The Ubergeeks are moving to north OC!
So we're moving. We're awaiting the arrival of Ubergeeklet and while our particular slice of the San Fernando Valley is a haven for filling, cheap ethnic chow, it's not a very nice place to raise children. Mrs Ubergeek grew up in Orange County, I have an office down there, and so we are pulling up and moving.
So. Anyone got any ideas for far north OC? I'm talking Korean places in Buena Park, anything in Fullerton? I've seen some great reviews of tacos in Santa Ana and pho or banh mi in Westminster, but what about Little Palestine in Anaheim? Is there anything at all worth eating in Cypress, Los Alamitos, La Palma or Stanton -- besides Merhaba and Park Avenue?
Given my peculiar bent for ethnic food in no-frills surroundings rather than fancy French-inspired Cal cuisine in designer digs, you can expect a lot of reports from me on an area that seems to fall off a lot of Chowhound radars.
And -- I'll be really, really close to Thai Nakorn, woo hoo!
Keep in mind your close enough proximity to the San Gabriel Valley, using Harbor Blvd through Fullerton's Sunny Hills,(assuming the usually congested 57 Fwy. is congested) into La Habra, then over the hill to a favorite 626 area code and all that that entails.
And then you have Little Saigon in Westminster/Garden Grove as well as the Cambodian enclave along Anaheim(Ximeno or so)in somewhat eastern Long Beach, as well as the Pioneer Blvd. Little India in Cerritos/Artesia for a wider array of ethnicities that are fairly commutable(at least in LA).
Congratulations to you and the Mrs. on the impending arrival and good luck with your move. I will sorely miss your SFV recommendations but look forward to reading about your OC conquests.
Our forays to the OC are generally limited to Irvine and environs, as my mom is a longtime Irvine resident (but sadly not much of a hound). In fact we're lunching with her at this little Japanese place in the Gelson's plaza at Alton and Jeffrey tomorrow on our way to San Diego for the Holiday Bowl. Go Bears!
My usual haunts in N. Orange Cty are unfortunately not cheap, but most of them are ethnic:
Anaheim: Zankou, Jaegerhaus (for breakfast only), Lee's Sandwich, Chu's Wok Inn (check out their siuchow style chinese mooncakes during mooncake festival time), Darya for persian
Fullerton: Anita's New Mexican (when we are in the mood for sopapillas)
There seems to be a lot of Mexican taco joints in La Habra, but I don't know which one is really good yet. We've gone to Tacos Sarboso (Beach and La Habra) for years, but the recent visits had been disappointing. There's also a Cafe El Cholo there, but we haven't been in there for years.
Brea: there's an Indian restaurant on Lambert behind Brea Mall that's decent. There's also a Cuban place in the same plaza, but we haven't tried yet.
Rowland Heights and Diamond Bar are indeed very close, and maybe your best bet for Chinese, and also a good bet for Korean (lots of them in the plaza with Jubei you can see off 60 freeway).
Have fun with your new adventures!
They have the white flakey layers for the wrapping, instead of the brown stuff.
Also the fillings are different - they have both savory and sweet. The meat one is very finely chopped juicy ground pork, better than a meat bao (especially when eaten warm, reheated in an oven). The sweet ones are the (unusual) rose w/ nuts & fruits, salt & pepper, and also the typical sesame with or without pinenuts.
I know what it feels like to move from Van Nuys to behind the Orange Curtain (Fullerton). But I came back to my Valley. Congrats on the baby!!
When we were in Fullerton, we went to:
Rigoberto's at 1974 N Placentia Ave which is open 24 hours for carnitas nachos.
Tom's Place at 221 W Orangethorpe Ave in Placentia for terrific bacon-cheeseburgers.
Pepe's at 821 N. Placentia in Fullerton for theeee best breakfast burritos and good hard tacos.
The Hat in Brea on Imperial Hwy and State College for chili cheese fries.
Of course, Little Tony's in Placentia for terrific pizza.
Oh, and Rutabegorz at 211 N. Pomona in Fullerton for salads (of course I'd forget a healthy place!).
Only went to Anita's New Mexican once, but I'd recommend it.
What else? What else? OH!
All you can eat gooood king crab legs on Friday and Saturday nights at Amber Waves at Knott's Berry Farm.
I never tried it, but Like-Go-Eat? (where did he disappear to?) always recommended Park Ave. in Stanton.
Dorothy has good recs, too.
That's about it.
I'm glad you'll still be working up here so you can continue to hound for us!
Taps in Brea has good seafood, good Sunday brunch, and great prime rib.
Summit House in Fullerton also has great prime rib.
There is an AYCE Korean BBQ off of Fullerton Avenue right before Colima where you grill you own food for around $20.
There is a 24 hour tofu house on corner of Fullerton and Colima.
Rowland Heights has a ton of good asian food.
The AYCE place is just okay. Go down the street and try out Ong Ja Gib. They have much better stuff. If you like spicy fish, you have to try their Black Cod dish with Daikon and Tofu.
Also hit up Shabu Ya in the Yes plaza for good Shabu Shabu.
If you like onion pancakes and other northern Chinese stuff, there is a place on Azusa called Earthen.
Beard Papa is in the mall on Colima and Azusa for deserts.
Lots more if you are interested. You can email me if you want.
welcome to oc! looking fwd to reading about your dining experiences here.
btw taps may have a good brunch but skip it for dinner. while you're at it, drive on by the summit house too. (sorry whills)
give following a try:
gabbi's mexican kitchen in orange (s of the orange circle)
cat and the custard cup in guadalahabra
claro's italian mkt in guadalahabra (good sandwiches)
red eye coffee in placentia (best baklava but coffee too light for me)
ye olde ship in fullerton for the fish n chips and english pub setting
luigi's d'italia in anaheim for down to earth italian
The Cat in the Custard Cup... isn't that owned by the El Cholo group? I know I've seen that on a list of unrelated restaurants on some menu somewhere!
If so, is it better than El Cholo? (Here's hoping!)
Love the Claro's Markets up here in LA... so I'm sure I'll love the Claro's Markets down in OC!
re: Das Ubergeek
The Claro's at La Habra is kind of small, and about the only time I can ever make it there was on Saturday mornings. Best call ahead for their hours - I think they are closed Sundays (unless it's near Xmas), and at 5PM weekdays. I like their italian sausages and the pignoli cookies.
I am pretty sure the Cat and El Cholo are owned by the same group. They are both at the same shopping plaza. Never bothered trying the Cat - just looked a little too 'cute' outside.
re: Das Ubergeek
re: Das Ubergeek
I'm new here and love what I am seeing. I grew up in OC (anaheim) but live in the valley. I have to say, Das Ubergeek...I love your recommendations. Thought I would let you know that there is a wonderful Italian market on Orange & Brookhurst in Anaheim called Cortina Italian Market. Family owned and much better than Claros. The store is wonderful and the restaurant makes the most wonderful Meatball sandwich in the world. Tried Claros in Irvine and the meatballs were so dry and hard. I've known the family at Cortina for a long time and have tried forever to get the recipe for meatballs. Now for Pizza...my favorite is Mamma Cozza on Ball Rd. near Brookhurst, also in Anaheim. Once again family owned for over 50 years. Don't care much for the dinners but the pizza is so good. Also want to comment on the recommendation from someone else for Chu's wok Inn, Garden Grove. Great choice however, the family (yes I know that family too) owns The China Palace on Newport in Tustin. Try that one and you won't be disappointed. For a nice Sunday Brunch in the warm weather go to Moreno's on Chapman in Orange. Sit outside in the large Hacienda setting and enjoy the great food.
A coworker of mine recommended Cortina's and that's where I go now -- haven't been for the restaurant half, but the store half is the only place I can get Polly-O ricotta, or regular ol' olive oil that's not shmancy extra-virgin etc. (insert joke about how even regular virgins are hard to find in Anaheim, etc.)
I had a bad experience at Mamma Cozza's but I will try it again, it's been years.
I just recently discovered Kareem's -- fantastic falafel.
re: Das Ubergeek
Where is Kareems? I travel from the Valley to OC almost every other weekend and would love a new place.
Sorry you had a bad experience at Mamma Cozza's. I only like the pizza because of the crust. It is crispy, not doughy. It's a cornmeal crust and they put the toppings under the cheese. The nice part is you don't take a bite and pull the cheese and toppings off. Also, get some of their homemade blue cheese. A little bit on top of the pizza is sooo good. Honest! This is why I go to balboa lake to walk...love good food.
Renu Nakorn in Norwalk for Thai (pick from the back of the menu).
Dos Amigos in Buena Park for the best damn Caldo de Res for those cold rainy days--or when the misses gets sick and needs pampering.
Surah in Buena Park for a Korean feast.
Mustard's in Los Alamitos for authentic Chicago hot dogs.
Cafe Hiro in Cypress for . . . uni spaghetti (I don't know why it works, but it works.)
Nory's #2 in Stanton for Peruvian (esp. the ceviche!).
Salo Salo Grill in Cerritos for filipino. There's also Magic Wok and Goldilocks in the same area.
The Little Bean in Artesia for very, very cheap (but delicious) take-out when you just don't have the time to cook.
Curry House in Cypress for Japanese curry.
Little India in Artesia for, well, Indian food. Do a search for the best restaurant that fits your needs. I personally like Ashoka the Great, but haven't been in a while.
Mike's Memphis BBQ in Cypress for pork ribs.
Echizen in Cypress for awesome japanese food. The 8-dollar daily lunch specials are the best-kept secret in town.
VIP buffet in La Palma for not-too-bad buffet food. They have a mini pho station, as well as a steak station.
Taco San Pedro in Hawaiian Gardens (or Anaheim) for solid Mexican fast food (flautas, tortas, sopas, etc.)
Dominic's in Cypress for Italian.
Glad you moved into the neighborhood. Looking forward to what you'll find in the future!
Welcome to the OC! Made that same SFV to OC move 20 years ago.
Not too far south of Buena Park is Huntington Beach:
Bukhara - good mom'n'pop Indian (Edinger between Gothard and Beach)
Lugatti's - family friendly, casual Italian (Walnut & 5th, near the beach)
Rombi's - fancier, yet still casual, home cooking Italian. Frank Rombi makes everything, and does it pretty well. (Warner & Gothard)
Mike's BBQ - as mentioned by OP. Consistent and delicious. Best for take out; they close pretty early, iirc, 7 or 8 p.m. (GoldenWest/Knott north of the 22)
Katella Deli - mentioned only because it's pretty much the only deli show in town. It's good, but it ain't no Nate'n'Al's! Good bakery items.
Enrique's - good Mexican (PCH & Loynes, Long Beach)
Mangia Mangia - another good, dependable Italian joint (GoldenWest & Edinger)
Best beef ribs in OC are at Tulsa Rib.
Arthur's for breakfast. Heard great things about, but haven't tried yet, the Original Pancake House in Anaheim.
2nd the rec for Jagerhaus for great German food.
Also 2nd the rec for Portillo's, especially the Italian beef sandwiches on the croissants.
Yesterday I ate some great Thai at Krua Thai, got some to go, then stopped at Swan Thai for yet another batch of fine Thai to go. Some may think that a bit odd, but I'm sure Uber understands. While eating at Krua, I recall Ubergeek saying he lives nearby. As he has said hisself, the area's food's great and cheap, but the neighborhood's not much. I grew up in the O.C., and I hope you enjoy it. Great place to raise kids. Hey Uber, can I move into your old digs? Best food in L.A, in my book.
Das Ubergeek, Pho Republic is a good Vietnamese fusion restaurant in Anaheim close to Harbor & Lincoln.
Mexi-Casa is affordable ethnic at it's best. Here's a review:
Taqueria de Anda is in Fulleton on East Chapman.
Mas' Islamic Chinese is good also, here's a review:
Again, I'll recommend Long Beach.
Benley's for great Vietnamese food. Little pricier than a hole in the wall. In the TJ Maxx strip mall on Ball Road at Norwalk.
Kid friendly breakfast or lunch with the best kept secret view in LBC: Long Beach Museum Cafe (closed Mon) on Ocean Blvd.
2nd St in Belmont Shore:
George's Greek Cafe
and some other little treasures up and down the alleys that I can't remember the names of.
Fullerton is great to explore. Don't remember much but
all natural. yummy!
I may post more as I think of them. Enjoy!
if you are looking for korean, you must go to garden grove! my favorite restaurant there is the lighthouse restaurant where the korean bbq is powered by a platter of hot coals that are delivered to your table - no butane! but garden grove is a little koreatown and i believe nearby is a little saigon. it's not much farther than cypress or anaheim and not to be missed.
Ditto on Ye Olde Ship and Rutabegorz (Don't forget their yummy, yummy coffees too!).
Also, if you feel the Italian or pizza jones come on, Angelo & Vinci's sounds like it would be up your alley. Fun, festive and totally casual with great food and pizza a native Jersey girl can feel good about eating. I haven't lived in NOC for a while but still trek from HB for A&V's.
Congratulations on Ubergeeklet! (Is he here yet? Is he here yet?) And welcome to North OC.
And here are some others"
- SUSHI MOMO, Fullerton, Harbor/Bastanchury
- Mongolian BBQ, Fullerton, State College/Chapman
- North China Garden (?), Fullerton, Placentia/Yorba Linda Blvd
- FRESCA's, Brea, Birch Street Promenade for their Taco Tuesday fried chicken tacos
- HEROE'S, Fullerton, for tv screens, huge portions of good bar food
- KIMMIE'S COFFEE CUP, Fullerton, on Brea Blvd, for b'fast
I just don't "get" the southwestern Anita's. I didn't find anything great or delicious about it. Maybe it was the dish I got.
And most of the restaurants in Fullerton's restaurant row are just okay (other than the aforementioned). The food is on par with chain restaurants, without having the stigma of being a chain. It can be fun to try, but I was never "wowed".
Good luck, Congrats on the addition & Welcome to the neighbourhood!
I've been to Anita's. It was no great shakes, but it is probably the only even slightly New Mexico-style Mexican place in the entire area -- and going to Santa Fe involves Albuquerque, that trailer park on a hill, so I will just need to live in ignorance of Tomasita's and Maria's until I'm forced by circumstances beyond my control onto the 25. :-P
See my other post, but Jagerhaus (actually for both breakfast and dinner -- breakfast was better), Merhaba, Carolina's, the teriyaki place on Ball & State College, China Express on State College in Fullerton, Ten Ten (for dim sum) on Euclid and Crescent, and Angelo's on State College, my old favourite... cheeeeeeeap beer.
And what is it about Anaheim -- more standalone old burger shacks than any seven towns in the Valley! It'll take me forever and a bunch of cholesterol points to try them all!
We just moved on Thursday, so nothing's really unpacked yet and we've been eating out three meals a day.
Add my congratulations regarding the baby! There have been a lot of good recommendations here--I'll throw in my 2 cents:
Fullerton Downtown area:
--Anita's New Mexican--I lived in New Mexico for 15 years and
this is pretty good authentic NM home cooking--they even ask red or green?
--Rutabegorz--great salads, sandwiches, etc. fun atmosphere, huge menu, lots of vegetarian choices
--Brownstone Cafe--great courtyard setting in the old historic Hotel California (now Casa del Sol shops). Excellent breakfast and lunch (soups, sandwiches,etc.)
--Sidney's Cafe-vegan coffee shop/sandwich shop-excellent coffee muffins salads etc.
--Ziing's--sometimes interseting California take on Chinese/Thai/Vietnamese
--Knowlwood--small chain, good cooked to order fast burgers
--The Rail--this is an interesting story--the owner inherited this sort of rundown diner and has brought in Cordon Bleu trained chef Cody Starts to help modernize the menu and get things going. The old tired diner stuff is still on the menu, but there are some real gems on the new menu as well. This is like an undiscovered little place poised to bloom and showcase Cody Starts' great talent
--The Cellar--classic old time French cuisine with impeccable service
--El Fortin--Oaxacan cuisine and awesome selection of wonderful mole
--Table Ten--excellent "California cuisine"
Also, Drydock Seafood on Commonwealth looks closed and boarded up but it isn't. The side door is open and it is the best place in north OC for fresh seafoof
Downtown Brea has:
--Pane e Vino--OC outpost of the LaBrea/Fairfax outfit--very decent Italian
--Market City Caffe-OC outpost of another small Italian chain--again very decent Italian food
--Mammalucco's-not downtown but conveniently by Trader Joe's on Imperial. Outstanding authentic Bronx style pizza
--El Farolito--excellent standard Mexican fare
--Taqueria DeAnda --excelent taco stand--there's also a Mexican seafood restaurant in that shopping center at Placentia and Chapman that is great but I can't remember the name
--Big B barbecue--will satisfy in barbecue emergency
--Tony's--truly authentic Chicago style pizza-will not disappoint
Also, the advice about Rowland Heights several folks have offered is right on the money. Just go north on Harbor, it will eventually turn into Fullerton Road, and once you hit Colima you are at some outstanding dim sum places. About 15 minutes from downtown Fullerton.
Santa Ana - The highest concentration of hispanics in the U.S, check out http://elmomonster.blogspot.com/ for reviews and other blogs.
Orange - Amazing Kabob (Glassell), Royal Thai Orchid (Best Thai food in the world) (Katella/Tustin Ave), Johnny Rebs (Chapman), Morenos (Chapman).
Fullerton - Olde Ship (Chapman) best English Indian Curry and Guiness.
Welcome to OC! I am new to chowhound, but hopefully can help you discover our tried and true favorites...Pho Hoang on Yorba Linda Blvd. and Rose serves very reliable pho, charbroiled pork rice, and vietnamese spring rolls. As for Japanese, we've tried Fish in a Bottle - more fusion style with good appetizers like soft shell crab, and chilean sea bass for main entree. Mediocre service but pleasant decor. Yoshi's on Yorba Linda and Imperial Blvd. is Chinese owned, fast, and serves fresh sushi. We go there when we are pressed for time. Another sushi place next to Fitness Pizza in Yorba Linda (forget the name) serves a great salmon skin salad and more Japanese style sushi. When we can drive a bit further, we go to Yoshino in Tustin to find "TenGanSan", our favorite sushi chef. A nazi lady owner, reminiscent of Nozawa, is an expert fish buyer. We have been going for years and have not been disappointed in the quality and variety of fish. Old favorites along with seasonal treats like scallops in shell, those tiny and tasty oysters (Japanese name), spanish mackerel, and other goodies. Have not tried Sushi Shibucho or Wasabi down the street. But will soon, to compare. Hard to beat Yoshino's quality for the price!
congrats on the little uber. regarding korean places in buena park, there are the standard fare, surah on beach in the hannam chain strip and sagan also on beach. i prefer surah over sagan. surah has a decent lunch menu at reasonable prices with fresh raw fish--nothing too fancy. sagan, also glitzy with servers wearing headsets, didn't really measure up. after all it's the food that counts not the decor.
surprisingly, i like the food court inside the hannam chain store. they've got great korean street food. the korean version of ja jang myun isn't so bad either.
there is a real ethnic regional place on beach called harubang. i think it used to be a taco bell or something by the architecture. the servers are rather nasty, especially during lunch and dinner rush, but the food is very good. they serve regional jeju cuisine. anybody been?
been having a real craving for ethiopian. does anyone know a place in north oc?
re: Das Ubergeek
Congratulations!! I too was raised in the OC and ended up in Sherman Oaks (not by choice), but I love asian foods particularly Indonesian, so here are the fav's around OC.
Banana Bay Restaurant, reasonable prices with good food, blend of Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, Philipino with big screen tv's to catch a game, it's a rather large restaurant, it's clean, and have live band on the weekends and it does get noisy. Address is: 18230 Colima Rd., Tel: 626.839.5511
There are also korean and japanese restaurants in the same plaza, have not checked them out though
Asian Deli - Indonesian restaurant, have not been there in a while since they changed owners, but I heard it is still good (by another fellow asian of course!) 23545 Palomino Drive, Tel; 909.861.1427
Toko Rame - Arguably the tastiest Indonesian restaurant (aside from Simpang Asia in West LA), it's small and you may have a tough time finding parking, but it is well worth it. on 17155 Bellflower Blvd, tel: 562.920.8002
West Covina - Satay Fong also Indonesian, address is: 989 S. Glendora, tel: 626.337.111
Tustin - Zov's Bistro, it's mediterranean/middle eastern, a bit more upscale than the above listed, but for special occasions. 17440 E. 17th street, Tel: 714.838.8855. The chef also offers cooking classes...
Have fun and good luck with the move!
It may not be in little Palestine, but Zena's Lebanese Cuisine in Orange is amazing. They have perhaps the best tabbouli I've had. I actually ordered a whole stuffed lamb from there recently for a party and it was great! Stuffed with meat and rice and served with grilled veggies.
Zena's Lebanese Cuisine
2094 N Tustin St
I forgot about this -- we ended up there right before the baby came, and it was FANTASTIC! The food was really good (though the hummus was just "OK" -- all hummus in the world is compared to Skaf's hummus, and all hummus in the world just pales, even the much-vaunted stuff from Sunnin), and the service was outstanding. You'd never know you were in a ghastly suburban Villa Park-adjacent strip mall.
hello daddy ubergeek...guess who?!?! my picks in north oc - since i work in cypress:
- Irie Jamaican Restaurant: good and cheep
- Katella Deli: good for deserts only! don't try to eat there unless you want to hang out with the senior citizens.
- Cafe Hiro: Japanese / French(?) fusion. Cute and quiant
- California Fish Grill
i have tons of suggestions in so oc...i found a great peruvian place in foothill ranch last week. we can talk more when you come to visit :)
since my other half is less adventerous in the ethnic cuisine...well less than i am, i'm excited to have new dinning companions. :) we can challenge him....maybe we'll break him and even get him to like curry.
Come on now, old people are not that bad. Sometimes they even know where to eat well. You might miss out on something, e.g. the Katella Deli has simply the best Chinese Chicken Salad on the planet, far as I can tell.
And I mentioned before in another thread about the same area, add California Wok behind the racetrack, and Nory's on Knott for the best Peruvian I've ever had.
At Cafe Hiro, try the Osso Bucco, it is seriously good.
hahaha!! i only know two people who work in cypress, and you're definitely not the Texas half of that group!
Gotta be honest, Jamaican food... well... just doesn't do it for me. Maybe I've never had good stuff.
My forays into south OC (well, south of Irvine anyway) haven't yielded much so fire away! We'll have to do dinner, but we need to wait until Ubergeeklette is old enough to sleep through dinner -- last night at the Chiu Chow place in Rowland was not a good experience.
Darya in Orange on Tustin Blvd. Great Persian food. Lamb and filet mignon are a must.
Mitsuyoshi in Stanton for Japanese food. Just a little place in a shopping strip mall, but its really good.
Ditto on Anita's for New Mexico food. Carne Adovada and Sopapillas hmmm.....
Ditto on TAPS in Brea for seafood and steaks
Ditto on Summit House for prime rib