Located in a Mediterranean climate zone, Santa Clarita, the third largest city in Los Angeles County, is often plagued with wildfires, particularly during the late summer. Despite experiencing high humidity and hot days for almost half of the year, residents and visitors dedicate themselves to creating outstanding restaurants that have resulted in the region becoming a foodie hotspot. Here are 10 of the best.
A small and distinct restaurant, Egg Plantation is an eatery specializing in breakfast meals. It is known for its menu of 101 different kinds of omelets that range from traditional types such as cheese to original innovations such as the chorizo sausage and jack cheese or shrimp omelet. It is also famous for its full bar and original Bloody Marys– the best Bloody Marys available in the city (according to loyal customers). Egg Plantation has been highlighted in the local newspaper and the Elite magazine as the ‘Best’ and ‘Ultimate’ breakfast spot in town, earning a reputation large enough to be featured on the Food Network.
A locally famed, casual burger and sandwich diner, Bricks is known as one of the best sandwich restaurants in LA County. Its menu presents a vast variety of meals including, but not limited to, burgers, tacos, salads, sandwiches, fries, onion rings and tater tots. A few of its most popular items are the House Burger, which includes lettuce, tomato, red onion and Thousand Island sauce, fish tacos, which consist of Oregano-battered white fish, cabbage, pico de gallo and poblano sauce and the original Bricks Burger, which consists of bacon, caramelized onions, Swiss cheese, grilled jalapeños, and arugula. With its wide selection of original and juicy options, Bricks welcomes all to explore its wide selection of creations.
A high-end restaurant that features authentic French cuisine, Le Chene is a popular eatery for dinner dates. It has been rated the most romantic restaurant for couples, according to the Daily News as well as the LA Magazine. It even presents a separate menu of appetizers, entrees and desserts specifically for Valentine’s Day. Not only has the restaurant been voted as the most romantic, but it has also annually received the ‘Best of Award of Excellence’ by the Wine Spectator for its vast collection of 32,000 bottles of over 900 different kinds of refined French and Californian wine. Due to the restaurant’s reputation for its authentic cuisine and high quality wine, hundreds of couples attempt to make online reservations for Valentine’s Day.
A family owned business located in the historic downtown district of Newhall, Newhall Refinery is a bar featuring over 20 types of draft beers as well as strongly supporting the idea of healthy and sustainable procurement. The ingredients used are all natural products that have been grown sustainably, organically, and fresh from local and regional farms. The poultry is from animals raised organically and free-range in Southern California, while the meats are all high-quality natural beef raised without any use of antibiotics or additional growth hormones in the central region of California. By using products that are natural, organic and sustainable, not only does Newhall Refinery support sustainability but it also creates deliciously fresh food for its guests.
Established in 1988, Rattler’s BBQ specializes in authentic barbecue dishes. Since its opening, the venue has been ranked as Santa Clarita’s favorite barbecue restaurant for casual dining occasions with families and friends. The secret to the barbecue’s juiciness and incomparable quality lies within the two-step method of cooking. Firstly, the chefs slowly cook the meat for up to a maximum of 24 hours so that the center remains slightly pink. Afterwards, they cover the meat with their signature barbecue sauce and place it over a live mesquite fire, developing a tender texture with a luscious flavor. As a result, after customers have a first taste of Rattler’s BBQ, they often return in the near future for more.
One of the few restaurants in Santa Clarita that specialize in authentic Peruvian cuisine, Lima Limon introduces the culinary wonders of Peru to the community. It presents a vast range of dishes from traditional fare such as aji de gallina (shredded chicken in a creamy, spicy, walnut sauce) to original chef specials such as piqueo marwo (fish and seafood platter consisting of ceviche; mussels marinated in lime juice with chopped onions, tomatoes and Peruvian corn. After dining at Lima Lemon, many customers claim that Peruvian food elsewhere – except in Peru – is nothing compared to that of this Santa Clarita gem.
Deriving its name from the Spanish exclamation ‘Ay caramba,’ which denotes a shocking but positive surprise, Ay Caramba is a family owned Mexican restaurant that creates authentic dishes that leave a powerful impression on the guests. Among the dishes are the Cochinita Pibil (shredded pork marinated in a tangy orange flavor sauce served with onions, corn or flour tortillas, rice and beans) and Carne Adobada Estilo Abuela Elia (marinated pork combined with dried chiles and spices served with rice, beans, red onions, and flour or corn tortillas). The fact that the eatery offers succulent Mexican food that well represents the culinary culture of Mexico is a pleasant surprise that successfully attracts more and more visitors.
A popular, high-end restaurant featuring authentic Italian cuisine, Piccola Trattoria displays a vast selection of common Italian dishes such as lasagna and simple cheese pizza as well as signature dishes such as Bucatini con Palpette di Angie, which is Bucatini pasta lightly covered with spicy tomato sauce and homemade meatballs, and Mediterranea Pizze –pizza filled with tomato sauce, Mozzarella cheese, calamari, shrimp, clams, mussles, scallops and arugula. In addition to its list of cultural meals, Piccola Trattoria offers two full-length pages of wine options, some as dinner beverages and others as dessert wines.
A famous Asian diner, Life Thai Fusion is an authentic Thai establishment that focuses on the balance between mind-blowing tastes and healthy, local ingredients for each dish. It specializes in herbal and spice combinations using secret family recipes and cooking techniques that result in an overflow of flavors with different levels of spiciness. A few popular options that demonstrate the experience are the restaurant’s special items, such as pa-nangcurry covered with peanut sauce and coconut milk, yellow curry coated with gang karee, coconut milk and potato, and pad see ew or stir-fried noodles mixed with egg, broccoli and sweet soy sauce. It is no wonder that Life Thai Fusion is considered a leading Asian restaurant in Los Angeles, according to Grubhub.com.
Located in the Bridgeport Marketplace, Rustic Burger is a new burger restaurant popular among couples for a casual dinner spot. Customers have a choice of bun, from pretzel, gluten free, brioche, or wheat buns, a choice of protein from chuck and brisket, sow and cow, chicken breast, tofu, shrimp, or salmon, and a choice of sides such as fries, tater tots, sweet fries, or house salad. The popular options that most guests select are the Cali Burger (avocado, pepperjack, bacon, tomato and romaine), the Blue (Gorgonzola, arugula and caramelized onion), and the Kimchi (kimchi, egg and romaine). Not only do visitors have a vast range of unique burger options, but they can pair their feast with a unique and delicious craft beer.