OC Grub Guide 10/12-10/18: Ready, Set, Eat!

We travel the globe this week, as our search for things to enjoy cover Hawaiian, Indian, Japanese and Mexican. There’s also some of the healthiest, plus some of the most guilt-inducing eats thrown in for good measure. Grab a fork and dig in— you’ve got your work cut out for you.

Puesto Test Kitchen Tonite! – Irvine
Not your normal OC Mexican spot, San Diego-based Puesto has put their spin on the celebrated cuisine. If you’ve ever wondered about the tables located in the kitchen, tonight is your last opportunity to find out. Chef Katy’s Test Kitchen is going all out for her experimental meal, serving items that may or may not find their way to Puesto’s menu. Served over five courses, this $40 (plus tax and gratuity) is a steal. Here’s a sampling of what to expect: Beef Carpaccio with salsa negra, crispy capers and wild arugula; a Greens & Beans taco in a guajillo red chile sauce; Toffee Date Cake with horchata gelato and tamarind toffee sauce. Email he***@ea*******.com to make the 7 p.m. reservation. 8577 Irvine Center Dr, (949) 608-9990; www.eatpuesto.com.

True Food Kitchen’s Fall Menu Is In Effect – Newport Beach
A change of seasons gets us famished, because we know many restaurants switch up their options to hearty fare. Over at Fashion Island, Chef Chris Polley kicks things into high gear, receiving upwards of 100 pounds of whole squash a day. The kitchen breaks down and roasts it all, incorporating the goodness into their Seasonal Ingredient Salad (extra mulberry toasties, please!), Butternut Squash Pizza and the returning Squash Pie— which we still cannot believe is both vegan and gluten-free. Also worth sticking around for: a trio of bar beverages made for this perfect time of the year. Go easy with the Pressed Apple Soda, or get busy with an Orchard Bourbon Sour. We are down with their memorable Pomegranate Mojito. The entire lineup is now being served through mid-January, so bring your fussy eaters and prepare for that nod of approval. 451 Newport Center Dr, (949) 644-2400; www.truefoodkitchen.com.

Slater’s 50/50 Serving Free Meals to First Responders – Anaheim Hills
The kind folks at the Anaheim Hills branch of Slater’s want to do something for the people out on the front lines fighting the blaze going on. From now through Friday the 13th, they are serving a free lunch or dinner to all first responders who visit that specific location with ID. Per the restaurant, “We recognize that it’s a hectic week and hard to get in, so we’ll be serving up a free meal now through this Friday. We’d like to acknowledge the hard work and bravery of those who are fighting the California wildfires and assisting in the aftermath. Our thoughts are with our neighbors and the community at this time.” Thank you, Slater’s! 6362 E Santa Ana Canyon Rd, (714) 685-1103; www.slaters5050.com.

OC Japan Fair This Weekend! – Costa Mesa
Enjoy all things Japanese this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the OC Fairgrounds. For $8 (Okay, and another $8 for parking), get your fill of entertainment, eats and sake! Participate in the Cosplay show on Saturday and/or Kimono show Sunday. Be ready to stand in a few lines. 88 Fair Dr, (714) 708-1500; www.oc-japanfair.com.

Dine Out for the Cure – multiple locations
Throughout Orange County, several eateries are joining the cause and offering anywhere from 10-25% of today’s profits towards breast cancer awareness. Shuck Oyster Bar at The OC Mix is just one of the participating spots supporting Komen Orange County. Check out the list of places and read up on the charity at the following link.

Discover Diwali at Adya’s Cooking Class – Anaheim
Learn more about this special holiday through Chef Shachi’s cooking, as she takes you through savory and sweet courses this Saturday morning. Your $35 class fee includes beverages, a live demonstration, recipes to take with you and, of course, lunch! Call ahead to reserve your 11 a.m. spot, and save us some Chicken Biryani. 440 S Anaheim Blvd, Ste 201; (714) 533-2392; www.adyaoc.com.

Ono Hawaiian BBQ Anniversary – multiple locations
Mark your calendar for October 17, as customers dining at all locations of the Hawaiian chain will be eligible to receive $15 Ono Bucks when spending $15 on (regularly priced) food and drink. That’s a free meal the next time you’re hangry! This deal lasts as long as they have Ono Bucks available. Also in limited quantities, a free tote with the same purchase. And if you happen to miss out, go online to register for their sweepstakes at this link. Possibly win some swag, and one lucky guy or gal will win a trip to Hawaii. www.onohawaiianbbq.com.

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