Every once in a while I find myself out in the OC when starvation sets in. Usually in those situations I drive past the quickserve chains and back into the 'Ville to find something to eat. But I've found a few hidden treasures before, and Gustavo's Mexican Grill is definitely one of them.
Today was the second time I've been to Gustavo's and I've thoroughly enjoyed it both times. It's in a fairly new building, and the atmosphere is warm and inviting. It's the kind of place you have to know is there or you would never find it.
We were served chips and salsa when we sat down, and we ordered a small queso to go with our chips. The chips were unusually fresh and crispy-truly delightful. Then I ordered a shrimp taco salad and my husband ordered shrimp cocktail. Both dishes were unique-not like similar items at other restaurants. My shrimp taco salad came in a crispy taco shell and was full of sauteed shrimp, peppers, and onions with fresh guacamole and all the trimmings. It was the perfect size for lunch. My husband's shrimp cocktail was beautiful and tasty, while being very different from the shrimp cocktail we're used to.
After we were finished with our meals we decided to split a dessert, and the fried plantains sounded perfect. Our plate was filled with perfectly fried sweet plantains with whipped cream and two dollops of vanilla ice cream. The whole plate was drizzled with caramel sauce and there were two cherries on top. It was as delicious as it was beautiful.
The service at Gustavo's was excellent. Multiple servers stopped by to ask us whether we needed anything.
Even for our veritable seafood feast, we still got out of there under $40. I highly recommend giving Gustavo's a try. I also have it on good authority that Thursdays are Ladies' Night and Margaritas are 99 cents. Enjoy!
Photos Courtesy of Maggie Kimberl
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