20 E. Colorado Blvd., Ste. 102
Old Pasadena, CA 91505
Parking: Colorado Blvd-adjacent lots and meters (we found $10 all-day parking)
Daily; 3-7pm ( ALL NIGHT TUESDAY!); $15 pitchers of sangria, $10 pitchers of beer, $5 wines by the glass, $4 well drinks, $3 beer pints, $6 Neo Specialty Martinis & Cocktails
It’s a shame JG & I live so far from Pasadena, it’s such a nice little town away from all the Hollywood hullabaloo. My pal Booze used to live in a guest house on a sweet residential street up near the the Angeles Forest and I loved going to visit at least twice a month. We’d always find something to do – whether bopping around Colorado Blvd. or hiking at Eaton Canyon Falls or jogging around the Rose Bowl and blowing our calorie burn on a delicious pastrami sandwich from the Hat!
Suffice to say, it’s always a treat to go back and visit these days and a recent Colorado Blvd. Happy Hour Tour proved no exception! My pals Nicandrew (a wonderful married couple – the nickname is Brangelina inspired!) and I headed East on a Friday afternoon and began our afternoon at NeoMeze, a Mediterranean tapas spot whose Happy Hour I’ve seen advertised every time I open the “LA Weekly.”
NeoMeze is an upscale, chill dining establishment with a nice bar/lounge and outside patio. Happy Hour is served at the bar and patio only; there was ample seating when we arrived as the first Happy Hour Tourists on the scene at 3pm. A couple folks joined us by the time we left at 4pm, but I’d be really interested to see if more people come out as Happy Hour rolls on until 7pm daily. I hope so, the spot was fun while we were there, but I have the feeling it just comes alive at night!
The friendly bartenders told us that NeoMeze offers up different musical acts on Wednesday-Sunday (post Happy-Hour) and that’s helped the scene since the restaurant is a bit set back from Colorado Blvd. and therefore slightly hard to find. When the performers are on, the bar apparently does draw in curious visitors.
Anyhow, the Happy Hour was pretty grand, plenty of choices. For drinks, we decided on the $15 pitcher of red sangria, a house specialty ($30 regular price) and while it was okay, Nic & I enjoyed a glass of the white sangria, which was inadvertently made and then gifted to us by the bartender :), a little bit more – it was a little sweeter and fruitier than the dryer red.
For food, Nicandrew split an order of the Spinakopita ($5) and I very much enjoyed the Cheese Bouregs ($5), crispy wonton dumplings stuffed w/ spicy cheeses and served with a sort of orange/ginger dipping sauce. The spinakopita was fine, but the bouregs were downright delicious and quite different than many traditional Happy Hour fares, I highly recommend.
I guess my only complaint would be the lack of other patrons, but again, I’d love to stop back by during the end of Happy Hour sometime to see what kind of crowd the space brings in!
Rating: 4 Martinis