10 Essential Garden Grove Restaurants

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Laila Derakhshanian
Drink up, then eat up!
Garden Grove has too many of my favorites. It took me a few days to chop my first draft of this list down to the ten you see below. If you hadn't noticed, Garden Grove is that Venn diagram sweet spot where O.C.'s own Korean District overlaps with Little Saigon.

What's left are the 10 restaurants and eateries that make Garden Grove one of the best eating towns in our county...or the state, even.

Do you agree? Disagree? Have your own 10? Participate in the discussion and put in a comment, won't you?

Brodard

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Edwin Goei
Secret sauce not pictured...

The nem noung rolls that made Brodard famous are still the ones against which all others are measured. The protein at the fulcrum is a ruddy concoction which isn't quite a sausage and not really a meatball, but a harmonious fusion of the two. A slender piece of it is grilled then wrapped tautly inside transculent rice paper with more vegetables than you probably had all week. And don't forget that secret dunking sauce--a substance whose recipe is better-guarded than nuclear launch codes. But you can still see them make the rolls on their assembly line; and then munch in their newly remodeled dining room. Brodard doesn't look like a dolled-up high school gymnasium as it used to, but it's still behind a 99-Cent-Only store.

Cham Sut Gol

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Charles Lam
Right now, your stomach is just as hungry as your eyes

You can't do much better at an all-you-can-eat than Cham Sut Gol. It remains one of the most popular and consistent Korean BBQ's in Garden Grove's Korean District. Their supply of panchan is good enough to fill up on, constituting a hearty meal on its own if you eat it with rice. It includes one of the most delicious potato salads found on Earth. But it's the bulgogi, the kalbi, and the spicy pork you're after. You don't even have to stand up to get more meat; they bring it to you, along with a steamed egg custard pot that, yes, functions as filler. But you should eat anyway. It's deliciously airy and worthy of the any stomach left unclaimed by all the animal flesh you'll sear and eat.

Joe's Italian Ice

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Edwin Goei
Edward Hopper, eat your heart out!

Joe's sits in a lonely hut on its own tiny lot, along a dark stretch of road just outside the border of Disneyland's tourist enclave. In the night, the luminous stand looks like something straight out of an Edward Hopper painting, a refuge for the desolate, bathed in light. Its specialty is authentic Philly-style water ice in permutations too numerous to recount but include those named Razzamatazz and Bananadana. Made in the store with fruit and just the right dosage of sugar and food coloring, the best way to consume it is as a Joe-Latti. A waxed-paper cup is filled by teenage employees with the Italian ice of your choosing, then topped with a dollop of a rich, soft-serve vanilla ice cream of an ultra-dense, calorically concentrated East Coast character.

Go Goo Ryeo

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Edwin Goei
Meat feast!

The best part about Go Goo Ryeo is that it's a do-it-yourself Korean barbecue joint where everything is done for you. But to experience the full splendor of the service, come on a Friday, or better yet, a weekday, during which the ratio of restaurant staff to diners will be stacked in your favor. They'll tend to the meats sizzling on your tabletop grill, turn over every piece of beef to check if it's properly seared, and snip the bacon into bite-sized swatches with scissors. Then they'll transfer every freshly grilled morsel to your plate one-by-one and answer in limited English how to eat it. There's a supply of mouthwash in the restroom in case you have some place to go afterward.


Location Info

BRODARD - CLOSED

9892 Westminster Ave., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Cham Sut Gol

9252 Garden Grove Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Joe's Italian Ice

2201 S. Harbor Blvd., Anaheim, CA

Category: Restaurant

Go Goo Ryeo

8851 Garden Grove Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Myung In Dumplings

8911 Garden Grove Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Peking Gourmet

9092 W. Garden Grove Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

The Red Pot

12119 Brookhurst St., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Thai Nakorn

12532 Garden Grove Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

The Globe Belgian GastroPub

12926 Main St., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant

Warung Pojok

13113 Harbor Blvd., Garden Grove, CA

Category: Restaurant


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23 comments
Cypress, CA Real Estate by Broker Charles Park
Cypress, CA Real Estate by Broker Charles Park

Everyone will have their favorites but ShikDoRak Korean BBQ on GG Blvd is good. Maybe it's in Stanton but SeolRakSan Duck BBQ on Beach (near Lampson and Chapman) is excellent as well...

Tina Cano
Tina Cano

How on earth could you not include the boiling crab

Johnny Barry
Johnny Barry

There are not 10 essential restaurants in Garden Grove.

Maria Del Sol Saenz
Maria Del Sol Saenz

Strong disagree! I live right on the border of G-grove and need to hand it to Santana ...here's why: Best Shabu Shabu ---greatest management. Best sushi Ami Sushi!!! Best Mexican family restaurant Colima:-)

Tammy Medina
Tammy Medina

how could you have left out casa de soto, a definite g.g. tradition.

Stephenie Garcia-Perez
Stephenie Garcia-Perez

The Globe is awesome! I highly recommend that one. I haven't tried the others yet but I will soon I'm sure.

CharlesLam
CharlesLam

Cham's egg soup is the best filler I have ever tasted.


Ruben Kelvin
Ruben Kelvin

Susie maybe we can go to one of these tonight

BobLoblawsLawBlog
BobLoblawsLawBlog

I've seen your gushing reviews of the Globe before and I still do not understand what it is you are gushing about. The beer selection is great, if a bit pricey. The food if good, not great. I did enjoy the cured chorizo empanadas and fries. Everything else I've tried was ok. The prices are high. The atmosphere is non-existent and loud. The worst failing though is reserved for the service. I've waited 30 minutes for my beer and my fries to arrive. Then, another 30 minutes for my main course. Usually when it comes to commerce there are 3 characteristic; speed, quality, value. A great restaurant will provide all 3. A good one will provide 2. The Globe barely manages 1 (quality). There are 5 bars on Main Street that I can go to have a beer. There are 8 restaurants I can go to have something to eat. My top pick on the street would be Zlaket’s Deli. My bottom would be The Globe.

Username
Username

This list is terrible, obviously written with bias, should have been titled 10 best Asian Eateries. There is some damn great asian food in garden grove but what about the other cultures?. Louies On Main, Los Cotijas, Miyakos, La Rancherita, Casa De Soto... and many more.

blakex
blakex

@BobLoblawsLawBlog  I've yet to have any bad food there and the pricing for the beers is fair given the rarity of finding those beers on tap in SoCal. As for the service, it definitely does lack at times, but I usually cut them a break as long as my beer stays full :)

BobLoblawsLawBlog
BobLoblawsLawBlog

The price of the beer is fair, I agree. Some may be surprised by a $9.00 price on a draft (but hey, it's not fucking Coors Light). The prices on the food are higher than they should be. It's good food, but not good enough to justify the price. I think the service is the area I have a problem with. Glacial is the best descriptor I can think of. Frankly, better food can be had at Doug's or Azteca. I've never been overly impressed with 7 Seas and I've never eaten at Louie's. Zlaket's, Kaye's and The Motorsport Cafe (formerly Yabba Java) is better, but a different style of restaurant than The Globe. I live in the area (if you hadn't guessed) and would love to see Main Street thrive as a gastronomique destination, but I think we were better served (literally and figuratively) when it was Main Street Pizza.

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