ISO of excellent clam chowder & lobster bisque in OC
It isn't excellent, but Boudin Sourdough Bakery at Metro Pointe in Costa Mesa has a good clam chowder. If you like sourdough bread they also offer the chowder in a bread bowl. It's a fast-casual place with soups, sandwiches, salads, and pizzas.
I would pass on their lobster bisque. I had it once as it's part of their soup of the day rotating schedule and was underwhelmed.
I'd love to hear of some place that makes a rocking clam chowder!
For Lobster Bisque you can do no better than Hamburger Hamlet. Rich, creamy, infused with a strong lobster flavor (from shells, shells, and more shells), no tomatoes or other such non-cannonical superfluities, and chock full of big chunks of lobster if the ladel dives deep and true.
And it's $7.95 for a big bowl with some soggy and unecessary garlic bread on the side. In my opinion it gives the bisque at the Water Grill a good run for it's money.
-- edit --
Of course, I've just discovered that the Irvine location closed years ago and is now a Lee's Sandwiches... No Lobster Bisque there. Sorry.
awwww. i was ready to google hamb hamlet locations in OC. Maybe that's one more reason to visit the Hollywood location! I love that "Entourage" films there.
So, what should I order at the hamlet for main dish?
Thanks for the recs. Really jonesing for clam chowder and lobster bisque this week :)
The lobster bisque is one of the old standbys on the HH menu that is still good. I always order a bowl of it, and then usually a bacon cheese burger or a patty melt. The burgers are almost as good as the old days (1960's), forget the fries and forget the gimmicky onion thread things.
Go for the bisque, burgers, and booze.
Scott's Seafood on Bristol for Clam Chowder. I also like Fishermans on San Clemente Pier. Still trying to find a great Lobster Bisque.
I'm partial to the clam chowder at the Original Fish Company in Los Alamitos (just off the corner of Los Al and Katella). Beautiful consistency, hearty, nice tender clams, rich broth. It has the stamp of approval of my in-laws, both from Cape Cod.
Of course, if you head up into Long Beach, the clam chowder at Lasher's (Belmont Heights, on Broadway at Newport) is quite a revelation as well. Different flavor combination, just as rich and hearty.