Friday, November 20, 2009

Haven Gastropub: Not your Ordinary Pub!

A Gastropub (noun): a British term for a public house that specializes in serving high-quality food.
Located in beautiful Old Towne Orange, at first glance Haven Gastropub would appear to be like any other pub: loud and fun atmosphere with large screen televisions outfitting the joint, and booths and bistro tables scattered comfortalbly throughout the room. But take a closer look: Haven isn't your average pub serving average pub food. Sure their menu offers ribs, hamburgers and fries, but each of their dishes goes above and beyond the ordinary. Cordon Bleu-trained chef, Greg Daniels strives to create a truly uniqe twist on the average pub faire.
I was lucky enough to to have lunch here with my Orange County sales rep, Dave McPhillips, and even more luckily I had a craving for a big, juicy burger. So I ordered the Havenburger, a house specialty that was recommended to me by the chef, as well as owners Wil Dee and Jeff Hall. Upon serving my burger was not only beautifully presented, it was also one of the best burgers I've ever eaten! The Havenburger is served with pickeled red onions, roasted red bell peppers, wild arugula and St. Agur cheese, and as a side I opted for the harvest pear salad- with pecorino cheese, rum soaked golden raisins, mesclun and a pear vinaigrette. I devoured every last morsel, which unfortunately left me too full for dessert, but believe me I'll be back for more!
Although I was already quite full, Dave gave me a taste of his pulled pork sandwich, with homemade BBQ sauce, warm apple cabbage and port salut cheese. His order came with a side of fries, which were perfectly seasoned and served with homemade ketchup! I'll admit it was a bit difficult to continue the word day after such a satiating lunch, but somehow we made it through, ending the day with a sales trip to Disneyland. It's a tough job but someone has to do it!
Haven Gastropub is open Monday-Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. with entrees ranging from $10-$20. Visit them at 190 S. Glassell St., Old Towne Orange, CA. 714-221-0680.
From left: chef Greg Daniels, owners Wil Dee, Jeff Hall and Ace Patel

Havenburger and harvest pear salad...amazing!

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