Story and Photos
By Jason Yassine
A casual and laid back Hawaiian themed restaurant is what you will find at Islands (3533 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena). Upon entering the establishment, I immediately felt beachy and tropical vibes. Props like surfboards and tropical native art decorated the walls. I also noticed large screen TVs hung throughout the restaurant for entertainment. The service was very friendly and I was seated immediately. Shortly after the waiter arrived, he was quick to take my order. Although this restaurant is most notorious for burgers and drinks, their menu is quite diverse. Since Islands has a beachy setting, I decided to order something that matched it.
Their mahi-mahi fish tacos, which is only available at select locations was the perfect choice. When the meal arrived, it visually looked vibrant and fresh. The fish tacos had grilled mahi-mahi with chipotle-white sauce, cabbage, cilantro, and diced tomatoes. It was all stuffed into corn tortillas and came with a side of pico de gallo. The meal usually comes with a side of beans as well, but instead I substituted it for a salad.
When I bit into the fish tacos, I was very pleased with the taste. The fish was tender and juicy, while the chipotle-white sauce gave the tacos a little kick. The cabbage, cilantro, and diced tomatoes complimented the fish with its refreshing flavor and added crunch. The tacos also came with two limes, which I used to supplement the fish with its tangy taste. Typically, a fish taco will come with two thin corn tortillas because they break easily. However, these fish tacos only came with one corn tortilla and did not break at all.
The side salad was also quite enjoyable. It was filled with crisp lettuce, tomato, carrots, and croutons. I decided to choose an Italian dressing, which I drizzled onto the colorful salad. Pairing the salad with the fish tacos was a great choice because it didn’t make it heavy and overwhelming.
Overall, this meal was delicious however it was a bit pricey. The waiter was very kind and accommodating. He provided fast service and answered any questions that I had. The environment was inviting and the theme was unique. This is the kind of restaurant that you could bring your friends and family to. I enjoyed my experience at this establishment and would definitely come back again!