Peter Dills is a noted local food and wine writer. He hosts “Dining with Dills” Radio Show on Sunday at 5:00 PM KLAA 830 and on Charter Cable Channel 188 every Saturday and Sunday at 3:00 pm. We are pleased that Peter will share his food and drink knowledge here at www.AroundTownPasadena.com. Visit his website too, at www.PeterDills.com.
Here’s Peter’s first post for Around Town Pasadena:
Writing reviews on restaurants is subjective, as is drinking and wine. I love mom-and-pop restaurants that you’ve probably driven past 100 times. I always go to the restaurant at least three times before ink hits paper in the form of a review (I do take recommendations). I love Parkway Grill, Panda Inn and Houston’s, but you know those already!
Sahara Restaurant in central Pasadena is one of my go-to spots for both takeout and sit-down dining. I probably eat at Sahara at least three times a month. I was born in Athens, Greece, and though Sahara leans towards Lebanese cuisine, Middle Eastern foods are universal in menu selections. They don’t have Lebanese beer (the owner’s son said they don’t have their home brew because they’d drink it all!), so I have my meals with Heineken. The interior is somewhat plain with pictures of Lebanon, and the tables and chairs could be from any diner in the area. But, the food is the highlight of this show. The kitchen is open so you can watch your food being cooking on mesquite, and it’s ably run by two brothers and their sons – it’s a family affair.
They offer plenty of standard Middle Eastern dishes like kebabs, shawerma, and falafels. I love the lulu kebabs (ground seasoned lamb and beef ($11.25), and for those of you who can’t decide, get the combination ($14.75) which has a little of everything. For you vegetarians the falafel is a crowd pleaser ($8.25). Order a side of babaghanouj (eggplant) ($4.50) – they tell me it’s the real deal. My buddy Mike Bingley from the tv show Straight off the Menu swears by the by the chicken kebab. I like it but others seem to be juicer. All dishes come with feta cheese, a remarkable starter of pita bread, cucumber and your choice of lentil or cabbage salad. The cabbage is salad is great, and often I’ll put it aside for my next day’s lunch. Two enthusiastic thumbs up for Sahara! Get here early – it’s posted close time 8:30, but many times Sebestain says bro “we were busy we sold out on the food, just like a BBQ joint in Texas” – when it’s gone, it’s gone. If you were a fan of Burger Continental 20 years ago, you will love Sahara.
Sahara 2226 E. Colorado Blvd Pasadena Closed on Sundays (626) 795-6900
Join @Peter Dills on Charter Cable Channel 188 every Sat & Sun at 3 PM and Sunday at 5:00 PM on Radio KLAA 830. Plus check out his updated website at www.peterdills.com.
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Thanks for reading Peter’s post about Middle Eastern Food!
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