Off the Menu: Easter Brunch in Newport Beach

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by Christopher Trela & Catherine Del Casale

 

xxPelican Hill 048Let’s do brunch!

Brunch brings people together to enjoy good company and good food. Certain holidays provide ideal opportunities to enjoy brunch, including Easter, which this year falls on Sunday, March 31.

A number of restaurants in Newport Beach offer Easter Brunch specials that range from prix fixe menus to lavish buffets, and everything in between.

The Bungalow

We sampled The Bungalow’s Restaurant Week menu back in January and were impressed with the flavors and quality of the food, as well as the price.

The Bungalow brings those same elements to its Easter Brunch Menu, which is available on Easter Sunday 4 to 9 p.m.

The three course menu offers a choice of Bungalow salad or corn chowder (we’ve tried and enjoyed both), followed by one of three entrees: blackened king salmon with mashed potatoes, avocado relish, beurre blanc and grilled asparagus; honey baked ham with creamy scalloped potatoes and asparagus; and prime rib (10 oz) with mashed potatoes, creamy horseradish and grilled asparagus. Dessert is seasonal berries and ice cream (which we gobbled down during Restaurant Week).

Cost is $34.95. For reservations, visit thebungalowrestaurant.com or call (949) 673-6585.

Great Maple

We fell in love with Great Maple’s marvelous menu last year, and love their creative takes on classic dishes (their salmon Wellington is sensational, and their lamb burger is insanely good).

So when we heard they had a special Easter Brunch menu, our taste buds stood at attention.

The prix fixe menu ($38 per person) starts with a mimosa (regular or lavender), then continues with a choice of three starters:  salmon brioche tosta with mascarpone cheese and sea salt capers; petite caprese with burrata cheese; or fresh asparagus with shaved pecorino cheese.

Next, select one of six entrees: chicken paillard benedict; Easter salad with crab cakes; calvados pork chop; John Dory; vanilla bean French toast; or Great Maple coq au vin.

Finish your meal with one of two desserts: key lime pie (one of the best we’ve ever had), or mini chocolate lava cake.

For reservations, call (949) 706-8282 or visit greatmaplefashionisland.com.

Brasserie Pascal

Another favorite is Brasserie Pascal. We recently write about the new Sunset menu, and the monthly Libations for Literacy fundraiser held in the lounge. Now, Chef Pascal Olhats has created a prix fixe Easter menu for $34.95 per person with endless champagne, a choice of five appetizers (including poached oysters), and choice of eight entrees (including duck confit hash and eggs, crab meat benedict, and crème brulée brioche French toast). Call (949) 640-2700 or visit BrasseriePascal.net.

Other Easter Brunch Options:

The Resort at Pelican Hill has a traditional Easter Brunch buffet from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Mar Vista Grand Ballroom, a prix fixe lunch menu and a la carte dinner menu in Andrea Restaurant, a breakfast buffet at Coliseum Pool & Grill, and Easter specials at Pelican Grill. Kids can enjoy an Easter egg hunt and a visit from the Easter bunny. Call (800) 820-6800 or visit pelicanhill.com.

Newport Dunes hosts its 21st annual Easter celebration starting on Saturday, March 30 with a free Easter egg hunt at 9 a.m. followed by a pancake breakfast ($7 to $12). On Easter Sunday,  enjoy a champagne brunch ($58 for adults, $28 for kids) with endless mimosas, a carving station, seafood display, and more. Call (949) 729-1144 or visit backbaybistronewportbeach.com.

Flemings at Fashion Island has a special Easter menu available 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Options include lobster bisque, prime rib, brioche French toast, and more. Call (949) 720-9633 or visit flemingssteakhouse.com.

Tamarind of London has an Easter menu with an Indian twist. Selections include Dosa (Indian version of a crêpe), eggs Benedict with lamb sausage, masala omelet infused with traditional Indian spices, and Naan stuffed with coconut and raisins. Brunch will be served on Sunday, March 31 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Reservations: (949) 715-8338 or tamarindoflondon.com.

The Cannery Restaurant has a three-course $40 prix fixe Easter menu that features such selections as braised short rib, skuna bay salmon, Brioche French toast, seared Diver scalloops, and more. Call (949) 556-0060 or visit CanneryNewport.com.

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