Holiday Dining Around Newport

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“It’s that time of year again,” I sighed.

“For what?” asked Stasha.

“Deciding where to feast this Christmas.”

“That shouldn’t be a problem. I bet there are plenty of Newport Beach restaurants serving Christmas dinner for you to choose from.”

“That’s the problem –deciding which one. Remember that amazing meal we had at The Ritz last December?” I asked her.

“Yes, the appetizer carousel was fabulous. I thought they were moving their location?”

“They are moving, but not until next year. They have a Christmas Eve dinner featuring their famous roast goose.”

“Who else is serving holiday fare this year?”

“The Balboa Bay Club’s First Cabin Restaurant is offering Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dining, with special menus created by Chef Josef Lageder.”

“And as I recall from last year, their decorations are impressive,” said Stasha.

“Chef Pascal Olhats is serving Christmas Eve dinners at his flagship Tradition restaurant and at Brasserie Pascal in Fashion Island. And, he has take out dinners available including roasted goose.”

“What about Pelican Hill?” wondered Stasha. “They always celebrate the seasons in a big way.”

“Indeed they do,” I agreed. “Andrea Restaurant, Coliseum Pool & Grill, and Pelican Grill all have impressive menus for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and they have a special family-oriented Christmas Day buffet in the Mar Vista Ballroom.”

“So many choices,” stated Stasha.

“True, and I didn’t even tell you about Bayside, Bambu at Fairmont Hotel, or The Bungalow, or…”

“I’m getting full just listening to the options,” laughed Stasha. “Maybe you’d better list them for everyone.”


Take the stress out of Christmas dinner and let someone else’s kitchen do the cooking for you and your family while you spend time doing more important Christmas chores – like opening presents.

Here’s our list of what some of our favorite Newport Beach Restaurants are offering this Christmas:


The Balboa Bay Club’s First Cabin Restaurant is serving Christmas Eve dinner from 5 to 10 p.m., and Christmas Day dinner from 1 to 8 pm. The Christmas Eve dinner features a five course prix-fixe meal ($85 adults and $42 children 4-12) created by Chef Josef Lageder that includes choice of Salads, Main Lobster Cognac Bisque or Truffled Cauliflower and Leek Soup, choice of entrees (Seared Diver Scallops and Jumbo :Prawns, Steak au Poivre, or Rack of Lamb), and choice of Dessert. The Christmas Day dinner is priced the same and includes Roasted Pumpkin Bisque, choice of entrees (Prime Rib, Atlantic Salmon or Long Island Duck), plus Dessert. For reservations, call 949-630-4245 or visit


Chef Pascal Olhats has cooked up both a three-course ($70) and a five-course ($90) Christmas Eve dinner at his Tradition Restaurant. Both menus include choice of appetizers such as Pumpkin Soup, Sauteed Foie Gras or Wild Boar Pate, and entrees such as Roasted Goose with Herb Pudding, Marmite de Fruits de Mer (Scallops, Lobster, and Bass), and Beef Tenderloin. Dessert is also included. The five-course menu adds a cheese course plus an extra appetizer. Call 949-263-9400, Ext. 1, or visit


At Chef Pascal’s more casual Brasserie Pascal in Fashion Island, Christmas Eve dinner is either a three-course ($45) or five-course ($55) affair. The three-course meal (available before 5:30 pm) includes choice of appetizer such as Lobster Bisque, Escargot, or Oysters on the Half Shell, entrees such as Filet Mignon and Duck Three Ways, plus choice of desserts including Pascal’s famous White Chocolate Souffle. The five-course dinner (available after 5:30 p.m.) features a similar menu with added selections. Call 949-263-9400, Ext. 1, or visit


Next door to Pascal’s Tradition Restaurant is his charming Epicerie and wine shop. Order a Christmas dinner to go with a choice of Roasted Goose, Rack of Lamb, Prime Rib, Turkey, and other entrees, complete with assorted side dishes and desserts. Call 949-263-9400, ext. 2 for details.

Andrea Restaurant at Pelican Hill offers holiday menus on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.


An array of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dining options are available at Pelican Hill, starting with Andrea Restaurant. Chef Luca brings an Italian holiday festa to the Resort on Christmas Eve from noon to 9 pm (a la carte selections) and a special Prix Fixe menu ($95 adults, $45 children) on Christmas Day. At Coliseum Pool & Grill, enjoy a three-course Christmas Eve dinner (a la carte selections) or a Christmas Day menu ($5 for adults and $20 for children). Pelican Grill also has a Christmas Eve menu, including a special menu for children under 5, plus live entertainment. The Christmas Day menu is available 11:30 am to 10 pm). And finally, in the Mar Vista Ballroom, a Christmas Day buffet with traditional offerings ($95 per adult, $45 per child) are accompanied by a classic harpist, photos with Santa, cupcake decorating, and a puppet show. Call 800-820-6800 or visit


The Ritz Restaurant in Fashion Island serves a four course prix-fixe ($85) Christmas Eve dinner from 4 to 10 p.m. that includes a Seafood Martini, choice of soup or salad (including Lobster Bisque laced with Armagnac), entrees such as Roast Christmas Goose with Lingonberry Sauce, Main Lobster Tails, Carved Chateaubriand, and Osso Buco, and a Christmas Eve Dessert Sampler. Call 949-720-1800 or visit


Bayside Restaurant has special festive holiday offerings plus live entertainment on Christmas Eve from 5 to 10 pm. Call 949-721-1222 or visit

Bambu Restaurant at Fairmont Newport Beach has a three course menu for $85 per person that includes traditional Tom Turkey and Beef Filet, plus starter course and dessert. Call 949-476-2001.

Bungalow Restaurant has a four course prix fixe Christmas Eve (4:30-10 p.m.) and Christmas Day (4:30-11 p.m.) dinner menu for $55 per person that includes appetizer, soup or salad, entrée and dessert. Call 949-673-6585.

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