8 Tips For a Pleasant Evening at the OC Night Market

Categories: Food Festivals

squid_roe_line.jpg
Edwin Goei
Fried squid. On a stick.

Here are some tips from someone who went to make your evening at the OC Night Market a pleasant one.

1. Avoid this insane 6 to 8 p.m. line to buy an admission ticket.

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Edwin Goei
This is just half the line.

Get there earlier or later.

2. Get one of these.

starry_cutlet.jpg
Edwin Goei
Finger lickin' great!

It costs $6 but this freshly-fried chicken cutlet is as wide as a tennis racket. And since Starry Tea Bar (look for a sign that says "TEA BAR" close to The Hangar) doesn't have any signs to advertise it, there will be no line.

3. There's more than one vendor selling those twirly potato sticks.

potato_twirl.jpg
Edwin Goei
Potato helix. $5-$7.

Hotato Potato's has the longest line at the entrance. But there's another deeper in and also a MiiSTER Potato.

4. The longest food lines: OG Ramen Burger and Squid Roe.

squid_roe_line.jpg
Edwin Goei
This is just 1/12th of the line.

Plan ahead if you want some of that.

5. Want to sit while you eat? Go to the merchandise area.

crowd_at_oc_night_market.jpg
Edwin Goei
All standing room and no place to sit.

If you want to snag a picnic table, there will be plenty of empty ones at the Merchandise Section between the Wells Fargo tent and the DJ. The Hangar also has a few tables.

6. Budget an extra 30-45 minutes for the Bubble Waffle.

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Edwin Goei
Don't waffle around.

If you want this Hong-Kong waffle from Bubble Waffle, stand in line, order it, then walk around and come back about 30-45 minutes later. It's worth the $4 cost--which is actually $1 cheaper than what Tasty Garden charges for waffles at its restaurant in Irvine.

7. Visit the OC Fair Tent.

oc_fair_glass.jpg
Edwin Goei
Free. If you win.

It's located in a dead zone at a forgotten corner in the Merchandise area, but if you find the lonely OC Fair Tent, you can easily score some free stuff like a beer glass or a shaker of spice from their prize wheel.

8. Use your nose to find or avoid the stinky tofu vendors.

ocnightmarket.jpg

OC Night Market

Admission: $5
Parking: $7

Sat, May 10: 3pm-12am
Sun, May 11: 3pm-9pm
@ OC Fairgrounds
88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

For more information about the OC Night Market, CLICK HERE.

Follow Stick a Fork In It on Twitter @ocweeklyfood or on Facebook! And don't forget to download our free Best Of App here!

Location Info

Map

OC Fair & Event Center

88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa, CA

Category: General

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37 comments
slop101
slop101

The most pleasant night you can have is just to stay away from the OC Night Market entirely. Seriously, what a pain in the ass for a bunch of bullshit.

Rachel Truong
Rachel Truong

Kris TyHoLana NuwenAngie WonDiana Chien we should've have read this before heading here yday

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

Did you enjoy it, Edwin?  I thought the whole thing was shit.  Why should I pay $5+7 to get in, and stand in 3 lines for a fucking waffle?  Oh yah, the waffles are $5 to $6, not $4.  I walked around back to witness the process:  a guy puts batter into waffle maker with a circular mold versus squares.  Bing!  Guy scrapes out waffle.  All the old gooey batter is baked on the side of the waffle maker -- looks like hell.


Merchandisers were terrible; although, I did like the floppy hat for $7.  There were a couple crappy t-shirt vendors and bad jewelry.  The artist dude in back had some talent -- I liked the VHS tape painting thingys. For crying out loud, the regular swap meet has 100x more stuff on sale, cheaper, and it's only $2 a person.


Maybe I'm spoiled by having been to the real night markets in Hangzhou where all manner of gadgets, gizmos, clothing, and CHEAP food is available, and there's NO charge to enter and NO fucking lines.  Christ's sake, my Chairman Mao lighter still lights and plays the Chairman Mao theme song for $1!!!  Silk boxers with green dollar symbols were $2!!!


Chinese night markets are about cheap eats and low priced nicknacks. 


On a positive note:  there a LOT of hoochies there.  You wanna get an eye full?  This is the spot. 


We left and ate at my new fav pho place for $11 plus tip.  Less than parking and entrance fee at the fabulous OC Night Market. 


OC Weekly
OC Weekly

We love all three of those things.

Ivonne Bogen
Ivonne Bogen

Do not fall fir the ramen burger it's NOT good its actually pretty disgusting

Jennifer Banh
Jennifer Banh

Tony Banh Alane Mey Anthonybell Burgundy we should go later then. To not get stuck in this crowd.

Lau Ra
Lau Ra

Lines were cray!

Chris Martinez
Chris Martinez

Camille Grace Balajadia Pejoro Christopher Balajadia

Alex Chavira
Alex Chavira

Watch out for the fermented tofu... long lines for the good stuff..

Marvin AC Verdadero
Marvin AC Verdadero

Bummer. I'm out of the state but will be back Thursday, are they open next weekend?

Eric Christner
Eric Christner

I've never heard of it. Thanks I'm checkin' it out!

Craig Hammons
Craig Hammons

Just got back....checked out some Rockabilly, beer and got a tri tip.

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Yep, I readily admit being a misanthrope most of the time but I swear to god, as prophesized, as I'm walking in the gate, there's a teen girl shooting a fucking Vine making a stupid fucking face like, "wooooo!  Here I am at the fucking night market!  Wooo!"  Fuck me.  

20ftjesus
20ftjesus topcommenter

@DonkeyHotayI just bought a CucinaPro Bubble Waffler on Amazon.  Wooo!  Oh yah, let's not forget Ramen Dude from HB -- the Bro is  manning the hibachi and snarling at people trying to get a glimpse of his super secret ramen grilling technique. Ramen Dude, Chill!  You're flipping a package of ramen on a hot plate for christ's sake; you're not inventing the chocolate souffle.  (Mmm...choc. souffle.)

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@20ftjesus ... sounds like the Christ needs to get laid.


Got Mary M's number?



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