Best New Restaurants 2020: Tavern House Pairs Fun Favorites With Fresh Creations

Sonoma salad with grilled chicken, strawberries, blue cheese, and candied pecans at Tavern House. Photograph by Emily J. Davis

It happened so fast. David Wilhelm, Orange County’s most prodigious restaurant operator, along with partner Gregg Solomon, pounced on this killer bayside site the instant it was available, launching Tavern House in July.

Menus read like Wilhelm’s greatest hits from his many prior ventures, supplemented by dishes born yesterday. Think barbecue chipotle bourbon oysters, iron skillet sirloin meatballs, red snapper Veracruzana, and a vibrant avocado-loaded Buddha bowl. Prime-rib dip piled with Gruyère is particularly lavish. Burgers include some stunners, including an Impossible Burger for those who swim in that lane. Sunset happy hours and weekend brunch are essential in this waterfront ’hood, so Tavern House wisely overdelivers, often with live music. Expect nifty deals on select appetizers and booze midweek, and weekends are time for outrageous bloodies, loaded tots, avocado toast Benedict, and buttermilk fried chicken atop malted waffles. Dining afloat? Check out the boat party menu for ready-to-share portions that you can pick up dockside.

Tavern House was 3-Thirty-3.

333 Bayside Drive, Newport Beach, 949-673-8464


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