The Halal Guys

The Halal Guys, a famous food cart from New York City, recently opened a location in Costa Mesa, Orange County. I couldn’t wait to visit.

For 25 years, The Halal Guys have operated only in NYC, but have become quite popular. It’s always been on my to-do list, but with so many things to eat in NYC, I’ve never had a chance to visit. This year, they began their global expansion. They plan on opening 200 locations worldwide. Costa Mesa is one of the first locations to open, with several others planned in California. They are also opening several locations in Asia and a location in Manila, Phillippines location opened last week.

From what I heard, during the opening week, wait times were 3-4 hours. We visited the second weekend they were open and while the wait was still long, it wasn’t nearly as bad. It took us an hour from when we got in line, to when we finished paying for our food. Inside, the staff was working quite efficiently and they also put a 2 order limit for each customer to help keep the line moving.

I always love shopping at Trader Joe’s in October. They have some many exciting products and always go all out with their pumpkin themed items.

Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookie Butter

Trader Joe’s always has one really big pumpkin hit every year and this year I’m predicting its the Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookie Butter. I was so excited when I saw this product and it did not disappoint. The obsession with pumpkin can sometimes lead to products being pumpkinized that come out more gimmicky than tasty, but this is not the case here. The pumpkin adds a festive orange color to the spread and really ups the flavors of Fall spices.

I’m so obsessed with this pumpkin cookie butter and I plan on eating both jars by myself, by the spoonful. No sharing.

Ghost Pepper Potato Chips

Wrench and Rodent is a sushi spot offering an unorthodox take on sushi.

It’s a little hard to spot because it’s located inside Bull Taco (check out the google map image here). I was going to take a photo of the exterior but the outside patio area was in full use and there was no way to avoid dozens of faces being in the picture.

Ceviche Flight

The ceviche selection changes daily and on the night we dined, we were treated to arugula chimichurri yellowtail, orange mandarin garlic whitefish, and apple butter salmon. This was a refreshing start to our meal and very reasonably priced at only $8. We loved trying all the different ceviche and pairing them with over-sized fried sesame crackers. My favorite was the apple butter salmon.

The Hedgehog

Crab, shrimp tempura and avocado filling, topped with seared yellowtail, roasted garlic and truffle oil. I was intrigued by the notion of truffle oil drizzled on sushi. I found the truffle essence a bit faint though and the roll as a whole was a tad underwhelming.