You know the tune by now. You turn off the 5, away from the Chinese and Korean places in Irvine, away from all the ethnic food that's splattered all over the 714 area code, a kind of Chowhound's Garden of Culinary Delights.
You turn your wheels north on the 133, then south on the 241. Your FasTrak beeps the death-knell of decent food. You are entering the Do-Not-Chow Zone: Lake Forest; Foothill Ranch; Rancho Santa Margarita; Las Flores; Coto de Caza; Ladera Ranch.
I have friends who have just moved down there. I went down there this weekend and (I'm so ashamed to admit this!) I ate at a Pick Up Stix last night and (sob!) Bruegger's Bagels this morning, surrounded by the Real Housewives of Orange County.
I wanted to stab myself with a teriyaki skewer.
Please, please, if there is food worth eating down here, please tell me! Any kind of food, any price range. We'll be down here more often, now that friends are moving in to the area, and I can't deal with all crappy chains all the time!