Category: establishments

shorebreak hotel room service – huntington beach, ca



in need of a vacation?  try a staycation… the Shorebreak in huntington beach.  we only stayed for a night, but i definitely felt like we spent the time well.  

we cruised over after work on friday and bee-lined straight for the bar for a little happy hour.  they had some food and drink deals that were oh so good.  we had planned just to have a few drinks and then head back to the room for room service on our little deck.  but, i’m definitely not mad that we didn’t stick to the plan.  we had calamari, soft pretzels, blow-your-mind mac and cheese, and cheeseburger sliders.  (i hear the pork chop is definitely something to try)  i slammed a martini and rolled myself back to our hotel room.  

we watched a few movies (expensive….) and decided we needed to pull it together and hit main street for a while, i mean, we came ALL the way to huntington……we met up with Martha at a bar just across the street, had a beer, listened to some Sublime covers, and then called it quits.  turns out when we got back to the hotel….we were hungry… service was no longer in service so we called local joint, Midnight Muncheez for a sandwich and too many bags of chips.  with lettuce scattered about the place we hunkered down for another movie and boozing, passed out and woke up ready to finally indulge in some room service.  we took down french toast, two eggs with potatoes and bacon, and a duck quesadilla – not without a refreshing bloody mary or two.  bottom line – staycations are where it’s at.


east borough – costa mesa, ca



need a quick, fresh lunch?  call your order in to East Borough and pick it up at the sidewalk, they deliver it to your car window.

get the spring rolls or the pork vermicelli.  and top it off with honey lime jasmine tea.  the chicken curry might just be something to write home about too…..

cassidy’s – newport beach, ca

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to be honest, i don’t really know where to start with this one.  i have a long history with Cassidy’s.  much of it good, some embarrassing, mostly blurry.  i’ve met many a character there, and probably been one of them, but none of them as truly breathtaking as their cheeseburger.

many would probably think twice before ordering food in this establishment, but they would be WRONG in doing so.  man, that burger.  it helps make up for the changes Cassidy’s has seen in the past few years (logo-ed pool tables, photo booth, dub step).  the burger is still the same: bun, mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, onion, the juiciest burger you have ever laid eyes on, a layer of REAL cheese, and bun.  you can elect for some extra fixins – bacon, avocado even.  but, the one thing that really puts it all over the edge: The Pepper Plant hot sauce.  you MUST apply generously.  it drips down your wrists as you lean against the bar, then wash it all down with beer in a heavy chipped mug.  and you’re satisfied.  and don’t even think of asking for fries – they don’t have any.

so, just overlook the shadiness, stickiness, saltiness, weirdness, dustiness.  eat the burger and have a beer.

san shi go – newport beach, ca


if i was just a tourist in this town, i probably wouldn’t stop at this sushi restaurant.  but, i would truly be missing out.  inside, it’s nice and clean.  always smells of fresh sweet fish and soy.

i have been to San Shi Go several times and have NEVER been disappointed.  we snuck in late on valentine’s day a few years back.  this place was packed and they squeezed us in at the far end of the sushi bar where orders were flying by our face, water was being spilled, etc etc.  they felt so bad they kept bringing us free appetizers and then sushi and then ice cream.  the service is really great there, hard to say about a lot of places these days.  they take the time to make sure the customer is taken care of.

and this particular evening was no different.  they were bumping NOW! 6.  how can you go wrong there?  it really help set the stage for the compilation of sushi that was about to hit our palates.  we went through our favorites:  salmon lemon roll, some jalapeno yellow tail roll thing, some stuff with roe, toro, a crunchy roll for good measure, ahi of course, a few of the chef’s choice (always a good idea).  but then, something caught my eye.  Amebi.  in the US eating raw shrimp, at least from my experience, is not so popular.  but, damn it’s good.  i ordered it, and was exceedingly excited to taste the delicate sweet shrimpy-ness.  not only did i get to experience the tasty flesh, we got to watch the poor little shrimp head flinch in front of us after the back end was chopped off for us to savor raw.  seems so gruesome now, but after they fried the head, we ate it.  and it was good.

bottom line:  go to San Shi Go, even though it looks a little janky on this dirty corner in Newport Beach.  sit at the sushi bar.  indulge in omakase – chef’s choice or “I’ll leave it to you” – my favorite way of eating, really, anything.  enjoy.

bbq two20 – costa mesa, ca



this is one beast of a burrito.  not for the weak at heart…or stomach.  at the humble BBQ Two20 you can get your burrito filled several different ways: brisket, pulled pork, pulled chicken.  you can decide what level of heat you’d like: 1 – 5.  you can even pick a side: baked beans, mac and cheese (blows your mind), cole slaw, potato salad.  once you make all of these painstaking decisions you then have to sit down and gather yourself for the battle that is about to begin.  you vs. burrito.  this does conjure up images of the travel channel’s painful man vs. food, but this meal usually comes without cheering bystanders – though if that’s something you would like, the employees might just abide.

so back to this behemoth of a burrito.  it arrives at your table steaming with a side of chips and bbq sauce and a delicate garnish of cilantro.  you look that burrito in the eye and take a moment.  you both understand what’s about to go down.  will it be your win or the burrito’s this time?

well meaning, good natured, hard working folks go head to head with this monster and fail. i’ve seen it a thousand times.  and if the size of this burrito doesn’t get you, the heat will.  they aren’t joking around.  their hot sauce is, well, HOT.

but besides all that…..the meat is good.  the burrito is good.  the sides are good.  the heat is good.  but, i think i’ll stick to redneck taco tuesdays when the serving sizes are just a tad more manageable.


miguel’s jr. ~ newport beach, ca



well hello there Miguel’s Jr. that so swiftly popped up on Newport Blvd.  i just wanted to thank you for replacing that REALLY scary taco bell that once stood on your footprint.  thank you, thank you for reminding me a little of Santana’s (es muy bueno).  yes, Santana’s….not MXN.  thank you for having a relatively easy menu to follow without “COOL RANCH TACOS” and “CRUNCH WRAP SUPREMES” – actually, i’m kind of sad about the lack of crunch wrap supremes – those were so very delicious.  my bean and cheese burrito hit the spot.  the chips, eh.  the salsa, can’t really compare to Santana’s red and Great Mex‘s green.  hot carrots, meh.  but overall, i’m so happy you’re there where i need you.  and a drive thru, no less.  thanks miguel’s jr.  thanks.

the wild goose ~ costa mesa, ca



After only seeing the menu before venturing to the old Little Knight location, we were excited.  The Wild Goose had potential.  We parked in the back sauntered our way through the VERY dimly lit bar and took a seat.  Brian had to get some sort of whisky cocktail, considering their boast on whisky selection, and I was happy to see a pint of Yellow Tail in front of me.  We started out with some sweet potato tater tots with goat cheese and a cilantro-y drizzle.  And even though we only were afforded FIVE tots for FOUR bucks, they were still damn delicious.  We moved on to fries and their various themed sausages.  Not disappointed.  They make a good cocktail, they do a good sausage and fries.  But, be prepared to throw down a bit a cash for the experience.  I will be interested to see how it does over there, it seems as though East 17th is gentrifying itself…..oh the anticipation!