When I was a kid, I once fed my Alaskan Malamute, Raleigh, a bowl of Cap’N Crunch and had him pull me on my skateboard all the way to the local arcade. “Mush! Mush!” I would yell as he ran, Iditarod-style, with his tongue flapping about wildly. With one pocket filled with crumpled dollar bills and the other with backup cereal for the return trip, I recall spending at least five intense minutes trying to straighten bills so they would fit into the circa 1983 token machine. Then there were the games; Tempest, Defender, Asteroids, Centipede…my name would be on the top of all their leaderboards: GPN.
Now, I can recreate my childhood and attempt to break those old records at Santa Ana’s newest arcade bar: Mission Control, located upstairs at downtown Santa Ana’s brand new food hall, McFadden Public Market on Main Street. Twenty-four taps of craft beer, quick-craft cocktails, and a whole lot of classic video games and pinball to work off the grub from downstairs.
Don’t be surprised if you hear the vintage Gauntlet game say, “Warrior needs food badly!” which is understandable with the smell of food stalls wafting up from downstairs. McFadden Public Market includes:
Rooster Republic – Fried chicken
En Tu Boca – Tacos
Bone Stock – Pho and spring rolls
Milk Man – Ice cream
Under Control – Craft cocktail bar
Mission Control – Where I can be found with a beer or cocktail in one hand, and a joystick in the other.
Solid Coffee – Roasters, cold brew, coffee drinks
Restaurateur and publican Leonard Chan is no newbie when it comes to Orange County beer, cocktail, and food concepts, in Orange County, co-owning several of my favorites, like The Iron Press, Hatch, and The Blind Rabbit. His new project is co-owned with Phillip Kwan and the two have essentially created a one-stop entertainment shop. I’ve yet to see the finished product, but I look forward to checking out the whole experience when it opens to the public at ll a.m. on Saturday, April 8. Get those dollar bills ironed, and don’t forget the pocket full of Cap’N Crunch!
McFadden Public Market, 515 N. Main St., Santa Ana // mcfaddenmarket.com