La Grande Orange Café
260 S Raymond Ave
Pasadena, CA 91105
I came here with my family for dinner to celebrate my birthday. We went on Monday night, which was still eligible for the Neighborhood special, which is a pretty good deal.
We started off with drinks, in which I ordered their White Sangria. This drink was rather delicious, the white wine was very refreshing and had a nice, sweet flavor that wasn’t bitter at all. In addition, there was a fair amount of fresh fruit included to absorb those extra flavors.
For appetizers, I decided to try the Brussel Sprout salad. I had read previous reviews about this salad and I like brusse sprouts to begin with, but I was a little disappointed. I was looking forward to that brussel sprout taste to stand out in this salad, but it ended up being a little bland. The manchego cheese, berries, almonds, and added bacon added flavor, but it wasn’t anything wow, especially paying $15 for it. I preferred the Caesar or Wedge salad that my parents got that came with the entree for an extra $6.
On to the main course… I wasn’t in the mood for any beef that night, so I went with the Dixie Pan-Fried Chicken, which was recommended to me by the waitress and my aunt. I usually don’t order chicken dishes that often as I’m more of a beef lover, but I thought I would give it a try. The real appealing aspect of the dish was the homemade cinnamon bun on the side. Sadly, I ended up liking the cinnamon bun more than the chicken part. The chicken didn’t have much taste or seasoning, and the texture was lightly fried. I was looking for more crispiness and flavor. The mashed potatoes on the side were fine, but nothing spectacular either. On the other hand, the cinnamon bun had great flavor and wasn’t overly sweet, with a nice soft texture. When paired with the bun, the chicken tasted better. Everyone else in my family ordered the prime rib, which I got to try, and this was much better being moist, tender,juicy, and cooked at a fine medium rare. It could even be cut with just a butter knife.
Lastly, for dessert, we got the red velvet cake. This definitely lived up to the hype and recommendation. Although the slice wasn’t large or overly decadent like some other red velvet cakes, this had multiple layers interspersed with cream cheese. It really hit the spot and didn’t leave me feeling bloated or overly stuffed. To top it off, it also came with a scoop of vanilla ice cream :).
As for ambiance, I think the building used to be an old train station, so it had that nice quirky antique feel with the metro stop right outside. It felt cozy and warm inside along with good service. The food came out quickly and the waitress came back repeatedly to check on our table.