Food & Drink

Santa Ana’s dining scene is as diverse and inclusive as its community. Whether you’re in the mood to embark on a taco crawl or treat yourself to an evening of fine dining, you’ll want to dive fork first into our dynamic food and drink scene.

Places to Eat & Drink in Santa Ana, CA

You’ll find no shortage of diverse restaurants in town for every meal of the day. Bird & Barrel is a popular go-to spot for lunch or dinner, serving poultry-centric cuisine with Asian fusion delicacies, like the stir-fried noodles and chicken katsu sandwiches — among other rotating creations. Sariñana’s Tamale Factory has served the community for over seven decades and serves tacos, burritos, and, its main attraction, tamales.

Café Cultura takes pride in its delicious offerings infused with Mexican heritage. Try anything from their collection of specialty drinks and bites with unique flavors — such as the Horchata Latte or Churro Waffle. Cultura is just one of many local coffee and tea shops.

Plant-Based Pride

The eclectic, bohemian-feeling Den Cafe is a longstanding Santa Ana establishment having self-proclaimed itself as Orange County's original "alternative" cafe. It’s both a coffee house and a full-service restaurant with a space for live music and entertainment. Den Cafe is a safe space if you’re seeking healthy, vegetarian, and vegan options for breakfast or want to sip on a coffee or an afternoon cocktail. 

If you’re vegan, you’ll enjoy a trip to the women-owned La Vegana Mexicana, serving fresh, plant-based Mexican dishes using house-made, plant-based ingredients (without the use of mock meats, soy, or processed ingredients!) — such as the burrito, filled with house-made "chorizo" and potato, white rice, and black beans.

Elevated Dining Experiences 

Dinner at Omakase by Gino (OMG) isn’t just a meal — it’s an entire experience of the freshest nigiri, sashimi, and sushi. This highly coveted dining destination only seats 10 people at a time and books up quickly, so be sure to set the alarm to reserve your spot. 

Native Son’s dog-friendly outdoor rooftop patio is always a crowd favorite for watching the sunset or people-watching. The casual, upbeat atmosphere pairs well with the wide selection of bites, curated cocktails, and nearly two dozen rotating taps of craft beer, seltzers, and ciders. 

Perla Mexican Cuisine takes you on an authentic culinary journey with its vibrant and inviting atmosphere. Their focus on traditional Mexican flavors, enhanced by long family recipes and traditions, is truly unique. A memorable dining experience whether you're a seasoned Mexican cuisine lover or new to the flavors.

For Groups & Beer Lovers

Planning a large get-together? Find plenty of group dining options like Wursthaus, offering community-style tables and a menu featuring hearty, satisfying hand-made sausages with 20 German and Belgian-style draught beers. For a variety of cuisines to satisfy every palate, check out local food halls like 4th Street Market or McFadden Public Market.

For those 21-plus, grab a seat at the table of any of our local breweries, pubs, and distilleries. Spirits lovers will enjoy an evening at Blinking Owl Distillery, the first craft distillery in Orange County, which produces vodka, gin, whiskey, and aquavit. For a little bit of everything, hit up the city’s oldest bar, Club 616, where you'll find a modern setting and diverse menu filled with craft cocktails, beers, and non-alcoholic beverages.

Eat & Drink in Santa Ana


Santa Ana, a community rich in culture offers authentic Hispanic flavors. Steamed tamales. Rich…

Best Tacos

Orange County Register  restaurant critic Brad A. Johnson broke down the top 50 places to…

Foodie Stories

Food & Drink

Tacos for Days

  • 1 minute read

By Greg Nagel Tacos aren't just for Tuesdays in Santa Ana. No matter what day of…

Jon food quote