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News for Restaurants in Orange County, CA
November 2009 Archive

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RESTAURANT NEWS


Openings

House of An restaurant group (Thanh Long, Crustacean) has opened AnQi. Located inside Bloomingdale's department store at South Coast Plaza (and next to Charlie Palmer at Bloomingdale's South Coast Plaza), AnQi blends fashion and the An family's signature Euro-Vietnamese fusion cuisine. A glass-and-water catwalk runs down the middle of the restaurant while organic woods, stones and fabrics create a soothing modern vibe. AnQi also features a private chef's table with a clever window looking into a "secret kitchen" and an inventive noodle bar, which showcases chef Helene An's signature garlic noodles and roasted crab. The menu focuses on small and tapas-sized plates of healthy gourmet Vietnamese fusion cuisine. AnQi, South Coast Plaza, 3333 Bristol St., Costa Mesa, CA 92626, 714-557-5679.
 
Cha Cha's Tacos & Tequila has opened in Downtown Brea. The California-Latin-inspired eatery spotlights locally grown produce, dishes roasted in a hardwood-fired oven, meats slow cooked on a rotisserie and cocktails made with fresh squeezed juices and seasonal fruit. Items are also affordably priced with appetizers ranging from $3.50 to $10.50 and entrées all under $17. Cha Cha's Tacos & Tequila, 110 W. Birch St., Brea, CA 92821, 714-255-1040.
 
Beach Pit BBQ has opened a third location in Old Towne Orange just steps from the historic circle. Proprietor Tim DeCinces has yet again created a family-friendly barbecue joint with some of his signature items (sweet potato fries, baby back ribs, beef brisket, pulled pork sandwiches, banana pudding) and some new gems (barbecue pizza, pulled pork Caesar salad, brownie sunde). Beach Pit BBQ also features rather good wine and draft beer selections. Beach Pit BBQ, 128 N. Glassell St., Orange, CA 92866, 714-633-7427.
 

News Bytes

Five Crowns Offers Take-Out Prime Ribs
Don't want to cook this holiday? Five Crowns in Corona del Mar is cooking up its famed Prime ribs of beef with all the trimmings for take-out dining. The full Prime rib rack weights 17 lbs. (serves 12-15) and costs $350. The half order serves 6-8 persons and costs $195. The price also includes mashed potatoes, creamed corn or spinach, gravy, au jus and whipped horseradish. The take-out order must be placed with chef Dennis Brask at least 48 hours in advance and can be picked up daily, including on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Five Crowns, 3801 E. Pacific Coast Hwy., Corona Del Mar, CA 92625, 949-760-0331.
 
Wildfish Gives $20 Bonus
Wildfish Seafood Grille in Newport Beach is giving its guests a $20 bonus when they purchase a $100 gift card for the restaurant. Wildfish Seafood Grille, The Bluffs, 1370 Bison Ave., Newport Beach, CA 92660, 949-720-9925.
 
Panera Bread Makes a Wish
Panera Bread is inviting its customers to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation by purchasing gingerbread man cookies. For each cookie purchased, $.10 will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Los Angeles. Panera Bread, 235 E. 17th St., Costa Mesa, CA 92627, 949-642-9500.
 
Holiday Tea at The Ritz
The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel is reprising its annual Holiday Tea. Held Tuesdays through Fridays at 2 p.m. through December 23, the resort offers a relaxing and very gourmand tea service. Some of the savory items served are truffled egg salad sandwiches, cantaloupe soup shots with crispy prosciutto, strawberries stuffed with bleu cheese and a smoked salmon cheese crepe. Sweet treats include freshly baked scones with Devonshire cream, gingerbread cookies, cream puffs, lemon raspberry cheesecake and spiced chocolate macaroons. The cost is $49 per person (exclusive of tax and gratuity). Holiday Tea, One Ritz-Carlton Dr., Dana Point, CA 92629, 949-240-2000, 800-241-3333.
 
Trader Joe’s Premieres Wine Tasting Bar
The Costa Mesa Trader Joe's location on 17th Street is the first TJ's store in the nation to offer a free wine tasting bar. Tasting hours are from 4 p.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Fri. and noon-6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Two wines are featured each week. Trader Joe's, 640 W. 17th St., Costa Mesa, CA 92627, 949-642-5134.
 
Lucca Café Offers Thanksgiving Take Out Meals
Lucca Café, which is located in Irvine's Quail Hill Village Center, is offering take-out dinners for Thanksgiving. For $250, the dinners feed up to 10 guests and feature a stuffed Diestel turkey, gravy, cranberry-orange chutney, mashed potatoes, yams with candied walnuts, green beans, salad, olives, dinner rolls and pumpkin spice cheesecake. Take-out dinners must be ordered by Nov. 20 for pick up on or before Nov. 26 at noon. Lucca Café, Quail Hill Village Center, 6507 Quail Hill Pkwy., Irvine, CA 92603, 949-725-1773.
 


Chef Shuffle

The Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Coast has announced a new chef for its Andrea restaurant. Italy native Stefano Chiarugi now heads the kitchens and brings his classic Tuscan cooking to Andrea and its ocean view dining room. Chiarugi has formerly cooked at such prestigious restaurants as Switch at Encore Las Vegas, Bellagio's Osteria Del Circo and New York City's Le Cirque. Andrea has recently partnered with farmers from The Irvine Ranch to source seasonal fruits and produce for special weekly dishes. Andrea, The Resort at Pelican Hill, 22701 Pelican Hill Rd. S., Newport Coast, CA 92657, 949-467-6800.
 

 

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.

Check back soon for more news.

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.


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