Anything Great in Claremont?

Going on thursday with some friends. We’ll eat anything. Also glendora and Rancho. I think they are close to Claremont. I would like soul food or mexican, but anything that is a must try is ok.


I really like Hilltop Jamaican. It is more of a market with food and seating. Really good jerk chicken, oxtail, and curry chicken patties. No ambience, but food is great.

There is also Maple’s Waffle House. Pretty much kills Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles in all aspects. Table service.

In Ontario, Carnitas Al Estilo Michoacán for carnitas and there excellent salsa verde to cut through all dat fat. Not much ambience, but I’m there for the pork.

I hear this is good.

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Viva Madrid is a neighborhood gem. We used to go there for dinner and then walk over to Casa 425 to sit outside in the courtyard lounge for after dinner drinks.
Also good in the neighborhood is Tutti Mangia and Union on Yale. Kazama Sushi on Indian Hill is worthwhile only if Chef Kazama is still working the counter…he worked out in the Valley by the Studios before heading east towards the suburbs of the IE…he and his wife were so lovely to us when we would come in.
My favorite Mexican place in the area is Juanitas III, but that’s more on the fast food end. It’s tastes like grandma’s cooking and they make their own flour tortillas daily…that they use to fry up for nachos. The pork chile verde nachos was a favorite of ours when we lived out that way.

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Going off memories from almost 20 years ago, Viva Madrid was quite delicious. I also liked Thai Orchid Garden, up on Foothill Blvd near Claremont:

Danson/Espiau’s in Claremont was horrible though… I remember that clearly.

I believe that Espiau’s is now gone. I drove by a couple of months ago, and something new is starting to brew up in that location. We went once…it was not ideal.

I think it has gotten really bad. Last time I went, we waited a long time, but the mussels they served us was really off tasting and grainy. It used to be quite good, but I haven’t been back for a long time. Therefore I cannot recommend it anymore.

@A5KOBE could be right. We moved out of the area 7 years ago and rarely have a chance to return. However, we never ordered the mussels. We stuck to the pan con tomate, bacon-wrapped dates, charcuterie, and a few other Spanish tapas. Those were consistently good back then.

I haven’t been there in years, mainly because of my previous experience. Must be 3 years or so.

Been looking for some good jerk chicken, thanks!

Cool. thank you all. will try something and report back.

If you eat in, don’t forget to order extra festival bread. Those damn things are so addictive, and oddly tasty with the oxtail gravy. I have had the jerk chicken, oxtail, goat curry and pretty much all of their meat patties.

I have never heard about festival bread until Hilltop. I wish more places made it.

Yeah, never heard of festival bread but will be sure to try it. Thanks again.

Soul food at Day Day’s

If you’re not in the area often, you might as well pick up a strawberry donut or four at Donut Man

If you end up feeling like Thai, there is a Sanamluang outpost in Claremont

Menkoi Ya Ramen
On a cold day, this place offers a decent ramen. They source Kitakata-style noodles so they’re thick and curly. The broth is pretty good…a mix of shoyu and pork broth…there are vegetarian and Kotteri-style broths, too. The charsu was seasoned and cooked well…I wish there was more of a roasted flavor, but still pretty good. I added corn, wood ear mushrooms, and they have perfect seasoned soft-boiled eggs.

According to my friend who works at the Colleges nearby, this is a more recent opening…and better than the other ramen joint in the neighborhood. Was just the right amount of busy at lunch…busy enough to have full tables, but not busy enough where you had to wait after walking in.