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Dining Guide for Families in Orange County

Oak Grill at the Island Hotel

We dined as a guest of Oak Grill

Families are invited to have an epicurean experience at the all-new Oak Grill at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach. Earlier this summer, we had a sneak peek of the cuisine that is being served at the new restaurant, and we have been craving a return for more.



We started the night enjoying drinks and appetizers from Aqua Lounge before having a poolside dinner hosted by Oak Grill. The tasting began with a tandoori spiced tuna tartare with Asian pears, avocado, cucumber and curry oil. The dish was light, refreshing and perfect to enjoy on a summer afternoon while basking in the cool ocean breezes on the patio of Oak Grill.


Next, we tried the Heirloom tomato “BLT” Panzanella. The dish was presented in a small mason jar that was filled with crispy pork belly (my favorite) avocado and field greens. Although this is not a kid-friendly dish, I would recommend this when dining for a date night.


The highlight of the evening was the Seared Maine Diver Scallops with heirloom beans, capers and stewed baby tomatoes. Scallops can go either way; either cooked perfectly or mediocre. For a dinner where they were serving multiple dishes of scallops, they were cooked spot-on. That was a sign that when ordering the scallops during dinner service, that guests can know that their dish will be perfectly cooked.

The scallops were paired with a glass of Chateau Montelena Chardonnay.


The scallops were followed by a Chilean Sea Bass with cranberry quinoa, peas and a carrot puree. The sea bass melted in my mouth, and the cranberries in the quinoa were an unexpected surprise, and boasted the flavor profile of the fish.


Dinner was complete with the braised short ribs served with Anson Mills blue corn grits, portobello mushrooms and bordelaise sauce. The rich dish was perfectly paired with a glass of Justin Isosceles Bordeaux Blend.


We ended the evening over a slice of rocky road bar. The Gianduka chocolate mousse was topped with marshmallow and crispy rice pearls.

Oak Grill is perfect for a family dinner or date night. Expand on your visit to Oak Grill by planning a family staycation at the Island Hotel. Oak Grill is located inside of the Island Hotel at 690 Newport Center Drive in Newport Beach.

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