The Best Things to Eat in Orange County, 2015

Winner of so many awards
Winner of so many awards
Photo by Dustin Ames

Yesterday, we went over the best things to drink in Orange County, so today we'll go over the best things to eat. In this list, you'll find the best individual dishes in Orange County, from burritos to breads and burgers to everything else that doesn't start for the letter B. So if you're looking for that great bagel? This is what you want to read. Next week, we'll touch in the best places to eat and drink, so if you want to find your next favorite restaurant or bar, wait until then or check out our full best of feature.

Best Fish Taco Orange County 2015 - El Taco Nazo

These fish tacos
These fish tacos
Photo by Dave Lieberman


Despite our county being so close to Ensenada, our fish taco game is weak. But El Taco Nazo carries the torch in La Habra, where families fill the booths on weekends for crispy fish and shrimp tacos dressed just as they are south of the border. The secret? The batter! Plus, the chiles güeritos are so popular the chefs had to start doling them out from the counter to keep customers from devouring the whole tray.

121 Beach Blvd. La Habra, CA 90631. 562-690-8078. http://www.taconazo.com/ Best Bread Orange County 2015 - Cream Pan

Don't you want them?
Don't you want them?
Photo by Edwin Goei

Épis are almost impossible to make properly. Baguettes are snipped in a way that resembles leaves growing off a branch, and if the "leaves" are too small, they burn and the bread is bitter. If they're too large, they get spongy and unappealing. But at Cream Pan, the obsessive Japanese bakery in Tustin perhaps best-known for its strawberry croissants, the épi is always, unfailingly perfect.

602 El Camino Real. Tustin, CA 92780. 714-665-8239. http://www.creampanbakery.com/ Best Burger Orange County 2015 - The Counter Ordering from the Counter can resemble taking a high-stakes multiple-choice test, but it's an easy A. The build-your-own-burger chain with three OC locations breaks it all down from the bun (pretzel, Hawaiian, brioche style) to the patty (organic Bison or hormone, antibiotic-free beef), plus everything in between. All the ingredients amaze. Fill up on loaded spuds or Parmesan fries while waiting for your masterpieces to arrive. Unhinge your jaw once they do for that first big bite.

6416 Irvine Blvd. Irvine, CA 92620. 949-336-7272. http://www.thecounterburger.com/


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