Pastries at Il Barone Bottega
IL BARONE offers Il Barone Bottega, a next-door sleeper stop for made-to-order panini, Italian pantry necessities, fresh-baked delights, gelatos, and more. Try Street Food Fridays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., when owners Franco and Donatella get their Sicilian on. And wine and bake-at-home lasagna are 20 percent off that day. Newport Beach, 949-536-5044, ilbaronebottega.com
SELANNE STEAK TAVERN opened TS Gourmet Shoppe, a teensy on-site boutique that sells chef Josh Severson’s secret sauces, Prime beef butchered to order, truffle butter, and other sweet-and-savory extravagances. And that chef jacket signed by Teemu? It’s yours for $79.95.
Laguna Beach, 949-715-4497, selannesteaktavern.com
BREAK OF DAWN brings us pop-up feasts. Twelve courses with a theme is chef Dee Nguyen’s idea of the underground dining he says is missing in O.C. bimonthly dinners sell out the day tickets are released. April’s motif is “local.” Follow Break of Dawn (BoD) on Facebook for notification.
Laguna Hills, 949-587-9418, breakofdawnreastaurant.com
JULIETTE KITCHEN & BAR allows owner and wine wonk John Hughes to apply his great palate and enviable connections to monthly premium wine tastings. Notable releases run $35 per person and include cheese, charcuterie, and about a dozen choice wines. Get on the list by emailing Hughes at email@example.com.
Newport Beach, 949-752-5854, juliettenb.com
CUCINA ENOTECA is all about the quirky goods. Yes, we know about the tasty wine deals, but smart shoppers also come for vintage seltzer bottles, candles in hobnail glasses, Spanish lime candles, and letterpress coasters with animal illustrations from San Diego’s Divine Chaos Ink.
Irvine Spectrum, 949-861-2222; Fashion Island, 949-706-1416, urbankitchengroup.com