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The Hit List: Comer!
Charlotte Farrell and Kristen Schott | Photo: Courtesy Image | October 10, 2013
Autumn weather making you hungry for some hearty fare? Head to these favorite haunts to sample what’s new on the menus.
1. In the Round
It’s National Pizza Month, and there’s no better way to celebrate than by grabbing a slice at O.C.’s pie palaces. Among our faves: Canaletto, perhaps the most stylish pizzeria in town. (It’s at Fashion Island, of course.) Here, orbs of cheesy goodness are put together with housemade dough and mozzarella, then wood-fired to achieve thin-crust perfection. Our pick? The Cristina. 545 Newport Center Drive, Newport Beach, 949.640.0900, ilfornaio.com
2. Taco the Town
Chef Deborah Schneider’s Sol Cocina in Newport has long been known as a harbor-front hot spot for its Baja-inspired flavors and fiesta-like atmosphere, but now, her team’s adding something new to the mix with Solita Tacos & Margaritas. When it opens this month in Surf City, the Mexican restaurant will offer a more casual approach to Sol’s sunny philosophy. Diners will feast on inventive dishes and classic creations (tacos, carne asada, ancho chile chicken and wood-grilled wild fish, to name a few) crafted simply with seasonal ingredients, all in a 150-seat space that reflects the region’s rustic charm. 7777 Edinger Ave., Huntington Beach, solitatacos.com
3. Palatable Palace
Tamarind of London is the go-to hot spot for the best in Indian cuisine and one-of-a-kind cocktails. It’s spicing up the wee hours, too, with its new late-night happy hour menu of small bites (a hint: try the spiced potato croquettes and battered lamb skewers) and other nibbles, along with a selection of sips. It’s offered Sunday through Thursday beginning at 8PM. 7862 E. Coast Highway, Newport Beach, 949.715.8338, tamarindoflondon.com
If you’re anything like us, you’ll soon be pouring in to Paul Martin’s American Grill in Irvine to indulge in its Monday night wine dinner for two. You and your dining guest—a fellow oenophile, we’re guessing—will choose one bottle from a selection of 20, and you’ll each select a salad and an entree from the menu of hearty yet wholesome dishes. Anthony Endy, the brand’s manager of culinary operations, suggests starting with the butter lettuce and Point Reyes blue cheese salad, then ordering the cedar-plank salmon with shallots, bacon, organic Bloomsdale spinach and a crimini mushroom jus. The pairing? Poet’s Leap Riesling (for the salad) and the Annabella Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir with the fish. The dinner costs $49. Irvine Spectrum Center, 31 Fortune Drive, Irvine, 949.453.1144, paulmartinsamericangrill.com
5. Bay Watch
We adore harbor-front Bayside Restaurant for its view, its environment and its heavy-on-the-fish menu of New American cuisine created by pro Paul Gstrein. Grab a seat for Parrot Head Sunday on Oct. 20, and you’ll be treated to a bottomless mimosa brunch and live entertainment. 900 Bayside Drive, Newport Beach, 949.721.1222, baysiderestaurant.com