Sunday, September 5, 2010

Reuben round-up

As I posted earlier, any time there is a Reuben on a menu my dad has to have it. Sometimes we share one. So I got to liking the taste of a good Reuben sandwich too.

But it is not so easy to find a good one in Orange County. We have been going to a few places, and here is my ranking of them. There is the Derby, a deli in a big building by the freeway where I sometimes go to play LaserQuest. The Derby is big, has grand pianos and entertainers. We went there with my friend Liam who lives in New York. They have other stuff my dad likes, including beef tongue! But for some reasons, none of us liked their sandwiches that much, we took more than half of each to go. I think it was the meat. The fries were a bit underdone, too. And they just gave me the children's menu which does not have the good food on it.

Then there is Champagne's which also calls itself a deli. They have a shop corner, you can get stuff to go from the kitchen, and there are two seating areas - inside or outside. We shared a Reuben and just to make sure we would have enough we ordered a tomato-basil soup. This Reuben was good, not too big, proportions of sauce and sauerkraut and meat and bread were good, but it was dripping dressing and the bread was a bit disappointing - toasted but a bit stale. The soup was definitely the best part of the meal, perhaps my favorite soup ever!

A few weekends ago we went to Benjies, a really old-fashioned place (the sign says since 1967). Their menu is huge. They have these old-fashioned booths to sit in, and the waitresses are kind of grumpy in a good way. (Like at one of my favorites, the Crab Cooker, by the way). Benjies is defiitely worth the drive to Santa Ana. They make amazing deserts, too. But we had no room for any! Because the Reuben and the Tongue sandwich we had there were great.

However, I think the best Reuben in the OC might be the one at the lunch counter at Bristol Farms near the Newport Beach public library. My dad says I should think twice about blogging this, because it is our best-kept secret. But I say people who read my blog should know. The meat is good, the sauce is right, the kraut is nice, the bread is good, you can sit outside or inside, and they have a lot of good other options. When we go to the library, we like to share a Reuben here. It's awesome. And the waitress is totally great, too.

My dad says we'll keep looking, he likes another place that I haven't been to yet. Please let me know in the comments if you know of a good Reuben somewhere!