Where: 14376 Culver Dr, Irvine, 92606
How Much: $5-10
Hours: Mon-Thu, Sun 8 am-9 pm Fri-Sat 8 am-10 pm
This past summer, Bruxie, a Southern California waffle joint, opened another branch in our very own city of Irvine.
The growing company currently has six branches scattered around SoCal, the closest ones being in Orange and Huntington Beach. Personally, I’ve been to two: the one in Orange, and the one in Brea. The two had very different atmospheres about them; Orange had an “old time, hole-in-the-wall” feel while Brea felt a lot more upscale and retained a more modern quality to it. So when I visited the newest one in the Irvine Heritage Plaza, right by the 5 and Culver, I was very curious as to what they would make it look like.
Bruxie is a new chain that’s popping around SoCal, whose popularity stems mainly from its use of the Belgian waffle. By combining the waffle with different meats and combinations, Bruxie has created an unusual, but yummy, entrée that has drawn crowds throughout SoCal.
They have things ranging from chicken and waffles, burgers in waffles, pastrami and waffles and even green eggs and ham in waffles. It’s a great place to go if you’re craving something “different.”
Now, the new branch in Irvine had pretty much the same choices as when I last visited Bruxie, so there was no real difference between what seemed to be offered there and some other branch in terms of food, though they did have a “daily special.” So instead of really focusing on how the actual food was since I already knew it was good, I decided to focus more on the experience you would get if you went, and if it was worth the drive.
First off, one of the things I noticed was the atmosphere. You can’t enjoy food if the place you’re eating doesn’t sit right with you. Luckily for Bruxie, this wasn’t a problem. The place felt very open and spacious, half of the walls having the option to be rolled up much like our very own Pippin in Middle Earth. This gave the place a very relaxed and comfortable atmosphere, where you could just sit and shoot the breeze with a friend.
The employees were joking around and singing, and were very helpful not only to myself but to all the customers that came in, handing out menus, suggesting things to eat and overall making the place feel great. The building seemed prepared for any sort of weather, hot or cold, so you’ll never have to brave extreme weather to grab a bite to eat like you would at the location in Orange.
The place was also very accessible, as if it was built to accommodate all types of people; they had hand sanitizer dispensers on the walls, booster seats for kids and even doggie treats by the entrance. They were also very accommodating, asking for my name and bringing my food to my table. And best of all, they had restrooms (unlike the Orange location)!
But probably the most important thing you want to know about is the price: is it worth it or not? While it’s not as much of a penny saver as McDonald’s, it’s still a manageable price. I got a Bruxie burger with fries and water for only $10.21. A soda would have made it $2 more, and a refill of said soda would be another dollar, so it’s not entirely cheap, but you could do worse, especially in Irvine.
If I was to compare this place to the other two I had been to, for those of you who’ve visited the chain before, I would say it is closest in style and appearance to the location in Brea. It is very different from the one in Orange, and in a couple good ways.
The one in Orange is located right across from Chapman University in a shack smaller than the place where M&M Donuts operates out of. It only has outside seating with a small number of seats which means not only are you hovering for seats just like you do in Brandywine, but you have to deal with whatever weather Mother Nature decides to grace you with.
Also, since it’s right across the street from Chapman (literally), you are stuck trying to find street parking in a highly populated area. The new branch in Irvine is located right in the middle of a shopping and dining plaza, so there are plenty of parking spots and it’s very easy to navigate.
Overall, I’m very glad that they’ve opened up a Bruxie closer to UCI than before, and with better accommodations. Not only is the food fun to eat and experiment with, but the experience here is a lot more comfortable than the one in Orange (though if you’re looking for that “hole-in-the-wall” feel, then by all means, go to the one in Orange, cause it’s perfect).
And if you’ve never heard of Bruxie or had the chance to try it, then you don’t have an excuse now! Go eat!