Easter means ham, and most of Orange County gets their hams from Honeybaked Ham. The Honeybaked folks actually have the distribution down to a science, which is a plus, but it still takes a couple of minutes per customer, and that means huge lines. Tempers can flare, especially since the lines at the attached cafés are often just as long.
It's as a public service, then, that we present an alternate nosh location for each Honeybaked in OC. All of these are places you can get an easily portable sandwich or burrito, and within walking distance of the Holy Ham Grail.
Sahara Falafel, 590 S. Brookhurst St.
The name of the place should give away what to order here: a falafel sandwich. You can ask them to smear hummus or babaghannoush into the pita for a slight upcharge; it's worth it.
Corona del Mar
Gallo's Italian Deli, 3900 E. Coast Hwy.
What you get here is the combination sub, which contains the finest giardiniera (pickled vegetables) to grace any non-bánh mì in the county. Others swear by the turkey sub, but the combo is the way to go.
Beach Burgers, 19102 Beach Blvd.
This the archetypal OC burger joint. Get a burger to justify the fries, which are the reason to come here. If you happen to swing by in the morning, they serve a credible breakfast burrito.
Lucille's, 23760 El Toro Rd.
Yes, it's a chain, and yes, it's a little expensive for a takeout sandwich, but you're in South County, deal with it. The tri-tip is actually pretty good with the spicy BBQ sauce, and make sure you get a biscuit and honey butter.
Molcasalsa, 2340 W. Whittier Blvd.
Super nachos. That's what you need to know. This isn't Alerto's/Alberto's/etc. where you can get a “half order” of carne asada nachos that's the same size as a full order, but you still need the greasy meaty wonderfulness.
Big City Bagels, 1267 N. Tustin St.
Until Five Guys opens on this corner, this is your best bet. Because the bagels are pretty bready, the best sandwich bet is the egg salad. With any luck, your halitosis afterwards will move you to the front of the ham line.
Claro's, 1095 Main St.
Sausage sandwich! Order it at the front counter, not at the appy counter in the back. Grab an aranciata from the cooler near the pasta racks, and if you need a dessert ask for a sfogliatella–if you can pronounce it.