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Monday, April 24, 2006

Where are we going?

Part of my reason for starting this web log was to give myself a systematic way to explore the county I grew up in. There's really a lot in Orange County, more than most people are aware of. I've compiled this list so I can check off the cities covered so far and to show what cities are left to go to. Some are actually communities and other currently unincorporated areas of the county.

For a list of actual restaurants covered so far check out the entry entitled Where Have We Been?

Orange County Cities and CommunitiesAliso Viejo
Anaheim Hills (Anaheim)
Atwood (within City of Placentia)
Balboa Island (Newport Beach)
Big Canyon
Buena Park
Capistrano Beach
Corona del Mar (Newport Beach)
Costa Mesa
Coto de Caza
Cowan Heights
Dana Point
Dove Canyon
East Irvine
El Modena (Orange)
Fountain Valley
Garden Grove
Huntington Beach
Kite Hill
La Habra
La Habra Heights
La Palma
Ladera Ranch
Laguna Beach
Laguna Canyon
Laguna Hills
Laguna Niguel
Laguna Woods
Lake Forest
Las Flores
Lemon Heights
Lido Isle?
Los Alamitos
Midway City
Mission Viejo
Modjeska Canyon
Monarch Beach (Dana Point)
Newport Beach
Newport Coast (annexed to Newport Beach in 2001)
North Laguna Hills
Orange Hills
Orange Park Acres
Pelican Hill
Rancho Santa Margarita
San Clemente
San Juan Capistrano
Santa Ana
Santa Ana Heights
Santiago Canyon
Seal Beach
Shady Canyon
Silverado Canyon
South Laguna
Sunset Beach
Trabuco Canyon
Trabuco Highlands
Tustin Foothills
Villa Park
West Anaheim
Yorba Linda

If anybody knows of any obscure Mexican restaurant in any of the lesser-known areas or you have knowledge that a particular area does not have any Mexican restaurants, please leave a comment.


Joy said...

You've been to three places in Santa Ana, but that's not marked on this list. Of course, that leaves a LOT of Mexican restaurants left to try in Santa Ana!

ChristianZ said...

You're right. This particular list is not for keeping track of the number of times I've been to eat in a particular city. It just shows if I've been to that city at all. And, yes, there's so many more places to go.

joy said...

But Santa Ana isn't marked, so...?

ChristianZ said...

Oops, you're absolutely right. Don't know how I overlooked that. Problem has been fixed.

Bert said...

Don Carlos is in Anaheim Hills, which isn't checked on the list.

Chaz Lamrusco said...

Here are a couple of places to try

Q-Tortas - small takeout place across from El Farolito in Placentia
Try the buneulos for dessert!

Charo Chicken - Growing chain of restaurantsthat beat El Pollo Loco in quality. Many locations in OC

El Conejo
Tustin Avenue about 2 blks south of 22 in Santa Ana. Probably will rate similar to El Conejito. I'm guessing if there is no connection between the 2, one is a copy.

I just remembered a couple of seafood Mexican Restaurants in Orange

Los Cabos
On Tustin S of Collins. Tried everything. Its superb. In Entertainment Book.

SW corner of Tustin and Chapman in Orange. They made some great atmousphere out of an A-frame building. Seafood is the best.

ChristianZ said...

Bert, you're right about Anaheim Hills. I wondered first if I should check it since I personally haven't been there for review purposes but decided to give it a check because I have been there and because of your review of it here.

ChristianZ said...

Thanks for all the suggestions, Chaz. Q-Tortas might've been the place I saw when I was driving away from El Farolito. It looked intriguing so I made a mental note to go back sometime.

I've been to Charo Chicken dozens of times and to numerous locations and it will eventually get reviewed here. One of my favorite items there is also "Moe's Favorite."

Clipped a coupon out of the Pennysaver for El Conejo and will be going soon. I have been to the Irvine location once.

I've noticed a number of places in Orange and a lot seem to focus on seafood. Bahia is the one I saw when I was driving away from Taqueria de Anda. One could almost do a blog devoted to Mexican seafood restaurants on Chapman. Did you see the review on Bahia: Playas de Sinaloa?

Renee said...

You should also try El Ranchito and Tacos Mexicanos.

El Ranchito is a sit down place and has locations in Santa Ana, Corona Del Mar and one other place.

Tacos Mexicanos probably has more than one location but the one I know of is in Santa Ana at 17th and Grand. Cheap tacos of all kinds, including many I would not try.


ChristianZ said...

Thanks, Renee. Avilas El Ranchito is on my list and I've been told that their Costa Mesa location is the best. Never heard of Tacos Mexicanos but it is on my list now.

Chaz Lamrusco said...


Here is another one to add to your list:
La Provencia Mexican Grill
137 W First St Suite A

I think this one fits in the upscale take-out category like Taco Mesa or Las Fajitas.

I had a chicken taco and a carnitas sope. Tortilla chips very heartly and a bit over-done. Tasted like CornNuts!

They have been open about 2 months in a new strip mall.


ChristianZ said...

Thanks for the new recommendation, Chaz. Guess I've been to two from your previous list so far. I certainly have my work cut out for me.

ChristianZ said...

Chaz, is this the place you're talking about?

La Provincia Mexican Food

Chaz Lamrusco said...

No. That is not it. Could be that they moved, or have 2 locations.
The one I went to is west of the Tustin Post Office by a block.

ChristianZ said...

Okay, I figure I'll try the address you gave me first.

ChristianZ said...

Chaz, the next review going up will be on La Provincia which I went to on Tuesday night.

Anonymous said...

There is place you should try. Jalapenos Grille in Fullerton has some great food. Its owned by the one of the brothers of the family that owns Jalapenos Mexican Food. They have a couple of great additions to the original menu, like Tortilla Soup and Sopes. Their address is 516 N. State College Blvd., Fullerton, CA 92631. Their phone number is 714-879-8077. They have a real friendly staff. The owners are usually there to make sure of it. Give it a shot!

Anonymous said...

One additional place to check out in Orange on Main Street near Chapman:

The Chili Pepper

The place is rather festive but can get very crowded on weekend nights. Probably not my alltime favorite Mexican restaurant, but we always end up going back there. Why? Because the food is good and cheap, the service is great, and the scene is very laid back with a very friendly waitstaff. It's a fun place for birthday parties, etc. This place is especially great if you have kids. If you go, make sure to try out one of their soups. I really enjoy the chili fresno soup when it's on the menu.

Another favorite in Tustin on Newport Avenue is Casa Gamino. They have other locations, including one in HB. They have various items to try but I always come back to the barbacoa. Really good food and worth checking out for your blog.

ChristianZ said...

The Chili Pepper is one of the key places that got me to start this blog and I hope to make it back there soon. I love their colorful decor and the little fried aplle things they give everyone as a free dessert. When I was there just over a year ago I thought, "Wouldn't it be great if I could share pictures of this place with others?"

And I drive by Casa Gamino all the time on my way to work. The HB one I think might technically count as being in Westminster.

Eric said...

Have you tried "Mi Casa" in Costa mesa or "Tacos Jalisco" in Orange

ChristianZ said...

A friend is supposed to be treating me to Mi Casa sometime and a former co-worker has told me he would review Tacos Jalisco. If I don't get a review from him soon I might be going myself. Remember that we take guest reviews here.

Jeff said...

this may be a bit north...and I can guarantee you it will be the most obscure.

Every late night and weekend day a taco truck sets up shop in a laundromat parking lot on Anaheim street in Wilmington. the name of the place is "Arturo's" and every night they have people lined up as late as 3 am to get their tacos.

They setup a full bbq, put out condiment tables with limes, onions, 3 kinds of salsa (best arbol chili sauce I have had) and serve what I consider to be hands-down, the best tripas and al pastor tacos I have ever eaten. Tacos and drinks are a dollar each.

It sounds far, but it is worth the drive...right next to long beach harbor. From Irvine the drive takes about 30 minutes.

ChristianZ said...

Thanks for the info. I'm still looking to cover a taco truck but they don't come to my work. I'll definitely put your recommendation on my Go To list.