* Click here for rating key
Five Crowns Restaurant Review: An English cottage exterior gives way to an interior with a newfound sense of vibrancy, brought about by brighter illumination, a lightened furniture scheme and an emphasis on the elegant patio. Executive chef Steve Kling brings the type of forward-thinking acumen that is necessary and welcomed at this OC landmark that could otherwise get away with coasting on past laurels. Starters of crispy pork belly with strawberry jam and salmon tartare showcase his skill in creating complex flavors and textures. Modern mains such as the crispy Jidori chicken and the juicy grilled Berkshire pork chop further display the level of craftsmanship. Of course, the restaurant’s prime rib is still offered with the traditional trimmings, as are winning takes on old-school classics like the beef steak Neptune with crab and asparagus. A rotating assortment of desserts, lemon buttermilk steam cake to a dark chocolate soufflé, is prepared with care. The first-rate list of globally sourced wines is deep yet accessible. And as with any good old English building, a resident ghost reportedly stirs up trouble on the second floor.