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Ontario Airport Redux

I'm at a professional meeting at the Ontario Airport Hilton for two days next month. I'll have one dinner by myself. Looking for something low-end (maybe lower-middle) but really good . . . burger, pizza, chinese, mexican would be fine.I checked previous posts & came up with these possibilities near the airport:

China Point
Guasti Cafe (may have moved, unclear)
In-n-Out Burger (unclear if it's take-out only)
Rosa's (Italian)
Sam Biagio's Pizza

One post suggested just go to Ontario Mills mall and check out food options.

Anyone has any ideas, suggestions? I'm flying in from the east coast; not planning on renting a car. Kind of bummed that I won't have the means to go off campus after traveling so far, but am trying to make the best of it.

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  1. I went to Guasti Cafe several months ago, and I don't think it moved, it's just really really hard to find. There was a lot of construction going on right around the restaurant, and I think they closed down a couple of the streets that you typically take to get there.

    I thought the food was good. Typical breakfast food. Not sure that it really sets itself apart in any way. The pancake though, was HUMONGOUS. There were families ordering it to share. I also had the biscuits with gravy, which were good. Biscuits were fluffy and the gravy was pretty good. If you're eating by yourself, they have a counter, I believe, otherwise be prepared to wait if it's a weekend.

    In-n-out, which a lot of southern californians will die defending, does a good fast-food burger, everything is made fresh on the premises. There was a little controversy in the last week where In-n-out officials confirmed that they had received at least some of the recalled beef that had been processed at a local meat distributor, but I personally don't think it's a big deal. You can eat there, but it's a fast-food joint. You could always try it to see what all the hoopla is about.

    Just my two cents on a couple of your choices

    1 Reply
    1. re: brewinphan

      We went last month. Guasti has moved. That wonderful building that was its former home is no more -- gone. We found the new place and ate there once. They say the new location seats more people. Maybe that is true because there are so many different dinnings rooms but the ambiance is poor. The new location is NOT close to the Ontario Airport but rather it is way south of the 60. Not much of a counter at the new place. The food is the same and the servings are still all way to big. The coffee is still 25 cents w/ free refills.

      Guasti Homestyle Café (Recently relocated to this new location too far away from the Ontario Airport. Breakfast in Crazy large portions)
      13526 Central Ave,
      Chino, CA.
      (909) 390-6253

    2. north on vineyard to foothill 2nd building on right is in and out with seating.left on foothill maybe a 1/2 mile on right thai satay cheap and delish

      1. Rosa's is high end, San Biagio's is like a transplanted small NYC pizza and pasta joint, definately not high end and you would need a cab to get there. Very little of note within walking distance of where you will be. You might consider taking a cab up to Viictoria Gardens, an open air shopping area in nearby Rancho Cucamonga. Lots of dining options within walking distance, chains, but decent chains.

        I like King's Fish House in Victoria Gardens, among others there is a Lucille's BBQ and the Yardhouse which is kind of a sports bar but with lots of food options.


        1. Lot's of good ``food'' for thought here. Is In/Out burger really that distinctive, or is it just an upgraded McDonald's/Burger King? Victoria Gardens & Thai place are intriguing. I guess cab rides would be tax deductible.

          1 Reply
          1. re: dan f.

            In-N-Out is a fast food burger done on a griddle. It is in many locals opinion much better than Mc D's, as they are cooked to order, and they use good, fresh ingredients. The menu is limited, the older stores are drive-through/walk up only. In the end, its only a burger joint. Unless of course you want to set some sort of world record and order a burger "off menu" such as 10 x 10, 20 x 20, etc. ( http://www.supersizedmeals.com/food/a... ).

            Attaching a photo of a typical In-N-out meal the Mrs. and I had during a pit stop: http://www.chow.com/photos/28433

            The one of the left is a Double Double with the usual lettuce, tomato and "spread" the one on the right is a cheese burger with spread only.

            If I were you, I'd just pick up a burger from In-N-out on the way to the airport when you fly home.

            In terms of the cab ride, I have never found it difficult to pad... er, account for all my reasonable expenses in my expense reports, "baggage handling" is a great catch-all.

          2. Had my business around the corner until a few years ago. Baker's (Archibald north of the 10 is 2 a step above most burger joints and makes REAL milkshakes. Directly across the street is a hamburger place (cant think of the name) that looks like a chain but only has a few locations. Great sandwiches, period end of story, plus they have what approaches a full menu. Rosa's is expensive and hit or miss. There's a decent Indian place in the same mini mall. Forget Ontario MIlls, like someone suggested go to Victoria Gardens Kings Seafood, expect a LONG wait for Lucilles ( WELL worth it), but you can go to the bar and they have the full menu. Plus checkout Bass Outdoor store. THE BIGGEST PLACE YOU"VE EVER SEEN. Plus they also have a seafood restaurant. Forget MEx in that area. Kickback Jacks, hellman and Foothill. GREAT breakfast good lunch only open till 3

            2 Replies
            1. re: LuigiOrtega

              Luigi, your rec for that "REAL milkshake" out near Ontario INTERNATIONAL Airport has been on my mind since you made the post above. It just so happen that this morning I drove out there to pick-up my family on a return trip from the Republic of Texas and made the stop at Baker's (1 block north of the 10 fry on the west side of the road behind the gas station). You are correct that this burger is a step above most burger joints. I would say that the Baker's burger is almost the same as In'N'Out -- very good for a good price. Now, that shake is really made with real hand scooped ice cream and fresh milk. I saw the girl make it right in front of the inside counter. It really hit the spot and is way better than the crappy shake at In'N;Out. I also had a taco and I would say it is just about the same as Taco Bell's taco. A fast food version of TexMex style taco.

              To the OP, you asked, "Is In/Out burger really that distinctive, or is it just an upgraded McDonald's/Burger King?" In'N'Out really is very good. I will temper that by saying that price is considered in any rec and for the price of that burger it is hard to beat at double the price anyplace. Try a "Double Double" which is two meat patties and two slices of cheese. The In'N'Out located on the south side of the 10 fry at Vinyard is an old style two lane drive-thru and has no inside seating. There are a few outside tables near the walk-up window. Well worth a try also.

              1891 E. G St.
              Ontario, CA

              Also, Pizza.IMO, the best pizza in the L.A. area is nearby at one of three locations which happens to be a take-out only. This is too far for a cab ride and woiuld require either a rental car or maybe you need to make friends with someone with a rental car and offer to pay for the pizza to take back to the room. Make a special request for a thin crust or else you will get a med. thick crust. Do not get lots of veggies or it could get to wet because this place piles the toppings high. The sausage is really great.

              Petrillo's Pizza (Take-out only)
              110 South Mountain, Suite F
              Upland, CA
              (909) 981-8114

              1. re: JeetJet

                Rather than the food court at Ontario Mills which is all fast food outlets, I would head to Victoria Gardens. The restaurants there are higher end chains and not just fast food.

            2. I'm going to O this weekend. Will file a full report. Thanks to all who've made suggestions.

              2 Replies
              1. re: dan f.

                if you decide to hit san biago for pizza and you have a sweet tooth ( the weather is warming so this might factor in as well ) treat yourself to a hidden gem - handel's ice cream ...it's about 25 yards from san biago ...i hit it everytime i fly in and out of ontario - i actually volunteer to pick-up friends when they fly out of ontario !!

                1. re: kjs

                  Well, as the OP, I'm a little sorry to report that logistics prevented me from taking full advantage of all the good suggestions offered here. It was practically 8 p.m. by the time I settled in and started thinking about dinner. I was told a cab ride from the airport hotel to Victoria Gardens would be $20-25, which seemed a bit steep for a five-mile or so ride. I may have gotten bad information. So I wound up at El Torito, which was OK but not anything to get too excited about. I know, I was warned . . . although the shredded beef taco was actually pretty good. Other than that, weather was great & mountain backdrop was stunning. Kind of unreal to come from the East Coast to a place where nothing is pre-1980. (Make that pre-2000.) If I get to go back next year (a possibility), I'm definitely taking an extra day or two and renting a car!
                  Again, thanks to all who contributed herein.

              2. steer n stein archibald ave 2 or so miles north of airport old school steakhouse great prices and food

                1 Reply
                1. re: JimmyC

                  We were visiting this weekend and checked out some of the Chowhounder tips, so here are some updates.

                  Victoria Gardens
                  near Hwy 15 between Hwys 210 and 10
                  Rancho Cucamonga
                  We had a toddler in tow, so ended up going to the food court, so not a good lunch, but they have a great outdoor walking area and playground. We noticed that they do have a branch of Beard Papa’s cream puffs.

                  Ken’s Sushi
                  10006 Foothill Blvd
                  Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730
                  (909) 989-3019‎
                  A little isolated on the outside since it a free standing restaurant, but nice to be away from all the malls and was crowded on a Saturday night including with families. We didn’t try the sushi, but the ramen and udon were pretty good.

                  China Point
                  9028 Archibald Ave
                  Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730
                  (909) 466-8766
                  I really enjoyed the hand-pulled seafood noodles that have been mentioned before, but my husband found the soup a little too seafoody. The kung-pao chicken and ma-po tofu were both too heavy with the sauce, but the service was friendly.

                  The branch that was supposed to be at 9170 Haven Ave in Rancho Cucamongao is now called Gramma’s deli, and was closed on Saturday afternoon.

                  Instead we tried a branch of Gandolfo’s NY
                  9090 Milliken Ave., Ste.160, Rancho Cucamonga, CA (909) 758-9000 http://www.gandolfosdeli.com/index.php
                  Pretty good sandwiches, and friendly staff. I don’t think I’ve ever been asked how our food was in a counter-service place before.

                  And a new place, recommended by our relatives…

                  Cardenas Market
                  2450 Vineyard Ave.
                  Ontario, CA 91761
                  (909) 331-4990
                  One of their newest branch in the area. Just a bit south of the airport at South Vineyard at the Highway 60 exit. Like a Mexican version of the Asian supermarket Ranch 99, clean and well-stocked. If you’re looking for very casual Mexican food, they have a sit-down food area with prepared food that you order at the counter including menudo and posole on the weekend, tamales, tacos, etc. The carnitas were moist, the others we tried – chicken, al pastor – were a little spicy but pretty good. We also tried the choco-flan from the bakery area, which was OK.