Subject:

Vientiane

  • Food

    August 29, 2013

    Sausage Party In Orange County!

    Mattern Deli, LinX and all the other places to get a banger (and a green chorizo and longanisa and bratwurst) in your mouth

  • Blogs

    October 9, 2012

    No. 5: Spontanaé Menu at Marché Moderne

    South Coast Plaza typically isn't a haven for bargain hunters, but for several years the prix-fixe lunch at Florent and Amelia Marneau's Marche Moderne has had one of the best lunch specials in the county.Dinner for two at Marche can easily top $100, but like Rachael Ray taught us on $40 a Day, expe ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2012

    No. 8: Pot Pie Purse at the Crosby

    Aside from La Palma Chicken Pie Shop and a handful of chain restaurants (Claim Jumper, KFC, Marie Callender's), there just aren't enough places doing pot pie anymore. And if they are, it's certainly almost never beef pot pie.Comfort food in the wrong hands can be too much of a good thing--over-porti ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2012

    No. 7: Venison Filet Mignon at Mare Culinary Lounge

    Mare is supposed to be known for its seafood. But you should know by now that Alessandro Pirozzi of Cucina Alessa fame has the golden touch, even with game meats, as it turns out. The venison filet mignon he serves at his newest restaurant, two cubes the size of a baseball sitting on opposite side ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 3, 2012

    No. 9: Farmers Market Feast at Anais

    Everyone talks about eating more simply, more healthfully. Everyone talks about going to the farmers market and eating more fruits and vegetables. Then they go to restaurants and get fried meat, fried potatoes, fried fried fried, and fruit only in syrup mode.Gross.It's different on Sunday evenings, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 1, 2012

    No. 10: Tortilla de Patatas At Ole Spain Delishop

    We love our breakfast morning, noon and night. Hot meals consisting of eggs and potatoes are always welcome, so when we were introduced to one dish in particular, it was love at first bite.Noticed by Niyaz back at number 30, we were pleased by Ole Spain's cuisine. Their tapas and bocatas seem unassu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 27, 2012

    No. 12: Blowtorch-Seared Mackerel At Izakaya Ku

    The menu said the mackerel would be seared tableside; but I didn't expect the hand-held flamethrower. I admit it:I was nervous. I inched away in my seat a little when the waiter lit it and the thing whooshed like an acetylene torch. We were sitting in an all-wooden booth shrouded with noren, the tra ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 25, 2012

    No. 14: Tri-Tip Benedict at Rocq Cafe

    Rocq Cafe has already established itself as the place in South County for intense, incredible macarons, but even the hungriest of cookie monsters (sorry! Had to go there!) needs a real meal sometimes.Much of Rocq's menu is on the lighter side--sandwiches, salads, housemade pastas--and those suffice ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 24, 2012

    No. 15: Porkabello At Bacon-A-Fair

    As we approach the home stretch of our favorites, we look back on one helluva fair season. Between our team's participation in culinary chowdowns (Go Dave!) to our interviews with Robert Irvine and Fabio Viviani, one thing is clear: It's all about the grub. Usually deep fried, and always incredible, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 18, 2012

    No. 18: Meyer Lemon And Honey Duck Wings From St. Roy Chef's Pub At VINE

    Wings are easy to prepare, but difficult to make memorable. I mean, how much ghost chili can one douse before there are no more stupid daring appetites left to burn? An appetizer with its own handle is coveted--even more so since it already comes sauced! Unless they are true wings, you'll likely fin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 13, 2012

    No. 21: Breakfast Hash And Eggs Waffle At Bruxie

    When folks ask us where our favorite place is for breakfast, we fail to mention Bruxie. Why? Partially because we forget (we're only look young). It's not like they're notorious for only the most important meal. But we're glad that we do, because one of our favorite bites is served on the weekends t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 12, 2012

    No. 22: Fried Bologna Slider At The Burnt Truck

    With everyone else going back to school, we're reminded of that cliquish time of day known as lunch hour. Deli combos, vending machines and the occasional candy gram were standard diet. By college, we were SO over cold cuts and mayo. Anything that resembled a sandwich was avoided. We had all but ban ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 10, 2012

    No. 24: Nemesis at The Viking Truck

    There was a time when we couldn't get enough of the luxe loncheras. Eventually, we got bored and took a break. Maybe five months passed before we even contemplated a truck stop. So in the last year, we've had our fair share of catch up with mobile meals. An entire menu devoted to sausages is enough ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 7, 2012

    No. 26: Suckling Pig Dinner at Haven Gastropub

    Culinarily-speaking, there are few things that make you feel as caveman/badass as digging into a whole animal. But there just aren't many places in OC going whole hog in the kitchen. One local place that does is Haven Gastropub, which, with their suckling pig dinners provide quite the feast, fi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 7, 2012

    No. 25: Tuna Empanada at Puerto Madero

    Even with fantastic sandwiches packed with charred Argentinian sausage, lengths of skirt steak, or a buffet of meats and cheeses, the star on the menu at Puerto Madero is a simple fish pastry. Tuna salads and sandwiches might be in other people's lunch bags, but one of the best ways to savor th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 4, 2012

    No. 29: Calamari at Three Seventy Common

    In my circle of friends, calamari for the table is a must. Because of this little tradition, I've seen my way around more than a few plates of crunchy squid bits.It's fairly standard from place to place; you can almost always assume you've ordered a pile of fried seafood with tartar and cocktail sau ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 31, 2012

    No. 30: Four-Course $7 Lunch Special at Olé Spain Delishop

    It's been a SanTana-heavy list for me in this round of 100 faves, but we gotta speak the truth, and SanTana has really emerged in the past year as a destination not just for Mexican food but for ALL sorts of food--and it's only going to get better. That's why I love Olé Spain Delishop so much--not ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 30, 2012

    No. 32: Mac 'n' Cheese at Chapter One: The Modern Local

    Ladies and germs: it's okay to eat at Chapter One: The Modern Local again. Us Forkers had an unofficial ban against the place because one of its former partners trashed Mexican SanTana during a city council meeting last year. A terrible disappointment, because we did love Chapter One--Edwin gave it ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 30, 2012

    No. 31: Starving Artist Sandwich With the Fixins' at the Crosby

    Apologies for the crappy photo above, but the lighting at the Crosby is never bueno...We're all still waiting for the Crosby guys to open their much-anticipated Grilled Cheese Stop, so in the meanwhile we must content ourselves with the genius that sparked this restaurant: the Starving Artist at the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 28, 2012

    No. 33: Chocolate Dome Cake at AnQi

    The garlic noodles at AnQui? Of course. The tamarind crab? Legendary. Cocktails? Superb. The South Coast Plaza eatery can always be counted on for a great, inventive dinner--a recent addition is tongue tacos made from a wonton shell--take THAT, Glen Bell!They also have a molecular gastronomy section ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 17, 2012

    No. 40: California Burrito at Taco Pronto

    We have no shortage of burrito joints in our fair county, and yet one type famous in our neighboring county makes itself noticeably absent here: the California burrito.What's that? You've never heard of a California burrito? Let's just say it's not named that because it has a cornucopia of our state ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 15, 2012

    No. 42: Meyer Lemon Curd at Irvine's Lucca Cafe

    It was May, sometime during Meyer lemon season, when we happened by for dinner at Irvine's Lucca Cafe. Chef Cathy Pavlos had made a lemon curd dessert served in a glass Ball jar to celebrate the delicately tart fruit's ephemeral appearance.

  • Blogs

    August 14, 2012

    No. 43: Cola Braised Pork at Haven Gastropub

    It might be fair to say that the chefs at Haven Gastropub have a hard-on for pork. Witness Haven's roasted whole-hog parties. Witness their participation in last weekend's Pig Out 1.0. Witness also their Cola-Braised Pork with Smoked Creamed Sweet Corn.

  • Blogs

    August 13, 2012

    No. 44: Shao Shan Tsai at 101 Noodle Express

    The wonderful beef roll at Irvine's101 Noodle Express, or any other dish for that matter, is enhanced with the spicy-salty condiment of green pickled Chinese vegetables, cilantro, and fresh serrano chilis called shao shan tsai. It sits on your tabletop in a small clear container which will be nearl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 10, 2012

    No. 45: Any Sandwich from Paninoteca Maggio

    We are now more than halfway through our march toward our favorite dishes in Orange County. It's run the gamut from Japanese to Mexican, from American comfort food to post-Ramadan fast food. When we get to the end, you'll know it's time to go pick up your free copy of this year's Best Of issue i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 9, 2012

    No. 46: Any Vegetable Platter at Tana Ethiopian

    We are now more than halfway through our march toward our favorite dishes in Orange County. It's run the gamut from Japanese to Mexican, from American comfort food to post-Ramadan fast food. When we get to the end, you'll know it's time to go pick up your free copy of this year's Best Of issue i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 7, 2012

    No. 48: Comida Corrida at Lindo Michoacán No. 2

    We are now more than halfway through our march toward our favorite dishes in Orange County. It's run the gamut from Japanese to Mexican, from American comfort food to post-Ramadan fast food. When we get to the end, you'll know it's time to go pick up your free copy of this year's Best Of issue i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 6, 2012

    No. 49: Gordita de Tinga at El Rincón Chilango

    We are now more than halfway through our march toward our favorite dishes in Orange County. It's run the gamut from Japanese to Mexican, from American comfort food to post-Ramadan fast food. When we get to the end, you'll know it's time to go pick up your free copy of this year's Best Of issue in da ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 3, 2012

    No. 50: Lobster Waffle at Bruxie

    Novelty first drew me to Bruxie. Waffle sandwiches were exciting, let alone the prospect of eating a cheeseburger waffle. But even that works here--even with syrup. Pretty much anything they throw into that bent, golden slab of crosshatched goodness is most always going to taste fantastic.Braised sh ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 2, 2012

    No. 51: The Scone at Coffee, Tea and Tulips

    Whether you're at Coffee, Tea and Tulips for a fancy-ass tea service, or just regular ol' breakfast or lunch, "Moody Chef" Michael Samawi's lengthy menu can be difficult to navigate. American, British, French and Middle Eastern fare all appear, so once you think you know what to order, something els ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 1, 2012

    No. 52: Huarache de Carnitas at El Paraiso

    A meal at El Paraiso feels as if you're a guest in someone's home. The same staff is always there and always hard at work in this Salvadorian kitchen no matter what time of day, forming pupusas, shredding cabbage for curtido and pouring steaming bowls of caldo. Hardly a lick of English is spoken in ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 31, 2012

    No. 54, Brizio Combo at Brizio Chicago Style Pan Pizza

    My initial impression of Brizio in Lake Forest was good-but-not-great, though lately I've found myself straying away from established favorites for this tasty newbie. I'll be the first to admit: I was wrong. Their basic cheese pizza is satisfactory--any kid would take this zesty sauce and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 31, 2012

    No. 53, Chivito at Puerto Madero

    I struggled with which of my two favorite dishes at Puerto Madero to feature on this list first, though both undoubtedly deserve a place on this year's 100 Favorite Dishes. You'll have to wait a little longer to see what bested the remarkable Chivito, but for now, let's talk sandwiches. Of the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 27, 2012

    No. 55, French Toast at Starling Diner

    Our humble rag anointed Starling Diner's French toast as the "Best French Toast" a few years ago, but it was a category we created specifically for it--there were no other candidates. To see it for the first time will permanently alter your definition of French toast. First, it's broiled, not fried ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2012

    No. 57, Gudeg at Indo Ranch

    If you're lucky enough to see gudeg at Indo Ranch, one of a handful of OC Indonesian restaurants (and I use that term very lightly here), it will be offered without rice. Indo Ranch's version is close to perfect despite missing the beef rinds in the sambal...that is if you even know what I'm talking ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 24, 2012

    No. 58, Salted Caramel Gelato at N'Ice Cream

    Most people congregate to OC Mart Mix for Portola Coffee Lab. Me? It's mostly for N'Ice Cream. This diminutive gelato counter makes one of the best flavors of ice cream ever: salted caramel. The color is of rust. You'll know it's the most popular flavor here, trumping even the Greek yogurt drizzled ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 23, 2012

    No. 59, Live Amaebi at Sushi Imari

    If you fancy yourself a sushi purist, you, too, might have dismissed Sushi Imari as a roll-peddler, an entity that would initially appear so diametrically opposed to the respected raw fish masters at Sushi Shibucho and Sushi Wasabi that it becomes like comparing a graffiti artist to Michelangelo and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 20, 2012

    No. 61, Olive Tree's Iftar

    Today marks the start of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month where the sons and daughters of Ishmael fast throughout the day, then stuff themselves silly on the iftar, the traditional meal that starts with the eating of a date and gets better from there. Most Little Arabia restaurants offer specials, but ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 20, 2012

    No. 60, Any Burrito from Dos Chinos

    Earlier this month, Google's Venice Beach offices invited me to do a book signing for my Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America. They asked me if I wanted to bring up a luxe lonchera, and I asked that they invite Dos Chinos, since a lot of my speech would focus on the fusion aspect. And beside ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 18, 2012

    No. 62, Sonoran Dog at Rubalcava's

    Roland Rubalcava has been doing great meals over at his family's market in Placentia, playing around with Mexican favorites while ensuring they do what Mexican food does best: comfort you like an abuelita while enticing you for more like a mujer from Los Altos de Jalisco. It's all great, but what re ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 17, 2012

    No. 63, Sizzling Hiramasa Sashimi at The Catch

    If I'm at the Catch, I'm eating seafood and/or steaks--maybe a burger, if I don't need to impress anyone and want to pig out. But regardless of entree, my appetizer is always the same: the Sizzling Hiramasa Sashimi, a flowery title for a dish that skips across culture like the city in which it's mad ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 16, 2012

    No. 64, Yakisoba Dog from Dogzilla

    This summer, the ad gals at the Weekly have been hosting Food Truck Fridays (I know, I know: clustertrucks are SO 2009). It's been a great way for me to catch up with luxe loncheras, and the one I keep visiting again and again is Dogzilla. I've long liked their Asian-inspired franks, but one I hadn' ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 13, 2012

    No. 65, Crispy Pork Belly from Lucca Cafe

    If there are two tastes our team has trouble denying, it's foie and pork. Especially pork, in all its glorious forms. Lucca Cafe's Cathy Pavlos floats our boat with this meal teaser, which we featured back in February. We suggest sitting down before our pork belly play-by-play.Coddled more than any ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 12, 2012

    No. 66, French Toast with Bacon at Flurries Shaved Snow Bar

    The pairing of certain items may be unnatural: peanut butter & jelly in a burger, pizza bagels, Ric Ocasek and Paulina Porizkova, etc. Experimental dessert places take it to another level with what they're willing to try. Along the perimeter city of Cypress, one business wants to conjure up memo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 11, 2012

    No 67, The Venetian Roll at Sushi at The Venetian Gentleman's Club

    Yes, we went to the second floor of a gentleman's club in Anaheim looking for sushi. We weren't quite sure what to expect after paying cover, because seriously-- it was raw fish in a joint Magic Mike would likely frequent on his nights off. Yet we trusted our instincts and kept an open mind.Prop ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 10, 2012

    No. 68, Okaki Asparagus at Hamamori

    With everyone's love of all foods with a face, sometimes we need to remind ourselves that good eats can be dug up from the veggie patch. So when we think of a mean, green snack worthy of our countdown, there's one obvious answer-- and it's even featured on a happy hour menu.Across the Bridge of Gard ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 9, 2012

    No. 69, The "Fried Egg" at Eat Chow

    Nicknamed "the most important meal of the day", we consider breakfast the tastiest. Eggs, pork products, hash browns and waffles. . . .what's not to love? We have ours with coffee or orange juice. The uppity mix in bubbly and call it a mimosa. Its mass appeal satisfies the heartiest of appetites. An ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 6, 2012

    No. 70. Nam Kao Tod at Vientiane Restaurant

    Vientiane is a Laotian restaurant that also serves Thai food in Little Saigon. Mostly, the fun and exotic dishes fall on the Lao side of their divide, but one Thai standout is the crispy fried rice dish called nam kao tod. It's a favorite dish of mine, and I'll invariably order it should I happen to ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 2, 2011

    Vientiane, Irvine Farmers' Market Get the Good Food Treatment

    I reviewed Vientiane in Garden Grove last year and want more people to go to this Laotian stunner--hence, the plug in this past weekend's edition of Good Food With Evan Kleiman on KCRW-FM 89.9. And while we here know and love the Irvine Farmers' Market, Good Food had amazingly never been to the mark ... More >>

  • Food

    March 4, 2010

    Go Laotian at Vientiane Thai Laos Restaurant

    [Hole In the Wall] The country's only culinary representative in OC lives up to bloggers' hype

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