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Neighborhood: Dana Point

Perched above Pacific Coast Highway, Monarch Bay Plaza reflects the relaxed sophistication of its Dana Point neighborhood. In the Spanish-style mall with red tile roofs, ocean breezes blow through white stucco archways, and upscale-yet-casual boutiques and restaurants attract locals and tourists. Read more...

Neighborhood: Buena Park

On the edge of what’s quickly becoming Orange County’s own Koreatown, the new Village Circle on Beach offers a mash-up of Asian cultures. Anchored by Taiwanese bakery 85C, Korean supermarket H Mart, and Japan’s dollar store Daiso, it’s Buena Park’s answer to Irvine’s Diamond Jamboree. Read more...

Exclusive Video Tour of Anaheim's Packing House

Click here for our Neighborhood guide to Anaheim's Packing House. Read more...

Neighborhood: Anaheim’s Packing House

An agricultural landmark and architectural gem, Anaheim’s packing house has been transformed into a European-style food hall. The venue, at 440 S. Anaheim Blvd., offers nearly 20 dining experiences ranging from customized gelato to sushi, as well as a handful of vendors making their first O.C. appearance. Read more...

Neighborhoods: Along the Boulevard

One of Newport Beach’s busiest thoroughfares may be just a block away, but the sprawling strip mall at Old Newport Boulevard and Hospital Road still seems like a local secret. It’s one worth knowing: Among the hairstylists and tanning salons, you’ll find an unexpectedly diverse collection of treasures. Read more...

Neighborhoods: Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra

Construction crews have been busy at Huntington Beach’s Bella Terra. In the past year, more than 10 stores and restaurants have opened at the shopping center just off the 405 Freeway’s Beach Boulevard exit, adding to the dinner-and-a-movie spot’s lively vibe Read more...

Hot O.C. Neighborhood: East Side Costa Mesa

This updated neighborhood doesn’t have to try hard to be interesting, original, surprising, and modern—it just is. Take the mile-long stretch of strip malls along 17th Street, between Newport Boulevard and Irvine Avenue, the heart of the renaissance. Foodies come for the Instagram-worthy Aussie-style meat pies at PieNot, coconut French toast at Plums Café, and braised pork panini at Pitfire Artisan Pizza. And that’s just the Ps. Other homegrown restaurants and shops tip toward lean-and-clean fare, such as the casual Jan’s Health Bar. Plus it’s the birthplace of Mother’s Market & Kitchen. Read more...

Hot O.C. Neighborhood: Downtown Anaheim

With a focus on food and community, downtown’s fresh look gets inspiration from the city’s rural roots. It takes resourcefulness to restore and imaginatively reuse old buildings, qualities the city’s founding farming families had, too. The new energy is centered on the Packing District, a two-block stretch of Anaheim Boulevard between Santa Ana Street and East Broadway: the restored 1920s-era Packard Building, now home to Anaheim Brewery and Umami Burger, and the 1919 Anaheim Citrus Packing House, with a food hall of locally based food-and-beverage artisans. Read more...

Neighborhoods: Costa Mesa

Chain restaurants and stores dominate most of the strip malls on Costa Mesa’s east side. But at Santa Ana Avenue and 17th Street, look a little closer and you’ll find indie boutiques and cafes tucked in among the usual suspects Read more...

Neighborhoods: Spiffed Up Shopping in Irvine

New facades and landscaping—part of a $10 million renovation—have gussied up Heritage Plaza, formerly a somewhat-tired Irvine strip mall with a few good places to eat. New tenants Habit Burger and Bruxie are breathing life into this place, along with these local favorites. Read more...
  • Best of 2014: Nutty Brûlée

    No one can resist breaking into the sugary crust of crème brûlée, and this one packs an extra surprise with its abundance of silky-smooth chocolate-hazelnut custard below—thanks to the addition of Nutella. This sinful dessert is incredibly rich and best shared with a friend. $8
    704 E. Balboa Blvd., Newport Beach, 949‑673‑7173, theslidingdoorcafe.com

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  • Hot Shop: Betting the Farm

    “There’s not a guy in America who wants to go to the mall,” says John Anderson, left, co-owner, with his brother Mike, of Tankfarm in Seal Beach. Read More
  • Neighborhood: Dana Point

    Perched above Pacific Coast Highway, Monarch Bay Plaza reflects the relaxed sophistication of its Dana Point neighborhood. In the Spanish-style mall with red tile roofs, ocean breezes blow through white stucco archways, and upscale-yet-casual boutiques and restaurants attract locals and tourists. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Tiki Drinks

    Though some regard them as overly cloying concoctions, tiki cocktails such as mai tais and zombies are enjoying a resurgence in Orange County. Craft bartenders layer the rum-based drinks with multiple spirits and spices to create beguiling and complex potions. Here are five great places to get your tiki on. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Vegan Breakfasts

    Veg-heads don’t just mow down bowls of granola and slam wheatgrass shots at the break of dawn. Most want to enjoy brunching on Sunday-Funday with everyone else. And because it can be hard to find tofu scrambles and dairy-free waffles, we’ve rounded up five local eateries that provide tasty vegan options to start the morning right. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Shaved Ice

    These light and downright lush desserts get tricked out with enticing toppings and mix-ins, many taking their cues from Asian favorites such as red beans, mochi balls, and lychee. But they also can be as traditional as orangesicle and strawberry shortcake. Here are six places in Orange County to get your brain-freeze on. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Roast Chicken

    Whether it’s cooked slowly over open flames on a spit-roast or stuffed with herbs and roasted in the oven to golden perfection, few dishes are as comforting as a simple roast chicken. While it’s hard to beat a home-cooked version, these seven diverse locales in Orange County do right by this ubiquitous classic. Read More
  • O.C.'s Best: Afternoon Tea

    The ritual dates back to the 1800s as a snacking fix and social gathering for the aristocratic ladies of Britain. Today, afternoon tea has become a fashionable alternative for birthday parties, and bridal and baby showers. Here are five teahouses in Orange County where you can practice traditional etiquette while noshing on dainty pastries and finger sandwiches. Read More
 
 
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