Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.

News for Restaurants in Orange County, CA
December 2013 Archive

Search / Openings / Closings / Chef Shuffle / News Bytes / Culinary Events / Wine Dinners / Sign up for our free, monthly newsletter / News Archive

RESTAURANT NEWS


Openings

BLK Burgrz (pronounced “black burgers”) is now open in Ladera Ranch. The casual South Orange County restaurant features contemporary American small plates and full menu items with an emphasis on burgers and sliders made with American Wagyu and Kobe-style beef, served tableside. The venue also features a full wine list, handcrafted cocktails and craft beer selections from local breweries. BLK Burgrz, Mercantile East Shopping Center, 27742 Antonio Pkwy, Ste 7, Ladera Ranch, CA 92694, 949-429-6666.
 
Downtown Santa Ana’s ever burgeoning dining scene is slated to welcome El Mercado Modern Cuisine in Spring 2014. The restaurant is the brainchild of Danny Godinez, chef/owner of the popular and acclaimed dining venue Anepalco’s Café, and promises to feature contemporary takes on classic regional Mexican cuisine, along with a full bar serving up craft cocktails. Dinner nightly. El Mercado Modern Cuisine, 301 N. Spurgeon St., Santa Ana, CA 92701, No phone available.
 
Fig & Olive has opened in Newport Beach Fig & Olive, the Mediterranean restaurant with locations in New York and West Hollywood, opened a Fashion Island branch. It occupies its own structure with limestone stucco walls and olive trees. Executive chef Pascal Lorange's menu features shareable small plates (e.g. fig-Gorgonzola tartlet, zucchini carpaccio) and dinner entrées such as Provence rosemary grilled lamb chops served with goat cheese gnocchi and eggplant roasted with thyme and honey. The wine list focuses on varietals from the South of France, Italy and Spain. Fig & Olive, 401 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660, 212-924-1200.
 
Cathy Pavlos, owner and executive chef of Lucca Café in Irvine, will open a new culinary concept in Newport Beach called Provenance. The restaurant will take over the former location of Sage in the Eastbluff Village Center, which closed at the end of 2012. The new eatery will feature seasonal contemporary fare highlighted by ingredients cultivated from the venue's 1,300-square-foot, organic garden. Provenance, Eastbluff Village Center, 2531 Eastbluff Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660, no phone.
 
Reunion Kitchen + Drink is now open. The venue, which is located in Anaheim Hills in the spot Canyon once called home, is marked by an exhibition kitchen and a casual dining experience featuring a forward-thinking take on modern comfort food. Guests can also belly up to the bar and order from a selection of craft beers and era-spanning cocktails. For more information, visit www.reunionkitchen.net. Lunch and Dinner daily; Breakfast Sat.-Sun. Reunion Kitchen + Drink, 5775 E Santa Ana Canyon Rd., Anaheim Hills, CA 92807, 714-283-1062.
 
Red O, the Los Angeles restaurant concept from Chicago celebrity chef Rick Bayless, launched a second location at Newport Beach's Fashion Island. The menu features Bayless' takes on classic Mexican cuisine, including original dishes exclusive to this outpost. Red O, Fashion Island, 143 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660, 949-718-0300.
 

News Bytes

Orange County Restaurant Week Returns
The Annual Orange County Restaurant Week will descend upon all corners of OC February 23-March 1, 2014. Dozens of the county's top restaurants will be cobbling together special prix fixe, multi-course lunch and dinner menus, from casual venues to fine dining establishments. Some of the participating restaurants include The Ranch Restaurant & Saloon, Charlie Palmer at Bloomingdale's South Coast Plaza, Lucca Café, and Anaheim White House. For more information, please visit www.orangecountyrestaurantweek.com.
 


Chef Shuffle

Check back soon for more news.

 

Closings

CLOSED FOR GOOD
Take your taste buds on a walk down memory lane! Check out our exclusive closed restaurant database for Orange County to virtually visit your favorite dining spots from yesteryear. Aqua, R.I.P.

Palm Terrace is closing its doors for renovation starting in January 2014 Palm Terrace, Island Hotel Newport Beach’s flagship restaurant, is closing its doors for renovation starting in January 2014. The restaurant is slated to reopen in July 2014. Plans for alternative dining concepts during the renovation have not been formally announced. Palm Terrace, The Island Hotel Newport Beach, 690 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, CA 92660, 949-760-4920.
 
DivBar Smokehouse BBQ, the roadhouse barbecue-themed venue located on Newport Beach’s Mariner’s Mile, has closed its doors. No reason was given for its shuttering, and no future plans for the space that housed the venue have been announced. DivBar Smokhouse BBQ, 2601 W. Coast Hwy., Newport Beach, CA 92663, no phone.
 
The Californian, the flagship dining venue of the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa, has been temporarily closed for renovation. The eatery will be transformed to a new dining and bar concept, but it will be relaunched under the same name. The reopening is slated for Spring 2014. The hotel’s other dining venues will remain open during the renovations. The Californian, Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa, 21500 Pacific Coast Hwy., Huntington Beach, CA 92648, no phone.
 

CULINARY EVENTS
Want to
learn to cook? Try new dishes? Meet a foodie friend for fun? Check out our compilation of culinary events in your area.


View our calendar of Wine Dinners & Tastings in Orange County

Current News View archived news: November 2017 | October 2017 | September 2017 | August 2017 | July 2017 | June 2017 | May 2017 | April 2017 | March 2017 | February 2017 | January 2017 | December 2016 | November 2016 | October 2016 | September 2016 | August 2016 | July 2016 | June 2016 | May 2016 | April 2016 | March 2016 | February 2016 | January 2016 | December 2015 | November 2015 | October 2015 | September 2015 | August 2015 | July 2015 | June 2015 | May 2015 | April 2015 | March 2015 | February 2015 | January 2015 | December 2014 | November 2014 | October 2014 | September 2014 | August 2014 | July 2014 | June 2014 | May 2014 | April 2014 | March 2014 | February 2014 | January 2014 | December 2013 | November 2013 | October 2013 | September 2013 | August 2013 | July 2013 | June 2013 | May 2013 | April 2013 | March 2013 | February 2013 | January 2013 | December 2012 | November 2012 | October 2012 | September 2012 | August 2012 | July 2012 | June 2012 | May 2012 | April 2012 | March 2012 | February 2012 | January 2012 | December 2011 | November 2011 | October 2011 | September 2011 | August 2011 | July 2011 | June 2011 | May 2011 | April 2011 | March 2011 | February 2011 | January 2011 | December 2010 | November 2010 | October 2010 | September 2010 | August 2010 | July 2010 | June 2010 | May 2010 | April 2010 | March 2010 | February 2010 | January 2010 | December 2009 | November 2009 | October 2009 | September 2009 | August 2009 | July 2009 | June 2009 | May 2009 | April 2009 | March 2009 | February 2009 | January 2009 | December 2008 | November 2008 | October 2008 | September 2008 | August 2008 | July 2008 | June 2008 | May 2008 | April 2008 | March 2000 | March 2008

AMERICA'S TOP RESTAURANTS

Discover the best female chefs, top pizzerias and stellar seafood restaurants with GAYOT's Top 10 lists of the best restaurants in America.

MASTERS OF MIXOLOGYDiscover craft cocktail bars and restaurants that put as much thought into what goes in your glass as what goes on your plate.