Hoods: North San Clemente Neighborhood Is Filled With Local Favorites

This neighborhood in north San Clemente is quieter than Avenida del Mar, but it’s filled with local favorites—some old and some new.

Photo credit: Melissa Valladares

Flights & Irons
Open since fall, this restaurant reveals its personality in its name: The bar specializes in flights of craft beer and wine, and most dishes are cooked in cast-iron pans. Enjoy upscale comfort food such as bourbon bacon meatballs ($12), salmon with ginger cream sauce ($27), and s’mores baked in the wood-fired oven ($9). 376 Camino de Estrella, 949-388-3991

Photo credit: Melissa Valladares

Brawner Boards
Owned by Damian Brawner, son of legendary surfboard shaper Danny Brawner, this friendly shop sells the eight surfboards and two paddleboards Damian designs, along with logo T-shirts, hats, hoodies, and necessities such as fins and traction pads. The helpful staff also offers board rentals, as well as surf and SUP lessons. 220 Avenida Vaquero, 949-429-9601

Photo credit: Melissa Valladares

Kelly’s Donuts
It looks like a traditional doughnut shop, and yes, it offers all the glazed, old-fashioned, and maple twist options you’d expect, along with fresh-baked pastries and muffins. But the kitchen also turns out croissant sandwiches ($4 to $8), breakfast burritos ($4.50 to $8.50), and even bacon cheeseburgers ($6) at lunchtime. 430 Camino de Estrella, 949-443-2862

Photo credit: Melissa Valladares

Guichos Eatery
One of two Guichos locations in San Clemente, this spot is known for its top-notch Italian takeout. Try the chopped salad with chicken ($9), eggplant sandwich with oven-roasted tomatoes and mozzarella ($8.50), or pastas such as penne with marinara and basil ($9) and spaghettini with meatballs ($11.50). 440 Camino de Estrella, 949-248-1910

Photo credit: Melissa Valladares

Good To Know
Weekend brunch just launched at Flights & Irons Urban Kitchen, featuring bottomless mimosas and rustic dishes such as an apple pancake baked in a cast-iron skillet.

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