15 Best Restaurants in Alhambra, CA
This article is written by local contributor Melissa Garcia & edited by the Travel Lens team.
I've been living in Alhambra, and I can confidently say that the city's cultural and ethnic diversity are among its most endearing features.
The downtown area of Alhambra in Los Angeles County is often described as a melting pot of cultures, cuisines, and sounds, making it a fantastic place to explore and dine.
In this article, I'll be sharing my top 15 favorite restaurants in Alhambra, California, offering a wide variety of cuisines and experiences to guests.
So, let's dive in and discover the best dining options in our lovely city!
On a vibrant culinary journey through Alhambra, I stumbled upon the gem that is Luyixian.
This Chinese restaurant, nestled on Valley Blvd, strikes the perfect balance between honoring tradition and championing innovation.
Each dish bears testimony to the careful thoughtfulness in recipe development, focusing on quality, freshness, and a symphony of flavors.
I was greeted by an air of warmth and genuine hospitality from the moment I stepped in.
The team's attentiveness enhances the dining experience, ensuring that it goes beyond just the cuisine.
Talking about the cuisine, the Shanghainese-inspired menu never falls short of delightful surprises.
My trip to Luyixian would be incomplete if I didn't taste the local favorites - the braised beef noodles and the braised pork over rice.
Each mouthful of the beef noodles sent my taste buds on a journey of robust spices, where chewy noodles are soaked in dark, aromatic soup and tender, succulent beef provides an unmatchable depth of flavor.
On the other hand, the braised pork over rice is a flavor-filled marvel.
The generous toppings of meat, sauce, and pickled vegetables created a tantalizing palate of textures and tastes.
I recently visited Borneo Eatery, which has been recognized by the Michelin Guide as one of 2019's best restaurants.
Located at S Garfield Ave, this place is well-known for its authentic and tasty Indonesian and Singaporean fare.
Michelin has recognized this restaurant for serving dishes of extraordinary quality that have been meticulously prepared.
Their extensive menu features numerous notable meals for their richness and flavor.
I tried various delicious dishes, including mi Goreng indo, mi goreng Borneo seafood, nasi Kari rendang, and more.
They always use the freshest ingredients to ensure the highest standards of quality and flavor.
Moreover, I couldn't leave without trying their nasi lemak.
It came with a generous helping of fragrant rice infused with coconut milk and pandan, topped with a marinated egg, fried chicken, veggies, anchovies, peanuts, and bread.
I highly recommend the chicken satay. The marinade tasted like there was lemongrass and turmeric, with peanut sauce on top.
It was very delicious and very tender.
The Borneo noodles were very good as well, but the chicken satay was definitely the winner for me.
Oh, and they do take Apple Pay, which is always a plus for me.
Charlie's Trio Cafe
Charlie's Trio Cafe, located at W Main St #3510, Alhambra, California, is among the best restaurants in the neighborhood.
The menu of Charlie's Trio Cafe features both traditional Italian fare and some unexpected twists.
Some of the top dishes on the menu include sliced ribeye, a rack of lamb Cioppino, ribeye Medallion, and others.
They also have various other cuisines, such as appetizers, continental, seafood, European, pizza, Italian, and more.
The pizzas and pasta are also fantastic. The Roma gorgonzola pizza is an excellent alternative if you're craving pizza.
This pizza is a fresh take on the traditional pie, loaded with veggies for a healthier option.
The restaurant is an excellent spot for a meal with your special someone or pals.
The creative flavors and stunning presentation will blow your mind.
The innovative flavors and visually striking presentation will surprise you.
Plenty of comfortable seating and televisions make Charlie's Trio Cafe an excellent place to watch games.
I recently visited Charlie's Trio Cafe for the first time and was impressed by the great ambiance, excellent service, and delicious food.
Our server, Allie, was friendly and helpful, as were the other staff members.
They started us off with some fresh bread and dipping oil.
I ordered the ham and pineapple pizza, while my date had the ravioli pasta.
We also shared a soup and salad. The food was delicious and came in abundance, so much so that there was plenty to take home.
The Chicken Koop
The Chicken Koop is a casual eatery specializing in chicken dishes with some island-inspired decor.
They opened their doors in 2016 and have been committed to providing excellent cuisine and service ever since.
It's the perfect spot to satisfy all your chicken cravings in one location.
One of the things I love about The Chicken Koop is their oven-roasted chicken and unique dipping sauces, which are a house specialty.
The roasted chicken has a unique blend of flavors and goes well with the house-made dipping sauces and the various sides.
During my last visit, I decided to try their brunch menu, which includes items like chicken pozole, fried chicken, and waffles.
I went for the Side Chicken Fried Sandwich, which had an outstanding balance of sweet and spicy flavors. It was absolutely delicious!
Another dish I highly recommend is their Koop crispy salad.
It's a crunchy mixed green and cabbage salad delicately seasoned with toasted almonds, won-ton strips, and tender chicken bits.
It's a must-order whenever I visit.
The atmosphere is great, with old school jams playing in the background, creating a nice vibe.
The food was 10/10, and we received our order very quickly despite the place being busy.
Boiling Crab is my go-to spot whenever I'm craving seafood in Alhambra.
I love relaxing and trying out their authentic Cajun and Creole dishes.
As a small franchise, they serve crawfish, oysters, shrimp, and other shellfish that have been boiled in a bag and seasoned with Cajun spices.
I've been a fan since Yo'Daddy and Yo'Mama founded the first Boiling Crab in 2004 with their penchant for good times and great seafood.
I appreciate their dedication to providing customers with the freshest seafood.
In addition to the beautiful shrimp, I've also enjoyed their delicious deep-fried catfish with lemon spiced fries, clams, oysters, and crab legs.
A mouthwatering seafood feast always awaits me at the Boiling Crab, located at W Main Street in Alhambra, California.
On a recent Friday evening, my friend Sandra and I stopped by the Boiling Crab for some yummy crab, shrimp, clams, sausage, and corn, all delivered to the table in a bag with everything coated with sauce.
The staff was very friendly and helpful, making our experience even better.
The shrimp with the whole shabang was amazing, and the fried fish and fries were crisped to perfection.
Baccali Cafe & Rotisserie
Baccali Cafe & Rotisserie is a Hong Kong-style restaurant in my neighborhood that serves a variety of Asian and American meat dishes, as well as other comfort foods.
They opened their doors in 2002 and have been providing fantastic food at affordable prices ever since.
I can always find something on the menu to satisfy my cravings.
The three-meat plate is the best deal on the menu. This combo allows me to have a chicken steak, pork chop, and rib eye in a single meal.
In addition, I love trying their sauces with my order of chicken wings, udon noodles, pasta, rice plates, filet mignon, and fish fillet.
I often stop by Baccali Cafe & Rotisserie to sample their Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and American menus.
The food and drinks here are incredibly good, yet they're cheap and the portions are huge!
The service is also great. The decorations, lighting, and the inside of the restaurant are quite nice. The absolute best food!
The food is comforting, and they offer a good variety of Asian foods on the menu.
The restaurant is fairly big, but it does get crowded. My family and I have been coming here for many years, and it never disappoints.
My usual orders that are 10/10 delicious include:
- Curry chicken wings
- Sicilian salmon and diced filet minion
- Fried chicken steak / pork chop steak
- Lamb chops
- Fish with black bean sauce
- Chicken salad
- Rib eye
- Korean style short ribs
Each order comes with half veggies and rice or pasta and a sauce on the side. I also love their lemon ice tea!
Pepe's Finest Mexican Food
I've been going to Pepe's Finest Mexican Food for years now, and it's always been a favorite spot for authentic Mexican fare, margaritas, and more in a family-friendly atmosphere.
This chain restaurant has been a longtime staple in the area, and the family-run restaurants have served traditional Mexican fare for decades.
Two brothers named Joe and Tony Russi established Pepe's Finest Mexican Food in 1962 in the Los Angeles area.
Eventually settling in Alhambra in 1964, they renamed the restaurant Pepe's after their nephew.
Pepe's expanded to Los Angeles and Orange County in the following years.
One of my go-to dishes at Pepe's is the Tosta Bowl, which comes with your choice of protein in addition to beans, rice, lettuce, tomato, cheese, salsa, sour cream, and guacamole.
It's always so filling and delicious!
They also have burgers with a modern twist, like the Triple Cheeseburger, which I've tried a couple of times.
It is topped with a 100% beef patty with lettuce, tomato, cheese, and dressing.
Their margaritas are also a must-try – they're the perfect accompaniment to their flavorful dishes.
New Noodle City
New Noodle City is an unassuming restaurant located at W Valley Blvd, Alhambra, California, where I enjoyed traditional Vietnamese dishes like pho and banh mi.
As a family-owned business serving the community since 2000, they always provide prompt and friendly service to their clients.
I was impressed by the fantastic value and wide selection of delicious options they offer.
If you're craving some delicious pho, this is the right place to go.
Their broth is delicious and goes well with the noodles. I couldn't go wrong with the Vietnamese beef stew and the chicken or beef vermicelli.
Upon request, they also provide free condiments like sliced onions, bean sprouts, and basil.
During my visit, I also tried their delicious banh mi, which paired well with Vietnamese coffee.
The surf beach bar atmosphere was nice, and I loved the fish and chips they served. T
he staff were cool, and I can see myself making this a go-to place of mine.
Spanglish Kitchen in Alhambra is the place to go for authentic Mexican fare.
They serve traditional family recipes using only the freshest, locally sourced ingredients.
The menu is full of delicious options, and the service is kind and welcoming.
Not only do they serve Mexican cuisine, but they also offer a variety of Latin American dishes.
I tried some of the best tacos, burritos, and tortas I've ever had in Alhambra.
One dish that stood out to me was their chicken enchiladas.
Made from shredded chicken, lime rice, refried black beans, sour cream, queso fresco, a corn tortilla, and green sauce, it's a must-order dish when you visit.
For a healthier option, I decided to try their low-carb shrimp salad.
It was loaded with fresh lettuce, veggies, avocado, and perfectly cooked shrimp.
I was pleasantly surprised by how filling and satisfying it was.
It is made from shredded chicken, lime rice, refried black beans, sour cream, queso fresco, a corn tortilla, and green sauce.
For a healthier option, try their low-carb shrimp salads loaded with fresh lettuce, veggies, and avocado and the shrimp.
The trendy Yang's Kitchen serves fusion Chinese cuisine in a light and airy setting.
I love coming here for a one-of-a-kind Asian-American breakfast and lunch.
Their menu also features organic and vegetarian alternatives.
They use only the freshest seasonal ingredients sourced from nearby farmer's markets.
They also provide a wide selection of beverages, including hot coffee, tea, mimosas, wine, beer cocktails, and more.
Every effort is made to use sustainable, local, and organic ingredients.
They prepare their dishes from scratch and take great care to only use the highest quality ingredients.
I recently tried the Cold Sesame Noodles made with organic Semolina spaghetti, topped with organic Persian cucumbers, pickled carrots, cilantro, crushed peanuts, and other toppings.
For my main course, I ordered the Market Grill Plate, which came with my choice of protein, locally sourced grilled vegetables, house pickles, and green sauce.
I had an excellent experience during my last visit on May 2nd, 2023. The variety of food was great, and the ambience was lovely.
The service was excellent, and the pricing was reasonable.
Yang's Kitchen has become my favorite restaurant in the greater Los Angeles area. I especially loved the miso steelhead combo plate!
Everything tasted very fresh, delicious, and flavorful.
I ordered my steak medium and it still had plenty of juice and flavor.
The quantity was very filling! I also ordered a red bean milk drink which was AMAZING.
Kyoto Gyukatsu offers a wide range of options, including udon, ramen, and even wagyu, that you can grill yourself.
They are experts in Gyukatsu or Japanese-style beef katsu and only use the finest cuts of beef to ensure the best possible flavor and texture.
Their Gyukatsu is cooked to perfection and comes in various cuts, each with its unique flavor, softness, and texture.
For appetizers, I tried the vegetable and shrimp tempura topped with various veggies, which was absolutely delicious.
The main course, Beef Gyukatsu, was an excellent choice.
It's a tender, juicy, flavorful beef cutlet served on a bed of fluffy rice, Japanese cabbage salad, and miso soup.
You can find Kyoto Gyukatsu at 100 E Main St STE 1, Alhambra, California.
On my visit, I found the Tonkatsu to be crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside, and the Udon perfectly cooked with a rich, savory flavor.
The portions were generous, so I didn't leave hungry.
The prices were very reasonable, especially considering the quality of the food.
The staff was friendly and attentive, making for a great dining experience overall.
I also had the chance to celebrate my son's birthday at Kyoto Gyukatsu, and it surpassed our expectations by providing an extraordinary culinary experience.
The main attraction of our meal was undoubtedly the interactive tabletop grill, which not only kept our children entertained but also engaged in the dining experience.
The exquisite flavors of the dishes were an absolute delight to our taste buds, and each one left us craving more.
The Ipoh Kopitiam restaurant at S Garfield Avenue, Alhambra, California, serves traditional Malaysian fare in the Ipoh style.
I recently enjoyed a meal with them and tasted some amazing dishes from Malaysia.
Some ingredients are brought in from Malaysia to ensure that unique aromas and robust flavors are maintained in their dishes.
The owner, originally from the Malaysian city of Ipoh, took great care to source the finest products to create a menu reflecting his heritage.
I tried some of the best Malaysian food, like Hainan Chicken Rice, Bak Kut Teh, Nasi Lemak, and Kaya Toast.
There were long queues of people eager to get seated before the restaurant opened, which shows its popularity.
The menu is straightforward, and the cuisine is superb.
I even took home a few extra servings of food, especially since I ordered a noodle and rice dish.
I came here with my best friend for dinner and we were so happy we did!
We ordered the roti canai, hainan chicken, and beef chow fun.
The roti was light and crispy, and the curry sauce was so flavorful (5/5)!
The beef chow fan was a really hefty portion, and I liked that there were a lot of bean sprouts for added texture (5/5).
My favorite was the hainan chicken, it was so juicy and tender (5/5)!
The side of ginger, soy, and spice really complemented each other well.
We arrived a little earlier than the dinner rush, so we were able to get a table right away.
We sat outside on the patio because it was a nice day, but there are lots of tables indoors as well.
The staff was really attentive and got our orders in right away, and the food came out quickly. There's lots of parking in the structure next to the restaurant.
Mahan Indian Restaurant
The menu of Mahan Indian Restaurant focuses on fusion dishes that combine traditional North Indian flavors with western region influences.
They also provide a variety of vegan specialties and other healthy options for diners to choose from.
They offer lunch buffets featuring curries, tandoori specialties, biryani, and more in a relaxed and cozy setting.
Enjoy a truly one-of-a-kind experience as you are transported to a tiny corner of India while dining at this restaurant.
You can practically taste the fragrant basmati rice and garlicky naan bread as soon as you walk in, not to mention the tantalizing smells of tandoori meats and other curries.
They are dedicated to serving you with courtesy and a kind, at-home vibe.
They are located at W Main St, Alhambra, California.
Mahan has become my favorite restaurant! My partner and I come here all the time.
My husband is vegan and I am not, but we both have options to choose from.
The malai kofta is to die for in my eyes. The owners are super kind and attentive.
The restaurant seems to have a lot of regulars, including us, so that says a lot!
Grill 'em All
Grill 'em All is my go-to place in Alhambra for authentic American cuisine.
Unique burgers, hotdogs, fries, and beer are just some items at this little establishment decked out in heavy-metal band memorabilia and a long counter.
Since 2009, the chefs at Grill 'em All have made the best burgers in Alhambra.
It started as a food truck but has since expanded into a well-regarded restaurant.
This food truck was the first to win the Food Network's Great Food Truck Race in 2010.
In addition, the burger joint has appeared on popular TV shows on the Food Network, MTV, and Travel Channel.
The Behemoth burger is a must-have, loaded with grilled cheese buns, bacon, grilled onion, cheddar, barbecue sauce, and pickle.
Visit them at E Main St, Alhambra, California, to satisfy your Burger cravings.
Grill 'em All looks pretty unassuming from the outside but actually serves really good burgers alongside having a unique heavy metal theme going on.
The burgers here are actually SO GOOD and overall, this restaurant is in my top 3 burger spots of all time.
They offer a variety of speciality burgers that are heavily loaded with things in it and are overall really unique.
My go-to order here is the Napalm Death, which has pepper jack, pickled jalapeños, cream cheese, habanero aioli, and sriracha.
This burger definitely has a lot going on but all the flavors work really well together and is so good!!
It also has a decent spice to it for my fellow spice lovers. The actual burger patty is also cooked perfectly and is nice and juicy.
During my last visit, I also ordered the H100s, which are fried tater tots with cheese inside.
These were the biggest tater tots I've ever had but I actually really liked them because of how potatoey and cheesy they were.
Living in Alhambra, a city once touted as a "city of homes," I've had the pleasure of being surrounded by several historic structures that add to the charm of this place.
What makes Alhambra truly stand out, though, is its diverse cuisine and numerous restaurants that I've had the opportunity to explore and enjoy.
So, if you ever find yourself in Alhambra, California, make sure to experience the best restaurants this city has to offer!