For more than twenty years, my husband and I have both been avid diners at Houston’s restaurants. Spanning the country, we’ve dined in the restaurant’s many locations including New Orleans, Atlanta, Irvine in Orange County and Pasadena in California repetitive times. As one of our favorite establishments to order ribs and baked potatoes overflowing with toppings (when we’re being bad), we figured it was about time to review it. We recently visited the Pasadena Houston’s on South Arroyo Parkway to our extreme delight.

The approach to the restaurant’s front door delivered us to a peaceful harmonious state as Asianesque lanterns hanging overhead guided us toward the front door. Climbing vibrant green ivy covered one wall while the sound of water from nearby fountains created a restful and serene atmosphere even before we entered the restaurant. We had the distinct feeling we were going to really like this Houston’s.

There’s nothing like making a statement with zen surroundings, the tranquil voice of flowing water and KOI! Yes, the outdoor foyer water feature is actually a modern indoor/outdoor koi pond with colorful koi swimming back and forth greeting patrons as brilliant flashes of orange and white and black move freely among their liquified world. My husband gave me that “there-she-goes-again” look he customarily throws my way when I am in the presence of creatures of the water and land, and laughed in the dashing way he always does. As for me, I was sold. In fact, my husband had to pull me away from the fish to go inside for dinner! I could have stayed there all evening just talking to and admiring the koi. (It’s the animal lover in me, I guess!)

Once we left the friendly koi outside, we were reunited with them inside. The indoor / outdoor water feature continues when you walk through the front door. I sat for a few brief minutes while we waited for our table and reunited myself with my scaly new friends. As we waited, we had a clear view of the open kitchen, where one of the chefs diligently cooked their famous ribs, a few steaks, a Filet Mignon, a hamburger, and a couple of other beef cuts. They not only looked delicious, but they smelled incredible.

The restaurant and attached lounge area are set under dim lighting. The intricate attention to detail in the decor, seating arrangements, and continuous Asian attributes throughout add to its uniqueness.

The entire staff at Houston’s respectfully shows off their professionalism, attention to customers’ needs and adheres to a strict code of politeness and courteousness. On more than one occasion, we’ve noticed the waitstaff deliberately stopping to allow diners walking past them through the walkways of the restaurant’s interior the right of way. Their backs to the wall, a smile and welcoming greeting on their lips and in their eyes tells everyone just how important they are. It’s really amazing to witness, and even more so to experience that level of personal customer service.

Houston’s offers various seating options for your comfort and dining pleasure. You can select a spot at the bar in the lounge, or dine in the main restaurant at a booth or table. We have dined at both before, and both are equally accommodating to the feasting experience. Candles on the tables design a romantic mood, a subtle flowing Asian theme is conveyed throughout the institution and once seated, all you really have to do is relax and enjoy yourself.

Though simple and one-paged, the menu is sure to delight and satisfy. Houston’s has a posted weekly “Soup Calendar” on their menu. For $7 each, you can entertain your taste buds with such compositions as the Mexico City, the New Orleans Red Bean, the Tortilla or Baked Potato soups, the Tomato soup, the Newport Beach Clam Chowder or the Firehouse Chili. If you’re looking for more to start off with before you dive into your main course for the evening, try any one of their selections from the Starters & Sides list. Such morsels include the Grilled Artichokes, the Chicago Spinach Dip, Cheese Toast, Whole Grain Barley Salad, Coleslaw, Hand-Cut French Fries, Seasonal Vegetables and Black Beans and Rice. We are huge fans of Houston’s Chicago Spinach Dip. We’ve certainly had more than our share of it throughout the years. Its savory creaminess is evenly distributed and perfectly-blended with fresh chopped spinach, artichoke hearts, sour cream, heavy cream, shredded Monterey jack cheese, Parmesan Reggiano cheese and garlic salt then served with corn tortilla chips. A sure winner with anyone! However, a few years ago when Houston’s restaurants started serving their Grilled Artichoke starter on their menu, it too has become one of our favorites…

The bar is fully-stocked, so anything you can think up, the dexterous bartenders can skillfully craft for your sipping pleasure. We do, of course, have to tell you that Houston’s HAS NO CORKAGE FEE!!! (Yes, I was yelling that out loud!) You all know how much I love that. But despite that little tidbit of information, we should tell you that Houston’s cocktail menu and wine list is terrific as well. Your server will have excellent knowledge of suggestions for wine pairings based on what you order, so don’t forget to ask them if you require a recommendation. Now, back to the menu…

Grilled Artichokes With a Creamy Dipping Sauce

The salads at Houston’s are to die for. The several choices include the Spicy Tuna Roll Salad. It’s an inside-out spicy tuna roll with mixed greens, avocado, mango and ponzu. Then there’s the Grilled Chicken Salad (one of my favorites captured in the photo below) with mixed greens, tortilla chips, tender shaved slices of juicy chicken breast, honey-lime vinaigrette and peanut sauce. I’ve literally been eating this salad at Houston’s other locations for twenty years, and it still tastes as flavorful and perfect as the first day I experienced it! Other salad choices include the Caesar Salad with crisp romaine lettuce, Reggiano cheese, crunchy croutons and eggless Caesar dressing…or try the Traditional Salad, presented with mixed greens, house-made croutons, chopped egg and smokehouse bacon. You can also indulge in the Thai Steak & Noodle Salad that’s expertly prepared with marinated filet or rotisserie chicken, avocado, mango and herbs in a Thai dressing. All scrumptious tastes, all unique in their preparation.

Most visits to Houston’s, I’ll order the Grilled Chicken Salad. Mixed greens and tortilla strips (below) give this immense dish of Asian-essenced veggies and thinly sliced tender chicken breast a gratifying crunch, while the peanut sauce and honey-lime vinaigrette dressing add to its delectable attributes. DELICIOUSNESS!!! (Was I just yelling again)?


Grilled Chicken Salad

Rotisserie Chicken With an Apricot Glaze and Barley Salad

Houston’s entree choices are endless. There’s the Oak Grilled Trout with a Cajun seasoning, the Scottish Salmon grilled and simple, Pan Fried Fish served with coleslaw and a dill tartar sauce, the Rotisserie Chicken (pictured above) on a bed of barley salad with almonds, fresh mint, tomatoes, cranberries and radishes, the slow-cooked Barbeque Ribs, the marinated Hawaiian Rib-Eye, the aged Roasted Prime Rib and the Center Cut Filet carefully grilled over hardwood in the open kitchen.

Pan Fried Fish With Cole Slaw and Dill Tartar Sauce

Houston’s tender Oak Grilled Trout offers a Cajun seasoning sprinkled on a beautiful grill-marked Ruby Red trout. An accompaniment of fresh seasonal vegetables is available as the side, or you can order a baked potato as an alternate side. The fresh chives and butter sauce doesn’t hurt this dish either!

IMG_4950 - Copy

Oak Grilled Trout

The ribs are by far my favorite item to order from Houston’s. I request a stuffed baked potato in place of the fries it normally comes with, and ask for an additional serving of the potato toppings. The potatoes are so huge, you’ll need more. Trust me! With the fall-off-the-bone ribs, the baked potato with all the trimmings is just divine!

BBQ Ribs With a Loaded Baked Potato

Many years ago, Houston’s restaurants offered one of the most incredible Club Sandwiches I’ve ever had the pleasure of devouring. Though not on the standard menu any longer, sometimes I have been able to have one of these made at other Houston’s locations besides the one in Pasadena. If you’re lucky enough to get one of these, you will remember it forever. It truly is the epitome of Club Sandwiches!

The Houston’s Club Sandwich with Honey Mustard

Thai Steak & Noodle Salad with Thai Dressing with Marinated Filet Mignon , Mango, Peanuts, Tomatoes and Asian Noodles

INSIDER’S TIP: The Thai Dressing on the Thai Steak & Noodle Salad can sometimes be a bit too spicy. Depending on how spicy it is can vary from day to day we have found. I have started ordering this salad without the Thais dressing, and instead, with a side of the Blue Cheese dressing. That way, it’s much milder, but I can add a little heat if I want to at my discretion with a side of the Thai dressing also. Additionally, this salad can be ordered with grilled chicken instead of steak if you’re not a meat eater.

Houston’s ever popular Hardwood Grilled Center-Cut Filet is a beneficial item for those who enjoy a fantastic and memorable steak. There are other cuts at this always-packed restaurant, however, my favorite of them all is this one. Tender and flavorful, this delicious experience of lean beef, a mouthwatering creamy sauce, and a very happy stuffed baked potato on the side is simply amazing!

Hardwood Grilled Center-Cut Filet

Like a great burger? Then Houston’s is where you should be for that, too. Below, my husband tried one of the eatery’s specialties…their Cheeseburger. Made with fresh-ground beef, and offered with tomato, lettuce, onion, and Cheddar cheese inside of a house made egg bun, this sandwich is certain to win the hearts of anyone who enjoys a delicious cheeseburger…

Houston’s Cheeseburger with a House-Made Bun

And you cannot forget about a little something sweet at the end of a meal at Houston’s. Many years ago, I became a fan of the Walnut Apple Cobbler a la mode, however recently, we were introduced to the Five Nut Brownie Sundae. What can we say? A picture is worth a thousand words, right?

IMG_7391 - Copy

Five Nut Brownie Sundae

Though the Pasadena Houston’s does not have a Happy Hour, you can still amply feed two adults from their varied selections on the menu. Throw in a bottle of wine from home with no corkage charge and you’ve got another fine meal out for under $50 (including tax!)

  • DECOR / ESTABLISHMENT: The Pasadena Houston’s enhances it’s already-popular atmosphere with Asian decor inside and out. The water feature with the flowing fountains and friendly koi is a lovely welcome, while the intimate setting of the restaurant is very inviting.
  • FOOD / DRINK: We’ve never had a bad or distasteful meal in the last twenty years we’ve been patrons at Houston’s restaurants. The Pasadena location is no different. Excellent presentation of both beverages and meals, colorful displays accompanying each dish, water glasses continuously refilled without asking, and world-class flavor, flavor, flavor!
  • LOCATION: 320 South Arroyo Parkway, Pasadena CA 91105. The restaurant parallels a busy thoroughfare in the heart of Pasadena, however the relaxing ambiance of both the inside and outdoor areas and lounge patio with double-faced fireplace create a refuge from busy city boisterousness.
  • HOURS: Monday through Sunday from 11AM -10PM.
  • SERVICE / STAFF : Continual coverage of our needs, refilled water glasses without asking, great attitudes and unparalleled consistent customer service throughout our meal was greatly appreciated. Our usual server, Sarah, is knowledgeable, courteous, happily answers questions and addresses our comments. She is an exceptional staff member. We always request to be seated in her section of the restaurant when she’s there.
  • PRICE / VALUEHouston’s service, attention to detail, flavorsome dishes, consistent quality and intimate unique environment all add up to one thing…great value for what you’re paying! You can enjoy the food and sips from 11AM – 10PM Monday through Sunday.
  • PARKING: Free parking is available in the attached lot adjacent to the restaurant.
  • TOTAL BILL: $46.75 for a bottle of wine with no corkage charge, the Pan Fried Fish and the Grilled Chicken Salad. Coming in a a penny more on another visit, the total bill was $46.76 for a bottle of wine with no corkage fee, a Coca-Cola, the Grilled Chicken Salad and the Rotisserie Chicken. One could easily bring in a bottle of wine and have several appetizers for $50 (including tax) or under here as well either at the bar or in the restaurant itself. We’ll do that next time and write up a “follow-up” blog just on appetizers at the bar when we visit in the future.

Houston's on Urbanspoon

Houston's Restaurant on Restaurantica

Houston's  Restaurant Reviews

* Menu and prices subject to change without notice.

109 thoughts on “HOUSTON’S RESTAURANT PASADENA… “Fans For Twenty Years!”

    • Hi, Edna! We definitely would NOT mind writing more posts about food and wine. In fact, we have over ten new posts waiting to be published to SavorHour.com in the next few days! We love that you’re anxious to read more, and will be publishing our new reviews to the site very soon. You can also subscribe to our food and wine blog on the right sidebar at the top via the blue link. That will allow you to receive instant updates to reviews of establishments we have posted. Thanks again for your eagerness to see more SavorHour.com reviews. That just makes us feel even more useful, appreciated by our readers, and as though we are doing something great for others! Thanks so much for your support!

    • Hi, Cassilda! We appreciate your taking the time to send your comments about our review of Houston’s Restaurant in Pasadena, CA! We LOVE going to Houston’s! The Pasadena location, specifically, is so unique and visually stimulating. A modernized koi pond with flowing fountains that is both indoor AND outdoor accessible, incredibly consistent cuisine and unparalleled service from start to finish. Just incredible. Thanks for your feedback, and thank you for following our ever-growing food and wine blog!

  1. Very good articles! Many months of quality posts. I admire you in many things, but disagree with others. Love your posts!

    • Hi, Arenice! Thanks for your honest feedback! I always say, if you can’t be honest, then there’s no use is saying anything at all. I really appreciate your comment and hope you will find more interesting, exciting and fun articles in the future on SavorHour.com. We really appreciate your following what we post, and we thank you for being a SavorHour reader!

  2. This was really a quality post. In theory I’d like to write like this too. Taking time and real effort to make a good article.

    • Hello, Cleusa! I was so happy to read your comment! Thanks so much for such a kind comment about our writing. You can stay up to date on new posts we publish to our little food and wine blog via the blue “Subscribe To Our Blog” link on the right sidebar at the top. That will give you immediate e-mail alerts when a new post is published to our SavorHour.com site. Thanks again and have a terrific day. Thanks for being a SavorHour.com fan!

  3. Hi Daiani! We appreciate your kind feedback. We love hearing from our readers and what they think about what we offer on our growing food and wine blog. Thanks for the encouraging words, and thank you for supporting our little food and wine blog!

    • Hello, Debora! Thanks for the terrific vote of confidence! And thank you for following our food and wine blog!

    • Hello, Alina! Thank you for your inspiring feedback! We appreciate your taking the time to send us your thoughts about our little food and wine blog!

  4. Your posts have been excellent and I have referred the site to many of my friends. My honor for the work that you have done. Thank you once again!

    • You are very welcome! We appreciate your kind feedback, and are appreciative of your supportive comments. Thanks for spreading the word about our little food and wine blog, and thank you for being a SavorHour.com fan!

    • Elina, thanks for the vote of confidence in your comments! We thank you for you being a SavorHour.com reader, and thank you for your support!

    • Elaine, thank you for your sincere feedback. It’s readers like you who open those doors of opportunity for us. We appreciate you and all of our other followers out there for your amazing support!

    • Elizabeth, your insightful reply was well-appreciated! Thanks YOU for following our little food, wine and travel blog and for being a SavorHour.com reader!

  5. This is a really good read for me. I must agree that you are one of the coolest bloggers I’ve ever seen. Thanks for posting this useful information.

    • Hi, Adrize! Wow…what a generous comment! We truly appreciate your feedback and thank you sincerely for being one of our loyal SavorHour.com fans!

  6. Excellent post. I want to thank you for this informative read! I really appreciate you sharing this great post. Keep up your terrific work!

    • Hello, Ennya! Thanks you so much for your sincere comments. We would like to thank YOU for being a fan of SavorHour.com!

    • You’re welcome, Belinda! Thanks for taking the time to write in to us, and thanks for being a SavorHour.com fan!

    • Hello, Cirleni! It’s our pleasure to share our information with our readers. Thanks for the generous compliment, and thank YOU for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • Thanks for your support, Adiles! We’ll keep forging ahead. Thank you for taking the time to write to us, and thanks for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • Great, Branca! We’re so excited to hear you’re a SavorHour.com fan! We appreciate your feedback and are very happy to add you to our growing list of readers!

  7. Hi, good post! I want to thank you for this informative read. I really appreciate the sharing of your posts. Keep up your great work!

  8. I’ve been exploring for a bit for any high quality articles or weblog posts on this sort of subject. Exploring in Yahoo I eventually stumbled upon this web site. Reading this info, I’m happy to express that I’ve an incredibly good uncanny feeling I came upon exactly what I needed. I will make certain to not fail to remember this site and give it a look regularly.

    • Hi there! Thanks for such a kind and appreciative response about our little food, wine and travel blog! We thank you for taking the time to write such sincere words. Thanks for sending us your feedback about what we write and review. And thanks for being a new SavorHour.com reader! Welcome aboard!

    • Hi, Cristina! We were so excited to receive your comment! Thanks for being such a loyal reader. We appreciate you taking the time to write in to us with your thoughts. Thanks for that, and thanks for being a Savorhour.com fan!

  9. Thank you for the article. I just about passed your web site up in Bing, but now I’m glad I clicked the link and got to go through it. I’m definitely a lot more informed now!

    • Hi, Albenise! Houston’s truly is a great location for dining. let us know when you get a chance to try it out for yourself. We appreciate you taking the time to send us your thoughts, and we thank you for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • Thanks for your comment, Deodora! We greatly appreciate your kind comment. Thanks for being a SavorHour.com follower!

    • Celeste, thanks for the comment! We appreciate you taking the time to write in to us with your comment, and we thank you for being a SavorHour.com follower!

    • Thank you, Cassila, for your generous feedback! We appreciate your kind comments. Stay tuned for new updates in the look and organization of SavorHour.com, because we have big things planned for our little food, wine and travel blog within the upcoming year. Thanks for taking the time to send us your thoughts, and thank so much for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • It’s our pleasure, Carmela! We’re happy to supply enriching, informative and entertaining information to our readers. We’re happy to have you as one of those! Thanks for being a follower of our little food, wine and travel blog at SavorHour.com!

    • Hello, Edilaine! You’re very welcome. And thank YOU for being a SavorHour.com fan and taking the time to send us your comments!

    • As are we, Ariana! Welcome to SavorHour.com. We appreciate you following our little food, wine and travel blog!

    • Hi, Briget! Thanks for your question. There are two ways to be notified of updates at SavorHour.com. 1) For updates on new posts, you can subscribe to our blog by clicking on the top area of the sidebar that says in blue: “Get Instant Updates On New Blogs Now!’ this will allow you to be instantly notified via e-mail when new articles are published…and 2) To find out about general site updates, you can follow us on Twitter and Facebook, as we post all site updates there for our readers. You can easily follow us on both by clicking on the Twitter and Facebook logos further down the sidebar. Just look for the ‘T’ for Twitter and the ‘FB’ for Facebook. Thanks for being a SavorHour.com reader. We appreciate your support and welcome you to our food, wine and travel blog!

    • Hi, Aline! Thanks for your rewarding feedback! Houston’s has been a true favorite of ours throughout the last 20 years. (Wow…that’s quite a while!) offering incredible salads, savory steaks and a multitude of other delicious fare, we hope you can get to a Houston’s and try it out for yourself! We appreciate you taking the time to write to us and thank you for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • Hi, Catrina! I absolutely LOVE your koala icon! Thanks for your comment, and thanks for being a SavorHour.com reader!

    • Hi, Carla! Thanks for your support! We appreciate you taking the time to send us your thoughts. Thanks for that, and thanks for being a SavorHour.com reader!

  10. I do not usally comment on sites but this was pretty interesting. It must take some time to write a good informative article like this. Keep up the good work!

    • Hello, Hope! Thank you very much for taking the time to comment on our site about what we’re doing! And yes, it does take time to write all the articles that we publish to SavorHour.com. But it’s what we love to do, so we’re definitely not complaining. Thanks for your kind words and support. And thank you for being a SavorHour.com follower!

    • Thanks for your kind reply, Homer! We thank you also for your support and enthusiasm toward what we’re doing at SavorHour.com. We’re so happy to know that you’re a part of the SavorHour.com community!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>