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30 Things We Love About Summer in the OC and Long Beach

In no particular order

Dinner Offerings at Outpost Kitchen

For the first time since its inception in 2015, Outpost Kitchen has expanded its hours and menu. The Aussie eatery in Costa Mesa known for its vibrant and seasonal breakfast and lunch menus, has begun serving weeknight dinner. Restaurateur Jay Lewis and Executive Chef David Osborn have put together a new lunch and dinner menu of entrée salads, bowls, and seasonal renditions of house favorites. The dinner menu strongly reflects Outpost Kitchen’s focus on California-grown and biodynamic produce, organic and humanely-raised meats, and responsibly-sourced, sustainable seafood. Lewis recently announced his plans to open a second location this summer (3420 Bristol Street, Costa Mesa), which will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The weeknight dinner menu will occasionally offer guests a first look at some of the exclusive menu items that will be available at the new location. outpostkitchen.com

Free Corkage at Bistango

Bistango knows a thing or two about wine. Boasting a globally-inspired wine list with more than 400 bottles to choose from, this restaurant is a coveted hotspot for the area’s wine-lovers. Bistango even partners with Hi-Time Wine Cellars to celebrate local, family-owned wineries. Each month, Hi-Time highlights a different locally-sourced varietal and offers 10 percent off the purchase of those bottles during the course of that month. Come in for dinner at Bistango and bring along Hi-Time’s wine of the month (with the receipt) and Bistango will waive your corkage fee. Bistango’s knowledgeable staff can even help you perfectly pair your wine with dinner. It’s a great way to support the community’s locally-owned wineries, while perhaps expanding your own wine repertoire. We’ll raise a glass to that! bistango.com

Alfresco Dining at Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens

Dine alfresco at Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens, and nourish your body and mind while surrounded by the beautiful garden setting. Nestled within the sprawling six-acre landscape of Roger’s Gardens, Farmhouse presents a unique field-to-fork dining experience courtesy of Owner and Executive Chef Rich Mead. Chef Mead has cultivated relationships with the highest-regarded local and sustainable farms, allowing him to create the freshest menus with seasonal ingredients and specially grown vegetables. The full menu is also available in the Farmhouse bar, which highlights exciting cocktails handcrafted by Anthony Laborin, head of Cocktail R&D. Developed to complement Chef Mead’s ever-evolving menu, Laborin’s signature cocktails are the perfect pair to Farmhouse’s health-based seasonal cuisine. farmhouserg.com

Red O’s Paleo and Keto Bowls

Our favorite way to eat healthy this summer starts at Red O Taste of Mexico in Newport Beach with Chef Rick Bayless’ selection of health-conscious paleo and keto bowls. Fill up on your Omega-3s with the savory Salmon & Keto Risotto bowl, featuring blackened salmon, cauliflower risotto, bacon, onions, rajas peppers, asparagus, English peas, Cotija cheese, and balsamic glaze. Keep it lean and green with the Paleo Green Bowl, a tossed blend of sautéed shrimp, broccoli, asparagus, English peas, pasilla pepper, shaved carrots, and ginger-soy mojo. Or, fuel up fast with the Keto Power Bowl, highlighting chorizo cauliflower rice, rajas peppers, broccoli, heirloom tomatoes, avocado. Who knew healthy could taste so good? redorestaurant.com

Happy Hour at Sapphire Laguna

Longer days mean staying on the beach until well after the sky’s grown dark and then heading over to Sapphire Laguna for late-night happy hour bites and sips. We’re talking about cocktails, wines by the glass, craft beer, and amazing eats at special pricing—a menu guaranteed to leave you with a full belly and a smile on your face! Must-try dishes include the American Kobe Beef Cheeseburger, Blackened Fish Tacos, Mini Pea Tendril Quesadillas, Jerk BBQ Chicken Wings, and Sticky Pork Spareribs. Happy hour is available Monday through Thursday from 8pm-close. sapphirelaguna.com

Bayside Restaurant Celebrates 20 Years

Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, Bayside serves as an incredible testament to the work of the Ghoukassian family and the amazing talents of Executive Chef Paul Gstrein. Bayside brings New American cuisine to the Newport Beach harbor in the form of steaks, pastas, seafood, and more. Indulge in the restaurant’s rotating modern art exhibit, nightly jazz performances, and breathtaking views of the harbor from the wrap-around porch. Bayside is offering a special menu now through November as a thank you to Orange County’s lovers of food, wine, art, and music and as an homage to the hard work that has earned Bayside the title of Newport Beach dining scene staple. baysiderestaurant.com

Shop, Eat, Repeat at LBX

Long Beach Exchange (LBX) is Southern California’s newest lifestyle destination located in East Long Beach. LBX continues to attract both nationally-recognized and locally-owned retail businesses that serious shoppers know and love. And when you’ve shopped up a ravenous appetite, refuel at choice restaurants, such as Wahoo’s Fish Taco, Georgia’s Restaurant, Plancha Latin Kitchen, and more. LBX is situated on what used to be home to be an aviation hangar, and the design features throughout the property are an evident tribute to the location’s history. Discover a variety of vintage statues outside of the hangar, in addition to historical photographs hung inside, and trinkets such as plane gauges and ticket stubs along the walls. longbeachexchange-lbx.com

Summer Brunch at Harvest

Every season is uniquely special at Harvest, but summertime brunch at this restaurant is hard to beat. An experience here is a breath of fresh air, enhanced by artistic dishes and true hospitality. Harvest’s menu changes with the season and is inspired by Chef Kyle St. John’s test kitchen and half-acre organic garden. Some of Harvest’s top picks for this season include the Carne Asada Breakfast Burrito, Eggs Benedict, and the Bacon Bourbon Cinnamon Roll. If you’re watching the waistline, try the Avocado Toast, Egg White Frittata, or Peanut Butter and Blueberry Oatmeal. As if that wasn’t tempting enough, top it all off with a mimosa or personalized Bloody Mary, and this may just be the best brunch you have all summer. theranchlb.com/eat/harvest

Naples Ristorante’s Outdoor Patio Bar

Escape the hustle and bustle of Downtown Disney at the area’s most beautiful bar top. Round out a long day at the parks with a stop at Naples Ristorante e Bar where you can snag a table on the massive outdoor patio or nab a seat at the stunning lit marble bar. Order up a classic Negroni or a Caribbean hurricane to quench your thirst while the entire family dines on an array of wood-fired pizzas, pastas, and other traditional Italian eats. It’s a fabulous place to relax, enjoy the scenery, and enjoy a great bite to eat. patinagroup.com/naples-ristorante-e-bar

Dinner and a Show at Brea Improv and Copper Blues

Since their debut in 1963, Improvisation Comedy Clubs have been the premier stages for live comedy across the country. Over the decades, The Improv’s national stages have hosted many of the industry’s top comedic talents. Now celebrating its 30th year in Brea, The Improv welcomes the masses, seating up to 570 guests over the course of eight shows a week. With the recent addition of Copper Blues Rock Pub & Kitchen next door, guests can now enjoy live music, great food, and stand-up comedy all in one night—you need only walk a few short steps! improv.com/brea

Yappy Hour at Ritz-Carlton

Canines and their companions are invited to a pup-ular free event at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel—Yappy Hour! This monthly cocktail hour, happening May through December, invites guests and locals alike to sip and schmooze while enjoying outdoor barbecue and ocean views on the Dana Lawn. Pups can enjoy refreshing libations—chicken, beef, and bacon-flavored water—while chowing down peanut butter biscuits made fresh by the house pastry team. Tito’s cocktails, Mutt Lynch wine, beer, and bites of barbecue are available for purchase for humans. Proceeds from each event support The Veterans Initiative of Canine Companions for Independence, a nonprofit organization committed to enhancing the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly-trained assistance dogs. Yappy Hour upcoming dates for this summer are July 18, August 15, and September 18 from 5-8pm. For more information and additional dates, visit ritzcarlton.com.

Beignets on the Beach at Lost Pier Cafe

Breakfast on the beach is a summer bucket list must—a morning ritual that sets the pace for the rest of the day—and Lost Pier at Aliso Beach can help you check it off. This little California cafe sits right along the water’s edge, serving coffee, breakfast, and lunch from 8am-3pm. While there is something on this menu for every diet, our favorite way to indulge is with the homemade Paper Bag Beignets, served best alongside a steaming mug of coffee and an unbeatable view of the waves. theranchlb.com/eat/lost-pier-cafe

Sunday Brunch at Michael’s on Naples

Don’t miss Sunday Brunch on the rooftop at Michael’s on Naples every Sunday from 10:30am-2:30pm. The rooftop at Michael’s on Naples is warm and vibrant, including a charming lounge area. It is the perfect place to unwind for a Sunday afternoon brunch. Soak in the live music while you enjoy a Michael’s Burger, Smoked Salmon salad, or decadent Sausage and Egg Skillet. Brunch offerings include a special menu of mouthwatering Italian-inspired dishes, refreshing drinks, and a relaxing ambience—everything you need for the perfect Sunday Funday. Oh, and bottomless mimosas, anyone? Yes please! michaelsonnaples.com

Wine Wednesday at Catal Restaurant

Nothing gets you over hump day like half-priced bottles of wine. Swing by Catal in the Downtown Disney District every Wednesday to sip on not only discounted bottles, but also special charcuterie plates all day long. Wind down after a long day in the parks with fine wine and a view of the Magical Kingdom’s firework show from Catal’s picturesque terrace. Any other day of the week, pull up a chair for the restaurant’s coveted Mediterranean eats—you won’t be disappointed. patinagroup.com/catal-restaurant

Spicy Yellow Hot Sauce from Gringo Bandito

Gringo Bandito’s new Spicy Yellow hot sauce is perfect for those summer backyard barbecues, tacos on the beach, omelettes over Sunday brunch, and just about anything else! Expect rock band legend, The Offspring, and their vocalist Dexter Holland (also the owner of Gringo Bandito) to have some sauce on hand during the summer 2019 tour, which will certainly have an Orange County/Los Angeles area stop. Also expect to see Spicy Yellow Hot Sauce at your favorite summer festivals. You can even enjoy Gringo Bandito at your favorite Angels games at Anaheim Stadium. For those Chronic Tacos and Wahoo’s visits this summer, be sure to enjoy Gringo Bandito at all their locations. gringobandito.com

This Summer’s OC Fair

The 2019 OC Fair will be “Acres of Fun” when summer’s best party returns to Costa Mesa July 11 through August 12. In addition to crazy fried food on a stick, fair-goers will find new choices like puffy tacos, pupusas, avocado toast, and the most outrageous milkshakes ever. With new value menus, there really is something for everyone. But before you head for the food, get your thrills on the new Titan, the tallest traveling booster ride in America, or enjoy a concert under the summer sky in The Pacific Amphitheatre. You can even increase your food and beverage IQ at the fair; check out demos from celebrity chefs, wine tastings in The Courtyard, and craft beer tasting at Brew Hee Haw. Best way to get to the fair? Take the OC Fair Express bus from one of nine locations—it’s only $2 each way and $4 admission! ocfair.com

Moulin’s New Digs in San Clemente

Moulin, the award-winning French bistro with locations in Newport Beach and Laguna Beach, just opened its third location at the historic Casino San Clemente. Proprietor Laurent Vrignaud, who was named “Restaurateur of the Year” by the Orange County Business Journal, also announced his plans to open a fourth, fifth, and sixth location in Orange County later this year. Within walking distance to San Clemente’s popular North Beach, much of Moulin’s menu is available to-go, modeled after cafes along coastal France. The 1,500-square-foot bistro faces North Beach, and its ocean-view patio offers vintage bistro tables and chairs shaded by Moulin’s signature red umbrellas. Inside is filled with the original metal plaques, light fixtures, and framed French art—all collected from France by Vrignaud—that have become synonymous with the Moulin brand. moulin.com

Tableside Guacamole at Tortilla Jo’s

Next time you’re touring Downtown Disney, budget time for a stop in to Tortilla Jo’s—Disneyland’s colorful cantina serving up traditional and contemporary Mexican fare. We suggest ordering the Tableside Guacamole, customized with all your favorite ingredients, and made mild, medium, or spicy. Then wash it down with a house margarita made from one of their 100-plus tequilas on order. Now that’s magic you can taste. patinagroup.com/tortilla-josTaco

Tequila Tuesdays at URBANA

Blending together the two worlds in which he was raised, Restaurateur Javier Cuadra offers Orange County diners a look at Mexico’s food, drink, and culture at URBANA. Murals and décor echo the streets of Michoacán—colorful strings of papel picado zig zag across the ceiling and massive sugar skull paintings adorn the walls. With the talented Chef Ernie Alvarado leading the kitchen, the menu boasts handmade tortillas, gourmet tacos, and vibrant ceviches reminiscent of authentic Mexican street fare. “My personal favorite are the Mole Enchiladas made with housemade mole sauce; it reminds me of home,” says Cuadra. But you can’t miss the specialty tacos. Swing by every Tuesday from 4pm-close and find corn tortillas brimming with chicken mole, cauliflower and queso fresco, and potato and chorizo on special offer (two for $5), plus $7 margs and palomas. urbanaanaheim.com

Live Music at Trevor’s At The Tracks

With live music on stage every night and all day long throughout the weekend, Trevor’s At The Tracks is the perfect spot to support and enjoy the area’s local talent. Even better, every Tuesday evening from 6-9pm, Trevor’s showcases a fresh, new musical find. First-Timer-Tuesdays has become a mainstay in the community, giving travelers a sense of place and locals a sense of pride! Kick back on the spacious patio with a craft cocktail in hand and listen to your favorite local artist or discover a new one. See who’s playing next at trevorsatthetracks.com/live-music-calendar

Summer Specialties at Mama’s Comfort Food & Cocktails

Mama’s Comfort Food & Cocktails, located on the water in beautiful Newport Harbor, is well known for its one-of-a-kind summertime specialty selections. The dish, Mama’s Gotta Fit in Her Jeans, is a comfort food delight, featuring a freshly roasted spaghetti squash, rosemary, garlic, fresh tomatoes, fresh basil, chile flakes, topped with asiago cheese—perfection. Add a fresh grilled chicken breast and the homemade marinara sauce for a little extra love. Specializing in the most notable comfort foods, Mama’s is a must. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner, along with a full bar boasting an 180-degree view of the harbor, Mama’s opens daily at 8:30am. World famous 32-ounce Mama Mary’s and Bottomless “Mamosas” are a must-have! Oh, and Mama’s serves world famous Thrifty Ice Cream by the scoop. Come by boat anytime to dock-and-dine at the exclusive Mama’s docks. mamason39.com

Rusty Pelican’s New Bar

Join Rusty Pelican in the Upstairs Lounge and enjoy their new cafe menu featuring delicious Halibut Bites and blackened Togarashi Tuna. Enjoy these items with Rabble Rosé, Woodford Old Fashioned, or one of many new beers on draft at the newly remodeled bar. The perfect setting in which to relax after a long day at the beach. The bar and lounge are full service and the views are remarkable. What’s better than great food with a great view? Rusty Pelican has been a staple on the bay since the 1960s. You can count on legendary service and handcrafted cocktails every time you stop by. therustypelican.com

Ocean & Earth’s Summer Wine Dinner Series

The wine dinner series of the summer will take place on the last Tuesday of each month and will feature wineries along the California Coast served alongside the best of nature’s seas, streams, farms, and forests. Prices range from $125-$150 per person (tax and gratuity included) with 10 percent of the proceeds going toward Future Foods Farms’ “Farm of the Future,” a fully automated aquaponic greenhouse adjacent to the restaurant where students will be able to learn first-hand how award-winning Executive Chef Adam Navidi grows the produce for Ocean & Earth. Reservations can be made online. oanderestaurant.com

Champagne Brunch at Orange Hill

This award-winning Sunday Champagne brunch at Orange Hill Restaurant is always a unique experience. Voted “#1 Best Sunday Brunch” by Orange County Register and Best of OC, the Sunday buffet offers complimentary Champagne and a number of indulgent options to please any palate; including made-to-order pasta, omelets, fresh seafood, carving stations, decadent desserts, and much more. It gets even better in the summer when you can enjoy views of all of Orange County from the top of the hill! Brunch is available every Sunday from 10am-2pm. theorangehillrestaurant.com

TACO Rosa’s New Patio and Taco & Tequila Specials

After a full patio renovation, Taco Rosa in Irvine has expanded its covered and heated patio (adding 80 seats) to include a total of 120 outdoor seats. Just in time for the warmer months, Chef and Owner Ivan Calderon has introduced variety of unique taco specials, including Lobster Chorizo Tacos, Sweet Potato Tacos, Korean BBQ Tacos, and more. The new outdoor patio also includes additional bar seating at its renovated indoor/outdoor bar. Enjoy new agave-sweetened drinks, including a Noir Cadillac Margarita and Chikka Cocktail. Since its inception in 2006, Taco Rosa has been committed to sustainability by using artisan water, produce sourced from hyper-local, regenerative farms, wild seafood guided by Seafood Watch, and humanely raised meats—most recently sourcing local GMO-free corn for all its masa-based products, which are locally produced at the concept’s sister restaurant Taco Mesa Tortilleria Orgánica & Café located in Orange (city). tacorosa.com

Ocean at Main’s New Menu

Michelin-starred Chef Craig Strong has unveiled a new menu at his scenic Laguna Beach restaurant, Ocean at Main. Inspired by his recent travels through Italy, Greece, and Croatia, Strong’s new summer dishes mark the first major menu overhaul since the restaurant opened in October 2018. Ocean at Main has made a splash in the heart of Laguna Beach since its debut last fall, attracting a loyal crowd of locals and curious travelers alike. As the restaurant heads into its first peak season of summer, Strong presents new dishes that artfully display both his pedigree and personal style. Awakening the senses to a summer spent abroad, Strong’s new menu delivers the richness of European fare through Spanish chorizo and housemade pasta with a contrast of refreshing seasonal ingredients like English peas, rhubarb, and watermelon. With vibrant, geometric pops of color, Strong’s dishes visually resemble the Gaudí-adorned streets of Barcelona where you’ll find a convergence of classic technique and modern design. oceanatmain.com

ARC Butcher & Baker located on the Newport Beach Peninsula

The award-winning husband and wife duo behind ARC Restaurant and The Guild Club, Chef Noah von Blöm and wife Marín, have opened the doors to ARC Butcher & Baker, their new concept located in Newport Beach’s historic Cannery Village. ARC Butcher & Baker focuses on ready-to-serve family-style dinners, offering several grill-at-home cuts from their European seam-cut butchery. The dine-in menu features toasts, salads, “streetwiches,” and classic entrées including a Baby ARC Burger, Steak n’ Potatoes, and Southern Fried Chicken & Biscuits. Breakfast favorites from Restaurant Marín, the couple’s modern-day diner that re-opened as ARC Pizza House in 2017, have been reimagined into mainstays on ARC Butcher & Baker’s menu. Located within walking distance to the Newport Beach Marina, ARC Butcher & Baker also offers seasonal Boating Baskets, providing boaters with premium, ready-to-eat dock-and-dine baskets. As a full-service bakery, ARC Butcher & Baker bakes a variety of artisan bread for local restaurants, as well as for the von Blöms’ other establishments. arcbutcherbaker.com

Boating in the Bay at Riva de Balboa

Travel back in time for the day by way of Riva de Balboa’s version of the classic wooden boat. A rental fleet of Mahogonite™ finished boats let you recreate moments of yesteryear in an eight-person bay cruiser. Plush seating, Bluetooth stereo, collapsible table, and other amenities are available to make your cruise around the bay picture perfect. Get ready to turn heads as you enjoy your time relaxing with friends on the water. Riva de Balboa aims to provide excellent customer service to all those looking for a unique experience, with added perks to keep guests coming back time and time again. So, come aboard—a truly unique experience awaits you! rivadebalboa.com

A Taste of Summer at Pacific Wine & Food Classic

Celebrate summer and the bounty of Southern California at the third annual Pacific Wine & Food Classic taking place at Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort during the weekend of August 17-18. The world-class culinary event puts a spotlight on one of the most exciting and fastest growing food scenes in the country, and was recently named one of USA Today’s “10Best Food Festivals in the Nation” for 2019. Offering over 100 taste experiences, the stars of the Pacific Wine & Food Classic are SoCal’s top, local chefs who give their time, talent, and resources to make this event possible. The irresistible two-day event allows culinary enthusiasts to taste the flavors of summer as the region’s top chefs and mixologists create dishes reminiscent of their favorite summertime memories. Immerse yourself in the perfect summer day with ocean breezes, incredible food, and fine wine while enjoying good company and toe-tappin’ music in the idyllic waterfront setting of Newport Dunes. pacificwineandfood.com

Summer Game Night at SideDoor

All summer long, join SideDoor for weekly Game Night in the backyard every Monday through Wednesday, from 4:30-9pm. Look for the Union Jack flag flying above SideDoor and head to Game Night in the picturesque outdoor patio and garden. Enjoy summer fun with outdoor fire pits and brand new lawn games like cornhole, yard pong, giant Jenga, and Connect Four. The full SideDoor menu with regular SideDoor service will be available for backyard guests. Sip on specialty cocktails under the twinkling lights, and savor signature dishes crafted by Executive Chef Alejandra Padilla. lawrysonline.com/sidedoor-corona-del-mar/