The Local List

Hungry girl looking for the next adventure.

Brunch, Lunch or Dinner: TLT hits the mark.

We all went through the food truck frenzy.  Some trucks were good, some were your typical roach coach.  Some, like The Lime Truck were great and made enough money to start a brick and mortar – TLT Food.

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Search for authentic Mexican

On a trip back from San Diego recently I stopped in a Mexican joint called El Campeon in San Juan Capistrano.  It is a grocery store, bakery and restaurant.  It looks like a hole in the wall (and it is) but stop in and order some food.  It is as authentic as it gets.

I got some tacos and then hit up the bakery and got some sweets.  I think tacos really define whether a place is good or not.  The baked goods are unbelievable.  The carne asada was well marinated.  I also got al pastor but wasn’t a big fan, and it also was quite greasy.  But the other street tacos were delish.  If you are in the neighborhood stop in!  I mean for about a buck a taco it can’t be that bad right?
4/5 for authentic tacos – but it isn’t your typical OC joint, its an adventure.

Post-Thanksgiving Hangover

Well it’s been awhile since I gave you anything worth while or a must eat.  And now that Thanksgiving is over, it’s time for you to go out and try something new.  Taco Asylum at The Camp is just the place.  While it is a bit over-priced, it definitely is delicious. 

This is a nice place to add into your “every once in a while” spots, although I wish I could go all the time.  My favorite thing to do is get the taco flight.  Short rib is a must eat, the fried chicken is delicious, the duck is a yelp favorite and their surf in turf is quite good.  They have a shrimp special that changes all the time as well as a house special.  When we went it was a habanero duck confit sopa – SO spicy, but really good.  They also have homemade sauces for the tacos as well as fresh juices (definitely helps cut the spice).  They have a revolving tap full of local brews and a wide selection of wines.  Although parking is a pain, the food is worth the trip and the staff is super hipster and fun to talk with.

It seems I always crave sushi on Sundays, which as most of you know is the worst day to get “fresh” fish.  However, Sushi Box still seems decent, and for the price it’s a steal.  Sushi Box is a little hole in wall restaurant located in Costa Mesa.  Although the rolls aren’t pretty, the fish is good.  I love their yellowtail and tuna, and the salmon is pretty tender too.  The best part about this place is their lunch specials.  For under $10 you can get a California Roll and 5 pieces of sushi.  I personally enjoy the sashimi plate, which comes with three pieces of tuna, salmon, yellowtail and whitefish along with a salad and edamame.  Yes it isn’t fancy, yes it isn’t true sushi, but for a low price it is worth the fresh fish and large portions.  Bonus: you can make your own rolls for under $5.  I mean come on, it can’t get better than that.

Now that the holidays are upon us its time for parties, festivities, and going out.  And what better thing to do with friends and loved ones then head to a rodeo.  Okay, not really, but there is a bar in Anaheim serving up some amazing food and playing some awesome music.  The Ranch is located in the most odd places, at the bottom of an office building, but once you step inside you are transported to the heart of Texas.  This is a line dancing bar – if you want to booty grind, go somewhere else.  And this isn’t JUST a line dancing bar, it is line dancing only.  You have to know what you are doing.  This sounds frightening and scary, but believe me when I say it is a blast.  If you are adventurous enough to try it out, people are very friendly and help you along the way.  Some songs are easier to learn than others, but kick back a few cocktails, put on your cowboy boots and get out there!

Taco Asylum on Urbanspoon

What did you do this weekend?

Weekends are always too short.  This past weekend was the first time that I got to stay in Orange County for an entire Saturday.  (Wedding season is the worst for travel.)  Being local meant lots of new adventures.

ramen, Ajisen Ramen, Japanese food
Ramen, Fried Tofu and Cutlet Curry

Dinner time at Diamond Jamboree
For anyone who has visited this shopping market, you know that it is like Disneyland for Asian food.  Parking is a nightmare, so try the parking structure first before you battle for spots in the lot.  One of the best restaurants in that area is Ajisen Ramen.  It has ramen (duh), sushi, udon, and rice dishes.  They also have boba for you die hards.  The ramen comes out within minutes of you ordering and is so large that you will not need to eat for the rest of the day.

haven gastropub, beer, orange
Mac n Cheese, Beer flights, and Burger and fries

Drinks at Old Town Orange
This area is probably one of my favorites in OC.  It looks like it came straight out of a movie, with the roundabout and “main street’ walking areas.  There are lots of great restaurants in the area that I must try, but Haven Gastropub has been talked up so much I finally had to stop in.  The food is supposed to be unreal, but I was only there for the drinks.  The draft menu changes often and the wine list is almost two pages long.  I will definitely be coming back here for the mac and cheese though.  It smelled unreal!

Clementes seafood
Fish tacos, shrimp ceviche, fish in Ranchero dressing

The best “hole in the wall” seafood joint
When I find a meal that leaves me speechless I always have to ask myself if I am just starving or if the food is really just that good.  I can say with full confidence that Clemente Seafood was the best hole in the wall Mexican food that I have found in Santa Ana, let alone all of the OC.  It is some of the freshest fish that I have had, and the sauces and breading that they cook the fish in is so flavorful.  The shrimp ceviche is their best seller, but the fried fish tacos were my favorite.  I already told the owner they should expect me to be there at least once a week.  This place should be a must try on everyone’s list, seriously people…

Clemente Seafood on Urbanspoon