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fun and cheap lunch in Costa Mesa

v
veee Apr 15, 2011 07:06 PM

We're going to be a group of ~10 people on Saturday, looking for a place to have lunch before a play at the South Coast Repertory (655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa).

Any place that has good food, affordable entrees (<$15), with good service so we can be out in time for the play at 2pm.

  1. j
    josephnl Apr 16, 2011 03:51 PM

    Unless you're going next Saturday this is too late to help you. But...for very good Greek food at a very reasonable price, you cannot beat the Greek Island Grille which is easy walking distance to SCR ~2 blocks away. See: http://www.greekislandgrille.com/

    1 Reply
    1. re: josephnl
      v
      veee Apr 25, 2011 10:41 PM

      thanks! we're going in a few weeks, so keep the suggestions coming!

    2. ocshooter Apr 26, 2011 08:51 AM

      You have a few options at the LAB and CAMP malls a little south of the 405 on Bristol. Old Vine will be right at your price point. Native Foods has vegan fair, Memphis is Southern comfort food and Gypsy Den is sandwiches and brunch-y items in a kitchy environment.

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      Memphis Soul Cafe & Bar
      2920 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

      Habana
      2930 Bristol St Ste A110, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

      Old Vine Cafe
      2937 Bristol St # A102, Costa Mesa, CA

      16 Replies
      1. re: ocshooter
        j
        josephnl Apr 26, 2011 11:28 AM

        Add to this list for the CAMP...ECCO...terrific pizzas, salads, everything is pretty good. I think they're open for lunch, but am not sure.

        1. re: josephnl
          v
          veee Apr 28, 2011 08:11 PM

          what about nearby Vietnamese restaurants that have more than just pho?

          1. re: veee
            n
            New Trial Apr 28, 2011 11:29 PM

            I've not been but there is the newish East Borough in the Camp (same development as ECCO and Old Vine Cafe) which, despite the name, is Vietnamese. Taco Asylum, in the Camp as well, might also be worth checking out for its unusual (but tasty) tacos.

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            Taco Asylum
            2937 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

            1. re: New Trial
              ocshooter Apr 29, 2011 11:05 AM

              From what I have ready, Taco Asylum might be out of the price range.

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              Taco Asylum
              2937 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

              1. re: ocshooter
                j
                josephnl Apr 29, 2011 11:58 AM

                If Taco Asylum is too expensive, ECCO will be too. Strongly recommend Greek Island Grille. Very good food at very reasonable prices. Check out their website.

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                Taco Asylum
                2937 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

                1. re: josephnl
                  janetms383 Apr 29, 2011 12:49 PM

                  You and one other poster here raves about Greek Island Grille, but in my opinion, the food is just alright and the service is HORRIBLE unless you're one of the "favored few".

                  1. re: janetms383
                    j
                    josephnl Apr 29, 2011 04:44 PM

                    I admittedly haven't been to GIG in probably 2 years. It's food was very good then, and service was decent. It may well have slipped.

                    1. re: josephnl
                      a
                      apple7blue May 2, 2011 12:53 PM

                      I don't think I am one of the favored few, but I enjoyed myself there.

                2. re: ocshooter
                  n
                  New Trial Apr 30, 2011 02:06 AM

                  Not really. OP is looking for under $15 and the tacos at Taco Asylum run $5 -$6 each and are larger than normal. They also offer a "flight" of 8 (smaller 3" tacos) for $18. Valhalla Table (gourmet sausages), also in the Camp, is another possibility I had neglected to mention.

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                  Taco Asylum
                  2937 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

              2. re: veee
                janetms383 Apr 29, 2011 12:47 PM

                For Vietnamese, go to Saigon - in the same spot as Greek Island Grille (much nicer service IMHO) and walkable to the theatre.

                1. re: janetms383
                  v
                  veee May 1, 2011 10:26 PM

                  thanks! i think we'll go to Saigon!

            2. re: ocshooter
              adamclyde May 2, 2011 11:56 AM

              Can I ask a somewhat related question about Old Vine Cafe? I wanted to go this Saturday for a pre-mother's mother's day. The latest seating they ever have is 8:30. What place can't seat you after 8:30? This isn't Montana or something. Why do they do their LAST seating at 8:30? I've never heard of a place where I can't actually get into the place after 9.

              Do places really all close that early in OC? Or is it something unique about OVC that they try and do some french laundry kind of bajillion course meal so you really are going to be there for 3 hours? I mean, I want a really nice meal, but I'm not going there for a 3-star michelin, 3-hour experience, right? Or is my context for the place off?

              1. re: adamclyde
                nomnomnoms May 2, 2011 03:11 PM

                Old Vine Cafe closes at 10 (or 9?), and the food comes out at a slower pace than some other restaurants (they have prix fixes too). It's more of a chilling out kind of place, and the clientele tend to linger for a loooong time.

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                Old Vine Cafe
                2937 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

                1. re: adamclyde
                  JAB May 2, 2011 05:57 PM

                  For diner service, you can order a la carte essentially to create your own tasting menu or choose one the set tasting menus which I believe is why they choose 2 seating's on Friday & Saturday at 5:30 & 8:30. I also believe that it's as much to protect the diner's experience as it is to help the kitchen. My experience is a relaxed casual environment with very good food and pairings at a very good price.

                  1. re: JAB
                    adamclyde May 3, 2011 11:22 AM

                    so... if I don't drink alcohol, is it stupid to go to OVC? or does the food hold its own?

                    1. re: adamclyde
                      JAB May 3, 2011 12:52 PM

                      While they are know for their pairings, I'd definately say that the food holds it's own and is worth going for.

              2. Searching4Dunny Apr 30, 2011 07:54 AM

                If you go to GIG I recommend you sit outside. Every time I eat inside the establishment I end up smelling like a grill for the rest of the day/night. This might not be desirable if you are dressed nice for the SCR. My 2 cents.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Searching4Dunny
                  v
                  veee May 1, 2011 10:48 PM

                  can't seem to find the right Saigon? what's the address or cross-street?

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