The Santa Ana Foodie Tour

Wander Broadway for a Day (or Week) of Memorable Eating

Beyond being one of Santa Ana’s most graceful streets, Broadway is the boulevard of dreams for foodies. Our culinary tour starts close to Broadway and 4th Street, just south of the Old Orange County Courthouse.

Start at Crave at 410 W. 4th Street, a favorite of federal and county employees, lawyers and those serving jury duty in the courthouses across the street. Try the smoked salmon bagel with a classic mimosa (dine-in only). Honestly, there is no bad choice for breakfast here. And on Saturdays, the famous Crème Brûlée French Toast is a MUST!

Retrace your steps on 4th Street, crossing Broadway to Hopper and Burr, a pop-up café at 4th and Sycamore that takes its coffee – and coffee variety – seriously. Instead of working with just one coffee provider, former Starbucks barista Truman Severson offers a continually changing menu of clean, sweet and complex blends from many different roasters.

Return to Broadway, and hang a left to Chapter One: The Modern Local at 3rd Street. Once a vintage book store, this multiservice tavern continues the literary theme with lunch, dinner, happy hour, late-night bites and a weekend brunch. Jeff Jensen and his chef-partners are going on their seventh year. Try the Duck Fat or the Sisig Fries, both equally worthy.

Continue down Broadway to the other end of the 1928 Spanish Colonial Santora Building and the pedestrian alley in Artist’s Village, site of the Grand Central Art Center operated by California State University, Fullerton. Here, you’ll find Lola Gaspar, a quirky, moody gastrobar that’s been blending L.A., Spanish and Mexican vibes since 2008. Go for the Bacon Wrapped Dates, Prawn & Chorizo Tacos or $5 Nacho Fries – and wash it down with a $3 House Sangria.

Directly across Broadway is C4 Deli: The Cure for the Common, a blend of Brooklyn deli, wine/beer bar and gourmet sandwich shop in a high-ceilinged, art deco space. We recommend the Reuben, or the Nutty Vegan for non-meat eaters, and don’t miss the house-made potato chips. C4 also serves a solid weekend brunch highlighted by Chicken & Waffles with Sriracha syrup and $10 bottomless mimosas. (Check the reviews out on Yelp if you don’t believe us.)

Go back up Broadway past 4th Street again to Irenia, a formidable new Filipino café tucked next to Starbucks. Chef Ryan Garlitos is reinventing traditional Manila dishes with farmers’ market-fresh ingredients and New American techniques. Sample his Adobo, a sweet, soft pork belly braised with soy, vinegar and lots of garlic, and his vegetarian incarnation of Kare Kare with roasted cauliflower, peanut “curry” sauce, sitaw and salted shrimp paste. Top it off with a Churron, a caramelized banana eggroll served with jackfruit preserve, cinnamon, sugar and Meyer lemon whipped cream.