Favorite Places

The following is a list of the Admission Office staff's personal favorites for dining in Pasadena. The entries in each category are listed by approximate distance from campus, from the closest locations to the farthest. We hope you enjoy exploring some of our favorite places in the area, and let us know if you have questions!

El Portal


Bella's Gourmet Pizza (16 North Fair Oaks Ave, Pasadena, 626-449-3332)  The best ingredients, thick crust, and the “Fatty” is tough to beat. If you like pizza with substance, this is the best in Pasadena.
The Counter (140 Shoppers Lane, Pasadena, 626-440-1008)  This hamburger joint allows you to custom build your own 21st century burger with anything from mixed greens and ground turkey to hard-boiled eggs and roasted garlic aioli!
Daisy Mint (1218 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-792-2999)  Cute, cozy neighborhood Thai restaurant with delicious food.
Gus's Barbeque (808 Fair Oaks Ave, South Pasadena, 626-799-3251) SoCal is not known for barbecue, and the essence of the word is most accurately used to describe a cookout or a carne asada. Not to worry though; Gus's offers a BBQ regional spectrum, offering both Memphis and St. Louis style ribs, Carolina style Pulled Pork, and also a zesty rendition of KC style sauce.
Domenico's (2411 East Washington Blvd, Pasadena, 626-797-6459)  A small third-generation family place known for its Antipasto and Pizza.

El Portal Restaurant (695 E. Green St, Pasadena, 626-795-8553)  In the Playhouse district, this family-owned restaurant features authentic Mayan dishes from the Yucatan region.

Green Street Restaurant (146 Shoppers Lane, Pasadena, 626-577-7170)  Stop by this Shopper's Lane landmark for delicious, innovative California cuisine in a relaxed atmosphere that features indoor and outdoor seating.

La Luna Negra (44 W Green St, Pasadena, 626-844-4331)  Live Flamenco shows Thursday through Sunday nights, and tapas for every every palette.

Lemonade (146 South Lake Ave, Pasadena, 626-304-7700)  Upscale cafeteria-style dining with great salads, hot bar and sandwiches. And, of course, gourmet lemonade!

Malbec  (1001 E. Green St, Pasadena, 626-683-0550)  Great Argentinean cuisine at a nice restaurant.  Recommended for dinner--try any of their steaks!  

Marston’s Restaurant (151 E Walnut St, Pasadena, 626-796-2459)   Cornflake crusted French toast, topped with fresh strawberries. Their omelettes pack quality into every bite. They even have porch seating, but can be a packed house on the weekends.

New Delhi Palace (950 E Colorado Blvd #205, Pasadena, 626.405.0666)  The closest Indian buffet to campus, the food is flavorful and served in big helpings. It's up the stairs, if you don't find it immediately off the street.

Plate 38 (2361 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-793-7100) Outstanding ingredients lend to excellence for any meal, carniverous and vegetarian alike. Great lunch and dinner options, but breakfast here is truly superb, and the portions are just right. 

Real Food Daily (899 East Del Mar Blvd, Pasadena, 626-844-8900)   Organic vegan restaurant that offers a little bit of everything.

Roscoe's Chicken & Waffles (830 N. Lake Ave, Pasadena, 626-791-4890)  Excellent Southern comfort food; order the chicken and waffles for an interesting and satisfying meal!

Sushi Roku  (33 Miller Alley, Pasadena, 626-683-3000)  Very trendy with great ambiance, tucked away off Colorado Boulevard.  Recommended for dinner.  

Tarantino's Pizzeria (784 E. Green Street., Pasadena, 626-796-7836)  Pizza lovers should look no further! Tarantino's features tasty pies in a Brooklyn-like atmosphere.

Twin Palms

Quick Eats:

Corner Bakery Cafe  (345 S. Lake Ave, Pasadena, 626-578-1281)  A dependable spot for hot and cold sandwiches, soups, and salads. 

Dog Haus (105 N Hill Ave, Pasadena, 626-577-4287)  "The Absolute Würst", gourmet sausages and hearty hot dogs are topped with nearly every ingredient combination imaginable, and served on King's Hawaiian Bread rolls. Their slider burgers are also a hit.

In-N-Out (2114 E. Foothill Blvd, Pasadena, 800-786-1000)  A California institution for burgers, fries, and shakes made to order with the freshest ingredients.  This is the oldest existing branch of the In-N-Out chain.

Lucky Boy (640 S Arroyo Pkwy, Pasadena, 626-793-0120)  The breakfast burritos are HUGE, and a gluttonous delicacy we enjoy every Prefrosh Weekend. I can’t vouch for the rest of their menu--and only visit here if you’re not afraid of grease--but it’ll take some determination to consume this bundle of joy in one sitting.

Lee's Hoagie House (2269 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-577-2250)  Best chicken salad you will ever eat.

Pie ’n Burger (913 E. California Blvd, Pasadena, 626-795-1123)  The amazing, award-winning pies and burgers at this beloved local coffee shop have garnered rave reviews for 50 years.

Rosarito's (2237 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-440-1640)  Fast food Mexican, best tacos in Pasadena.

Sachi Sushi (696 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-578-1877)  Friendly service and fresh food, with elaborate creations like spider roll and old favorites like unagi. This restaurant features a cozy atmosphere and reasonable prices.

Sharkey's (841 Cordova St, Pasadena, 626-568-3500)  Health-conscious Mexican fast food.

Tastees Donut & Burger (619 N Fair Oaks Ave, Pasadena, 626-449-8846)  Don’t let the name fool you, you don’t have to eat them together. This is probably the lightest and fluffiest donut in Southern California (and perhaps second best in the world after the giant delights found at Spic & Span in Las Vegas, New Mexico). Not a fan of their burgers actually, but their chorizo and egg breakfast plates are great way to start your morning.

Zankou Chicken (1296 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-405-1502)  The juicy and fragrant rotisserie-style chicken is a must at this Lebanese restaurant. 

In n Outl

Coffee/Snack Shops:

Starbucks (575 S. Lake Ave, Pasadena, 626-795-0918; 408 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, 626-564-0914; 3699 E. Foothill Blvd, Pasadena, 626-351-9994)  You can get your fix at any of these locations! 

Peet’s Coffee and Tea (605 S. Lake Ave, Pasadena, 626-795-7413; 3571 E. Foothill Blvd. #A, Pasadena, 626-351-6822)  Another fantastic option for coffee and tea.