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Grub Guide

Tasty morsels from the county's best damn dining guide

SAN CLEMENTE

PITA WRAPS
Pita Wraps' colossuses aren't so much edibles as they are construction projects on the level of washing out the Augean stables—herds of wonderfully spiced lamb and beef chunks; valleys of tomatoes, onions and lettuce; all placed on a pita the size of a hamster velodrome, then welded with a brazenly tart tzatziki cucumber sauce. And the Acropolis of Pita Wraps is the souvlaki gyro: fat-free pork marinated in a zippy red-wine sauce, the best hog you'll chew on outside the South. 415 E. Ave. Pico, Ste. H, San Clemente, (949) 492-7779. $

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO

Location Info

Map

La Langosta

408 S. Brookhurst St.
Anaheim, CA 92804

Category: Restaurant > Mexican

Region: Anaheim

Rasthal Vegetarian Cuisine

2751-2755 W. Lincoln Ave.
Anaheim, CA 92801

Category: Restaurant > Indian

Region: Anaheim

Oki Doki

13681 Newport Ave., Ste. 9
Tustin, CA 92780

Category: Restaurant > Asian

Region: Tustin

Harbor Café & Tacos

16540 Harbor Blvd.
Fountain Valley, CA 92708

Category: Restaurant >

Region: Fountain Valley

Heroes Bar & Grill

125 W. Santa Fe., Ste. 128
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Fullerton

Kung Pao House

217 N. Euclid St.
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > Chinese

Region: Fullerton

Roadside Burgers

513 N. Harbor Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > Burgers

Region: Fullerton

BCD Tofu House

9520 Garden Grove Blvd., Ste. 9
Garden Grove, CA 92844

Category: Restaurant > Korean

Region: Garden Grove

Boulangerie Pierre & Patisserie

14354 Brookhurst St.
Garden Grove, CA 92843

Category: Restaurant > Bakery

Region: Garden Grove

Vien Dong

14271 Brookhurst St.
Garden Grove, CA 92843

Category: Restaurant > Vietnamese

Region: Garden Grove

The Chicken Co.

9017 Adams Ave.
Huntington Beach, CA 92646

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Huntington Beach

Lucci's Deli and Market

8911 Adams Ave.
Huntington Beach, CA 92646

Category: Restaurant > Deli

Region: Huntington Beach

CARNICERÍA EL CAMPEÓN
All things being equal, we find that the less we comprehend of a menu, the higher the odds we're going to get authentic food. "Tamale" at Carnicería El Campeón was arranged on the menu near some other foods that only a Mexican mama could recognize. Unlike the other joints, their tamales are unencumbered by frills. It is a Bauhaus dish: cornhusk, moist masa, chicken. 31921 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano, (949) 240-3141. ¢

SANTA ANA

GEORGE'S THAI BISTRO
Served with rice or noodles, George's food tastes, looks and smells so delicious that your senses will beg you for return trips to this trippy little oasis. And if you've been a good boy, you can have some of the kiwi, mango or coconut ice cream. What's that? You don't like kiwi, mango or coconut, but you've still been a good boy? 3732 S. Bristol St., Santa Ana, (714) 979-8366. $$

HANS' HOMEMADE ICE CREAM
Hans Biermann likes to make ice cream and carries some 55 delectable flavors. He also serves up real meals, such as the flaky croissant filled with avocado, almonds, lettuce, tomato, Swiss cheese and mayo. 3640 S. Bristol St., Santa Ana, (714) 979-8815.¢

MARISCOS LA SIRENA
This little palace serves caldo de caguama (turtle soup) but also represents its own endangered genus—the restaurant whose métier is stunning Sinaloan-type Mexican food with a side of stereotypes: blistering aguachile with wooden parrots, nuclear ceviche served under drooping nets, and deer steaks that are almost as tender as each waitress's top is low. 515 S. Main St., Santa Ana, (714) 541-0350. $$

NEW PANDA CHINESE FOOD
Combo C: fried rice, chow mein and any three items. God love 'em, they'll most likely give you four just for the hell of it. And all for, like, $5—if you can beat that, you must be in China. 3814 S. Bristol St., Ste. B, Santa Ana, (714) 540-2238. ¢

PRIMOS MARISCOS
No red meat at this lonchera: Los Primos Mariscosmakes seafood with a Nayarit twist. This means the freshness and sourness for which the coastal Mexican state's cuisine is famous reverberate from every plate. Most impressive is Los Primos Mariscos' ceviche: so many chunks of shrimp or fish are packed on the large tostada that it's only a matter of time before the Santa Ana Police Department cites Los Primos Mariscos for overcrowding. On the corner of First and Hesperian streets, Santa Ana. ¢

SEAL BEACHO'MALLEY'S
O'Malley's covers all the bases of pub grub, with nachos, quesadillas and chicken wings on one side and Irish sausage rolls, corned beef, and bangers and mash on the other. Theirshepherd's pie comes with a slag heap of tasty mashed potatoes on top that utterly hides the stew from the light (and oxygen) of day. 140 Main St., Seal Beach, (562) 430-0631. $$

SUNSET BEACH

CAPTAIN JACK'S
Opened June 25, 1965, this steak and seafood restaurant supposedly serves 53,000 pounds of Alaskan king crab per year—more than any other restaurant in the U.S. It prides itself on consistent quality and hearty portions. The bar is one of the few that still uses the "Super Well," meaning that if you order gin, you get Bombay, and if you order vodka, you get Absolut. 16812 Pacific Coast Hwy., Sunset Beach, (562) 592-2514. $$

STANTON

THE GOLDEN STEER
The Golden Steer is what a family restaurant used to be—not just inexpensive enough to feed a family, but tasty and wholesome enough to feed it well. It also harks back to the time when a family meal meant meat, meat, meat. The place is crowded, but good acoustics keep it from sounding like a mess hall and incredible service keeps that growl in your stomach from turning into a bad mood. 11052 Beach Blvd., Stanton, (714) 894-1208; www.goldensteer.com. $$

TUSTIN

McCHARLES HOUSE TEA ROOM
This 1885 restored Victorian is resplendent, and the menu items—such as the hearty shepherd's pie or the meatloaf sandwich—matches the décor in depth and scope right along with the vanilla-infused Cameo tea. 335 S. C St., Tustin, (714) 731-4063. $

NOODLE AVENUE
Noodles. Lots of 'em. Thin. Thick. Stir-fried. In soup. Yellow. White. Thai. Vietnamese. Japanese. Welcome to Noodle Avenue, a hectic fast-food Tustin eatery that fuses various Asian noodle traditions into heaps and heaps of long, luscious strands. 13816 Red Hill Ave., Tustin, (714) 505-9070. $$

VILLA PARK

FIRST CLASS PIZZA
Go for the employee sampler, which features four different pizzas, including the barbecue chicken, zesty Italian, Villa Park special with fresh basil and garlic, and the combo with pepperoni and sausage. 17853 Santiago Blvd., Villa Park, (714) 998-2961. $

WESTMINSTER

CAJUN CORNER
Cajun Corner is the latest in a rash of Little Saigon restaurants that attract mostly young Vietnamese looking for Louisiana seafood favorites like crab and crawfish, beer, and messy dinners—bibs and butcher paper on your table at Cajun Corner are gospel. The special is a whole Dungeness crab, brought out in a plastic bag heavy with chile rub, awaiting your cracking to reveal soft, buttery meat. 15430 Brookhurst St., Westminster, (714) 775-7435. $$

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