It should come as no surprise that Pasadena and the greater Los Angeles area offer a plethora of delectable food options. I have spent the past 3 years adventuring to a new place each week with a friend. This has led to some great successes, and some places I would rather not visit again. But, nonetheless, it has proven to be a wonderful exploration of all that is LA food.
Here is a list of a few of my favorite (and now frequented) establishments, in no particular order. I realize some of these might be repeats:
1. Cacao Mexicatessen|Eagle Rock|4 miles from campus – this quaint joint brings the best of fresh made Mexican with a foodie twist. Things like duck tacos, avocado fritter tacos, and mole fries will tantalize your taste buds. As a vegetarian, this place offers much more than the typical option of bean and cheese burritos. They also have a fantastic brunch on the weekends.
2. Milk|Los Angeles|15 miles from campus – Milk is a great dessert spot. They have amazing treats including Macaron ice cream sandwiches, homemade ice cream and the like. Although it’s a bit of a trek, I think it’s very worth it.
3. Donut Friend|Highland Park|5.5 miles from campus – DIY donuts. Need I say more? This place is an absolute gem. They have awesome (and strange) offerings, including basil, sriracha, olive oil, bacon, and candied lime. I love to create my own – the best one I’ve concocted so far is maple pumpkin butter on a vegan donut with maple glaze.
4. Blaze Pizza|Pasadena|.5 miles from campus – This fast fired pizza will have you coming back for more. It’s similar to Chipotle, Subway, or any of those other DIY food options. Except pizza. And who doesn’t love pizza? You can build your own, get one of their signature options, or get a simple one topping. They also offer blood orange lemonade, which is amazingly refreshing.
5. Flour + Tea|Pasadena|1 mile from campus – This tea house and bakery is a great place to study. If you life boba, unique breads, or bendy straws, check this place out. They have a great number of options for hot or iced beverages. I tend to hunker down here on the regular to get work done – there are almost always free seats near an outlet (which is gold for student life!)