Is This REAL?
How Cool Is This
Sometimes it’s very hard to get out of our comfort zone foodwise. I used to have some restaurants in mind and I would go to the same places every week — it’s just safe and you know what to expect. But now that I’m exploring the O.C. more, I learned that it’s good to take chances and try completely new things. If you do that too, you’ll be surprised (in a good way) with the little gems you’ll find!
This week, The Iron Press was one of my best “discoveries”. I’ve heard of this place before, but I wasn’t sure about the whole waffle sandwiches and beer combo. Well, I couldn’t be more wrong.
This place is a mix of restaurant and bar; so you can eat great food or just pass by to drink a beer with friends and relax. If you like sports, their TVs are always on and you can enjoy the matches over a nice, local beer. They are located at the O.C. Mix, a nice open mall in Costa Mesa.
At first I felt a bit overwhelmed with all of the options on the menu — so many savory and sweet waffles to choose from! But Jeremy, who works there, took the time to explain a bit about the waffle options, giving us some very good tips. The whole staff was, overall, very friendly.
Because my friends and I were Iron Press “virgins”, we weren’t sure about what beer we should get.They have a large selection of local and imported beers and I had no idea what to order (you can see I’m not a beer expert). I was happy to find out that they offer samples, so you can actually try some beers before you order it. If you’re bad in making decisions, like me, you will take some time to decide what you really want. I had some samples and they all tasted great, so it was a bit hard for me to choose one (it was just Wednesday)!
Wafflewise, I order the Smoked Turkey Club (with garlic aioli, avocado, apple wood bacon, lettuce, tomato and gruyere). I was so glad that I ordered this, because on my first bite I already could tell it was amazing. And it really was. There’s also the option to order a regular bread sandwich instead of the waffle one, so you can play it safe, too.
The dish comes with a bit of maple syrup on the side. I’m not a huge fan of sweet and savory together, but I decided to give it a try (remember, get out of your comfort zone). Although I thought it was strange to have maple syrup on my lettuce and tomato, I really enjoyed it. It was a night of weird combinations!
The atmosphere is also quite nice. The place is not too big, but it was cozy and well decorated. One thing that I also liked a lot was the fact that part of their kitchen is open — so you can actually see them making waffles. You have no doubts that they’re making things from scratch and using fresh ingredients.
Whether you want to have a beer and hang out with some friends, or just want have a different lunch/dinner, The Iron Press is a great choice. It’s now on my mental list of “safe” places to eat (and the vicious cycle never ends!).