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Dining Guide for Families in Orange County

It’s Not Your Typical Pizza Place at the Pizza Lounge

We dined as a guest of the restaurant

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I’ve driven past the Pizza Lounge a dozen times and never thought to stop in to see what it was all about until recently. A friend of mine kept posting pictures of delicious dishes on her social media network that perked my interest. I kept asking her where the hidden dining gem is that she kept frequenting; she told me it was the Pizza Lounge in Laguna Niguel. Since I’ve never seen a pizza place craft-up such culinary masterpieces I had to bring my husband with me to dinner to taste the food for myself.

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When we first walked into the restaurant, we discovered a hip yet family-friendly dining environment. There is a large square bar in the center of the restaurant, multiple high top tables and semi-private booths along the walls. There was a mix of singles, couples, and families all dining in the upscale restaurant.

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When my eyes first glanced over the menu, my taste buds danced with delight. They offer a wide variety of custom pizzas, salads, appetizers and signature dishes. We started our night by sharing a plate of their calamari, ahi tuna tartare, chicken wings and brie and fig flatbread (that’s right – brie flatbread).

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The brie and fig flatbread boasted bold flavors that would satisfy even the most discerning diner, and the ahi tuna tartare was fresh, light and delicious. The calamari tasted just like traditional calamari, but it was the French aioli sauce that made it unique. The chef at The Pizza Lounge makes the homemade aioli sauce for all the restaurants, and it made eating calamari more enjoyable than ever before. While chicken wings have never been my go-to appetizer, my husband couldn’t get enough of them.

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My husband started his main course with a cup of creamy clam chowder followed by a sausage and pepperoni pizza. With my husband growing up working at Original Pizza in Newport Beach for all of his teenage years, he has become quite the pizza connoisseur. Within a blink of an eye, he had savored every last bite of the artisan pizza giving it rave reviews.

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While my husband enjoyed his crispy pizza piled high with fresh ingredients, I was in the mood for a little seafood. I ordered the shrimp scampi expecting the shrimp to come on a bed of al dente noodles and instead the shrimp was served with a mound of mashed potatoes. While I was not expecting the dish to be served in this style, I really enjoyed it, and will attempt to order shrimp scampi with mashed potatoes again. Keep in mind that guests dining at the restaurant do have the option of ordering the shrimp scampi with noodles or mashed potatoes – just let your server know.

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Finally, we were in for a big treat when the chef brought out a sampling of all his desserts. As many of our readers know that I am not a big dessert lover, I couldn’t help but savor every bite of the vanilla creme brûlée. It was the Nutella chocolate pizza that we decided to save until the next time we dine at The Pizza Lounge.

Families can save big on their meal when dining during their happy hour from 3pm-6pm and 9pm-11pm. It is Sunday Funday at The Pizza Lounge with Happy Hour all day and Wine Wednesday featuring half off bottles of wine all day.

There are two locations:

Huntington Beach
301 Main Street
Huntington Beach, 92648
(714) 374-0200

Laguna Niguel
29971 Alicia Pkwy
Laguna Niguel, 92677
(949) 495-1453

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