Say cheese! Bill Addison reviews Agnes in Pasadena

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Along a busy stretch in Old Town Pasadena, Bill Addison finds a neighborhood restaurant, Agnes. Named after his Iowan grandmother, chef/owner Thomas Kalb is serving Midwestern favorites like cheese curds. The building dates back to the 1920s with exposed brick walls and high beams. The space acts as a restaurant, market, and cheese shop. Co-owner Vanessa Tilaka runs the cheese program, which Addison calls “a good mix of bloomy rind cheeses and stinkier washed rinds and firmer blues.” His current obsession is with kunik — a Brie-like cow and goat’s milk cheese from upstate New York. The couple met at Flour + Water in San Francisco and took that inspiration to the eclectic menu, which includes pasta, hearth-cooked meats, and of course, cheese boards. Addison likens Agnes to “a more earnest, less rambunctious version of Bestia.”



Evan Kleiman