First reported by Michelle, we ended up at South Coast Collection's The Iron Press last week for a friends and family unofficial opening. Beer taps and waffle irons abounding, we took a seat at their counter to check things out.
In a building directly across from OC Mart Mix, the windowed, corner shop bustled with servers taking orders. At first we thought it was unusual for everybody behind the counter to be looking down at their iPhones, but (in similar Sushilicious fashion) they were utilizing an app to submit customer requests.
A very modest back-of-the-house was primarily for refrigeration, dishwashing and firing up proteins. However, the featured pieces of equipment were the row of waffle irons cranking nonstop. We did notice a habit of excessive batter pouring, resulting in pools of waffle mix collecting under each appliance. There was also a little bit of difficulty in removing completed batches from the iron. Then again, this was their practice run.
The ratio of scrumptious to toothsome waffleliciousness was 5 to 1, with a fried chicken variety being the most popular for $8. Owner Leonard Chan encouraged us to try the grilled panko tilapia next time, but we were too preoccupied deciding on dessert. A Nutella version with fruit, and a Guinness with Thrifty ice cream float later, we realized how well their Bruxie (plus brews) concept would fit in with their neighbors. Did we mention they served both tater tots and waffle fries? Be sure to request a dipping sauce that suits your taste buds, like the lucky habanero mango firecracker; or toss it in garlic and Parmesan for an additional charge.
With a half dozen ales on the menu, we passed on our Lost Coast Witbier for once and cooled off with a Mountain Meadow from Fullerton's Bootleggers Brewery. Other respected brands in their lineup of 30 included Stone, Hangar 24, and Iron Fist . . . .all for only $6. Don't even bother making a reservation, because seating is at a premium. Instead, try leaving your name and cell and walking across the way for shopping or a starter, like a nibble from The Cheese Shop.
The Iron Press is at 3321 Hyland Ave, Ste E, Costa Mesa, 714-426-8088. www.theironpress.com.