A Blog Mainly About Food

If by "mainly" you mean "sometimes"

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Anaheim Food: A Quick Roundup

Okay, I was going to do a longer post detailing all my fooding in the city of Disney. In fact, I was even going to try and remember all the meals I've had there over the last three years. But I really don't feel like it. I've been a little down, I've got a book to read (and am doing good at the "fewer thirsty Thursdays" resolution), and I've got a new mix off of Boomselection I want to listen to. So instead, here's a quick rundown of the memorable. No addresses, sorry--I don't have the energy to look them up, come on. If you are curious about these or other Anaheim restaurants (and if you aren't going to Disneyland or a conference, there is no reason you should care), feel free to email or comment.

1. The La Palma Chicken Pie Shop

This came recommended by eGullet folk. A true greasy spoon diner type joint. They are known for their chicken pie--note, not chicken pot pie, chicken pie. It came out with a thick buttery crust and a viscous yellow looking gravy. I had it with the mashed potatoes. To be honest, I wasn't impressed at first. And then I added a small bit of salt and *bam* everything came alive. The mix of light and dark meat was tasty with the right amount of moisture. The odd gravy tasted perfectly heart clogging. And the service--old women who glare at you and seem like they don't want to see you--was perfect for the location. Do: Go here, despite its relative distance from anything of interest. Don't: Try to walk back to Disneyland from here. It will take you an hour and a half.

2. Yamabuki

Who knew a decent sushi joint could be in a Disneyland hotel? I've been going here for three years and have enjoyed it every time. This year I had the "Sashimi Zen", a plate of sashimi served with miso soup and a teriyaki marinaded eggplant dish. The miso here is some of the best I've ever had. The eggplant was interesting. Normally I'm not big on eating the skin of the eggplant, but it was well cooked and added some texture to the otherwise too-mushy eggplant. The sashimi? Crazy. The toro literally melted, as it is supposed to, and I have never, ever had a better piece of octopus. Normally the shellfish are not my favorite bits of sashimi or sushi, but this octopus was chewy and meaty without the usual overpowering fishy smell. Do: Enjoy Hakutsuru and Sho Chiku Bai sake. Don't: Go after having too many martinis to properly enjoy the meal.

3. Thai Thai

A small family Thai restaurant about a mile from the convention center on Katella. It looks like someone took a cheesy suburban restaurant and replaced the tchotchkes with Thai decorations, the menu with Thai food, and the staff with (duh) Thais. I had some hot and sour soup and a very spicy green curry, and a six pack of Singha. For $25. I love Thai food. Do: Sit at the copper topped bar, if you're dining solo. Don't: Expect amazing service. Its just okay, mainly because they are frequently under staffed.

4. The Degrees Lounge in the Marriott Convention Center

A hotel bar? Yes, this is the hotel bar with the aforementioned Bloody Mary's. And it has decent food to, if a little over priced. The one meal I had ther was their lobster ceviche. Served in a massive margarita glass, thick with guacamole and lobster, garnished with a garlic crisp. Its delicious. The other dishes? Really, I can pass. But I love the ceviche. Do: Order the Bloody, especially if your bartender is Mario. Don't: Fill up on the shrimp that garnishes each Bloody.

A had a couple other meals in Anaheim, including a moderate one at the Downtown Disney establishment of Naples, but frankly nothing was that good. I've been to finer establishments in previous years, but I just wasn't feeling it this year. Still, I had to have an okay time. Of course, I did have two meals composed entirely of airplane food, because United has decided to suspend in-flight meal service. That sucked; there is nothing more annoying than gripping a McDonald's bag and a medium soda during take off and the period where you can't have the tray table down. That's what I get for planning layovers down to the minute.