Mother’s Day, May 12, will be celebrated throughout all of the restaurants at Pelican Hill Resort (949.467.6800, pelicanhill.com). The grand feast will be the Pacific Ballroom Brunch from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Cost $115 per adult, plus tax and gratuity, $50 per child ages 5-12, under age 5, complimentary. Call the resort or check the website for dining details at Andrea, Pelican Hill Grill and the Coliseum Pool & Grill. Afternoon tea will be served in the Great Room from 1-5 p.m., while a classical harpist entertains. The prix-fixe tea menu is $48 per adult and $25 per child under age 12.
On May 14, 6:30 p.m., as a part of its monthly tasting series, Bluewater Grill in Newport Beach (949.675.3474, bluewatergrill.com) and in The District at Tustin Legacy (714.258.3474) will showcase A Taste of Spain. Dinner includes a seafood tapas platter, Bluewater Grill paella, tapas, and the wines of Spain, including a white Rueda and Tempranillo. The special pairing event is $34.95 per person. The paella will also be available throughout the month at lunch and dinner, with Spanish wines available by the glass at menu price.
Seasons 52 (seasons52.com), popular for its “no dish contains over 475 calories,” has opened its fourth Southern California location on Broadway and Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica (310.451.1152). Chef Tim Kast, the opening chef of Seasons 52 at South Coast Plaza (714.437.5252), now heads the new kitchen. The health-oriented dishes, a selection from 52 wines by the glass, or a seasonal signature cocktail, can be enjoyed at lunch, dinner or in-between, either indoors or on the contemporary patio with views of the Santa Monica Pier and Pacific Ocean.
Brasserie Pascal (949.640.2700, brasseriepascal.net) is ready for summer with a new menu of 200 calorie Guiltless Summer Cocktails, priced from $9 to $13, and a Sunset Dinner menu that includes a $13 entree of filet mignon or salmon. The Sunset Dinner, with a wine pairing for $7 extra, and cocktail specials, is available from 4-6 p.m., Sunday through Thursday. Happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 4-7 p.m. with a special bar menu.
Stonefire Grills (stonefiregrill.com) have introduced an Under $8 Lunch Menu in Orange County and Pasadena. Available Mondays through Fridays, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., menu items include ample portions of a ½ chicken special with a fresh salad and garlic breadsticks, French dip sandwiches, a seven-inch oven-baked pizza with two toppings, baked rigatoni, and homemade tortilla soup. Most items are in the $6.50 range. Visit Stonefire’s website for more information and locations.
On May 16, 5-8 p.m., The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel (949.240.2000, ritzcarlton.com) will host its popular Yappy Hour on The Dana Lawn. Pooches of all shapes and sizes are invited to attend and will be treated to complimentary house-made dog biscuits and flavored water. Cocktails and appetizers will be available for purchase by their companions, with a portion of the proceeds going to support the Friends of Orange County’s Homeless Pets (FOCHP.) Yappy Hour continues through September on the second Thursday of the month.
Parrot Head Sunday returns to Bayside Restaurant (949.721.1222, baysiderestaurant.com) on May 19, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. These special monthly Sundays include special entertainment by Mark Wood & The Parrot Head Band Duet. A three-course, free-flowing Champagne brunch is offered for $29.95, in addition to the regular menu.
Every Thursday, 4:30-9 p.m., the new Enoteca Lounge at Antonello’s in South Coast Plaza Village (714.751.7153, antonello.com) presents Ciro’s Wine Flights, featuring four glasses of specially selected wines from different wine makers each week. The prices per flight vary according to the wine maker, but average $15 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Light snacks accompany the tastings. During happy hour, Monday through Saturday, 4:30-7 p.m., the lounge features live music and discounted beers, wines and well drinks. A new bar menu is available from 4:30 p.m. to closing.
For over 25 years, Anaheim White House (714.772.1381, anaheimwhitehouse.com) has been recognized as a fine dining restaurant serving continental cuisine. Chef/Owner Bruno Serato has recently changed that image to that of an Italian steakhouse. Loyal fans will still find the house signature pasta, fish and chicken entrees on the menu, but the new focus is on hormone-free beef, such as New York steak, filet mignon, hanger steak, Australian Waygu, New Zealand rack of venison, and North Dakota bison tenderloin.
Pastry Chef Michelle Bracken joins Zov Kazmardian, chef/owner of Zov’s restaurants at a Spring/Summer Cooking Class, to be held at the Tustin location on May 25, 11:30 a.m. Learn to make a mushroom stuffed boreg with puff pastry, grilled leg of lamb, arugula and halloumi salad, bulgur and cabbage salad, cinnamon pecan coffeecake, and a rustic stone fruit galette. The class is $75 per person. For reservations, call 714.838.8855.
On May 20, 6:30 p.m., learn about the wine regions of the Southern Hemisphere at the Wine Education Tastings held at the Old Vine Café at The CAMP (714.545.1411, oldvinecafe.com). The class is $40 and includes a tasting of six world-class wines.
Wild Oregon Dungeness Crab is being showcased now through the end of June at Fish Camp in Huntington Beach (562.592.2267, samsfishcamp.com), as well as other King’s Seafood restaurants. Three styles of preparation are offered, including steamed to capture the natural sweetness of the crab.
Bruxie (bruxie.com), the famous gourmet waffle sandwich restaurant, has opened its fifth location in Huntington Beach at The Strand at 5th Street. The menu, comparable with its sister restaurants' in Old Towne Orange, Brea, Santa Margarita, and Chino Hills, highlights more than a dozen savory and sweet Belgian waffle sandwich offerings. In addition, there are salads, old-fashioned cane sugar sodas, Wisconsin frozen custard, shakes, sundaes, and floats. Nothing on the menu exceeds $10.
The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar at The District (714.258.7600, thewineryrestaurant.net) has signed a lease with Villa Nova’s new owner, and will be opening in the fall following an extensive renovation.
Greenleaf Gourmet Chopshop, the popular eatery, marketplace and wine bar (949.200.3950, greenleafchopshop.com) will open a second Orange County restaurant in the fall at the South Coast Collection (SoCo) in Costa Mesa.
Lucca Café owners, Chef Cathy Pavlos and husband Elliott, purveyors of fine wines (949.725.1773, luccacafe.com), plan to open Provenance, the Garden at Eastbluff, in the space formerly occupied by Sage in the Eastbluff Village Center. Also scheduled for a fall opening, Provenance will boast a 1,300-square-foot, raised-bed organic garden that will be viewable from the patio. The new concept promises to deliver elements of California’s wine country.
Chris Henry, a former advertising executive in Orange County who made a career change, is now the founder of Fresh! A Personal Chef Service in Newport Beach (949.433.9995, email@example.com). As chef, her service provides custom, individually planned healthy meals to local families, as well as those visiting the area for extended stays. She accommodates vegan and gluten-free special orders. Visit her website, freshpersonalchefservice.com.