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Friday, February 29, 2008

Tacos Ensenada Lake Forest

Tacos Ensenada Lake Forest
Tacos Ensenada
24601 Raymond Way
Lake Forest, CA 92630
(949) 583-7711


In OC, south of Santa Ana, Tacos Ensenada is probably as close to authentic Mexican food as you can get. When you walk through the doors of this place, you know you're in for an authentic Mexican experience because you'll notice that not only are all the signs in Spanish, but almost all of the people eating here are Mexican. If you don't speak any Spanish, and aren't very familiar with Mexican food, you may want to steer clear of this place. If not, you may find that you've ordered yourself a big bowl of stewed goat meat or a platter of octopus doused with lime. (Don't get me wrong, these things may be delicious, but if you're looking for stuff they sell at El Torito, you may as well leave). There are a wide variety of things to order here. They offer homemade soups, burritos, tacos, ceviches and more. I usually tend to stick with the tacos though.

I decided to order three tacos ($1.99 each). I got one carne asada(grilled steak), one chorizo(mexican cured pork sausage) and one lengua(cow tongue) taco. I grabbed my number, set it down on a table and made a trip to their extensive salsa bar. Their salsa bar has six different salsas ranging from mild to hot(and it's actually pretty hot). On the bar you will also find limes, onion, cilantro, crushed red pepper, toasted chile de arbol, pickled jalapenos with carrots and probably more stuff that I can't remember. Once again, a warning to those of you out there looking for a "La Salsa" type meal. You will not find any Americanized taco toppings on the salsa bar. No lettuce, no tomatoes, no cheese.
Tacos Ensenada salsa bar

I sat down and was immediately greeted by a gentleman bringing me a basket of fresh tortilla chips. I scarfed some of them down with their hottest salsa. My tongue was already on fire by the time the food arrived. The food arrived quickly. Six standard size corn tortillas (2 per taco) were topped with large mounds of meat. The tacos here are served completely plain, just meat and tortilla. This gives you the opportunity to completely customize your tacos with all the great stuff you grabbed from the salsa bar.
Tacos Ensenada chorizo, carne asada and lengua tacos

I covered my tacos with the standard combo of salsa, cilantro, onion and lime. The first lucky taco to enter my mouth was the lengua taco. The meat was juicy, tender and full of flavor. Lengua at its finest. The second taco, the chorizo, was even better. Upon eating this taco I kicked myself for not just ordering three chorizo tacos. The flavor was strong but delicious and the chorizo wasn't too greasy. It was absolutely fantastic. It reminded me of chorizo tacos that I got from a little dirt road stand in Guadalajara. The last taco, the carne asada, was good but nothing special. The grilled steak was lightly seasoned and fairly tender. It was good, but I would have much rather had another chorizo taco.

Tacos Ensenada on Urbanspoon

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Mochilato Irvine

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14310 Culver Drive Ste E
Irvine, CA 92604
(949) 559-1116

Opening soon in Fullerton
http://mikawayausa.com/

Mochilato (Mochi+Gelato) is the retail outlet for Mikawaya. If you are not Japanese, there is a good chance that you have no idea who Mikawaya is. For us Japanese people, we know Mikawaya as the Japanese bakery whose confections lined the shelves of all the Japanese stores in the area. From mochi to manju to chi chi dango, Mikawaya has always been the leader when it comes to freshly made Japanese treats.

Mikawaya has been around since 1910, but it wasn't until 1994, when they started selling mochi ice cream in the grocery stores, that people other than the Japanese began to recognize the name.

Mochilato carries almost everything in Mikawaya's product lineup. In addition to mochi ice cream, they also offer several kinds of Japanese pastries including manju and chi chi dango. Other items for sale here include shaved ice with fresh fruit toppings, gelato, Japanese white bread, various pastries and Japanese cookies.

They may have some outrageously large shaved ice treats at Mochilato, but I have never heard good things about them. Therefore, I've never tried them. What I come to Mochilato for is the mochi ice cream. Small, frozen dollops of gelato surrounded by a soft, cushiony layer of sweet pounded rice. Mochilato features 14 different varieties that can be purchased individually for only $1.25 per piece. This is the perfect small dessert when you are nearly full from dinner and just want a small treat. Some of the more popular flavors of mochi ice cream include creme brulee, apricot, cookies and cream and coconut. My favorite is the cookies and cream.
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(The mochi ice cream case)

I've also tried the manju here. Manju are Japanese confections of pounded sweet rice filled with various things. My favorite manju is filled with a sweet paste of sugar and lima beans. I know it sounds weird, but it's good. You're just going to have to trust me on that one. Instead of selling manju in multi packs like they do in the Japanese markets, the manju here is sold individually as well. I was told that they are trucked in fresh everyday from Los Angeles where they are made daily. The manju I purchased did not seem that fresh to me though. I guess whenever I want really good fresh manju, I am still going to have to drive up to Gardena....
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(The manju case)

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(various pastries)


Mochilato on Urbanspoon

Elephant Bar Irvine


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Irvine, CA
14346 Culver Drive
(949) 651-6087

48 additional locations across the U.S.

http://www.elephantbar.com


The Elephant Bar is a casual dining theme restaurant. When you walk through the front doors, you are greeted by an almost life size elephant to your left. You are supposed to feel as if you are transported into a magical safari land. Pictures of wild animals and "safari" suitcases line the walls. Tacky? Yes. Fun? Maybe if you're a kid. I definitely don't come here for the decor. If I ever visit the Elephant Bar, it's because I am looking for a casual meal at an affordable price.

It just so happens that I was looking for an easy inexpensive meal last night. I met another couple at the Elephant Bar around 6:00, on a Wednesday and had no trouble getting seated right away. I've come here on the weekend before and experienced a long wait.

We were seated in a large comfortable booth. I started looking over the menu. The menu here has three main sections. The first and the most boring is the burgers and sandwich section. The second is their "Pacific Rim Specialties" which are all asian inspired dishes. The third section is called "Regional Favorites" and includes items such as fish, ribs, lamb and tri-tip.

After hemming and hawing for a long time, I finally decided to order the blackened catfish ($9.95). It was to be served with white rice and fresh sauteed vegetables. My wife decided to order the veggie burger ($6.95). The other couple we were with ordered the misoyaki grilled salmon ($14.50) and the macadamia nut crusted fish and chips ($8.95).

The service was pretty quick so we received our food right away. My fish was served with a sauce that seemed to be mayo based. It was flavored with so much cumin that it shocked me. The fish was dry, bland and I just didn't like it. The same could be said about the rice. The vegetables actually seemed like they were of the frozen variety and were just boiled and then tossed in some butter. The vegetables, sadly, were the high point of my meal.
Blackened Catfish

Overall this place wasn't horrible. The service was prompt and friendly. I think I just ordered the wrong thing. I have been to Elephant Bar before and enjoyed my food. My wife liked her garden burger, especially because of the guacamole on top. Bottom line: This is a place to get an average meal at a very reasonable price. Don't expect to get anything gourmet though.
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Garden Burger

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Misoyaki Salmon

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Macadamia Nut Crusted Fish & Chips


Elephant Bar on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Lee's Sandwiches Lake Forest


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23624-C El Toro Road
Lake Forest, CA
949-829-8600
www.leesandwiches.com

29 Locations In California


Lunch for two dollars and some change? You betcha! Lee's Sandwiches is becoming the standard for cheap lunches in office buildings all over Southern California. The banh mi or Vietnamese sandwich has been around for a long time, but Lee's has successfully brought it into the mainstream.

Lee's Sandwiches serves both Vietnamese and "European" style sandwiches. Their Vietnamese sandwiches are what most people come here for. Cheap eats at it's finest. The Vietnamese sandwiches at Lee's are served on a large 10 inch baguette and start at only $2.20. The most expensive Vietnamese sandwich costs $2.70. You have your choice of many different types of meat including pate, pork roll, BBQ pork, headcheese, meatballs, sardines and more. My favorite sandwich here is the #14 Pork Roll & Pate. The Vietnamese sandwiches are served with house pickle (daikon, an asian radish & carrot), onion, fresh jalapeno peppers, cilantro, house mayonnaise, salt, pepper and soy sauce. I prefer to order mine without the house pickle and add extra cilantro and jalapenos.
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For those of you that do not feel these Vietnamese sandwiches sound appealing, Lee's also offers "European" style sandwiches for prices that are much cheaper than those large chain sandwich places. European style sandwiches come served on your choice of croissant or 10 inch baguette. They offer all of the standard sandwich staples from ham to turkey to salami and cheese. European sandwiches range from $3.70 to $4.20.

The sandwiches here are great. The thing that really brings me back all the time though is their shrimp and pork egg rolls. Crispy flaky egg roll skins are wrapped around a perfect mixture of tasty pork and succulent shrimp. The flavor of black pepper permeates the meat and entices you to eat more and more. At five egg rolls for $2.50, I think this is the best value they have on their menu. I could eat these egg rolls all day, every day, but I'm sure my cardiologist would have a heart attack himself if I did.
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Lee's Sandwiches on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Chester Drawer's Omelette Parlor Costa Mesa

Chester Drawer's Costa Mesa omelette Parlor
179 A East 17th Street
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
(949) 645-0740
http://www.costamesaomeletteparlor.com/

Tucked away in the back of a Vons strip mall in Costa Mesa, lies the Chester Drawer's Omelette Parlor. I've heard about this place for years, but have never tried it. As fate would have it, due to circumstances out of my control, I recently found myself standing in front of the omelette parlor with time to kill.

Walking through the large wooden front door, you feel as if you're transported to some cute little country diner in the middle of "Farmtown USA". Milk cans line the walls and images of sun bathing pigs and boxing frogs are painted all around. The smell of country fried potatoes is enough to make you salivate as you follow the hostess to your table.

The menu or course focuses on omelettes, but there are many other homestlye meals to be had here. Biscuits and gravy, sausage, bacon, french toast and pancakes were all calling out to me. Sadly pancakes are not available on the weekends. I am told that this is because they get so crowded that there is not enough grill space for pancakes. The grill gets dominated by potatoes.

I was tempted to order biscuits and gravy($7.50) or a cheeseburger with peanut butter on it($6.95), but since this place claims to have the "best omelettes in the west", I decided to order the "South Coast's Finest" omelette($7.75). This omelette came with crispy bacon pieces, avocado and cheddar cheese. The omelette is served with homestyle potatoes, a whole grain english muffin and fresh fruit. The omelette was light and fluffy with plenty of filling. The bacon was really crispy. I'm not saying that was a bad thing, but be careful that you don't chip a tooth. The potatoes were kind of mushy, but not bad. The english muffin was smothered in butter. I didn't even touch my fruit. (Yes, I know if I was in a V8 commercial, someone would be smacking me in the forehead right now) So was this the best omelette in the west? Probably not. Was the omelette very good though? Absolutely. I look forward to returning to this place to try more of their items.
Chester Drawers Omelette Parlor omelette


The Omelette Parlor on Urbanspoon

Monday, February 25, 2008

Garlic Jo's Newport Beach

Garlic Jo's menu
Garlic Jo's Ninniku Bar & Grill
2332 W Coast Hwy
Newport Beach, CA 92663
(949) 673-8444
http://www.garlic-jos.com/english.html


Do you like Garlic? Well I sure do! If you're a huge fan of garlic, then you have got to get yourself down to Garlic Jo's. Garlic Jo's is a garlic lovers paradise. Everything here is made with garlic. Items here range from common-garlic bread, to extreme-garlic ice cream. Garlic Jo's is a japanese chain of garlic restaurants. This Newport Beach location is their only loaction in the US. Even though this place is Japanese owned and is even called a "Ninniku", I wouldn't really classify the food here as Japanese. Some of it may be Japanese inspired, but it's mostly just good ol' garlic food.

I went here last Friday night as a party of four. My wife and I have been to this place many times and it ranks high as one of our favorite places. The couple we went with, Tim and Isabel, had never been here before. They were excited to try it though since my wife and I always rave about this place.

As soon as we were seated, I asked the waitress to bring us an order of their famous garic bread($4.00). One order of garlic bread here comes as two large pieces, each cut in half. Therefore, one order is usally enough for four people to start out with. The picture below is half of one piece. Soft fresh baked bread is split open and crowned with a mound of perfectly roasted garlic and butter. Use your knife to push the garlic between the folds of your bread and you will be in garlic lovers heaven.
Garlic Jo's garlic bread

The time came to order our entrees. I decided to order my two favorite items here. The first is garlic fried rice with beef($9.95). The second, odd as it may sound, is shrimp and mayonnaise pizza($10.95). Every person that I have told about this pizza thinks that it sounds odd to say the least. Once they try it though, they can't stop raving about it. Tim decided to tackle a garlic and hot pepper pizza($8.95) and a creamy garlic pasta dish($12.95). Isabel and my wife decided to share a garlic vegetable fried rice($9.95) and a shrimp and mayo pizza. Our dinner selection was limited to our favorites, but Garlic Jo's definitely has a lot more to offer. Other menu items include garlic steak, garlic chicken, spicy mexican peperoncino pasta, jambalaya and more.

First to arrive were our pizzas. They are wafer thin, but not crispy. Nine square, floppy pieces are easily folded into just a few bites. Tim said the peppers on his were quite spicy. A succulent shrimp tops each piece of the mayo and shrimp pizza. The mayo complements the flavor of the pizza so well it's a wonder that Pizza Hut hasn't stolen this combination yet. If you only order one thing at this restaurant, make sure the shrimp and mayo pizza is it. The pizzas are served with a trio of sauces, a slightly spicy chili sauce, a parsley pesto and a roasted tomato.....I think. I really only use the chili sauce.
Garlic Jo's Spicy Yellow pepper pizza
Garlic Jo's pizza sauce trio
Garlic Jo's Shrimp and mayo pizza

Next up were the pasta and the fried rice. Tim didn't say much about his pasta, but he seemed to like it because he ate the whole bowl. The fried rice is perfectly seasoned with plenty of garlic. The top is covered with more toasted garlic slices. My only complaint about the fried rice is that you seem to get a rather small serving for the price.
Garlic Jo's fettucini pasta
Garlic Jo's fried rice

After gorging on pizza, fried rice, pasta and garlic bread, we were way too full for dessert. I was diappointed because I wanted to have some of their garlic ice cream. It sounds weirder than it actually is. It really tastes mostly like vanilla ice cream with just a hint of garlic spicyness.

Bottom line: If you like Garlic, you will LOVE Garlic Jo's!

Garlic Jo's on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tacos & Co. Irvine

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www.tacosnco.com

University Park Center
Culver & Michelson
949-653-8081

Alternate Locations

Tacos & Co. Brea
Brea Mall Food Court
714-255-8301

Tacos & Co. Santa Ana
Across the street from South Coast Plaza
714-549-9974

Tacos & Co. Westminster
Westminster Mall Food Court
Bolsa & Goldenwest
714-373-2257

Tacos & Co. Newport Beach
Bristol & Jamboree
949-955-1136


The mastermind behind the Orange County Mexican Food blog got an invitation to sample some of the culinary delights down at the Tacos & Co. in Irvine. They told him he could bring a guest. I was that lucky guest.

Tacos & Co. is not your typical fast foot Mexican joint. The owner, Francisco, started as a cook at La Salsa. He quickly moved up the ranks and was eventually the district manager for the entire region. He wanted more though. He wanted a place that he could call his own. Thus, Tacos & Co. was born. The first Tacos & Co. opened up in the food court of Westminster mall. Over the years, Francisco has built his business up to 5 great locations. One of the keys to Francisco's success is his involvement in the needs and wants of his customers. He is always listening to customer comments and evolving his restaurant to make sure that it pleases as many people as possible. Francisco is also very involved in the communities in which he operates. He runs a variety of local promotions and fundraisers. One of his most popular promotions is the student discount. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, college students with a student ID can get meals at any Tacos & Co. location for 50% off with the purchase of a drink. High School students get the same treatment on Fridays. (High school kids must be accompanied by an adult) Lastly, everything is made fresh here except the tortillas. The meat, the beans, the salsa, the chips and more are all prepared fresh everyday. This makes a huge difference. You can definitely taste the freshness in the food.

Now on to the food....

We arrived at the restaurant around 1:00. Francisco welcomed us and told us to grab a seat. He told us that the chef would take care of us. The chef came out to greet us and offered us a drink. I decided to go for an horchata. After we received our drinks, we were presented with plate after plate of beautifully prepared food.

The first to arrive was their chips and salsa. They have five different kinds of salsa here (We only got 4 on the plate), ranging from mild to super hot. They even have a green tomatillo based salsa. They were all very good, however I didn't think the "super hot" was very hot at all.
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Next to arrive was their ceviche. They have both shrimp and fish ceviche here. They were both very good, though my favorite was the shrimp. The lemony flavor in the shrimp ceviche was very strong. I added a little bit of Tapatio to cut the strength of the lemon a little bit and it was absolutely fantastic. I could have eaten an entire lunch of this.
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Next to arrive were the tacos. 2 plates of tacos were placed before us. One plate contained a carnitas and an al pastor taco. The other plate had a chicken and a carne asada taco. My fellow food blogger chose the plate with the carnitas and al pastor, so I had the chicken and the steak. The meat on both tacos tasted fresh and lean and seemed to be grilled perfectly. They were served "California" style with cheese, lettuce and tomatoes. However, for those of you that prefer a more traditional Mexican style, they will be happy to prepare your tacos for you with cilantro and onion instead. This goes back to Francisco trying to make sure that everyone is happy and can get what they want in his restaurant.
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Up next were enchiladas. A plate with a red and green enchilada was placed before us. A drizzle of delicious sour cream on top of each one. We received cheese enchiladas and I know that they also offer chicken enchiladas. I'm not sure if enchiladas are available with any other meat, but I'm sure they wouldn't have a problem making it for you upon request.
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Up next were two different burritos. One with steak and one with chicken. They offer a variety of burritos here. Their largest burrito, the "Bad Boy" comes with half a pound of meat, lettuce avocado cheese and salsa. Their various burrito are stuffed with such items as guacamole, sour cream, piquin sauce, tomatillio sauce and more.
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Next we were served a plate of rice and beans. They offer both black and pinto beans here. They also offer white rice in addition to their mexican rice for those of you looking to eat a little healthier.
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By this time, our bellies were more than full. The focus of this place seems to be fresh food, made daily. The food here is so popular, they offer giant family packs as well as catering. Francisco tells me that they do lots of weddings. To finish up this post, I will add a few more photos of the restaurant.

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The Menu Board-Look for the "hidden" menu on the left for the authentic Mexican items

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The Salsa Bar

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Daily Specials


Tacos & co on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Battle of the Fast Food Hot Wings


I posted a new article on OC Food Blogs. OC Food Blogs is an online community of food bloggers from Orange County. Have you ever wondered where to get the best fast food hot wings in the Irvine area? If so, jump over to the article at OC Food Blogs to find out where to get them!

Friday, February 15, 2008

JT Schmid's at The District at Tustin Legacy



JT Schmid's Tustin
2415 Park Avenue
Tustin, CA
714-258-0333

JT Schmid's Anaheim Location
2610 East Katella Blvd.
Anaheim, CA
Across from The Honda Center
714-634-9200

http://www.jtschmids.com/


The shiny new mega mall, The District at Tustin Legacy, is almost fully complete now. Large box discount stores are mixed with, fast food, casual restaurants, fine dining restaurants, a movie theater and even a brewery. I visited JT Schmid's brewery for the second time last night. I really want to love this place. I love the location, the vibe of the new mall, the modern look with all the colorful lights, the casual atmosphere of a dimly lit restaurant/brewery. I really want to love this place.....but well, I just don't.

My first experience at this place was just ok. Average food, average service. I just wasn't feeling it though. I've heard good things about this place. I know brekkie_fan seems to like it (Orange County Food Blogs: JT Schmid's - Tustin) So I decided to give this place another try.

My second visit to this place would rank as a "poor" for me. First and foremost, our server did not seem to enjoy his job. I would describe his personality as "surly" at best. I never even once saw him attempt to smile, and he seemed to be annoyed that he even had to wait on us in the first place.

While we were looking over the menus, my wife was commenting on how she thought she might get the vegetables in coconut curry. My wife loves coconut curry, but she also likes it spicy. She was wondering if this one was spicy at all. The waiter passed by the table, so I said to him, "Excuse me, is the coconut curry spicy?" He responded, "Um. It's a little spicy". I asked, "Do you know if the kitchen can make it extra spicy?" He gave me a blank stare and said, "I can bring you Tabasco". Somehow I don't think the flavor of coconut curry would go well with Tabasco. I told him "thank you" and continued to look over the menu.

After looking over the menu for a while, I decided to get a cup of chili ($3.00) and a cheeseburger ($11.00 with my two extra toppings). I ordered my cheeseburger medium rare, and told the waiter, "No tomatoes, no lettuce, and no pickles. I just want cheddar cheese, bleu cheese, bacon and onions." He said ok as if he understood.

My cup of chili arrived and I eagerly dove in. The chili was mildly spicy. It wasn't too spicy for me, but if you can't "do spicy", then it probably would be too spicy for you. The chili was ok, but it had this flavor that I just didn't like. I couldn't put my finger on what it was exactly. I think it may have been some kind of green chile that I didn't really care for.

Our entrees arrived and I received a burger with bleu cheese, onions and tomatoes on it. The food was not delivered by our waiter, but rather a food runner. I told the food runner that the burger was not how I ordered it. I told him that it wasn't supposed to have tomato, and it was supposed to have cheddar cheese and bacon on it. Then I repeated myself for good measure, "So it's supposed to be medium rare, cheddar, bleu cheese, bacon and onions only". He was friendly and apologetic. He took it away with a smile and told me he'd have the kitchen fix it. A few minutes later, the burger arrived back at the table. It was almost correct this time, but it still had tomato on it. Not a big deal. I just took it off.

I then took a bite of my burger. It tasted incredibly charred. I cut the burger in half and it was way over well done. I flagged down the waiter and told him that the burger was way overcooked. I told him that I didn't want to wait for another one though, so I was just going to eat this one. Maybe I should have insisted on another burger. The burger was charred on the outside and tasteless and dry on the inside. The waiter must have told the manager about my burger, because he stopped by to apologize for the burger. He took one look at it and agreed that the kitchen had indeed way overcooked it. He apologized and told me that it would be removed from our bill. The fries served with my burger were the high point of my meal. Fresh, salty and crispy. Just the way I like them.

My wife ordered the roasted garlic and potato pizza ($10.95). The other couple we were with ordered the buffalo burger ($10.95-not pictured), the sauteed rainbow trout ($16.95) and a side of asparagus ($4.95). The trout dish ended up coming with asparagus on the plate as well. Had she known, she would not have ordered the extra side of asparagus. I think the waiter should have told her that her meal already came with asparagus when she ordered the side.

My wife at first rated the pizza as "ok". After she added a liberal dose of salt though, she upgraded her opinion to "pretty good". The person that ordered the rainbow trout enjoyed it and she said that she would order it again. The one that ordered the buffalo burger said, "It was just like a bland burger. I would have rather had a cheeseburger from McDonalds."

Overall I would say that the food here ranges from bad to average. Although the management here seems to be attentive to customer complaints, I would also say the service here is pretty bad. Our waiter seemed unfriendly at best and everyone in my party noticed it right away. Also, throughout our entire dinner, no one ever refilled our water glasses. The glasses sat empty and our thirst remained unquenched. I would have requested more water, but I didn't see our waiter that often.

JT Schmid's Restaurant & Brewery on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Ritz Newport Beach 99 cent lunch on Tuesdays


(I did not take this photo. Photo courtesy of ritzrestaurant.com)
880 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 720-1800
www.ritzrestaurant.com


I received a tip from my brother in law. He told me that if you go to The Ritz in Newport Beach on a Tuesday, you can get lunch in the bar for only 99 cents! I was hesitant to say the least. With the reputation and regular prices at The Ritz, I would have been surprised if someone told me they had a $10 lunch special.

So today being Tuesday, I decided to head on down to The Ritz to check it out. This restaurant has valet parking only. You can probably park around the corner in the office building parking lot like I did, but I don't think you're supposed to. I walked in the heavy front door and was greeted by a hostess. I told her I was there for the bar lunch special, she smiled and pointed towards the bar. My friend and I walked into the dimly lit bar. It was only around 11:45, but the bar was already almost completely full. We were lucky though and found two empty seats way at the end of the bar. It was a tight squeeze, but we fit. There was a little plastic menu card that advertised the special of the day.

You had the choice of either Chicken Marsala or a meatball sandwich. Either choice was 99 cents and came with a small Italian salad. My friend and I both chose to get the Chicken Marsala. It is my understanding, that in order to get this cheap meal, you need to order a drink. This was not posted on the little sign though. We ordered a couple of sodas ($3.00) and eagerly awaited our meal.

The food arrived very quickly and was presented before us. It looked delicious. I started off with the salad. It was nothing special. It seemd to be bagged salad mix with some italian dressing and some red onions. I can't complain though, this salad would have cost 99 cents by itself at most places. Next I moved on to the Chicken Marsala. I thought it was wonderful. Tender pieces of chicken and mushrooms, covered in a creamy white wine sauce was smothered over buttered noodles. The portion was plenty of food, and I actually left a few bites behind. The bartender also brought us some bread and butter to go with our meal.

From what I have heard, their 99 cent lunch menu changes frequently. This was definitely the best 99 cent lunch I have ever had though. I look forward to returning again, possibly for dinner next time.

99 cent lunch available on Tuesdays only between 11:30 AM and 3:00 PM

Ritz on Urbanspoon