Outsiders largely overlooked this quiet community in Fountain Valley until Afters Ice Cream opened in 2014 and brought a flood of foodies to town. But locals have long enjoyed the city’s eclectic restaurant scene. Before or after getting your...
“We should open a store called Forever 39. We’ll sell wine and yoga pants.” This viral Internet quip was part plea, and now the ingredients are all there at Yorba Ranch Village. But that doesn’t do the peaceful, unhurried shopping center justice: OC Wine Mart & Deli staffs a wine concierge, holds wine tastings, and will help you create overflowing gift baskets for anyone on your list. Fig Leaf stocks Pilates and yoga gear, and a little inspiration (ever heard of the “30-Day Plank Challenge”?) There’s more, of course: Herbed Chicken Breast Gorgonzola at The Wild Artichoke, and eclairs from Beverly’s Best Bakery.
Students and locals slurp noodles, sip milk tea, browse bouquets, and jump into the e-sports craze.
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.
Old Towne Orange has been a longtime favorite among locals, and for good reason: It’s a great place to spend an afternoon browsing the antiques malls and eating at the charming and often top-quality restaurants along Glassell Street. These days, there’s even more reason to head to the plaza, where a handful of new shops and food vendors is infusing the area with fresh energy.
When you venture into this grouping of Fountain Valley strip malls, you’ll be rewarded with a few fun surprises.
Check out our printable, pin-able, shareable, refrigerator-magnet-able guides to the neighborhoods of Orange County. This month: Anaheim! Local or visitor alike, you'll discover gems you didn't know existed in the O.C.
Vietnamese spot and sandwich place complete the appeal of this popular hood.
You’ll find boba tea, handmade pasta, specialty hot chocolate, and a charming boutique.
As writer Robin Jones points out, Crystal Cove Promenade lies across the street from the Pacific, so you can enjoy the sea air along with Neapolitan pizzas underneath olive trees at Settebello; browse jewelry, cool textiles, and letterpress cards at Juxtaposition Home; and fill up a take-home pastry box at Sweet and Saucy Shop (when did macarons get to be so hip?).