Buy Your Friend a Drink Program, The Ritz's Roast Goose Dinner and Much More
WEB-EXCLUSIVE: Find out what's new in Orange County food and dining news.
A few fun nights at the new Three Seventy Common Kitchen+Drink (949.494.8686, 370common.com) include Tuesday Brown Bag Night, when a bottle of red or white is offered with dinner for $15. Wino Wednesdays offers a three-course dinner menu with a wine pairing for $30, in addition to the a la carte menu. The new Buy Your Friend a Drink program allows guests to buy a friend a drink in advance. A board at the bar posts the names of people who have pre-paid drinks waiting for them on their next visit.
On Monday through Friday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., the Palm Terrace Lounge at the Island Hotel (949.760.4920) serves a weekday lunch buffet that is designed to be quick and easy. Selections include soups, salads, sliders, and sandwiches, as well as petite sweets from Pastry Chef Michael Owens. The $9.95 cost per person includes tax, gratuity and complimentary parking. Through December 31, Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., spa-goers can enjoy a 30-minute massage followed by a light lunch from the spa’s express menu that is served in the Palm Terrace Lounge (949.760.4992). The $99 fee includes treatment, lunch, tax, and parking for one vehicle. Therapist gratuity not included.
One of the most lavishly decorated restaurants for the holidays is The Ritz Restaurant & Garden (949.720.1800, ritzrestaurant.com). It is also the time for The Ritz’s traditional roast goose dinner and all the trimmings. It is now open Sundays for dinner and Mondays for lunch and dinner through December.
The Californian, a AAA Four Diamond award-winning restaurant at the Hyatt Huntington Beach (714.845.4776), has introduced its regular fall menu, plus a featured three-course Chef’s Menu that includes a house-smoked Muscovy duck salad, an entrée of a 12 oz. rib eye and house-made Meyer lemon cheesecake for $40. Paired with wine, $50 per person.
Zov’s Bistro in Tustin (714.838.8855 Ext. 22, zovs.com) has Holiday Dinner Packages To-Go. The dinner for 12 includes a choice of entree, sides, dinner rolls, salad, and dessert. It is priced at $450. Orders must be placed no later than December 17 and picked up at the Tustin location by noon on December 24.
In lieu of hosting a traditional holiday party, ChrisAnn Richards of the Wine Lab (949.515.8466, winelabnewport.com) offers an alternative: Entertain with a wine or beer tasting at the Wine Lab. Reservations are currently being taken for private parties. Check on available dates.
Every Monday through December 31, Katsuya by Starck (949.793.4030) is Local’s Night, which means 50% off the entire menu, including drinks. Offered in the bar or main dining room, enjoy signature items such as crispy rice with spicy tuna, yellowtail sashimi and miso-marinated black cod. The discount also applies to wine, sake, beer, and dessert.
Starfish Asian Coastal Cuisine (949.715.9200, starfishlaguna.com) is available for holiday parties in the dining room and bar. For groups larger than 15, choices include a per person minimum or selections from a list of pre-set menus. The dining room seats up to 25 and buyout options are available for large groups. For further information, contact Events Coordinator Jen Sobel at 805.453.1574.
Antonello Ristorante in South Coast Plaza Village (714.755.1195) has seven private dining rooms that accommodate small to large groups. All are festively decorated and ready for reservations for holiday banquet lunches, dinners or cocktail parties. Executive Chefs Sal Ferrara and Gino Buononoce, Sommelier Steve Ebol and Banquet Coordinator Vicenta Canton are on hand to help you personalize the menu, suggest wine selections and make sure all of your party needs are met.
Marissa Gerlach has been appointed the new restaurant chef of RAYA at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel (949.240.2000). Gerlach worked as sous chef for the last six months and was a key contributor to the success of RAYA and its awards for its Pan-Latin Coastal Cuisine. While at the hotel, view the celebrity surfboards on display throughout the lobby. The Fourth Annual Surfboard Auction, on through December 31, includes signed boards from Kelly Slater, Joel Parkinson, Taj Burrow, Andy Irons, and others to benefit Surfers Healing. A Teddy Bear Tea will be held December 4,11 and 18. Guests are asked to bring a new teddy bear or stuffed animal that will be donated to Children’s Hospital of Orange County.
Holiday gift suggestions from Old Vine Café (714.545.1411, oldvinecafe.com) include OVC Gift Cards for any amount, shipping Six for Sixty (six bottles of wine for $60) to a loved one or client, or the ultimate gift for a significant other, a vacation of a lifetime with Chef Mark McDonald to Italy for a 10-day, all-inclusive culinary and cultural experience March 10-19, 2012.
King’s Fish House (kingsfishhouse.com) will offer guests a free $20 certificate to use in 2012 for every $100 gift card purchased through December 27. The gift cards are available at any of its restaurants or online. In addition, guests who book a party of 15 or more at any King’s Fish House during the month of December, will receive a complimentary $25 gift certificate to use during 2012. Guests can contact their favorite King’s Seafood Company restaurant for details.
Cucina Enoteca (cucinaenoteca.com) opens December 6 at the Irvine Spectrum Center in the space formerly occupied by the Fox Sports Grill. The new California-inspired Italian kitchen and wine shop will feature Italian classics that can be enjoyed while dining traditionally or “family style." The restaurant’s expansive patio overlooks a newly opened courtyard.
Capital (949.788.9218, capital-seafood.com) has also opened at the Irvine Spectrum Center. More than 100 different types of dim sum are available, including classic dishes. Capital opens at 10:30 a.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Lucca Café (949.725.1773, luccacafe.com) has a new VIP Birthday Club. All that is needed is one’s birthdate and a mailing address. After calling in the reservation, anytime throughout the birthday month, the celebrant is gifted with any item from the menu, as long as one paying companion orders a plate from the menu. A special dessert treat, not found on the menu, will be served complimentary.
See’s Candies, a holiday tradition for 90 years, has announced its new and limited edition holiday items. “New” is the Winter Wonderland Box of signature favorites. The "Limited Edition,” with cinnamon lollypops and Christmas Victoria Toffee, is made from Mary See’s secret recipe. Shop early. The items move quickly.