Where To Eat Before The 2010 MLB All-Star Game
If you can't handle the idea of overpaying for stadium food, here are some additional suggestions both quick and leisurely for eating near (but not too near) the Big A.
The problem, of course, is that the known places (The Catch, J.T. Schmid's, Mr. Stox) will be madhouses; good luck getting a seat. The immediate area, however, is a desert of decent food, with almost nothing but chains for a mile in any direction. As you head slightly out of the Katella corridor, though, things improve.
El Moctezuma #3 (1740 W. Chapman, Orange) is an offbeat choice for Mexican, the third iteration of OC's best Oaxacan restaurants. Try the moles, try the tlayudas (Mexican pizzas, but so much more), try the cactus paddle salad.
Jägerhaus (2525 E. Ball, Anaheim) is OC's best German restaurant. Stop in before the game for a filling meal. They often have wild-game specials (elk, for example), and their desserts are not to be missed.
Lucille's Rib Shack (4050 W. Chapman, Orange) is an offshoot of the popular Lucille's barbecue chain, a quick-service restaurant with a limited menu and lower prices. Their tri-tip is quite good, and if you sit at the bar, you can order from the bartender--try their Amber Ale, a dead ringer for Newcastle.
Natural (1177 S. State College, Anaheim) isn't a full restaurant, but if all you want is a snack, a shake or a scoop of ice cream, this is your destination. Try the escamocha, a Mexican fruit salad topped with yoghurt, granola and desiccated coconut; if you're in the mood for a cold shake, try the mind-bending chamoyada, a mango shake poured into a cup lined with a spicy, salty sweet-and-sour syrup made from apricots.
Niberino's (inside the His-Nibs Liquor Store, 2501 E. Ball, Anaheim) is a liquor store with a sandwich counter that makes some damn tasty meatball sandwiches. The store's namesake, Nibs Waters, recently passed away, but the counter is still in operation.
OC Poultry and Rotisserie (2117 E. Ball, Anaheim) is where you go for your chicken sandwiches. Shredded organic rotisserie chicken on baguette with garlic mayo, pickled vegetables, chiles (if you want them) and cilantro (ditto) will set you back all of $2.65. Try the xôi gà, sticky rice with shredded roast chicken, for a flavor blast that will leave you reeling.
OC Sports Grill (450 N. State College, Orange) will be very busy as well, but I have a soft spot for their club sandwich and their fried bar snacks. If you're truly determined to cheap out, you could technically walk to the stadium from here.
Pasta Connection (2145 W. Chapman, Orange) is an Argentine-Italian place with handmade noodles, serviceable main dishes and excellent gnocchi. It's off the beaten track, but is just a few minutes from the stadium.
Prime Cut Cafe (1547 W. Katella, Orange) is a surprisingly nice steak-and-chops place, specializing (surprise!) in prime rib. A good wine list will help the steak down, and when you're ready to face the crowds, you're just half a mile from the north entrance to the stadium.
Super Teriyaki Bowl (2013 E. Ball, Anaheim) is a Korean-owned teriyaki joint that's a favorite with nearby workers and people getting their cars washed; expect a line, but they're efficient, will move quickly, and you can have kimchi if you ask.
Throwbacks (1759 S. Claudina, Anaheim) offers that rarest of things: free parking and a free shuttle to the game and back. They offer a gameday special that's hard to beat if you hate the beer prices Arte Moreno charges: $10 gets you a hot dog and a beer before the game and a beer after the game.
Enjoy the game, eat well, and welcome to
Los Angeles Anaheim!
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Orange County dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.