#55. Persian Buffet at Irvine Wholesome Choice

Because ustedes gentle readers love lists, behold the latest entry in our Top 100 dishes list that
continues until Best Of–at which point, we'll give you MORE lists!
Now, on with the show…

I actually would be fine if we bumped the Persian buffet at Wholesome Choice even higher than the 50s, but this favorite of many foodies will get big love later in the list (the ONLY hint I'll breathe on future choices, for those of you whining this list is too “ethnic”). In the meanwhile, let us sing the praises of the trays kept warm with steaming water below.

Here you find the various polos of Persian cuisine–rice pilafs studded with barberries, sweetened with orange peel, made hearty with lentils or spruced up with dill. Those rotate throughout the week; always available are saffron rice heaps to accompany…what do you want? Kabobs? Check. Cornish game hen? Check? Kooftah, beef balls stuffed with a date and packed with legumes? Yes. That weird cake-like dish that's more savory than chicken pot pie? Of course. Wholesome Choice's Persian buffet beats most of its Persian restaurant peers–and that it's not even the best Persian meal in the supermarket shows how spectacular your deals here will be.

Wholesome Choice, 18040 Culver Dr., Irvine, (949) 551-4111; www.wholesomechoice.com

The list, so far:

#100. Jerk Carnitas Torta at The Crosby
#99. Nem Nuong Cuon at Brodard
#98. Pork Chop Anything at Nice Time Deli
#97. Flying Saucer at Alberto's
#96. Frozen Custard at Marc Burger's in Macy's Signature Kitchen
#95. Collard Greens at Johnny Reb's
#94. Strawberry Shortcake from Job's Daughters
#93. Cuban Sandwich at DeSimone's Deli
#92. Lamb with Preserved Cabbage at Mas Islamic Chinese
#91. Baked Rice at Luc Dinh Ky
#90. Beans on Toast at The Olde Ship
#89. Midnight Al Pastor Burrito or Taco at Taqueria Tapatia
#88. Budino di Cioccolato, Pizzeria Ortica
#87. Beef Teriyaki Bowl, Teriyami
#86. Salmon Onigiri at Cream Pan
#85. Beef Fat Fries at SideDoor
#84. Silken Tofu & Thousand Year Old Egg at Asian Tapas
#83. Cambodian Beef Jerky at Sophy's
#82. Com Tam at Com Tam Tran Quy Cap
#81. Chipotle-Piloncillo Goat Cheese at SOL Cocina
#80. Nem Nuong Cuon at Au Lac Restaurant
#79. Blackened Mushroom & Tofu Burger at Taco Loco
#78. Fried Veggie Fish Fillet at Dong Phuong Tofu
#77. Tofu Vegetable Salad at BCD Tofu House
#76. Che Ba Mau at Thach Che Hien Khanh
#75. Barracuda Sushi at Ohshima
#74. Whole Lamb with Kabsa at Olive Tree
#73. 5 a.m. Chitterlings at Tri-Village
#72. Spinach Empanadas at El Gaucho #2
#71. Croissants at Molinos Bakery
#70. Beso de Monja at El Rincón del Sabor
#69. Fatteh at Kareem's
#68. Korean Beef Rib Sandwich at Kaffa
#67. Rice Flour Pupusas at Pupusería San Sivar
#66. The Hash Browns at Pop's Cafe
#65. Seven Courses of Beef at Thien An
#64. Baby Back Ribs at Blake's Place
#63. Fish and Chips at The Chippy
#62. Roasted Beef Marrow Bones at Brasserie Pascal
#61. The Lunch Buffet at Tandoor Cuisine of India
#60. Eggs, Charcuterie and Bread at Uyen Thy Bistro
#59. Wang Mandoo at Myung In
#58. Gobi Paratha at Traditions
#57. Kibbeh at Zait & Zaatar
#56. Chicago Dog at Portillo's.

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