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Nite on the Town Restaurant Discount Card, image and link

The Nite On The Town Card is an exclusive membership card that enables the holder to dine at a dizzying variety of the San Gabriel Valley's most popular restaurants at a discounted price.

Simply include your card when paying your check. If you are a party of two, one of your entrees (equal or lower priced) will be free or substantially reduced in price. If there are four or more in your party, two of your entrees will be free or reduced in price and you can visit each restaurant up to three times during 2011 and get a great discount each time

Periodically, SanGabrielValleyMenus.com readers save $5 off the $30 price of the card.  Check back for savings.

Partial list of NOTT Card participants

Beckham Grill, La Fiesta Grande, El Portal, Stoney Point, Radhika, Firefly Bistro, Cafe Mundial, Central Park, Matt Denny's, 1810, Cha Da Thai, Dish, Italian Kitchen, Bella Sera and dozens more. 

Click here to view the complete list, and to see the discount each restaurant offers to Nite On The Town Card holders.

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Restaurant Spotlights  Click on photos (except logo) to see them full-size

You can also find our Dot Com Dining columns weekly in the San Gabriel Valley Weekly (print media) and SierraMadreNews.Net (online)

View Robin's Woodfire BBQ Menu

Restaurant: Robin’s Woodfire BBQ and Grill

Where: 395 N. Rosemead Blvd., Pasadena

Phone: (626) 351-8885

Reservations: 10 or more

Cocktails: Full cocktail service

Service: Full wait service

Atmosphere: Casual

Outdoor Dining: Available, check for availability

Credit Cards: Major credit cards

Kid’s Menu: Yes

Senior Discount: No

Food to Go: Yes

Catering Menu: Most definitely

Price Range: $ 5.95 - $26.95

Spuds Skins - Tri-tip and Cheddar version

Blueberry corn bread, blue cheese slaw

 

Wood Fire BBQ Chop Salad

Baby Back Ribs, sauce on the side

Carrot Cake

 

Dot Com Dining logo image

A Look At San Gabriel Valley Restaurants by SanGabrielValleyMenus.com

 

Robin’s Woodfire BBQ in Pasadena – Try It, You’ll Enjoy It!

By Bill Coburn

 

Before I get into this week’s spotlight, I wanted to send congratulations out to Matt McSweeney and the crew over at Matt Denny’s.  They’ll be celebrating their eighth year next week, with a special menu and champagne with dinner on tap (figuratively, not literally) from Friday the 19th thru Sunday the 21st.  As I told Matt when I stopped by for lunch the other day, it’s not surprising that they’ve lasted this long, because they have good service, provide good size portions of fresh quality food, and have reasonable prices.  Add to that the fun things like St. Baldrick’s Day, sporting events, golf tournaments, Oktoberfest, and the like, plus marketing that includes a frequent diner card, birthday club, etc., and you’ve got a winning formula.  Congrats, Matt, here’s to many years to come.

 

And speaking of good restaurants with a winning formula, I stop by Robin’s BBQ several times a year, and pretty much once each year I’ll write about it in this spotlight column.  The surprising thing I discovered this year when I went to write this (fourth) column about Robin’s, is that I really don’t need to write anything different.  Everything at Robin’s is consistent, as in consistently good, and the same things I enjoyed before are the things I enjoy on each visit.

 

As an example, in my 2004 spotlight, I wrote about “the hallway to the bathroom.  There’s a wall that displays “Places to Go in Pasadena.”  Now you’re expecting you’re going to find pictures of the best that Pasadena has to offer, suggestions of famous tourist attractions.  But the pictures are of the bathrooms you’ll find in some of the best tourist stops that Pasadena has to offer.  Maybe I have an odd sense of humor, but I found that quite funny.”  And here in 2007, I still do.

 

In my 2005 spotlight, I wrote about the fact that “the menu itself is fun.  There’s a large section of one page dedicated to Robin’s Rules, such as  “If you’re drinking to forget, please pay in advance.”  “Invite us to Tahiti and we’ll close this joint in a minute.” and  “No shoes, no shirts, no pants, no service.  But you can take it to go.”  There’s still a fun section of rules on the menu, though a couple have changed.  But there still a nice diversion from the plain “lists” of food that you find in most places.

 

In my 2006 column, I wrote about one of the most popular items on the menu..the “Garbage Can Combo” which features an ensemble of ribs, hot link sausage, bbq chicken and tri-tip.  This item…could definitely feed three, and probably four people.”  Actually, I first wrote about the Garbage Can Combo in 2004, but I was trying to pull something from each column to show you the consistency.  And the fact that I wrote about it both times really does that.  And Robin’s still has the Garbage Can, and it will still feed three or four people, and everybody will still be happy and full, when they’ve sampled not just the meats listed above, but the sides that come with it.

 

Some of my “you gotta try ‘ems” at Robin’s: The sautéed mushrooms: Katie and I were reluctant to try these the first time we had them, not big mushroom fans, but they were so good, we used the leftovers for omelettes the following day, and now we regularly try mushrooms when we dine out, though we’ve never found ones as good as Robin’s).

 

The Mad Dog Sauce: Robins offers four sauces.  There’s Robin’s Tangy Original, s the Memphis Red Vinegar Style, the Smokin’ Spicy Mad Dog, (that has some heat), and the Carolina Sweet Mustard sauce.  Robin, who knows a lot more about this BBQ stuff then I do, said that these are the four main, popular, types of sauces, associated with their typical geographical areas.  The Robin’s sauce, is, to my understanding, associated with the most common, the St. Louis, Midwest area BBQ sauce.  I like the Mad Dog, and Keelan tried it on his Spuds Skins on his last visit, and said they made the Tri-tip and Cheddar version of the skins even better than they were, which by the way, he said was better than the traditional bacon, cheese and sour cream skins.  (He ordered his skins with a mix of both).

 

Of the ribs, my personal favorites are the Baby Back Ribs, with the Mad Dog Sauce.  They are always falling off the bone, juicy, meaty ribs, and plenty of them!  While I like the sauce, I do kind of think sometimes they go a little overboard, so you might want to do what I do, ask them to bring the sauces on the side.  That way, you can put on just as much as you want.

 

I almost forgot to mention the blueberry corn bread, which would be a blow-it, cause that’s good stuff, too.

 

They also have good salads.  On our last visit, Katie had the Wood-fired BBQ Chop Salad, which you can get with chicken or tri-tip.  She had the chicken, which is what Keelan had eaten on our last visit there.  Both of them really enjoyed their salads.

 

I’ve only had the weekend breakfast there once, and that was one of our first visits there  years ago, but I remember it was more food than we needed, and really delicious.  In fact, as I write this, I have to wonder why we haven’t been there for breakfast since, although we admittedly don’t go out for breakfast often.  I remember Katie and I were both impressed.  I’ll have to put that on my list.

 

And don’t forget the desserts.  Robin’s has amazing, huge desserts, including a great hot fudge sundae that comes in a glass that’s completely covered in fudge on the OUTSIDE of the glass it’s served in.  But my favorite dessert is definitely the Apple Sizzle (apparently also available without the sizzle).  You know those black skillets that you get fajitas on?  Same skillet, same sizzle.  But it’s apple pie, with ice cream, whipped cream, and cinnamon powder sprinkled on top.  This is one heckuva dessert folks.  I worked five years at a place known for their pies, and we had nothing to compare to this.

 

As I write this, the menu on the website (www.sangabrielvalleymenus.com/robinsbbq) is a little outdated, and I’m expecting to get the new one posted by the time this goes to print.  But in case I don’t, I’ll post if the menu is the new one or the old one, so you know if it might cost a little more than what the web’s menu shows it will cost.  While the prices have changed a little, and they no longer have the All You Can Eat nights that are on the menu I currently have posted, most of the items are still available as described in the menu.  So stop by and say hi to Robin (and/or Peter Dills of TV’s “The Chef Knows” who still works regularly at Robin’s).  And be prepared to have some fun, and a delicious and filling meal.

 

Bill Coburn is owner of SanGabrielValleyMenus.com, a restaurant website featuring dozens of  restaurants’ menus, as well as downloadable coupons.  He has nearly 20 years experience in the restaurant business, and has been eating for much longer than that. 

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