I've recently moved to Irvine from LA, and have been having a lot of trouble trying to figure out where the good non-chain, hole in the wall places are around here. I realize that LA is a very unique and wonderful food place, and the Irvine Corporation has a lot to do with the lack of variety and mom n' pop style restaurants here, but I'm hoping there are some hidden gems out there, yes?
I know there are Chowhounders in Irvine. Do you guys all just travel outside of the city for good food? Other than some of the business travel threads I haven't been able to find much.
Anything good, cheap, and/or ethnic would be appreciated. No chain restaurant. Closer to UC Irvine the better. If I'm going to have to suck it up and go to Costa Mesa or Garden Grove to find food (I've found those threads), then I guess that's that.
But there must be some type of guerrilla foodie operations going on here, right? Anyone with any good places to check out? Or even just favorites--best of the worst--would be appreciated!!!
Yes, I do know about the various restuarants in the Diamond Jamboree shopping center--but is there more stuff out there?