Dave's Top Five Restaurants of 2014

Stop reading this caption and go order this pizza.
Stop reading this caption and go order this pizza.
Dave Lieberman

Another year-end list? Already? Well, fortunately, it's been a fat and happy year. Thank you, Orange County.

5. Fuoco Pizzeria Napoletana

A repeat member of this list, Orange County's best pizza still sits in the middle of downtown Fullerton, waiting to beguile passersby with the smell of wood-fired, real Neapolitan pizza. If you haven't tried their quattro stagioni pizza, go right now and order it--and see if you don't think the ricotta portion is the best part. Or order sausage and broccoli rabe, where it's the saltiness of the cheese that cuts the bitterness of the vegetable.

4. La Parolaccia

The beginning to a wonderful lunch.
The beginning to a wonderful lunch.
Dave Lieberman

The first time I went to La Parolaccia, it was in Claremont, and it was the closest I'd come in a very long time to a true Italian lunch, with a very good beet-and-citrus salad followed by a baked pasta dish, wine and coffee. Then I went to the Long Beach sister and found fewer cream sauces and more osteria cooking as I remember it from Italy. This is an overlooked gem, especially at lunch.



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