Summer officially begins next week, which means local restaurants are adjusting their menus, launching weekly barbecue events, and concocting new and creative libations to fit the season.
For us – and you – this means getting out and discovering what’s haute for summer! Need some ideas on where to go? Check out these local options for summertime inspiration:
The Palm Terrace at the Island Hotel got a jump on summer last weekend when they launched their “Sundays Only” Pool Party and Barbecue that runs through Sept. 4. Included in the cost ($34 for adults and $12 for children 12 and under) is a family swim time from 3 to 5 p.m., and then a fun barbecue on the pool deck with slow-braised and grilled beef short ribs, garlic and herb grilled chicken skewers, harissa-marinated and grilled swordfish, corn-on-the-cob, and a variety of salads.
Chris sampled the menu and said the desserts nearly steal the show! Among the many goodies on display are berry shortcake, chocolate fudge cake, fresh baked pies, and mini S’mores tacos (made to order).
Visit IslandHotel.com for details or call 949-759-0808.
BALBOA BAY CLUB
Starting this Sunday (June 19, Father’s Day) and running through Sept. 4 is the Balboa Bay Club’s annual Sunday Evening Dinner BBQ, held from 4:30 to 8 p.m. on the outdoor terrace of Duke’s Place, overlooking the bay.
Priced at $29.95 for adults and $19.95 for children 12 and under ($35 and $22.50 on the Fourth of July and Labor Day weekends), the BBQ includes free-range chicken, fresh Atlantic salmon, baby back ribs, bratwurst, hickory smoked sausage, and – of course – hot dogs. Sides include corn on the cob, BBQ baked beans, baked potato, sauerkraut, and a variety of salads. Dessert is the Balboa Bay Club’s famous bread pudding a la mode.
While you dine, enjoy the sounds of a steel drum band performing calypso and reggae music. And on Father’s Day, be sure to check out their Classic Car Show with more than 75 cars on display.
We attended the Balboa Bay Club’s recent Wine Festival BBQ and loved the food. Tip: try the bratwurst – it’s delicious right off the grill.
For details, call 949-645-5000 or visit BalboaBayClub.com.
SOL MEXICAN COCINA
What’s better than a new summer food menu? A summer cocktail menu!
To showcase its more than 70 artisan tequila offerings, SOL Mexican Cocina has created several new cocktails with a bar-chef flair, including what they call the “ultimate margarita” (Clase Azul reposado with fresh lime juice, agave nectar and Cointreau) shaken tableside to order, and a White Sangria (an infusion of fresh oranges, lemons, apples, peaches, white wine and a touch of Gran Marnier), both focused on delivering fresh and immediate flavors.
New bar offerings include: Strawberry Kiwi Margarita with fresh muddled strawberries, kiwi and agave nectar; Coconut and Pineapple Martini with pineapple juice, coconut water, agave nectar and fresh house made sweet and sour; and a Tequila and Chocolate concoction.
We’ve sampled some of SOL’s freshly muddled cocktail staples and can vouch for their amazing burst of flavor on the palate. We’re looking forward to trying these new concoctions.
For more information, visit SolCocina.com.
We recently wrote about a variety of Father’s Day dining options in Newport Beach, but it seems like we forgot a few.
Wildfish Seafood Grille in Newport Beach is offering a meal fit for a king, or a dad. Starting at 4 p.m., they’re offering a menu that’s tough for any father to resist: steak and lobster combinations starting at $44, such as an 8oz filet and 1/2 Broiled and Stuffed Maine Lobster. Wildfish is also offering 25% off all wines from their Cellars list. After the meal, Dad will leave with a big smile because not only did he have a great meal, he’ll receive a $25 Wildfish gift card that he can use on his next visit.
For details, call 949-720-9925.
The Cannery Restaurant has an a la carte menu on Father’s Day starting at 11 a.m. The item that caught our eye is the Cannery Clam Bake Platter: 1 ½ lb. steamed main lobster, steamed clams, black mussels, corn, boiled potatoes, root vegetables, and choice of dessert, all for $49.95. That is certainly guaranteed to please any dad, as will the classic cars on display outside the restaurant.
For details, call 949)-566-0060, or visit CanneryNewport.com.
And of course, leave it to Pelican Hill Resort to provide a luxurious Father’s Day treat. Celebrate dad with an afternoon barbeque, featuring grilled favorites with a choice of bubbly beverages at Coliseum Pool & Grill. Children can opt for the grill fare or let them enjoy the “Coliseum Kids” menu with endless pizza, pasta and gelato for just $10. And everyone can enjoy Camp Pelican for bubble activities from 1 to 4 p.m.
Cost is $60 per adult, and $30 per child under age 12. For details or reservations, call 800-820-6800.
Christopher, I like your column and blog a lot. I’m Joey, I run the only high-end wine tasting group in Orange County. I wonder if you could cover my tasting group in one of your pieces, I think we make a good story that fits into your classy concept. We are based in Newport Beach. http://www.meetup.com/WineElite
I can give more information anytime, I’d love to have you join a meeting to show you how much fun we are.