I'm with Edwin: Haven Gastropub in Old Towne Orange is uneven. I love their chorizo flatbread, a perfectly toasted plate with oily, spicy chorizo, red peppers out of the Windy City, a tomato sauce that tastes like it came from organic veggies, a reason to justify this overplayed restaurant trend. But the mac-'n'-cheese was just a bit more flavored than mashed potatoes, an order of olives should include a cheese or some bread slices, and what's with getting two dishes at a lukewarm temperature?
That's not Haven's biggest sin, though. I don't drink beer and wasn't in the mood for Jameson, so asked for a glass of water. Ah, that familiar taste: OCWD Varietal, otherwise known as North County Chardonnay. Tap water: stale, nearly metallic, downright nasty. Maybe my senses were failing me? I asked for another glass, and out came a liquid so cloudy it nearly looked like Squirt. Few things are more gastronomically gross than seeing a glass of tap water set, to see its cloudiness dissipate into God-knows-what. You couldn't add a sliver of lemon to at least offset the flavor, Haveners?
Yeah, the economy is tough. But for a place that boasts it's a gastropub, a label that justifies chefs charging twice or three times the average cost of the dish, dontcha think they can at least spring up to Arrowhead?
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