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Best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in CA

Best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in CA

Costa Mesa, CA, is a treasure trove of the best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants offering unique and authentic dining experiences. This article highlights three standout establishments: The Crack Shack, Memphis Cafe, and Eat Chow, each bringing its own flavor and charm to the table.

These restaurants are just a glimpse into the rich food culture that defines Costa Mesa. The best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants are known for their exceptional dishes, cozy atmospheres, and dedicated service. They capture the essence of what makes Costa Mesa a vibrant food destination.

As you explore these hidden gems, you’ll find that there are many more such establishments waiting to be discovered, each offering a unique taste of the local food scene. Prepare to embark on a journey of culinary discovery, where every meal is a testament to the creativity and passion of Costa Mesa’s chefs and restaurateurs.



Best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in CA - 1 The Crack Shack

1. The Crack Shack

Address >> 196 E 17th St

Nestled in the vibrant city of Costa Mesa, The Crack Shack stands out as a quintessential example of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. This family-owned and operated gem has garnered a loyal following for its inventive menu, casual atmosphere, and commitment to quality. Located at 196 E 17th St, The Crack Shack combines a laid-back vibe with culinary excellence, making it a must-visit spot for both locals and visitors.

The Crack Shack offers a welcoming, relaxed environment that’s perfect for families, friends, and solo diners alike. The open-air seating, rustic decor, and lively ambiance create an inviting space where patrons can enjoy delicious food without the frills. The restaurant provides various services, including dine-in, takeaway, and no-contact delivery, catering to diverse dining preferences and ensuring convenience for all customers.

The Crack Shack’s reputation as one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa is well-earned. Their dedication to using high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients, combined with innovative recipes, sets them apart from the competition. The friendly staff and family-oriented approach further enhance the dining experience, making each visit feel special.

Signature Dish:

The standout signature dish at The Crack Shack is undoubtedly the Coop Deville. This culinary masterpiece features a perfectly fried chicken breast, served on a brioche bun with pickled Fresno chilies, lime mayo, and napa cabbage slaw. The balance of crispy, juicy chicken with the tangy, spicy, and creamy elements makes it a must-try item. The attention to detail in preparation, from the marination to the frying process, ensures that each bite is packed with flavor.

3 Main Menu Items:

1. Firebird: This spicy fried chicken sandwich is a favorite among heat lovers. Topped with ranch, crispy onions, and pickles, the Firebird delivers a perfect kick of spice balanced by cooling elements. The chicken is marinated in a blend of spices, then double-fried to achieve an irresistible crunch.

2. Señor Croque: A delicious twist on the classic croque madame, this sandwich includes crispy chicken, bacon, fried egg, cheddar cheese, and miso-maple butter on a brioche bun. The rich, savory flavors meld together harmoniously, making it a top recommendation.

3. Deviled Eggs: These aren’t your average deviled eggs. The Crack Shack’s version is topped with French toast crumble, smoked paprika, and chives, creating a delightful blend of textures and flavors. This appetizer perfectly showcases their creative take on traditional dishes.

The Crack Shack’s unique qualities and exceptional dining experience solidify its place as a significant part of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. The combination of a warm, inviting atmosphere, a menu filled with innovative and flavorful dishes, and a commitment to quality makes this restaurant a standout choice. They are one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa.

Whether you’re in the mood for a quick takeaway, a leisurely dine-in meal, or a convenient no-contact delivery, The Crack Shack delivers an unforgettable culinary adventure that keeps customers coming back for more. They rank high with their popular Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa for good reasons.


Best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in CA - 2 Memphis Cafe

2. Memphis Cafe

Address >> 2920 Bristol St

Located in the heart of Costa Mesa, Memphis Cafe has carved out a niche as one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. This popular eatery, found at 2920 Bristol St, Suite B102, is celebrated for its Southern-inspired cuisine, warm atmosphere, and community-oriented approach. Though not family-owned, Memphis Cafe has maintained a close-knit, family-like environment among its staff and patrons, fostering a sense of belonging and comfort.

Memphis Cafe exudes a cozy, eclectic charm with its retro decor, featuring vintage posters, and rustic wooden accents. The ambiance is relaxed and inviting, making it a perfect spot for casual meals, intimate gatherings, and family outings. The restaurant offers a variety of services to meet the needs of its diverse clientele, including dine-in, takeaway, and no-contact delivery. This flexibility ensures that everyone can enjoy their delicious offerings, whether they prefer dining in or taking their meals to go.

Memphis Cafe’s status as one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa is attributed to its commitment to serving authentic, high-quality Southern cuisine with a modern twist. The restaurant’s use of fresh, locally-sourced ingredients and its innovative approach to classic dishes make it a standout in the local dining scene. The friendly, attentive service and the unique, inviting atmosphere further enhance the overall dining experience, ensuring that customers feel right at home.

Signature Dish:

The signature dish at Memphis Cafe is their Southern-Fried Chicken, a true testament to their culinary expertise. This dish features juicy, tender chicken coated in a perfectly seasoned, crispy batter, served with mashed potatoes, collard greens, and a side of gravy. The secret to its exceptional flavor lies in the meticulous preparation process, which includes marinating the chicken in buttermilk and spices before frying it to golden perfection. The result is a harmonious blend of flavors and textures that make this dish an absolute must-try.

3 Main Menu Items:

1. Memphis Gumbo: This rich, hearty gumbo is packed with chicken, sausage, shrimp, and okra, simmered in a savory, spiced broth. The slow-cooking process allows the flavors to meld together beautifully, creating a comforting and satisfying dish that’s a favorite among regulars.

2. Blackened Catfish: The blackened catfish at Memphis Cafe is a standout, featuring a perfectly seasoned fillet cooked to perfection. Served with dirty rice and seasonal vegetables, this dish offers a delightful mix of bold, smoky flavors and tender, flaky fish.

3. Jambalaya: A classic Southern dish, Memphis Cafe’s jambalaya is a flavorful medley of chicken, sausage, shrimp, and rice, all cooked in a rich, spicy tomato sauce. The balance of spices and the generous portions of meat make this a popular choice for those seeking a true taste of the South.

Memphis Cafe’s unique qualities and exceptional dining experience make it a significant part of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. The combination of a welcoming, cozy atmosphere, a menu filled with flavorful and innovative dishes, and a commitment to quality sets this restaurant apart. They truly are one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa.

Whether you’re looking for a casual meal, a place to gather with friends and family, or a convenient takeaway or delivery option, Memphis Cafe offers an unforgettable culinary journey that keeps customers coming back time and time again. They absolutely are one of the greatest Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa.


Best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in CA - 3 Eat Chow

3. Eat Chow

Address >> 1802 Newport Blvd

Tucked away at 1802 Newport Blvd, Eat Chow is a gem among the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. This cozy eatery has earned a devoted following for its eclectic menu, inviting atmosphere, and exceptional service. Family-owned and operated, Eat Chow combines a sense of homeliness with culinary innovation, making it a popular spot for both locals and visitors alike.

Eat Chow boasts a charming, intimate setting with a casual yet chic vibe. The interior is tastefully decorated with modern accents, providing a comfortable and stylish dining environment. The friendly staff and welcoming ambiance make it an ideal place for any occasion, from casual lunches to cozy dinners. The restaurant offers dine-in, takeaway, and no-contact delivery services, catering to the varied preferences and needs of its patrons.

Eat Chow’s reputation as one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa is well-deserved. The restaurant prides itself on using fresh, high-quality ingredients and crafting each dish with care and creativity. Their diverse menu, which includes a fusion of American, Mexican, and Asian influences, ensures that there’s something for everyone. The warm, attentive service and the cozy, inviting atmosphere further enhance the dining experience, making Eat Chow a standout choice in the area.

Signature Dish:

The Chow Burger is the signature dish at Eat Chow and a true culinary delight. This burger features a perfectly cooked beef patty topped with melted white cheddar, crispy bacon, fresh avocado, arugula, tomato, and a house-made aioli, all sandwiched between a soft brioche bun. The combination of flavors and textures – from the savory patty to the creamy avocado and the crisp bacon – makes this burger a must-try. The attention to detail in each component, including the freshly baked bun and the carefully selected toppings, sets this burger apart.

3 Main Menu Items:

1. Braised Short Rib Tacos: These tacos are a popular choice, featuring tender, flavorful braised short ribs topped with pickled onions, cilantro, and a zesty lime crema. The slow-braising process ensures the meat is succulent and rich, while the fresh toppings add a burst of brightness.

2. Truffle Mac and Cheese: A decadent twist on a classic comfort dish, this mac and cheese is made with a blend of gourmet cheeses and infused with truffle oil. The dish is baked to perfection, resulting in a creamy, indulgent experience with a delightful truffle aroma.

3. Ahi Tuna Salad: This refreshing salad combines seared ahi tuna with mixed greens, avocado, cucumber, and a tangy soy-ginger dressing. The perfectly seared tuna, paired with the crisp vegetables and flavorful dressing, makes it a light yet satisfying option.

Eat Chow’s unique qualities and exceptional dining experience solidify its place as a significant part of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa. The combination of a cozy, stylish atmosphere, a menu filled with inventive and delicious dishes, and a commitment to quality makes this restaurant a standout. They also are one of the best Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa.

Whether you’re in the mood for a hearty meal, a quick takeaway, or a convenient no-contact delivery, Eat Chow offers an unforgettable culinary experience that keeps customers returning for more. They deserve to be ranked high with their top Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants in Costa Mesa.


The Crack Shack, Memphis Cafe, and Eat Chow are prime examples of the best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants, each offering a unique and unforgettable dining experience. These featured restaurants are just a starting point in discovering the hidden culinary gems that Costa Mesa has to offer.

The best Costa Mesa Hole-in-the-Wall restaurants are known for their diverse flavors, cozy atmospheres, and dedication to quality, but they are just the tip of the iceberg. Costa Mesa is brimming with many more undiscovered establishments waiting to be explored.

We encourage you to venture beyond these highlighted spots and delve into the full depth of Costa Mesa’s vibrant food scene. Each visit promises a new adventure and a chance to experience the rich culinary diversity that defines this dynamic city. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, the ongoing discovery of these hidden gems will undoubtedly make your culinary journey in Costa Mesa a memorable one.


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