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Austin hound visiting East LA burb

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Hi, I'll be visiting relatives in the Montclair area and am on the lookout for good food nearby. Looking at the map it looks like montclair is a good ways from downtown and my relatives aren't nearly as interested in food as I am so I was wondering if y'all had any suggestions within a 30 min drive.

I'm looking for any type of cuisine besides mexican and bbq. I do want at least one splurge meal (<$200 pp without drinks) but I'll be there for 4 days so looking for several options. TIA for the help!

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  1. For Montclair you should survey this thread http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/845932 for ideas.

    1. Take the 10 freeway east to San Gabriel, Monterey Park, or Alhambra, There, you will find one of the greatest concentrations of restaurants (primarily Chinese) in the US. Do a search for Chinese restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley (aka "SGV") for some fascinating choices.

      5 Replies
      1. re: raytamsgv

        From Montclair Alhambra and San Gabriel are west, not east. Other than that small quibble, I heartily second the motion.

        1. re: judybird

          My mistake. Thanks for the correction.

          1. re: raytamsgv

            Thanks for the tip. Any specific restaurants you would recommend? There isn't good dim sum available here so I'd love that. And my better half is always on the lookout for great szechuan...

            1. re: chrisdds98

              Here is some information about Sichuan resetaurants:
              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8933...
              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9078...

              For dim sum, I'd recommend either Elite in Monterey Park or Sea Food Harbour in Rosemead. In both places, you order dim sum from the menu. For cart-style dim sum, try NBC in Monterey Park. All three places are very close to the 10 freeway.

              Here is a recent thread regarding Chinese food recs in the SGV:
              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9096...

        2. re: raytamsgv

          +2,3,4,5 to ray's response.

          There's nothing to eat in Montclair/adjacent. Source: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8459...

        3. Just as an aside, Montclair is so far east you're not even in LA county anymore....

          Agree w/ pursuing the Claremont thread (although I think there's a lot of Mexican places mentions.... Is Mexican food in Austin the same that you'd find here) and the SGV recs....

          12 Replies
          1. re: ilysla

            I always thought Austin Mexican was more Tex-Mex and a different creature than what we see here in LA. Not better or worse, just different.

            But I'm no Tex-Mex expert.

            1. re: Jase

              That was my initial thought, too, although I wonder if that's perhaps the case in most of TX but perhaps not in Austin itself (I assume Austin is significantly "hipper" than most of the state).

              Perhaps the OP will tell us what's the state of Mexican food in Austin.... B/c if it *is* mainly tex-mex, maybe he/she could/should actually try our version.... =)

              1. re: ilysla

                Yes, Austin is predominately texmex, though there are a few restaurants that are more interior mexican. They are certainly different and I'm a fan of both varieties. My fiance is mexican and I'm well fed when I visit her relatives :)

                1. re: chrisdds98

                  Ah.... Thanks for the insight.

                  If you like dim sum (and don't need to go to a cart place), then Elite and Sea Harbour generally get very good reviews around here. I also like Lunasia, but that place gets more mixed reviews.

                  For cart places, Ocean Star, King Hua, and 888 (I think) have been recommended by other posters.

                  Just be prepared for a fairly long wait wherever you go, if it's on a weekend after 10AM or so.

                  Don't know much about szechuan, so I"ll let other posters comment about that....

                  1. re: ilysla

                    King Hua is not cart, though there are waitstaff that will walk by with plates of prepared dishes and ask people if they want something.

                    1. re: PeterCC

                      King Hua is also a good alternative from Elite or Sea Harbour, especially on the weekends, for the (relatively) shorter wait time.

                      1. re: PeterCC

                        Hmmmm.... Then maybe I should give it a whirl. It's in the same plaza that Office Depot/Staples/Big5 is/was in on Valley?

                        1. re: ilysla

                          It's a bit north of Valley. It's at the corner of Raymond and Main across from Target. Just a block away from Fosselman's.

                          1. re: PeterCC

                            Whoa. Glad I checked. Maybe I was getting it mixed up w/ Top Island? If I'm understanding your directions correctly, it's sort of a weird intersection corner all by itself, no?

                            1. re: ilysla

                              Yeah it is a weird corner.

                              1. re: PeterCC

                                Trapezoid.

            2. re: ilysla

              I agree... You'll want to explore Claremont and Chino Hills is starting to have a good variety of ethnic foods as well (I also love Drip coffee shop's ice coffee)

              --Dommy!

            3. I'm just putting this out there-I LOVE Vince's Spaghetti. There is one in Cucamonga on Foothill. Same recipe for like a million years. Kind of greasy, great garlic bread, pretty family oriented, but a town staple. Not sure of other CHers thoughts, but I think it's great. (And it's on historic Route 66-just a hop, skip and a jump from Donut Man in Glendora!, where you can grab dessert!!)

              2 Replies
              1. re: schrutefarms

                Greasy italian-american can be great comfort food and definitely has its place. =)

                1. re: ilysla

                  And it's place is right in my belly...:)

              2. Thanks for the help y'all. had a nice trip.

                Went to loteria in santa monica for happy hour. nice value.

                Umami burger in Pasadena was ok. not worth all the hype.

                Red hot Kitchen in loma linda was creative and tasty.

                Sushi Asahi (AYCE) in riverside was surprisingly fresh and an excellent value.

                Sea Harbour was pretty awesome. I think we were the only non-chinese table at a packed lunch on Tuesday. I could eat a few dozen "Chinese kolaches" as I like to call them. Easily my favorite meal of the trip.

                Splurge meal at the bazaar. I preferred Andres' place in vegas 'e' but his food is always interesting

                in'n'out before leaving town was a bit disappointing. My other in'n'out experiences are in Vegas and have always been great. the restaurant by LAX gave me burgers that looked and tasted like McDonalds.

                Can't wait to visit the area again :)

                1 Reply
                1. re: chrisdds98

                  Glad you enjoyed at least a few places, especially Sea Harbour. Thanks for the follow-up.