new, earlier this year when I wasn't looking Sunday Cafe opened up a branch in Rosemead called Sunday @ Rosemead, adjacent to the Rosemead Supermarket on Valley Blvd. With Sunday Cafe and Ruben's Kitchen opening up within about a block of each other, I guess it proves once again that the demand for Hong Kong cafe food in the San Gabriel Valley is indeed insatiable.

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  1. Thanks Chandavkl.

    Do you know what all will be housed in the enormous complex coming up on Atlantic near Garvey? This is prime real estate and looks like there will be a lot of space for restaurants. I am actually surprised that construction is continuing apace in this recessionary times.

    7 Replies
    1. re: suvro

      Actually it promises to be boring. Mostly if not exclusively national chains.

      1. re: Chandavkl

        Perhaps suvro is referring to the building on the SW corner of Atlantic and Garvey--the site of the old China Travel Service? The Atlantic Times Square is on Hellman and Atlantic. I'm a bit confused.

        Anyhow, I'm sure Atlantic Times Square will have all the usual chains: Applebee's, Johnny Rocket, etc.

      2. re: suvro

        That project has been in the works years before the downturn of the economy.

        1. re: suvro

          The first advertising banner has been hung from Atlantic Times Square, and it's for--Lee's Sandwiches!

          1. re: Chandavkl

            I saw that too on the way to Little Fat Sheep on Tuesday. Philly cheesesteak - how will they accessorize this for the local tastes, I wonder!

            1. re: suvro

              Well given that the supposed tenant list includes Chili's, Quizno, Coffee Bean, La Salsa and Surf City, I don't think accessorizing is part of the plan.

              1. re: suvro

                The Lee's in RH features "Asian" sandwiches. They looked like Bahn mi to me. Mabybe this Lee's will do the same at this new location.

          2. The original comment has been removed
            1. oooh, you'd make a great urban planner.......

              1. Is Tip Top still happening? Tony C's update last month suggested it might be off:


                7 Replies
                1. re: Peripatetic

                  I kind of assumed it was the rest of the center that was for lease (except for one foot massage place) but who knows?

                  1. re: Peripatetic

                    How does Tip Top rate. Whenever I am in Little Saigon there are about 5 other places that are on my Banh Mi list, so I haven't tried them. My SGV Banh Mi list is shorter so they have a better chance.

                    1. re: Peripatetic

                      I was driving by today and noticed that Tip Top was finally open. I went in for a banh mi dac biet and ca phe sua da. Very disappointing. Like worse-than-Lee's-Sandwiches disappointing. The sandwich was just pork, pate, and mayonnaise. No cilantro, jalapenos, or anything else. I went back to the counter to ask whether these were available, to which they replied no. Was I "whited"? I don't know. Even so, the baguette itself was more bready that crusty, and the pork and pate were bland. The coffee in the ca phe sua da was good, but the creamer was either half-and-half or non-dairy creamer.

                      I think anyone who loves banh mi can safely give this place a miss.

                      1. re: Peripatetic

                        You're the first person to actually write something that squares with my experience with Tip Top Sandwiches in Garden Grove-or-is-it-Westminster.

                        1. re: Das Ubergeek

                          I can't remember where, but I was sure I'd seen effusive praise for the OC Tip Top somewhere. That's why I was really looking forward to trying it when it opened here in the SGV. In the Westminster/Garden Grove area, I've only had banh mis at Cho Cu.

                          I'm still trying to find banh mis as good as the ones I had at Au Petit Cafe and Tung Hing Bakery in Vancouver, BC:


                          Banh Mi Che Cali and Banh Mi My Tho are okay, but not nearly as good.

                        2. re: Peripatetic

                          whited. all the banh mi dac biets I saw (including mine) had jalapenos + cilantro + daikon/carrots. The baguette was very chewy, but very crusty, and the combination was far better than the neighboring Lee/Mr. Baguette/BM&CC trifecta. Still, the bread was a bit scary as far as hurtin' the jaw goes.

                          1. re: Peripatetic

                            thats disappointing, and if they dont do well to start off with I think the location can be an ideal place to rent out in no time.

                            Such a large spot, the rent must be expensive unless they actually own the building.

                        3. BTW would anyone know of a place to get bann mi that would not be too much of a detour while driving down Rosemead Blvd? or Whittier Blvd for that matter?


                          13 Replies
                          1. re: SeaCook

                            It depends on your starting and ending points on Rosemead Blvd.

                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                San Gabriel (Huntington Dr.) to Pico Rivera (Whitiier Blvd)

                                1. re: SeaCook

                                  Not much that I can think of on Rosemead, but just west on San Gabriel Blvd (which runs parallel to Rosemead) has a litany of options right around the intersection of San Gabriel and Valley.

                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                    I can jog over. What have you got?

                                    1. re: SeaCook

                                      Listen to raytamsgv.

                                      Ba Le is also good and its right on the corner, next to Popeyes.

                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                        Sadly, the Ba Le at at San Gabriel and Valley is no more. Got replaced by something called M Delivery.

                                  2. re: SeaCook

                                    Bahn Mi Che Cali is on Valley just west of Walnut Grove. It's a little more than half a mile from Rosemead and Valley.

                                    1. re: raytamsgv

                                      It's exactly halfway between Rosemead and San Gabriel, in the same big building as 888. I was once delighted to see a teenage girl, waiting with her friends for a table at 888, break off from her group and come back with a banh mi to tide her over... OH, to be young!!

                                      1. re: Will Owen

                                        Hah I do that sometimes with other restaurants, since most good Chinese places have a wait on weekends I always grab a little snack or drink from some adjacent shop.

                                        But I agree with those above, Bahn Mi Che Cali is a great choice that doesn't stray too far from Rosemead especially for the money (buy 2 get 1 free).

                                        Also you may like Mr. Baguette, although I haven't eaten there in over a year I remember their sandwiches were quite good and the bread quality is nice too but its a little bit pricier than your typical banh mi joint, although its still somewhat cheap.

                                        1. re: Will Owen

                                          Thanks everyone I will go to Bahn Mi Che Cali this afternoon. I've been to 888 (love the Mongolian venison)so I know exactly where that is. It fits perfectly to my route.

                                2. re: SeaCook

                                  I don't know if it's too popular, but I love Baguette City on Garvey.

                                  9505 Garvey Ave.

                                  1. re: andytseng

                                    Isn't Lee's and Tip Top and Baquette City closer to Rosemead Blvd than the ones off of San Gabriel and Walnut Grove? But in terms of taste, you might consider driving the minor distance.