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May 7, 2010 03:15 PM

Griffith Park, Laguna Beach and Disneyland area ideas? Help!


The hub and I will be arriving this Sunday evening 5/9 staying through 5/12 to visit Disneyland, Laguna Beach and Griffith Park areas. I've perused this board for a couple days for restaurant ideas, but I'm overwhelmed with ideas, geography and our acute differences in eating styles! (Makes dining out very difficult at times.)

Any referrals to *already established lists* or recommendations are very very much appreciated. Help!

I'm a wine loving vegetarian-leaning food lover. He's likes old standards such as spaghetti and meat sauce, BBQ or thai food. OK he does like beets and spinach. And sushi. But that's about it. (-: He is NOT cheap which has saved me in the past and doesn't even mind spending money on "snooty" food if he really enjoys it, which happens on occasion. I did use this board successfully two years ago when I was on my own, and loved AOC, Canele and Real Food Daily.

I'd love some ideas for good mid-range restaurants, even California small chains, that would make the non foodie and upscale eater (me) happy, but without an menu full of truffle oil or confit. Actually he loves duck.

We'll by staying right by Disneyland for a couple nights, visiting Laguna Beach for a day and going out to Griffith Park to see the observatory.

Thank you thank you.

8022 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

3219 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039

Real Food Daily
414 N La Cienega Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90048

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  1. The popular wisdom is Thai Nakorn in Stanton. considered world class and near Disneyland. Haven't fallen in love anywhere near Laguna, not my usual gorging grounds, but Break of Dawn in Laguna Hills is surprisingly good. You can find reviews of both here on the board. Griffith Park adjacent is a great food area and if you search Silver Lake (sometimes spelled Silverlake to the chagrin of more punctilious board members) and Los Feliz you'll get a number of good choices. I like Babrix and Little Dom’s is popular too but there are a bunch of interesting choices. No reason to resort to a chain, even a local one, in these parts. Based however on your ambitious itinerary you might want to stock up on car snacks. Have a nice visit.

    Thai Nakorn
    11951 Beach Blvd, Stanton, CA 90680

    Break of Dawn
    24351 Avenida De La Carlota Ste N6, Laguna Hills, CA 92653

    Little Dom's
    2128 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

    1. From Seattle, I see. =) While we don't have great coffee like you, we do have numerous great ethnic foods. I 2nd the recommendation of Thai Nakorn, but there's a Garden Grove location which is more convenient to D'land. Also another OC CH favourite is El Farolito in Placentia for Mexican home-style cooking. Great Mexican comfort food at great prices. Izakayas are another area Southern California does well. Honda-ya in old town Tustin would make a great spot for dinner. A few feet away, across the street is Cream Pan (a Japanese bakery) for excellent pastries to buy in the morning to take w/you to D'land. They have awesome strawberry croissants, excellent fresh sqeezed OJ, curry pan (yummy while warm), cheese boules and cute boxed sandwiches which reminded me of Italian boxed sandwiches I had a couple months ago.

      EDIT: Here's a fairly recent inquiry similar to yours: | What is the quintesential SoCal ....

      Local chains that my SEA relatives often visit while here include In-n-Out Burger, El Pollo Loco (Mexican version of KFC, but with grilled chicken) and Polly's Pie (for nostalgia), They usually try to hit Mrs Knott's Chicken Dinner; this is for nostalgia too, not for food. I used to go with them, but now meet them *after* their meal--it's just meh for me. There's also Lee's Sandwiches for the Vietnamese bahn mi.

      In Laguna Beach, there's Brussels Bistro that has excellent moules frites. 230 Forest is a cute place for people watching (with good food), and Zinc Cafe has good salads & sandwiches (more casual than 230 Forest, but with good people watching as well). All three are on Forest Ave.

      If you want a nice upscale dinner while at D'land, I'd recommend sitting at the Chef's Counter @ Napa Rose. Some CH complain of poor service when they sit in the dining room of Napa Rose, so if you go, make sure you have reservations for the Counter. Upscale-ish chains nearby include Ruth Chris, Roy's and McCormick & Schmicks, but I've found these locations just a tad not-as-nice as other locations.

      Enjoy your visit & report back!

      EDIT: here's a recent thread that might be helpful: | What is the quintesential SoCal ....

      Napa Rose Restaurant
      1600 S Disneyland Dr, Anaheim, CA 92802

      Thai Nakorn Restaurant
      12532 Garden Grove Blvd, Garden Grove, CA 92843

      Mrs Knott's Restaurant
      8039 Beach Blvd, Buena Park, CA

      Cream Pan
      602 El Camino Real, Tustin, CA 92780

      El Farolito
      201 S Bradford Ave, Placentia, CA 92870

      Brussels Bistro
      222 Forest Ave, Laguna Beach, CA 92651

      McCormick & Schmick's
      2101 Rosecrans Ave, El Segundo, CA 90245

      8420 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

      2 Replies
      1. re: OCAnn

        That's right. (-: Seattle, land of many coffees, microbrews and mountains. (I do miss my homeland of So Cal though.) The food scene here isn't so bad anymore.

        Thank you for the ideas! Break of Dawn sounds fantastic, although a bit off the beaten track of Laguna Beach. But hey we have a car. The hub would love McCormick and Schmicks, but I'm sticking to more local stuff. 230 Forest sound like a total winner. I'll read up on the suggested list and go from there.

        And I'll report back. Thanks!

        Break of Dawn
        24351 Avenida De La Carlota Ste N6, Laguna Hills, CA 92653

        1. re: seagrace

          Avoid McCormick & Shmick's, its just a chain, and you have the original in Seattle.

      2. On your Griffith Park day you might want to take a short trip to LA's original Farmers Market on 3rd and Fairfax. It's open everyday. Lots of great food for every taste. Everyone can try something different from tacos to gumbo to Brazilian cuisine to donuts to corned beef sandwiches and wonderful people watching too. Lots of nice places to sit and enjoy. Something for everyone and the Grove shopping center is right next door.

        Farmers Market
        6333 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90036

        1 Reply
        1. re: wienermobile

          OMG. What a brilliant idea! My plan is to go directly to Griffith Park tomorrow afternoon after we arrive (staying in Anaheim) so a pit stop at Farmer's Market for a drink/snack/people watching before the Observatory is a terrific idea. Thanks!