10 Essential Buena Park Restaurants

How you should be eating Knott's fried chicken.EXPAND
How you should be eating Knott's fried chicken.
Edwin Goei

To tourists, if Anaheim is New York, Buena Park is Chicago: Orange County's second city, the one they go to after they've exhausted all that Disney has to offer. But to locals, Buena Park is more than just the territory of Knott's and knights; it's also the home of a burgeoning Korean population and thus, excellent food.

Still, Knott's and Medieval Times did make this list of your humble food scribe's 10 essential Buena Park eateries.

What's yours? Share them in the comments so that any tourists who read this can make the most of their visit, won't you?

Aji Limon
Not the saltado, but still great!
Not the saltado, but still great!
Todd Barnes

Aji Limon might be the first restaurant in the county to completely embrace chifa cuisine (Chinese-Peruvian dishes) as its specialty. Its roster is dotted with more than a few Chinese dishes of the kind you might find on Capón Street, Lima's Chinatown. But its saltado is one against which to measure all others, the best amalgamation of the Chinese and the Latin as only the hot crucible of a wok can forge--neither too soupy nor too greasy and every bit the diplomatic ambassador of chifa to OC as the restaurant is its temple.

Athenian #3
Good morning burrito!
Good morning burrito!
Gustavo Arellano

Athenian #3 didn't invent the breakfast burrito, but it produces what is perhaps the best breakfast burrito in Southern California. There are nine different preparations, the folds of the tortilla holding back everything from chorizo to Polish sausage to bacon to ham to even chili. Your chosen meat is then joined with fluffy egg, crispy hash brown, gobs of cheese, all tucked into a perfectly gridled tortilla that feels like a brick in your hand but heaven in your mouth.

Cocohodo
Mmm...bite-sized!
Mmm...bite-sized!
Edwin Goei

The first question you will ask yourself passing by this branch of Cocohodo is "What the heck is a Cocohodo?" The second question you will ask yourself when you find out they sell walnut pastries is "What the heck is a walnut pastry?" Soon you find out that Cocohodo is Korean purveyor of hodo gwaja, the walnut pastry in question. Hodo gwaja is, in fact, uncannily shaped like a walnut; but for all intents, it's just a bite-sized version of a Japanese taiyaki with a walnut morsel embedded in the azuki paste filling. Since it's as big as a donut hole, you can fit one in your mouth. Doing this, however, is very stupid idea. When a hodo gwaja is just freshly made, formed in a walnut-shaped waffle press, the azuki will be a scalding, sticky equivalent of red hot lava. Wrapped up in tissue paper and boxed up like precious truffles, you wouldn't think they'd be such a first-degree burn hazard, but be warned! Eat them. Enjoy them. But bite into them carefully, blowing to cool it off.



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