With a partially outdoor bar and a spacious dining area and lounge, NEOMEZE is hip without being overbearing. Coalesce with its angular aesthetic sipping a cold summer sky martini with Skyy vodka, cucumber, strawberries, and lemon juice ($12) or a glass of the house beer, an amber bock ($7). Get your grub on with a geometric watermelon neo, a starter of stacked watermelon, feta sticks, and herbs ($10), or a greek salad with kalamata olives, feta cheese, and lemon cilantro vinaigrette ($7). Substantiate a wayward soul with the mediterranean mac 'n' cheese with crumbled feta, fontina, gouda, roasted red pepper, oven-dried tomato, and herbed bread crumble ($10), or rosemary grilled-lamb lollipops marinated in rosemary, thyme, and garlic ($15).
Situated in the basement of the Union Savings Bank Building, the oldest standing building in Old Town Pasadena, Old Town Haunt reopens the building's spooky catacombs for tours steeped in haunted history. The underground maze delivers hair-raising thrills with a cast of creepy characters, closed-quarters darkness, and grandpas holding flashlights under their chins. Adrenaline junkies can leave their autos at nearby park-and-walk garages with up to 90 minutes of free parking before cars become possessed by wayward spirits.
The unassuming red brick building in the alley behind the Ice House in Pasadena may not look like much, but inside lies T. Boyle's Tavern—a no-nonsense two-level pub with a polished beer menu, hearty eats, 13 flat-screen TVs, and one 8’x10’ jumbo TV. The TVs flicker with the NFL Sunday Ticket’s games or broadcast USC and UCLA teams as they shoot a basketball, throw a football, or punt a volleyball. Nearby, a huge stone tiki head perched on the rough brick wall overlooks live bands as they belt out classic rock covers, blues, or ’80s hits.
Tall, round bar tables next to old wooden barrels hoist buffalo wings, pastrami burgers, and fish tacos that pair with dozens of bottled or draft craft beers, including tasty suds from Bear Republic, Rogue, Sierra Nevada, and Port Brewing. When regulars aren't sharing laughs over beers or frantically trying to answer trivia questions, they can head over to the dartboards or shuffleboard and pool tables.
For more than 50 side-splitting years, The Ice House’s stage has been propping up comedy heavyweights and future legends by the likes of Robin Williams, Lily Tomlin, George Carlin, George Lopez, and Jerry Seinfeld. Each week, the club continues its tradition of inverting frowns with an ever-growing lineup of up-and-coming jokesters, as well as occasional drop-ins by stars that have included Rob Schneider, Tom Green, and Nick Cannon. No seat within the intimate club is further than seven rows from the stage or 30 feet from the inflatable slides that serve as emergency exits.
You could argue that every meal at Gaucho's Village includes live entertainment—servers are constantly visiting tables with humongous skewers of meat and slicing off choice pieces with a sword-like knife. To summon such a show to your table, all you need to do is turn a small marker over to display its green side, or turn your "Bring on the Meat" t-shirt right-side out. Then, you select from an array of flame-roasted cuts, ranging from the traditional picanha, or sirloin cap, to tri-tip and filet mignon wrapped in bacon. The blazing churrasco fires backstage also cook lamb, pork, and sausage, and the menu suggests a proper wine pairing for each cut.
Though these meats have been featured on the Travel Channel's Tastiest Places to Chow Down, they aren't the only impressive spectacle at the restaurant. The real show occurs on weekends, when samba dancers and DJs rev up the always-festive atmosphere. Guests who would rather kick back than shimmy along can visit the attached lounge. There, a separate lounge menu boasts empanadas and coxinha—fried balls of chicken and cheese—as well as flavored hookah on a back patio fenced with live bamboo.
The chefs at Chadaka Thai shower traditional spices over a bevy of fresh seafood, spicy curries, and refreshing vegetarian dishes. Tender steak and succulent lamb chops don flavors of lemongrass and hot peppers as egg and rice noodles take on a range of shapes beneath savory sauces. In the dining room, towering windows and pillar-like pendant lights illuminate dark-wood décor as stark geometric furnishings find a rustic complement with burl accents and a patchwork-quilt ceiling. Candlelit tables for two fan the flames of a romantic evening or passionate fire-eating contest, whereas an outdoor patio framed by pinewood-hued beams grants diners a glimpse of the bustling shoppers just beyond their savory sanctuary.