Halves Boiling Pot + Grill is a Japanese restaurant in Foothill Ranch. Without knowing that the restaurant offers both yakiniku and shabu shabu, Halves looks like every other shabu shabu joint in Orange County. Each table comes with containers of all the usual shabu shabu accouterments of scallions, garlic, and grated daikon. And when you order the hot pot here, it comes with a bowl of thick goma sauce and ponzu, a bowl of rice, and raw vegetables with an excess of udon noodles you’ll never end up eating. There’s even the option of hot drops that the waitresses offer from tiny vials that should be labeled with a skull-and-crossbones. But the restaurant—which was conceived by the owners of Plush Karaoke Lounge in Irvine—may be the first in Orange County to offer this unique two-for-one DIY meat-cooking experience.
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Have you ever had a bite of food you wanted to last forever? For me, there was that first bite of otoro at Sushi Noguchi, and then the oyster I gulped while a cool breeze blew across Tomales Bay in Northern California. This past wee...