Mendocino Farms DOUBLE AGAIN

Ugh. Of course my favorite place in UTC is one of the most expensive ones. But, MF is more than worth it. And it’s even more appealing now that I know they have fantastic house-made lemonade!

So this’ll be just a quick one-two punch deal:

“The 8 Hour” Pulled Pork  

The word that came to mind was “righteous.” Haven’t a clue why. I don’t think I’ve ever used that word in conversation, and if I have, it would have been in the sense of “righteous indignation” or something like that. This pulled pork was basically like homemade, in terms of seasoning and fat level. Great balance between the richness of the meat and the bite/tang of the sauce. The requisite slaw imparted the requisite vinegar and vegetable flavors, and the bread was excellent.

Note:  I treated myself to extra meat ($1), but only because I really love pulled pork. I’m sure it would be just about as good without that.

Short Rib Sunday Supper Trencher 

Braised short ribs with Sunday Sauce (red wine-tomato gravy, braised kale, and mirepoix), Mendo’s krispies, and local horseradish ricotta crema on a panini-pressed soft roll.

 

Could it be?! Is it possible that the trencher is coming back?

I mean, it’s only a name here, but still. I’ve loved trenchers ever since I learned about them in high school AP Euro (and asked my mom to replicate them at home).

The Sunday Sauce was adamantly winey, perhaps augmented by the tomatoes, and combined with the horseradish crema, provided just enough of a balance against the richness of the braise overall.

And such a generous hit of short rib! This isn’t even with extra meat.

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The Grilled Cheese Spot

I had originally planned to go to The Grilled Cheese Spot while I was waiting out my jury summons in Santa Ana, but I ended up getting sent to Westminster. Hardly a death sentence, eating wise, but I prefer to avoid sudden changes in plans. I had a free day Saturday, though, after helping my grandparents out with some work in Brea, and The Grilled Cheese Spot was pretty much on the way home. I lucked into great parking just two blocks away with 20 minutes left on the meter, and after giving myself an hour, I was off.

GCS was conspicuous with the crowd of people―some eating, some in line―around its front. Right away I liked the look of the sandwiches I saw in people’s hands. I was struck by indecisiveness, but then I saw the build-your-own menu. There, the only way is up! With the occasional upcharge, of course. I immediately zeroed in on the fried eggs and grilled onions, but aside from those, I circled white bread, cheddar, tomato, and bacon. I also ordered the Government Issue, american on white, to try a classic grilled cheese, the house potato chips, and the house onion onion rings.

I loved both sandwiches! Not as crusty as the ones my mom made me when I was a kid, but the fillings were well heated and activated and all that.

My custom sandwich on top, the Gov't Issue on bottom.

My custom sandwich on top, the Gov’t Issue on bottom.

As good as the sandwiches were, I have to admit that the fried offerings somewhat overshadowed them! The onion rings are obviously handmade, and very well, too. The membrane was removed, the crust was crispy, and the onion tender. The crust had some sort of aromatic flavor that neither I nor my mom could place with certainty, but whatever it was, it was really good. The chips, slightly simpler, were just overall excellently prepared―thinly sliced, seasoned well, fried crispy, and properly dried afterwards. I’ve encountered a good amount of chips that were not subjected to that last vital step.

Nary a grease spot to be seen on the bags.

They were still crispy hours later when I finished them at home.

I’d go back here any day.