Grub Guide

Orange County's best damn dining guide

DANA POINT

MIRABEAU BISTRO
The eatery's appellation derives from the famous Cours Mirabeau, a tree-lined avenue of bistros in Aix-en-Provence dear to the restaurant's proprietors. And the food offered here—lamb osso bucco with a North African twist, fine wines and an addicting pork-and-duck confit—is just as renowed. As the French Revolution-era orator Mirabeau might have shouted, c'est magnifique! 17 Monarch Bay Plaza, Dana Point, (949) 234-1679; www.mirabeaubistro.com. $$$

FOUNTAIN VALLEY

Location Info

Map

India House Restaurant

7775 Beach Blvd.
Buena Park, CA 90620

Category: Restaurant > Brunch

Region: Buena Park

Silverado Cafe

28272 Silverado Canyon Road
Silverado, CA 92676

Category: Restaurant > Cafe

Region: Silverado

Katie Mcguire's Pie & Bake Shoppe

10121 Valley View St.
Cypress, CA 90630

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Cypress

Beverly's Best Bakery

3020 Brea Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92835

Category: Restaurant > Bakery

Region: Fullerton

Chicago Harv's

410 E. Chapman Ave.
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Fullerton

Anna's Mondu

9972 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92843

Category: Restaurant > Korean

Region: Garden Grove

Vien Dong

14271 Brookhurst St.
Garden Grove, CA 92843

Category: Restaurant > Vietnamese

Region: Garden Grove

Zubies Dry Dock

9059 Adams Ave.
Huntington Beach, CA 92646

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Huntington Beach

Clay Oven Cuisine Of India

15435 Jeffrey Road, Ste 116
Irvine, CA 92618

Category: Restaurant > Indian

Region: Irvine

Kochee Kabob House

4143 Campus Drive
Irvine, CA 92612

Category: Restaurant > Middle Eastern

Region: Irvine

Casa Olamendi's

1100 S. Coast Highway, Ste. 202
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Restaurant > Mexican

Region: Laguna Beach

French 75 Bistro and Champagne Bar

1464 S. Pacific Coast Highway
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Restaurant > Bistro

Region: Laguna Beach

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EBISU JAPANESE NOODLE RESTAURANT
This restaurant is a sleek ramen mecca that serves miso ramen, a curative soybean-flavored elixir, poured over a tangled cake of supple noodles rife with bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, hard-boiled-egg halves and scallions. 18924 Brookhurst St., Fountain Valley, (714) 964-5993; www.ebisuramen.com. $

 

FULLERTON

BEVERLY'S BEST BAKERY
In an era in which restaurant chains focus-group everything to manufacture a sense of Grandma, Beverly's Best is hominess with a brownie. The macaroons are chocolate-dipped coconut dreams: rich, light and fluffy, a guaranteed late-night craving. The holiday-themed sugar cookies—haunted houses, Christmas trees, Guy Fawkes (kidding)—are beautifully, deliciously detailed pieces of art. And chocolate-chip cookies fresh out of the oven (co-owner Carmela's admitted favorite) will make you discard Mrs. Field's as if they were a mere carton of Chips Ahoy! 3020 Brea Blvd., Fullerton, (714) 529-3989. $

CHICAGO HARV'S
Most every county hot-dog cart advertises Chicago dogs, but Harv's is among the few places that do it better than the South Side. They ship in bulky Vienna sausages directly from the Windy City, stuff 'em into a poppy-speckled bun next to dill pickle slivers, and squirt the mess with stinky-but-super quarts of relish and mustard that'll leave lips a yellow-green color as vibrant as a 1970s Notre Dame football uniform.410 E. Chapman Ave., Fullerton, (714) 871-0491. ¢

 

MANDARIN PAVILION
The windowless room nestled near a nondescript corner of working-class Fullerton has black-bowtied waiters who bring out such treasures as the three-flavor sizzling rice soup, a scintillating broth of grains, shrimp, ham and mushrooms that actuallyis sizzling when it arrives at the table. It's one option of their mandatory three-course dinner. 1050 W. Valencia Dr., Fullerton, (714) 870-7950. $$

GARDEN GROVE

ALI BABA'S KITCHEN
Although Ali Baba's prepares decent versions of subcontinental standards such as chicken tikka and tandoori and an epic chicken biryani that's more rice than fowl, concentrate on the Pakistani specialties—three types of kebabs and a scorching chicken kahari. And do trot out with an order of Afghan naan—a little less than two feet in length, dimpled, soft and sweet, about the thickness of a Bic, and easily feeds four. 14282 Brookhurst St., Ste. 1, Garden Grove, (714) 531-2000. $

ANNA'S MONDU
Anna's Mondu keeps an English-language menu; bright pictures on the wall hint at its specialty: the massive Korean dumplings known as mondu—steamed giants of minced meat, buckwheat noodles and green onions. The true revelation is the dduk bok ki, a plateful of stretched gnocchi over which the chef has drizzled a sweet-and-spicy chile sauce. Just three of the dduk will meet your daily caloric maximum; the plate comes with at least 20. 9972 Garden Grove Blvd., Ste. F, Garden Grove, (714) 530-0102. $

VIEN DONG
Serving the best in Northern Vietnamese food, including banh tom co ngu, an addictive dish of lightly fried shrimp and sweet potato. As with many dishes, it comes with a plate loaded with mint leaves, lettuce and rice paper for rolling into burrito-like tubes. 14271 Brookhurst St., Garden Grove, (714) 531-8253. $

HUNTINGTON BEACH

SMOKIN' MO'S
A tour of barbecue traditions within the confines of a gleaming Surf City development, Smokin' Mo's redeems the red states from which it pulls its stuff. Tennessee shines with vinegary, massive, great pork ribs; Louisiana appears with hot links that please like a boat ride through the bayou. Better than that, we love its pig mascot—wide-eyed, holding a massive wooden spoon, grinning at the thought of eating its brethren, the happiest cannibal since that weird gay German guy. 301 Main St., Ste. 107, Huntington Beach, (714) 374-3033; www.mosbbq.com. $

SEBASTIANI'S ITALIAN BISTRO
Owner Pablo Benavente references his Peruvian roots during lunch and Italian dinners. Before you chow through an extensive, expensive gustatory tour of Southern Italy—highlights include powerfully herbed cannelloni, filling risotto and multiple chicken dishes—Benavente trots out a thimble of ají, the deceptively spicy Andean condiment, for your bread-spreading pleasure. 6078 Warner Ave., Huntington Beach, (714) 841-3619; www.sebastianis.net. $$

ZUBIES DRY DOCK
Zubies has yummy pizzas, sawdust on the ground and lots of TVs. Don't worry if food falls on the ground—you won't be able to find it even if you tried. 9059 Adams Ave., Huntington Beach, (714) 963-6362. $$

IRVINE

CHINA GARDEN
The dim sum jockeys who patrol China Garden with their carts and filled plates want you to gorge immediately, but pace yourself: the visits will not cease, the goodness of the county's best dim sum will not end. Cha shu bao, filled with sweet red barbecued pork, perfectly foils the steaming cup of the sharp house oolong tea. So does the steamed chicken bun, a light, chewy thing filled with ground chicken meat, ginger and herbs. 14825 Jeffrey Rd., Irvine, (949) 653-9988. $$

 

CLAY OVEN
What makes the Clay Oven stand out is the way it uses the traditional tandoori tools to expand upon the cuisine. You can't find a better swordfish in Orange County. It's so tender it flakes apart at the mere hint of a fork. 15435 Jeffrey Rd., Irvine, (949) 552-2851.$$

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