I’ve been lucky enough to travel a fair bit in my 22 years, but of all the places I’ve visited, Huntington Beach is the only place I’ve felt like I could move to quite happily.
December was my fourth trip to California, second to Huntington Beach, and leaving gets harder every time. Something about the sunshine + laidback lifestyle just really appeals to me, and I’m forever plotting my next trip back.
Until then, I thought I’d share some of my favourite foodie spots, in case you ever find yourself in that neck of the woods!
Shall we talk about the CHEESEBOARD OF MY DREAMS?! French restaurant Blue Gold is tucked upstairs in the new Pacific City Development and serves their twist on classic, seasonal American cooking. The cocktails were incredible (I kept topped up on Sophia Lorens all night) and the food was infallible (yes to truffle fries and mac and cheese) but the standout dish was the Charcuterie board. Covered in artisan cured meats, fresh cheeses, crusty breads, nuts and seasonal jams, I had a hard job sharing this.
I could sing the praises of Saint Marc all day and all night, but all you really need to know is that they have a bacon bar. Yes a bacon bar. Order bacon by the slice (my favourite was the garlic parmesan) and a cheeseboard to go along with it, and I promise you you’ll want to go back every damn night. They serve your drinks in those iconic american red cups (I was far too pleased about this), and the bacon comes out on a pig shaped chopping board I found equal parts disturbing and hilarious. They also had giant beer pong set up, if that’s your thing.
Saint Marc also has a secret bar, hidden behind a bookcase called The Blind Pig. You can only go in if you’ve bought a bottle of alcohol to keep there, + made reservations in advance, but it’s basically the coolest thing ever, like a secret mini speakeasy. We went in for cocktails, beignets and salted caramels, and basically thought we were the coolest people ever.
Are your eyes prepared for the cutest thing they will ever see? Petals and Pop is a florist-cum-champagne ba, and the girliest place you could ever imagine. Pick your fizz of choice from library check out cards in the sleeves of classic novels, have it served in vintage champagne glasses on a bar sprinkled with fresh seasonal flower petals. If it weren’t for my lightweight alcohol consuming capabilities, I could have just moved in here.
If you’re after something a little healthier after all that cheese, bacon, cocktails and champagne, you’re in luck, as Lemonade have just opened a branch in Pacific City. Serving fresh lemonades and delicious salads, my order of choice is the Rosemary Watermelon Lemonade – a perfect pick me up on a sunny Californian afternoon.
And really, it’s not worth going to California if you’re not gonna hit up In-N-Out. My order is a classic Cheeseburger and Animal Style Fries combo – and it really doesn’t get any better. And no, I won’t share.
Are you hungry now?