Tavern House Opens; Last Chance for Lobsterfest

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David Wilhelm

Tavern House Opens 

Restaurateur David Wilhelm, whose previous restaurants include French 75, Chat Noir and Chimayo, is back in Newport Beach with his newest concept, Tavern House Kitchen + Bar, that opened last month in the old 3Thirty3 spot which Wilhelm purchased earlier this year. Regulars probably did a double take when they saw the new sign outside the restaurant, because the changeover was relatively quick.

I popped in for brunch last weekend to try the new menu and check out the restaurant. The brunch menu lists a dozen starters, but the BBQ chipotle bourbon oysters with garlic butter and pecan wood smoked bacon caught my eye. Wilhelm told me he had tried smoked oysters up north and decided to create his own unique version.

Smoked oysters

The oysters were excellent, as was the Maine lobster and shrimp club sandwich with avocado, tomato and smoked bacon on grilled sourdough. The sandwich was huge, with generous chunks of lobster and shrimp. I’ll be back soon to try the dinner menu and offer a full report.

Tavern House is open for dinner nightly, and for weekend brunch. There’s also a happy hour menu served from 3 to 6 p.m.  Visit tavernhousekb.com.

Last Chance for Lobsterfest

Lobster lovers, take note—the cutoff date to purchase VIP tickets to this year’s annual Lobsterfest, held on Aug. 11, has passed, but general admission tickets are still available.

Lobsterfest is in a new location this year. The ode to crustaceans has moved from Newport Dunes to the greens of the Newport Beach Civic Center, home of the Newport Beach Wine & Food Festival.

This celebration of summer is now in its eleventh year, and raises funds for deserving charities: Make-A-Wish Orange County and the Inland Empire, Leadership Tomorrow Newport Beach, and Les Dames d’Escoffier LA/OC Chapter.

For Lobsterfest, whole Maine lobster is flown in fresh the morning of the event from Anderson Seafood and prepared on-site. While feasting on lobster, grilled NY strip steak, summer salad, red potatoes, corn-on-the-cob, drawn butter, sourdough rolls and dessert, you’ll enjoy live entertainment from Pinch Me! Band.

Tickets are $65 general admission which includes one lobster ($25 for additional lobster) and the other dishes.

Visit lobsterfestatnewportbeach.com.

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