Lately I’ve been traveling back and forth between New York City and Orange County, and I’ve had the opportunity to experience some amazing food in the OC. California definitely offers a variety of healthful options and is home to some of the best Mexican food in the country. This year I visited Orange County four times and truly enjoyed amazing food at some popular spots. I figured since I love talking about food ALL THE TIME and annoy everyone around me, it was time to share my wealth of knowledge with you guys. Without further ado, here are the 5 Best Things To Eat in Orange County!
1. Mastro's Restaurant, Newport Beach, CA
I’ve never actually dined at Mastro’s, but rather sat in their Piano Bar Lounge and relished in THIS Butter Cake which is a meal in itself. Mastro’s Butter Cake is sinfully delicious! The first bite took me to heaven, I swear. It tastes like butter and has a creamy cheesecake center. The cake is then topped off with vanilla ice-cream. It is the perfect dessert that is both sweet and savory. Clearly, this dessert is rich so don’t even think about those calories when indulging in this decadent concoction.
2. Esquites (Grilled Corn) @ Gabbi’s Mexican Kitchen, Orange, CA
A lively, semi-romantic, Mexican restaurant in Orange township serving authentic and delicious food. The Esquites or grilled corn at Gabbi’s is a must-do! Warm corn prepared with red onion, cilantro, lime in a buttery chipotle sauce with Cotija cheese. There is a natural sweetness about this dish, additionally it is also spicy, creamy and loaded with flavor.
3. Braised Short Rib Enchiladas @ Red O, Newport Beach, CA
Enough vegetarian, let’s get to the meat! If someone asked me if I eat red-meat, my answer would be, "once in a blue moon." I don’t typically eat red-meat, but this dish right here made me eat it. Slowly cooked short ribs in a succulent sauce and then stuffed into a warm, soft enchilada and topped off with Monterey Jack Cheese! A swanky and upscale space at Red O that offers refined Mexican food.
4. Taco Vampiro @ Sol Cocina, Newport Beach, CA
And yet another Mexican restaurant, Sol Cocina serves up authentic Mexican food and the specialty here are tacos! The Taco Vampiro is the most popular taco and is prepared with carne asada, cheese, serrano chile, scallions, guacamole, pico de gallo, chipotle sauce and cotixa cheese. Since I’m not big on red-meat, I requested my Taco Vampiro with grilled chicken and the folks at Sol Cocina were gracious enough to substitute. The result was an incredibly juicy taco with lots of fresh flavors. Note - the image below is the Taco Vampiro with carne asada. Since my chicken photos weren’t clear enough, I had to improvise.image courtesy Sol Cocina
5. Shrimp Taquitos @ Nick’s Laguna Beach, Laguna Beach, CA
Every single time I have walked past Nick’s, it is packed. I dined here once for dinner and ordered the Shrimp Taquitos appetizer that is filled with jumbo blackened prawns and then topped off with pico de gallo, avocado salsa and chipotle ranch. The taquito flavors were bright. And the best part about these taquitos were the size of the shrimp, they seriously are jumbo! Delectable!image courtesy Nick's Laguna Beach
Have you been to Orange County? If so, what's your favorite thing to eat and where?