At Kenyan Café and Cuisine, chefs craft authentic Kenyan recipes from scratch, flavored with aromatic spices from Africa, India, and the Middle East. Crispy samosas shine in the menu's appetizer section, followed by main courses such as stews studded with lamb or fish and vegan collections of lentils and greens. Diners can eat with their hands, using polenta-like ugali as a malleable utensil, or dine with knife and fork as they avail themselves of the restaurant's Kenyan beer and flat-screen TVs.
The decor of Habiba Abdi’s restaurant, Gendershe Cuisine, is not ostentatious—she tries to impress the four senses besides sight. The aroma of all-halal meats marinating in signature spices tints the air, heralding Somali entrees such as the hilib ari, a goat dish that OC Weekly deemed "gamy and glorious." Mango lassis cool the tongue with a mix of almond milk, fruit pulp, orange juice, and vanilla. Pieces of bur—somali fry bread baked onsite—engage the hands, encouraging patrons to soak up lingering sauces with their dough instead of a friend's shirtsleeve. All the while, guests absorb the sizzling sounds of salmon and tilapia being sautéed in the kitchen's special "mother sauce."
Named after the Somalian city where Abdi’s father grew up, Gendershe Cuisine is an outpost of a kind of cooking rarely found in the United States, much less Orange County. Even so, Somalia’s rich culinary tradition—influenced over the years by Italy, India, and surrounding East African cultures—means that many dishes may look familiar even to the uninitiated. Crispy, triangular sambusas are relatives to indian samosas, ethiopian injera pops up beneath stews of beef, chicken, goat, or fish, and spaghetti and lasagna lie under sauces subtly spiked with Somali herbs and spices.
Golden Spoon Frozen Yogurt has been here for years??30 years, in fact. At first Jeff Barnes began serving frozen yogurt as an offshoot of his health food store. Soon thereafter, he couldn't keep cups filled fast enough; so in 1983, he began serving the chilly delight exclusively. The rich flavors, which include pistachio, s'mores, pumpkin pie, and salted caramel, all made with real milk and real fruit and available in low-fat and nonfat options. The staff also works to be as eco-friendly as possible, which includes filling cups that bio-degrade within 21 days and spoons that self-destruct in 60 seconds.
Embracing the Middle Eastern culinary tradition of mezze?small plates of appetizer-like nibbles meant to be shared? Nara Bistro serves hot and cold varieties, including stuffed grapes leaves, creamy hummus, and spinach pies. Nara also serves traditional entrees such as chicken and minced beef strung along skewers on the grill and falafel tucked into sandwiches with mint and tahini. Its chefs also make classic Middle Eastern desserts, from baklava flavored with orange blossom syrup to sweet cheese-stuffed crepes. And all the dishes can be washed down with a bevy of beverages: fruit and honey smoothies, turkish coffee, and a wide selection of exotic teas populate the menu.
Ziller Karaoke & Bar's private rooms and booths reverberate with the sounds of friends crooning to one another amid ambient neon hues, laser lights, and a selection of Asian and American pub fare. The bar's extensive catalog of hit tunes provides fodder for spotlight-ready vocal chords, and its Karaoke Camstar system employs cameras to capture performers and insert them into projected music videos laden with special effects and shots of sports cars made of cash. As nights unfold into impassioned displays of singing prowess, the resident team of mixologists keep tables stocked with a spread of cocktails and bottle service to fuel singing into the late evening hours.
After opening their first store in Anaheim in 1993, the grocery gurus behind Super King Markets noticed the globe-spanning diversity of their customer base. This keen insight led them to stock shelves with brands from across the world and around the corner, a policy which helped them win LA Weekly's Best Ethnic Deli Counter of 2009, Best Place to Buy Nutella of 2010, and Best Palace of Cheap Produce of 2011. Now expanded to five locations, the store still fills each outpost with fruits and vegetables, quality meats and private-label seafood, and an assortment of shells in the mixed-nut bar. Staff members behind the service deli weigh imported salamis, caviar, and cheeses for their upcoming high-school wrestling matches, and clerks in the liquor aisle dole out advice on each spirited beverages. Additionally, the Los Angeles, Altadena, and Claremont locations invite shoppers to linger longer with an expansive fresh bakery.