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Restaurants

  • The Surfin' Cowboy

    The Surfin' Cowboy

    Surfin' Cowboy is a bar in Capistrano Beach. There's good tequila (though skip the ludicrously overpriced Casa Dragones at $50 a shot) and cocktails that were actually researched and don't rely on artificially flavored vodka. There's freshly... More on The Surfin' Cowboy »

  • Zimzala

    Zimzala

    Laid-back yet classy Zimzala-which means "free-spirited person who finds peace with the sand between their toes"-is set, appropriately, within HB's groovy new Shorebreak Hotel. Executive chef Vincent Muraco has collaborated with award-winning... More on Zimzala »

  • The Shore

    The Shore

    One of Downtown San Clemente's newest restaurants is actually updated from an old one (Shore House CafĂ©). A margarita is the libation of choice, and the ahi salad is the thing to nibble. Sweet-potato fries, burgers-all the crowd-pleasers are... More on The Shore »

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Bars & Clubs

  • The Fling

    The Fling

    For better or worse, this little dive is a legendary among local patrons and all that pass through it. Descriptors range from "epic" to "disastrous," but a vast majority manage to agree that if you enter the premises without a stick up your ass,... More on The Fling »

  • Knucklehead's

    Knucklehead's

    A typical night will find this box-shaped building off San Clemente's main drag filled with loyal locals. Eleven TVs line the walls above the bar and over the two pool tables; most of the other wall space is covered in stickers in that classic... More on Knucklehead's »

  • Bootleg Theater

    Bootleg Theater

    Based in a former 1930s warehouse, this brick-walled performance space hosts music, theater, dance and film events in a medium-size theater, which is adjoined by a more bare-bones bar, where indie-rock musicians are booked by the local promoters... More on Bootleg Theater »

View More Top Bars and Clubs »

Music Venues

  • The Joint

    The Joint

    This live-music bar has long featured rockers like regular Waddy Wachtel, who's occasionally brought in such stellar guest pals as Keith Richards. Full bar. Over 21. More on The Joint »

  • Bootleg Theater

    Bootleg Theater

    Based in a former 1930s warehouse, this brick-walled performance space hosts music, theater, dance and film events in a medium-size theater, which is adjoined by a more bare-bones bar, where indie-rock musicians are booked by the local promoters... More on Bootleg Theater »

  • Club Fais Do-Do

    Club Fais Do-Do

    Fais Do-Do is a Cajun dance party, as well as a phrase used by mothers to tell their infants to go to sleep. The Mid-City nightclub Fais Do-Do is very much a raging Cajun dance party, and a whole lot more besides, with its large bar and adjoining... More on Club Fais Do-Do »

View More Top Music Venues »

Movie Theaters

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Food Trucks

  • Dogzilla Hot Dogs

    Dogzilla Hot Dogs

    Dogzilla is a food truck that sells hot dogs. The great thing about Dogzilla's Asian-inspired hot dog is that their structural integrity remain: the noodles stay in place, the wiener doesn't slip, the bun soaks up everything but doesn't turn into... More on Dogzilla Hot Dogs »

  • Tacos El Chavito

    Tacos El Chavito

    Here is Orange County's best deal: two tasty tacos for a buck, with free, unlimited pineapple juice. Who cares that this taco truck is in the middle of Surf City's notorious Slater Slums-two tacos for a buck with free pineapple juice! More on Tacos El Chavito »

  • Los Reyes Del Elote

    Los Reyes Del Elote

    Though they sell tacos, tortas, burritos and even raspados, the emphasis at this taco truck is on roasted corn-take a cue from the squat, dark man flipping cobs on a grill as if they were flapjacks. And keep some room for esquite, a wondrous... More on Los Reyes Del Elote »

View More Top Food Trucks »

Coffee Shops

  • Starbucks

    Starbucks

    Since its founding by a trio of aspiring coffee roasters in Seattle in 1971, Starbucks has grown to become the largest coffeehouse in the world, with upwards of 20,000 locations in Orange County and around the world. Named for the chief mate on... More on Starbucks »

  • Starbucks

    Starbucks

    Since its founding by a trio of aspiring coffee roasters in Seattle in 1971, Starbucks has grown to become the largest coffeehouse in the world, with upwards of 20,000 locations in Orange County and around the world. Named for the chief mate on... More on Starbucks »

  • Paul's Coffee Shop

    Paul's Coffee Shop

    The menu is small and doesn't really vary from omelets, hamburgers, pancakes and waffles. But surprises lurk in the specials board-Korean barbecue with kimchi, a linguiça-and-eggs breakfast (note to readers: Whenever a restaurant serves this... More on Paul's Coffee Shop »

View More Top Coffee Shops »

RecentReviews

  • Critic Reviews

    • Having twice the skill set in the back of the house means twice as much attention to detail. It also means double the personalities. Yet my time with Ben and Justin of Ways & Means taught me that collaboration and working towards a common goal (in this case, running an efficient kitchen) can only mean success. I interview them shortly before the afternoon management meeting, as they prepare for dinner service. Read our interview with Ben and Justin of Ways & Means, part one. And now, on to part two . . . Name one thing you like about... More on Ways & Means Oyster House »

    • Best friends. Significant others. Chefs de Cuisine. However you want to classify them, I've been interviewing pairs for On the Line as of late. I don't know if they're trending, but there's a positive energy that occurs when you have another person to collaborate with (Maybe it's because you share the stress?). Either way, our subjects for this week are creating a name for themselves at the edge of Old Town Orange. We bounce questions off both Benjamin Wallenbeck and Justin Odegard, the chefs de cuisine over at Ways & Means. How are... More on Ways & Means Oyster House »

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