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Dining Guide for Families in Orange County

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Quick and Delicious Dinner at Pizza 90

Posted by on Jul 2, 2016 in Italian, Reviews | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue As a busy mom, I am always looking for a new place for fast and delicious dinner. After a busy day driving the kids to all their activities and working, I wasn’t in the mood for cooking, so we tried Pizza 90 in Irvine for the first time. What I loved the most about Pizza 90 was how quick and easy it was to order our dinner. We walked right up to the counter where we could see them making pizzas with fresh ingredients. Plus, all the pizzas are personal size so everyone in my family could get their pizzas personalized to be just what their taste buds were craving. A 3rd generation craftsman oven builder in Napoli, Italy, created the oven used at Pizza 90. The pizzas are made in just 90 seconds in a 900-degree oven, so dinner is on the table within minutes after ordering. We started our dinner by sharing a market salad featuring baby spring mix, pears, apples, gorgonzola, and toasted walnuts tossed with a honey champagne dressing. The salad was light, fresh, and delicious. Then is was time for the best part – the pizza! My favorite was the Pesto Geno pizza. It features a delicious pesto sauce, mozzarella, balsamic...

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Sensational Seafood at Market Broiler

Posted by on Jul 1, 2016 in Reviews, Seafood | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue I love seafood, and I love that my children share the same love for seafood even more. On the last day of school, I took my older son for lunch at Market Broiler at The Outlets at Orange to celebrate him graduating middle school. Before sitting down for lunch together, we spent a couple of hours finding some great fashion deals at the outlet stores. When we arrived at the restaurant, I was immediately in love. The restaurant is large and features many semi-private booths that make for a perfect intimate family dining experiences. While we were looking at the wide variety of seafood options, a loaf of warm bread arrived at our table. The bread was soft, hot and fresh from the oven. We started our lunch with a plate of delicious crab wontons. The plate was beautifully decorated and came with a generous serving of wontons. Inside of each crispy wonton shell was fresh crab meat, and they were paired perfectly with the Thai dipping sauce. For the main course, we were having so much trouble deciding what to order. There are so many delicious seafood options that made it hard to make a choice. Finally, my son decided to order the fresh fish...

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Urban Produce Opens 100% Organic Farm Store

Posted by on Jun 30, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Urban Produce, Irvine’s organic indoor vertical farm, will host the Grand Opening of their Farm Store on Saturday, July 9 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Acting as a weekly pop up shop, the Urban Produce Farm Store will be the first on-site retail addition to their indoor growing facility in Irvine, CA. Chefs and consumers alike will be able to find a variety USDA-certified organic produce at wholesale pricing. The majority of items at the Urban Produce...

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Farmers Market to Table Dinner

Posted by on Jun 29, 2016 in Events, Farmer's Markets | 0 comments

  Orange Home Grown Farmers & Artisans Market is collaborating with local Chefs in Orange County to present the inaugural “Farmers Market to Table Dinner” at 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 27th at the historic Villa Park Orchards Packinghouse (304 N. Cypress Avenue in Orange, location of the Orange Home Grown Farmers & Artisans Market). Proceeds from tickets to the event will support operations and management of the new Orange Home Grown Education Farm in Old Towne Orange, which...

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CPK Fresh and Seasonal Summer Menu

Posted by on Jun 29, 2016 in American, Reviews | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of CPK The best part about summer is all the sweet, fresh, seasonal foods that are available. Because of the abundant variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables, restaurants around Orange County are adding delicious seasonal menu items. California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) is one of our favorite places to bring the family for dinner because of their diverse menu and family-friendly ambiance. When I first learned that they were adding seasonal summer menu items, I...

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Team Behind Driftwood Kitchen and The Deck on Laguna introduce Hendrix

Posted by on Jun 17, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Sentinel Restaurant & Hospitality Group, the team behind Driftwood Kitchen and The Deck on Laguna Beach concepts, will introduce their newest restaurant in Orange County, Hendrix, at the Ocean Ranch Village in Laguna Niguel (32431 Golden Lantern, Laguna Niguel). Hendrix Restaurant will be the newest restaurant to join Shea Properties’ Ocean Ranch Village, the popular neighborhood center located at the corner of Avion and Golden Lantern. This neighborhood restaurant will offer a style of cuisine that reflects the...

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ADYA’s 2nd Annual Curry Festival

Posted by on Jun 15, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  This month, ADYA Executive Chef/Owner Shachi Mehra introduces four weeks of special curries in an effort to highlight India’s regional culinary styles and provide guests with a delicious, in-depth look at India’s culinary diversity. The curries will feature ingredients and styles of cooking unique to each region, from coconut and curry leaves, to poppy seeds and mustard. ADYA will journey through India as guests are invited to explore various curries. The following specials will be offered during ADYA’s...

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Angels Home Game Prix-Fixe at Anaheim White House

Posted by on Jun 15, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Anaheim White House is offering a special prix-fixe menu​ from 5-6pm on the evenings of​ Angels home games​. $35.00 per person plus tax & gratuity Reservations required. Must mention the special when making reservation. Appetizer Cheese Ravioli — Ravioli studded with a combination of Italian cheeses in a porcini mushroom sauce Salad Contemporary Greens — Baby mescaline greens tossed with passion fruit-ginger vinaigrette served in a rice paper basket Entree (choice of) Filet Gorgonzola — Filet mignon oven...

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Mimi’s Chicken Under a Brick is Back

Posted by on Jun 15, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Mimi’s, the popular neighborhood café offering French-inspired American comfort food, is bringing back a guest favorite and offering a new Coconut Cream Slab Pie for the summer. Beginning today through mid-September, Mimi’s guests can enjoy Chicken Under a Brick, fire-grilled half chicken cooked “under a brick” for crisp, crackling golden brown skin with juicy breast, wing and leg meat in two flavors, starting at $16.49: · Cowboy Rub Brick Chicken – brick chicken with flavors of rich, smoky...

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Tour de Fork Culinary Event

Posted by on Jun 14, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Victoria Gardens has secured yet another impressive set of restaurants, breweries and wineries as they invite locals to experience the very best of the Inland Empire culinary scene at the fourth annual Tour De Fork event, which will take place on Thursday, June 23, 2016, from 5:30 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Ticket-holders will make their way, bite-by-bite and sip-by-sip, through a delectable assortment of dishes and drinks from over 18 local establishments with all ticket proceeds benefitting the...

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Mezzet Mediterranean Cuisine Debuts at South Coast Plaza

Posted by on Jun 14, 2016 in Dining News | 0 comments

  The plates are small but the fresh and bold tastes are large at the new Mezzet Mediterranean Cuisine, which is the latest addition to South Coast Plaza’s dynamic dining scene. The restaurant, which opened June 9, has a relaxed coastal vibe and it located in the Crate and Barrel/Macy’s Home Store Wing. Named for the wide array of Middle Eastern small plates called mezze, the tantalizing flavors of the Mediterranean can be enjoyed in an airy bar, on...

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ASID’s Wine + Design Event at SOCO Collection

Posted by on Jun 13, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  You’re invited to explore SOCO’s premier design showrooms and view stunning vignettes designed by top interior designers at ASID’s Wine + Design Event at SOCO Collection in Costa Mesa on Wednesday, June 15, 2016! Orange County’s top ASID (American Society of Interior Designers) designers will create innovative window vignettes at SOCO’s design showrooms, highlighting the latest trends in interiors and home décor. On the progressive tour featuring Farrow & Ball, Calligaris OC, Roche Bobois, HD Buttercup, DWR, Stark,...

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Hoag Hospital Foundation Summer Classic

Posted by on Jun 13, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Celebrating its 29th year, the Hoag Summer Classic will feature live musical performances by The Chicago Experience and The Doobie Experience. The annual event, expected to attract thousands of Hoag donors and friends will be held at 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, June 29, 2016, at the gorgeous Newport Dunes, 1131 Back Bay Drive in Newport Beach. Hoag Hospital Foundation and the 552 Club are collaborating with more than 30 of the finest restaurants in Orange County to host an...

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OC Meets Napa & Baja Culinary Event

Posted by on Jun 13, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  AltaMed, California’s largest community health organization, is excited to announce the return of OC Meets Napa & Baja on Saturday, July 16th after a successful inaugural event in 2015. The second annual fundraiser, held in San Juan Capistrano, will bring Latino chefs from Orange Country and Baja together with Latino-owned wineries from Napa and Baja for a unique celebration of culture and flavor. Proceeds from all ticket sales will go toward supporting the essential health programs AltaMed spearheads...

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Honey & Butter Opens at The Irvine Spectrum Center

Posted by on Jun 8, 2016 in American, Dessert | 0 comments

  Honey & Butter, makers of adorable and wildly popular cartoon character macarons, opened its first brick-and-mortar location at Irvine Spectrum Center. Honey & Butter’s specialty macarons are crafted in distinctive macaron shells that are shaped into assorted character forms. The intricately detailed creatures vary daily and span a variety of themes, from pandas and underwater sea creatures to delectable homages to characters from popular culture, including Harry Potter, Star Wars and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The...

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Huntington Beach’s Asian FlavorFest – Wokcano

Posted by on Jun 8, 2016 in Asian | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue I always enjoy the prospect of a dinner out, especially when it’s sushi, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese. Basically any Asian cuisine and you can count me in. And as much as I love to cook, I never feel as if the effort I put in to making a great Asian dish compares to the flavors I can get out. So I was happy to receive an invite to try the recently opened...

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Southeast Asian Street Food Culinary Event

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel presents a culinary evening showcasing Southeast Asian Street Food on Friday, June 24, 2016. The experience is presented from 6 to 9 p.m. on The Dana Lawn overlooking the Pacific Ocean and is $85 per person, inclusive of tax and gratuity. Southeast Asia is known for its astonishing array of delicious street food. Executive Chef Brian Sundeen garnered his inspiration for the evening’s tasting menu from these roadside carts where many of the region’s...

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Healthy Summer Dining at Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in American | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue Summertime makes us want to play outside and spend less time in the kitchen, which leads us to look for healthier choices when eating out. On a recent evening, we were a guest at Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s new location in Mission Viejo to try a few items from their menu of wraps, bowls and flatbreads. We loved their slogan of “Eat Better, Feel Better” when we arrived. We were in the...

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Square One Pizza in Irvine

Posted by on Jun 6, 2016 in Featured, Italian | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue There is something special about a restaurant that is run by a mom and a dad with small children. I feel that when a family opens a restaurant during one of their busiest (and hardest) parenting phases that their entire family pours their heart and soul into the restaurant. I found this to be true when meeting the owners of a new local pizza place in Irvine called Square One Pizza....

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National Doughnut Day: FREE poqetDONUTS

Posted by on Jun 2, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Irvine-based poqetDONUTS, the first doughnut shop in Orange County to offer custom doughnuts alongside signature gourmet creations, will be celebrating National Doughnut Day on Friday, June 3 with an incredible deal fit to satisfy any craving. The first 100 guests to pay them a visit that morning at 6 a.m. will have the opportunity to enjoy a complimentary Classic Glazed doughnut. Guests will be able to choose from their house-made vanilla, strawberry, maple or chocolate glazes (while supplies...

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Bistango Gardens: Spanish Wednesdays

Posted by on Jun 2, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  If summer isn’t already expected to see temperatures rise, Bistango Gardens, the hidden alfresco dining area adjoining the critically acclaimed restaurant by the same name, is sure to heat things up with the debut of Spanish Wednesdays starting June 8. Each week from 5 – 9 p.m., the Irvine restaurant will serve up pequeña paella ($12) and sangria ($7) (tax & gratuity not included) as flamenco music fills the night air. Space is limited. Executive Chef Timothy Doolittle...

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A Patio With a View At Bluewater Grill Redondo Beach

Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Reviews, Seafood | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue There are few things I appreciate more than enjoying seafood and sipping a cocktail while overlooking a fantastic view. On a recent beautiful evening, we were invited to check out Bluewater Grill’s newly renovated patio and restaurant in Redondo Beach. Living in San Clemente, it’s been a while since I’ve been to Bluewater Grill in Redondo and I was really curious as to what they would have in store with their...

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$2.15 Burger Fridays at TAPS Fish House

Posted by on May 26, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  TAPS Fish House & Brewery in Irvine will celebrate its first anniversary by serving the TAPS Signature Burger for $2.15 every Friday in June with purchase of any beverage. TAPS Burger is a hefty 8 ounce blend of aged choice Angus chuck, short rib and brisket, cooked to guest’s preference, and layered with sharp cheddar cheese, red onion, tomato, pickle, remoulade, butter lettuce. It’s served on a toasted brioche bun with TAPS garlic parsley fries. The anniversary special,...

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Sapphire Laguna Spring Wine Dinner

Posted by on May 23, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Sapphire Laguna bids farewell to Spring with a special Wine Dinner this Wednesday, May 25th at 6 p.m. with Steinbeck Vineyards & Winery. A limited number of seats are available for this dinner with Steinbeck, a boutique, family owned & operated winery in the heart of California’s Central Coast. The Steinbeck family has been farming on the same picturesque land since 1884 and their ancestors were pioneers in many aspects of the trade, including farming wine grapes of...

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Taste of Santa Ana

Posted by on May 23, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

  MainPlace Mall invites local foodies to attend Taste of Santa Ana, an annual food and hospitality event presented by The Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce, featuring a delicious array of food tastings from area restaurants, beer and wine sampling, photo booth from Happy Photos, and live entertainment by the SMITH DUO and DJ Paul-Dean Martin. Participating hotels, restaurants and wine and beer brands include: Applebee’s, Boudin SF, California Pizza Kitchen, Chick-fil-A, Corner Bakery Café, Dog Haus, Katsi, Laguna...

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Old Vine Café: The Real Italy Cooking Workshop

Posted by on May 17, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

  Chef and owner of the beloved Old Vine Café, Mark McDonald, has made internationally influenced cuisine a hallmark at his Costa Mesa eatery. On the heels of his return, from leading two culinary tours of South and North Italy, McDonald will be sharing his expertise in regional Italian cooking this June and July. On Sunday, July 10th, McDonald, along with Chef John Nocita of the Italian Culinary Institute, will be presenting a workshop called, The Real Italy, which...

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Mother’s Day at Mimi’s

Posted by on May 4, 2016 in American, Events, Holidays, Reviews | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue There are only a few restaurants in Orange County that cater to multiple generations like Mimi’s Cafe. Mimi’s is a dining destination where my children and my grandma would all enjoy a flavorful meal in a family-friendly environment. It has always been one of my go-to restaurants for multi-generational family celebrations, and it’s a perfect place for families to celebrate Mother’s Day together this year. Since we are going to be...

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38th Annual Greek Festival Brings a Taste of Greece to Orange County

Posted by on May 3, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Orange County’s 38th annual “A Taste of Greece” festival will be held on June 24-26 at St. Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church. More than 12,000 guests are expected to attend the three-day festival, which will feature traditional Greek cuisine and pastries, wine tasting, live music, church tours, authentic Greek dancing with lessons, and boutique booths reminiscent of the Plaka, a well-known picturesque historical neighborhood of Athens. Festival hours are 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, June 24; noon...

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Fresh Brothers – Fresh Thinking Fresh Pizza

Posted by on May 2, 2016 in Italian, Reviews | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue When brothers Adam and Scott decided to open up a pizza joint, they wanted it to be different; they wanted it to be fresh, and created Fresh Brothers Pizza. The minute that guests bite into their food, they can immediately tell the difference from their food and that of their competitors. From salads to wings, mini meatball sandwiches to pies, they take pride in their cuisine and are serious about keeping...

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Sip and Savor at the 2016 Great Wine Festival

Posted by on Apr 21, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  The Great Wine Festival blends the OC lifestyle with the wine country experience. Every year, wine lovers and foodies alike enjoy an afternoon of relaxation, decadent food, superb tastings, and live entertainment. Conveniently located at the heart of Orange County, the event will take place in the newly renovated Hangar 244 at the OC Great Park, the first great metropolitan park of the 21st century. Citrus plantings, native shade trees, and the iconic Great Park Balloon serve as...

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The Ecology Center’s 8th Annual Green Feast Farm-to-Table Dinner

Posted by on Apr 20, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  For the first time, Chef Alice Waters will be hosting The Ecology Center’s farm-to-table fundraiser, Green Feast, on June 18th at The Ecology Center in San Juan Capistrano (32701 Alipaz Street). Recognized as the “mother of the farm-to-table movement,” Waters has been an avid leader of the sustainable food effort. She pioneered the concept of eating locally and seasonally, launched Chez Panisse, one of the most renowned restaurants in the world, and created the national initiative, The Edible...

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Luna Grill Fresh Spring Menu

Posted by on Apr 20, 2016 in Best of OC, Events, Featured, Mediterranean | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue I was recently introduced to Luna Grill, and it has become my go-to place for eating out on Tuesday evenings because of their kids eat free night. Our family of five can get more than enough food (often with leftovers) for less than $20 on Tuesday nights. The modern family dining destination just keeps getting better as they recently introduced some fresh and delicious spring menu items. When dining at Luna...

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Fig & Olive Welcomes Spring With New Menu

Posted by on Apr 19, 2016 in Dining News, Reviews | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue Spring. It’s finally here. Though Orange County leaves very little to complain about weather wise even in winter, there’s an uplifted feeling of relief I get when the days become longer. Everything feels freer and happier. Even the food goes from earthy and heavy to lighter and brighter. Bring on the citrus flavors and fresh spring vegetables… Fig & Olive sure has! And a few of us were fortunate enough to...

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Chef Azmin Ghahreman Takes His Globally Inspired Cuisine into the Workplace

Posted by on Apr 17, 2016 in Dining News, Events | 0 comments

  Internationally renowned Chef Azmin Ghahreman has redefined dining in the workplace with the introduction of Masimo Technology Café by Sapphire, which brings fresh, flavorful meals to the international headquarters of Masimo, an Irvine-based medical technology company. For the past 2 years, Chef Azmin has worked on designing a state-of-the-art kitchen that opened at the Masimo headquarters on Monday, March 28th. He and his Sapphire at Work™ culinary team serve 500 employees daily. Those familiar with Chef Azmin’s cuisine...

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The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar Introduces Sunday Brunch

Posted by on Apr 16, 2016 in Dining News, Events, Featured | 0 comments

  The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar will introduce a new Sunday Brunch at its waterfront location in Newport Beach (3131 W. Coast Highway), beginning Sunday, April 17th from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Executive Chef Yvon Goetz will present a brunch menu that will change weekly and consist of dishes such as Zinfandel Braised Beef Shortrib Hash & Fried Eggs with duck fat-roasted fingerling potatoes and roasted cauliflower; and Almond Croissant Crème Brulee French Toast with fresh berries,...

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