Westside Costa Mesa
Once the city’s industrial center, Westside Costa Mesa is a burgeoning neighborhood of unique restaurants, art studios and small businesses. The warehouses and garages that once housed boat builders and other businesses have been repurposed as restaurants and social spaces like 2145 Pizza, voted Best Pizza in OC, converted from a vacant gas station to create a beautiful open restaurant and bar.
No matter what you’re in the mood for, you’re be able to find it in this unsuspecting Costa Mesa neighborhood. You just might have to do a little digging. Try the Foodbeast approved Catalina Fish Kitchen, laid back Outpost Kitchen or classically authentic Mexican food with fresh, organic ingredients at Taco Mesa.
As the City of the Arts, Costa Mesa is full of artists and opportunities to take in their work – or even get your hands dirty yourself! Location 1980, a gallery and studio space, has exhibitions on view throughout the year, and Costa Mesa Ceramics is open to visitors and hosts classes.
While Westside Costa Mesa is home to more offices and warehouses of favorite brands like Hurley and Vestal, there’s still plenty of opportunity to shop! Or you can explore local small businesses at the Westside Market creative showcase on the 2nd Sunday each month.
Music & Nightlife
The visual arts aren’t the only to be found in Costa Mesa. The city has helped launch careers of dozens of big names as an incubator for Orange County’s local music community.
Over the course of the building's history, The Wayfarer's stage has hosted bands big and small including those like Modest Mouse, Cold War Kids and Young the Giant. These days, the small, laid back ambiance provides an intimate setting where you can hear from local and touring up-and-coming artists while grabbing a drink and bite to eat at the bar.
In addition to having a menu worthy of Foodbeast review, Boathouse Collective hosts live music nearly every night of the week in its unique space reinvented from the building’s days as a boat-building warehouse. From Tuesday’s Songwriters Circle and Warble Wednesday to rotating after-dinner entertainment, this is a hidden gem of Orange County.
If cozy and hip is what you’re hoping for, Casa is the perfect place to grab a “bespoke” seasonal cocktail and hear live music. The intimate venue provides the perfect opportunity to get up close and personal with local performers and DJs. Casa hosts everything from folksy trios to electronic DJs, so be sure to check the calendar!