Is It Any Good?

Lebanese Meza in the heart of Glendale.

Carousel on Urbanspoon
Carousel Restaurant on Foodio54

The idea of functioning in a place like Glendale, with a substantial Armenian Community, is that you’re going to get some really, really good Middle Eastern Food.

I mean, you’d kinda expect that right? Everyone loves the flavors of home, and the native community should expect the best of the best. You should just go along for the ride.

This is from their website:

Carousel is the premier Los Angeles area restaurant providing guests with the complete culinary experience when it comes to enjoying traditional middle eastern and Lebanese cuisine. Meza, the Lebanese term for appetizer is one of the most characteristic elements of Lebanese Food. In the Middle Eastern culture, meza consists of a vast array of hot and cold dishes, served in small size portions to allow the patron to sample and share a sizeable variety of items. At Carousel, our menu offers a selection of kebabs to seafood to an array of vegetarian items. We offer more than 60 meza items, ranging from familiar dishes, such as hummus, falafel and tabouleh to more traditional delicacies.

Carousel is one of the nicest places I’ve been in, for Middle Eastern cuisine since I’ve been in Los Angeles. It’s not like Dar Marghreb, where they’re putting on a Vegas-like show for you with Belly dancers and pulled tea. No, this is more of a neighborhood place. A place to bring the family even on a Sunday Night. It’s quiet, and Is It Any Good likes quiet…on occasion.

You step in through those doors, and…might still find yourself surprised at how big the place is. I know I was. There is some seating outside, but being that close to Brand any night of the week is a little much for me. Plus, the Decor inside is so nice, you want to be a part of it.

Granted, there is a space for live music, so that can be a bit much on the wrong night. But the food’s good, the pace is relaxed. It’s a place that hits my sweet spot.


WHAT SHOULD I GET?: I went simple. I got a Lule Kabob (Beef Kafta) platter. Very good, very tasty, straight ahead old-school Kebab. Wheel ain’t broken, why fix it? It’s minced, lean beef mixed with fine onions, parsley and spices, and broiled on skewers. Very tasty, and proved they can handle the basic stuff…which is what I wanted to know.

But the star of the show was the Filet Mignon Meza (which I now realize was a Meza). This was really, really good. Nice cuts of Filet Mignon sautéed with mushroom and onion (mostly onion), and smothered in a tomato and pepper paste. Pick up the cubes, put ‘em in some flat bread, wrap it up. Enjoy.

Seriously, I’m writing this like days after the visit, and I’m still thinking about it. Gotta have it again. Gotta have it again.


IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: Nothing to really worry about. You walk in, and the Hostess/Matrie’D area is halfway into the restaurant. A bit unusual, but again, nothing you can’t handle.

It’s closed Mondays, so be aware.


PARKING: Consult our Glendale Parking Map, yeah we have one. Odds are the best place to park is the Orange Structure right there in the middle of the map. If you leave close to where the elevators are, you’ll be facing a slightly funky alleyway known as “Chess Park” cross through it, fight whatever urge you have to get into a pick up game, and once you’re out of there, you’ll be on Brand and should be right across from the restaurant.


Carousel (Glendale)
304 N. Brand Blvd
Glendale, CA 91203

Tel: (818) 246-7775

Tuesday-Thursday 11:30 am – 10:00 pm
Friday 11:30 am – 1:30 am
Saturday 10:30 am – 10:00 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 8:30 pm