OC Grub Guide – 3/29-4/4: Tapatio, Portillo and Sabroso!

Happy 30th!; photo courtesy Pascal Olhats

Where do we even begin? Hot chicken, ramen and some very special meals rule the guide this week. You will definitely locate something for every price point. While there aren’t enough hours in the week to hit them all, but that won’t stop us from trying. 


3-course Monday prix-fixe at Marche
We’ve missed you, spontane!; photo courtesy Marche Moderne

Marche Monday – Newport Beach

Earlier this month, the ever-popular prix-fixe at Marche Moderne made a comeback. Found as a Monday night dinner only, it’ll cost loyal diners $38. Wine fans can add a carafe for $18. Reservations always recommended. 7862 Pacific Coast Hwy., (714) 434-7900; www.marchemoderne.net.


Tapatio Hot Sauce paired with ramen noodles

Why didn’t we think of that?; photo courtesy Tapatio Ramen

Tapatio Ramen – Long Beach (for now)

National Food Holiday Alert: Wednesday, April 4, is National Ramen Noodle Day. To celebrate, there’s been a merger of sorts. Tapatio Hot Sauce and United Exchange Corp have collaborated on a line of instant noodles, putting together the two great tastes. Eliminating the need for a bottle means more time focusing on lunch (and dinner). The West Coast rollout began in select stores throughout LA, with one in Long Beach! Get your Beef, Chicken and Original flavors at Villa Market (2990 Santa Fe Ave.) until they make a wider release. Oh, and shrimp flavor is coming this summer. Online ordering via Amazon and the Tapatio Hot Sauce website is also available. Please pass the, uh, spork! www.tapatioramen.com


Happy 30th!; photo courtesy Pascal Olhats

Pascal Celebrates Milestone – San Juan Capistrano

“It will be 30 years in March that I have signed my first restaurant lease for Pascal Restaurant in Newport Beach. I am not sure if I will still own a restaurant for another decade, so it is time to celebrate.”

And celebrate he will. If you’ve been looking for a reason to visit Pascal in San Juan Capistrano, here’s the perfect opportunity. It’s been going on all month, but there’s still time to enjoy his anniversary specials (they end Saturday). At lunch, dine on vegetable soup, roasted half-chicken, green salad and home fries for the tasty price of $15. For dinner service, his “Pascal’s Patron Favorites” prix-fixe is down to $50 (normally $65), and includes a champagne toast. Stop by at night for thyme-crusted seabass (or duck l’orange), lemon tart and salad Lyonnaise. Celebrate one of the Orange County OG’s with some delicious dining out. 31451 Rancho Viejo Rd., (949) 488-0031; www.cafesanjuancapistranoca.com.


Portillo's Celebrates 55 years in business

Happy Birthday!; photo courtesy Portillo’s

Portillo’s Specials – Buena Park

There’s a duo of deals coming your way from the hot dog brand in the next week. First up, college basketball fans are in for a treat if they dress up in maroon and gold (a.k.a. the colors of the Loyola Ramblers) this Friday. Order a large fries or rings, and receive a free cheesy sauce. It’s meant to celebrate the team’s rise to Final Four status, since the last time they reached that achievement was 55 years ago— when Portillo’s first opened in Villa Park, Illinois. 

Secondly, on Wednesday, April 4, there’s another tasty deal. Dine in and drive-thru customers who order an entree will qualify for a 55-cent signature, double-layer chocolate cake slice. Now that’s a sweet birthday goal! 8390 La Palma Ave., Buena Park, (714) 220-6400.


Bring it!; photo by Cynthia Rebolledo

The Return of Rojo’s Hot Chicken Pop-Up – Santa Ana

It’s been many months since we last heard from Roland Rubalcava, but thank goodness for Facebook Messenger. His clucking good sandwiches are back next week, and we’ve got the details. Mark your calendars for Friday, April 6. From 6 p.m. until sold out, you can find Rojo’s at Burritos La Palma. And according to Roland, he was told to, “Bring the heat”, so a very spicy version called the Rojo X will also be available. We can’t wait! 410 N. Bristol St., (657) 266-0575.


Taco tournament
Winning; photo courtesy Sabroso

KLOS Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco and Music Festival – Dana Point

Over 150 craft brews will be poured while The Offspring headlines performances at Doheny Beach next Saturday, April 7. Tacos of all kinds are ready to compete for “Best in Show”, while beer-infused ice creams and lucha libre wrestling keep folks entertained. Slap on extra sunscreen for this 21 and over event, and check out the Gringo Bandito hot sauce line while you’re there. www.sabrosotacofest.com.

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