Gentle readers: Behold our annual Best Of issue, in which we bring you blurb after blurb about Orange County’s finest and brightest! But while a casual observer may think compiling an issue of blurbs is easy, far from it: every such endeavor is a military exercise in discipline, in forging wayward freelancers into a troop of battle-hardened scribes, and then setting them loose on the county. Consider this our manual from that experience: Now YOU get to go scalp Nazis; scour the county’s best dives, greatest artists and finest shops; and defeat Hitler!
That’s why our theme this year is in homage to The Dirty Dozen, that dazzling flick starring Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Jim Brown, Charles Bronson—basically every Hollywood badass who wasn’t Clint Eastwood in his pre-chair-talking days or Steve McQueen. Besides, we’ll use any excuse to have hot girls and guys cavorting in tiki bars with guns, as well as guacamole on heaving breasts (check out our hot pictures—the Andrews Sisters, our models ain’t). Enjoy, and don’t forget to download our Best Of app, which is FREE!
And don't miss our interviews with OC's best: Teri Sforza, Orange County Register investigate reporter; Jody Agius Vallejo, USC sociology professor; Forrest Cokely, Hi-Times Wine Cellars master; Rachel Nguyen, That’s Chic fashionista; Kat Secor, Team Destiny paintball queen; Eddie Day, one-man band at the Fling; Danny Godinez, culinary genius at Anepalco’s; Anaïs Tangie, SoCo Farmers’ Market empress; Jeremy Cross, dark artist; David Carnevale & Joey Baital, co-founders of Theatre Out; Bill Bennett, president of Sweet Relief Musicians Fund; and Sami Matar, Muslim-radio pioneer.
With contributions by Gustavo Arellano, Dave Barton, Joel Beers, Kelsey Bowen, Jay Brockman, Michael Chin, Matt Coker, Stacy Davies, Erin DeWitt, Josh Dulaney, Brandon Ferguson, Edwin Goei, LP Hastings, Taylor Hamby, Charles Lam, Dave Lieberman, Patrice Marsters, R. Scott Moxley, Yasmin Nouh, Shuji Sakai, Gabriel San Román, Nick Schou, Amber Stephens, Priscilla Vega and Michelle Woo.