Weekend Brunch: Does any other meal generate as much anticipation and satisfaction?

Brunch can be a simple affair — an omelet with fresh vegetables, toast and coffee. Or, it can be an elaborate buffet of carved meats, sushi and sashimi, fresh fruits and smoked salmon.

Last weekend, I searched the Internet to find a good Sunday brunch restaurant, and one place stood out. For $62 a person, you can have an extravagant champagne Sunday brunch at the Gardens Restaurant in the Four Seasons. I found other restaurants in the LA-area that quoted $36 or $24 price tags for their buffets.

Instead, I opted for something more affordable, but no less satisfying.


A few steps from Pasadena City Hall, it’s easy to miss Marston’s Restaurant, which looks like a small house. If you get there early (before 11 a.m.), you probably don’t have to wait too long for a table.

Inside, the restaurant feels like a friend’s crowded living room. It’s close quarters but not uncomfortable. The servers are very friendly and attentive in pouring coffee refills.

The breakfast menu is fairly simple: a variety of egg dishes, pancakes, omelets and a few sides.

My friend ordered the French toast rolled in corn flakes. Crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle, the French toast was fantastic.

I ordered the Californian omelet, which includes chicken cilantro sausage, spinach, cheese, avocado and sour cream. The eggs were light and fluffy, and the toppings were generously portioned. I didn’t taste cilantro in the sausage and thought the sour cream was unnecessary, but it didn’t ruin the dish.

My only complaint is of the poor air ventilation. After we left, I could smell the food and aroma of brunch in my clothes and hair. Still, Marston’s is definitely worth a visit.

Marston’s Restaurant
151 East Walnut St.
Pasadena, CA 91103
(626) 796-2459.

Sample the world’s cuisine in one city

I thought I’d post restaurant reviews that Lafayette Hight (staff writer and classic car aficionado) wrote for The Rose magazine.

An adventurous spirit is the only passport needed to experience the many cuisines of the world that can be found right here in Pasadena.

The options are endless. It’s entirely possible to, in a single day, have breakfast at the ever-popular Marston’s Restaurant, eat lunch at Robin’s Wood Fire BBQ & Grill, and then have the ultimate fondue dinner experience at The Melting Pot.

Here you can also hope and pray for a J-Lo sighting at Madre’s, or visit Bistro 561, where student chefs at the California School of Culinary Arts practice skills they hope to use in the future to tantalize the palettes of the masses.

Pasadena has both a Tommy’s World Famous Hamburgers location, and an In-N-Out Burger many, including myself, put these among the top Southern California burger joints Rick’s Drive-In, home to the Spuderito (that’s a burrito made from French Fries, in case you haven’t tried it), and finally, a place I call Conundrum Corner on North Lake Avenue, which has two fried chicken restaurants sitting next to each other and the only vegetarian drive-through restaurant I’ve ever run across is across the street.

I say again, the options are endless.

Let the restaurants that follow only serve as a beginning. These are far too few words about far too few experiences to be listed here. Let your taste buds be your guide as you make plans to eat, drink and be merry.

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