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Author Elizabeth Evans

  • Elizabeth Evans

 

(7) First Dates

1. Take a Hike Part of Crystal Cove State Park, El Moro Canyon is an undeveloped valley east of Newport Coast that offers miles of trails leading to stunning ocean views. (All-day parking is $15.) Opt for a relatively easy 3½-mile outing, or the more arduous 8-mile trek. Afterward, treat yourselves to lunch or dinner at The Beachcomber just steps from the sea. Need other trail options? Our October “Great Hikes” issue has nine more. Check them out at orangecoast.com/hikes. Crystal Cove State Park, 871 N. Coast Highway, 949-494-3539; The Beachcomber, 15 Crystal Cove, 949-376-6900, thebeachcombercafe.com Read more...

Saloon Suppers


Packable Desserts


Top Tables

We all know a bad restaurant table when we see it: a lopsided slab crammed into a dark, noisy corner in front of a busy service bay or the kitchen’s swinging doors. If you want the best dining experience, you have to know the best seat in the house. Ask for a specific table by number; there are no guarantees, but good restaurants will make every effort to honor your request. It’s worth snagging the perfect table when you’re celebrating a special birthday or want to impress a client. Here are prime tables for just about every occasion. Read more...

Dining Solo

  • Best of 2014: Nutty Brûlée

    No one can resist breaking into the sugary crust of crème brûlée, and this one packs an extra surprise with its abundance of silky-smooth chocolate-hazelnut custard below—thanks to the addition of Nutella. This sinful dessert is incredibly rich and best shared with a friend. $8
    704 E. Balboa Blvd., Newport Beach, 949‑673‑7173, theslidingdoorcafe.com

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  • Hot Shop: Betting the Farm

    “There’s not a guy in America who wants to go to the mall,” says John Anderson, left, co-owner, with his brother Mike, of Tankfarm in Seal Beach. Read More
  • Neighborhood: Dana Point

    Perched above Pacific Coast Highway, Monarch Bay Plaza reflects the relaxed sophistication of its Dana Point neighborhood. In the Spanish-style mall with red tile roofs, ocean breezes blow through white stucco archways, and upscale-yet-casual boutiques and restaurants attract locals and tourists. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Tiki Drinks

    Though some regard them as overly cloying concoctions, tiki cocktails such as mai tais and zombies are enjoying a resurgence in Orange County. Craft bartenders layer the rum-based drinks with multiple spirits and spices to create beguiling and complex potions. Here are five great places to get your tiki on. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Vegan Breakfasts

    Veg-heads don’t just mow down bowls of granola and slam wheatgrass shots at the break of dawn. Most want to enjoy brunching on Sunday-Funday with everyone else. And because it can be hard to find tofu scrambles and dairy-free waffles, we’ve rounded up five local eateries that provide tasty vegan options to start the morning right. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Shaved Ice

    These light and downright lush desserts get tricked out with enticing toppings and mix-ins, many taking their cues from Asian favorites such as red beans, mochi balls, and lychee. But they also can be as traditional as orangesicle and strawberry shortcake. Here are six places in Orange County to get your brain-freeze on. Read More
  • O.C.’s Best: Roast Chicken

    Whether it’s cooked slowly over open flames on a spit-roast or stuffed with herbs and roasted in the oven to golden perfection, few dishes are as comforting as a simple roast chicken. While it’s hard to beat a home-cooked version, these seven diverse locales in Orange County do right by this ubiquitous classic. Read More
  • O.C.'s Best: Afternoon Tea

    The ritual dates back to the 1800s as a snacking fix and social gathering for the aristocratic ladies of Britain. Today, afternoon tea has become a fashionable alternative for birthday parties, and bridal and baby showers. Here are five teahouses in Orange County where you can practice traditional etiquette while noshing on dainty pastries and finger sandwiches. Read More
 
 
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