Archive for the ‘Bar Reviews’ Category

Great Maple Libations And Seasonal Plates At Fashion Island.

January 21st, 2012 1 comment

Its spot in Fashion Island (near Nordstrom) has gone through a few changes to become the Great Maple it is today.  I liked the Italian restaurants that preceded it and now appreciate the “Libations and Seasonal Plates” we had in the Bar this day — $5 Small Plates on Fridays.

It was Happy Hour time (4:00 – 6:30PM) and the start of Newport Beach Restaurant Week.

All deals were contemplated over a couple Black Lemonades, a seasonal drink special.

Bread in a bag with soft Butter, with a dash of Olive Oil, Parsley, Salt & Pepper, a nice touch.

Here for a quick bite on the way to elsewhere and do want to try the Moroccan Lamb Burger next time.  Today it was the Market Asparagus with Shaved Pecorino and Lemon Olive Oil.

Chorizo Picante Board and Aioli Mayo.

Creamy Polenta with Pancetta and Shaved Pecorino.

Great Maple:  Nice people, creative libations, a cool atmosphere and tasty seasonal plates.

2nd Floor Restaurant And Art Gallery On Main Street In Huntington.

December 5th, 2011 No comments

Up the stairs to Make Me Bad — Partly owned by former Korn Drummer is the 2nd Floor Restaurant and Art Gallery in Huntington Beach.  The space has gone through several changes to become the cool place it is today.  You’ll need to learn the specifics elsewhere, since I don’t get paid to know.

In addition to food and drinks, ART is for sale — Eat, drink, shop and people watch.

There’s an attention grabbing Main Street view from the 2nd Floor’s outdoor patio — This day we saw a guy skateboarding up and down Main in a leopard g-string (only).  It was cold too.  Tried to capture him on film, but kept missing it.  Entertaining stuff all-around.

Each table is a work of art (though not for sale, I don’t think) and the menu is unique too.

We’ll definitely be going back for the House Mac & Cheese.

It’s a harmonious blend of Cheddar, Parmesan and Gouda Chesse with Bacon and Jalapeno.

We think the Pulled Pork Sliders rock too.

Have to say we didn’t love the Santana San Lucas Salad (above) — This day it had way too much Dressing and the Filet Mignon was a bit bland and cold.  It’s okay though, because there are more Sliders and Colossal Creations to try next time.

We liked the Sauce on the Thai Green Beans, one of several sides to choose from.

The long Bar is waiting for you and the service is excellent.

Where do you want to sit?

Read what Yelpers are saying about the 2nd Floor Restaurant and Art Gallery.

Just walk up the stairs.  No need to be shy.  And check out the live bands on Wednesdays.

McCormick & Schmick’s Supplemental Happy Hour Report: Go Monday.

October 20th, 2011 No comments

One of the Best Happy Hours in town is at McCormick & Schmick’s Pilsner Room in Irvine.  We’ve now tried almost everything on McCormick’s Happy Hour Menu and the $2.95 full size Cheeseburger and French Fries will always be a must.  It’s filling, cheap and tasty. 

We highlight it and supplement our previous post with Ceviche.  It’s good too, though not as delicious as Mary Sue Milliken’s Ceviche had a couple days prior, but enjoyable in its edible bowl for $4.95.  Their Happy Hour is generally between 4 – 7 PM.  This day we practically killed ourselves trying to make the 7PM cut-off, then learned that HH is all night during Monday Night Football.  Cool, we didn’t need to order everything at 6:55PM.  It seems that Monday is a good day for some things.

What Up Panama Joe’s – Hoochified By The Shark From Baja?!

October 16th, 2011 No comments

It’s Panama Joe’s in face only, but truly a Shark behind the awning, Baja Sharkeez that is.

It’s really not Panama Joe’s anymore, the local bar I liked most when living in Belmont Shore a lifetime ago.  We loved dancing to their live bands — Let’s go crash that party down in Normaltown tonight and we’ll go skinny dippin’ in the moonlight, the Deadbeat Club in PJ days.

PJ’s was a kick-back, fun neighborhood bar and restaurant where we had some times, and it’s now marketed as a party-down place with distracting TV overload.  BS is trying to be cool when PJ’s already was.  Everyone at BS seemed nice but… RIP the real Panama Joe’s.

Shannon’s Bayshore: Dive Bar Still Going Strong And Longer.

October 15th, 2011 No comments

Oh Belmont Shore I have a special place for thee — Hadn’t been back for some time.  Memory lane happened today with a stop at Shannon’s Bayshore for a Shoot the Root and game of pool.  A lot has changed and much remains the same on Second Street.  A good change for Bayshore is its longer bar that now stretches most the length of its narrow space. 

Shoot the Root — A Shot of Root Beer Schnapps dropped into a glass of Beer.

The Pilsner Room: A Long Time Great Place For Happy Hour.

September 18th, 2011 No comments

McCormick & Schmick’s Pilsner Room still serves above average Happy Hour Food — They’ve offered an ever changing menu of high quality appetizers at great prices for many years.

This day we had the King Crab Legs with a Tomato Chili Gastrique.

Current MENU and prices above.

1/2 lb. Cheeseburger with French Fries – A long time staple there that’s always good.

Risotto Balls — Enlarge menu for more description on all.

Carrot Chipotle Wings.

Dynamite Mussels, a favorite — Photo doesn’t do ’em justice.

Legume Empanadas.

Marinated Olives — Since prices are so good you can’t pack anything to go, so eat up.

California Roll.


Its interior is hipper looking these days, mixed in with appreciated old school.

View of Pilsner Room from above.

There’s an outdoor patio too. 

Entrance to McCormick & Schmick’s.

A peek inside M & S’s.

Flight of Beer — We took a couple flights.

Can’t we skip this part? 😉

Peace out — Thanks for the GC Sarnoff from my other life.

Walt’s Wharf Restaurant Wrap Up And A Mystery Solved.

June 7th, 2011 No comments

Those Cadillac Margaritas go right here, thank you — At Walt’s Wharf Restaurant in Seal Beach for the Oak Grilled Artichoke, dinner, drinks and to explore Main Street.

In the Bar having Walt’s Famous Oak Grilled Artichoke and Lea & Perrins Sauce.

View looking out the Bar window on to Main Street, a couple blocks from the ocean.

The kitchen, grill and pick-up window.

White Wine cases lining the entrance.

Lovely Hostesses of the evening.

Warm Sour Dough Bread.

Dinner Salad.

The Trout was excellent.

A Blackened Halibut (split).

Looking in from the outside — Got there during daylight and left when it was dark.

Walt’s Wharf Birthday Dessert — Thank you.

And thank you dear friends for the appetizers, dinner, drinks and guaranteed laughs.

Those piggies ate most of the dessert. 😉

I drift back in time and I find my feet down on Main Street.

Note:  Mystery solved is found in the links above and summarized here — We observed that Walt’s Lea & Perrins Sauce n/k/a Lea and Perrins Aioli is slightly different.  The ingredients are the same, but the measurements have changed.  We like the original recipe better.

Prime Rib And A Tribute To Frank Sinatra At La Cave On Monday Nights.

May 16th, 2011 1 comment

Fly me to the moon and give me a flashlight — Prime Rib and David Kinwald’s Tribute to Frank Sinatra is at La Cave on Monday Nights.  With Soup or Salad, Potato or Rice, and a basket of the best Garlic Cheese Bread in town, it’s a steal at $19.95.  Make a reservation or go early to be guaranteed a slab and keep tabs on the tab.  Otherwise choose from the above.

Outside La Cave off Irvine Avenue and 17th in Costa Mesa.

Entry looks like 1970’s VIP.

Menu, hours and entertainment schedule (above).

La Cave festivities are underground — Take the elevator (left) or stairs (right) down.

David Kinwald is a good singer and Cool Cat — Enjoyed the show and meal.

As reported, La Cave consistently serves some of the finest Prime Rib in the OC.

We ordered an add-on King Crab Legs, but for $24 it seemed sparse — I want fat legs!

You’re looking at the menu (above), shown with a flashlight and explained by the server in the very dark lounge.  I was happy not to trip walking in and it’s amazing the photos turned out, but do LOVE the old school aspects about the place.  There are no prices to look at, which I don’t love, because I like to know and don’t want to ask — We’re not cheap, but know La Cave isn’t either, but strategically it can be.  Closed Sunday, go Monday or Always, Frank.

Brasserie Pascal In Newport Beach: See Mom It Isn’t A Whore House.

April 17th, 2011 1 comment

Falling in love doesn’t happen often at a Whore House — What a meal and deal at Brasserie Pascal in Fashion Island.  We loved everything about it.  I tell my Mom it isn’t a WH, because she laughingly called it that when I tried to get her to eat there before.  We peeked in from the outside to a sea of leather and red, part of its appeal to me.  We went elsewhere that day, but I knew I’d be lured back.  This day I finally had a Perfect 10 and more with another.

It started with a Hot Mess, a Dirty Vodka Martini with a Blue Cheese Stuffed Olive and Cajun Spiced Rim, and a Lychee Raspberry Martini times two, since only $5 during Happy Hour.

And the Perfect 10 Menu offers a selection of complete, high quality meals for $10, 7 days a week — The price and convenience make this fine dining experience repetitively tangible.

It’s beautiful and jazzy inside, don’t be afraid.

Before diving into the Perfect 10 we started with the Pascal Patchwork, because it’s only $10 too, and happens to be an exclusive variety of remarkable food, a sampler tray of the ‘Best of Happy Hour’ — Blue Cheese Beef Sirloin Sliders, Homemade Pate, Grilled Cheese with Truffle Oil, Thyme Fries, Buttermilk Onion Rings, Charcuterie and Gourmet Pizza.

As if that wasn’t enough, the Baked Brie Cheese on the Perfect 10 Menu for $5 sounded too good to pass up — When our meal selections arrived, our kind banquette neighbors were compelled to comment on the seemingly endless food that kept coming our way.

We were a bit out of control, but hungry and free to sit back and enjoy the food and live music.

And now the original enticement, the meal deal we heard about — We opted for the “Duo De Crevettes Croustillantes” aka Jumbo Tempura & Grilled Shrimp with Moroccan Style Tabouli and a Tomato Saffron Emulsion (pictured topmost), and the USDA Choice Aged Filet Mignon with Roquefort and Cabernet Sauce, Potato Au Gratin and Vegetables (directly above).

We usually don’t show off a bill, as who wants any, but it’s a genuine deal for all that’s pictured, with 4 magnifique Martinis – A votre sante!  Are you ready now Mom?  Brunch at Brasserie Pascal (11:30am – 3:30pm) includes free flowing Sparkling French Wine.

And leftovers to stretch the deal a mile — LOVED everything about Brasserie Pascal.

Nuts For The Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts In NY: Easy To Make In CA.

February 21st, 2011 1 comment

There’s not much more to say about the Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts that hasn’t been said or written by many.  I first saw them on the Food Network as one of Giada De Laurentiis favorite snacks.  They looked and sounded so good I made ’em the next day.  I love Nuts and everyone is right, the Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts are superb and easy to make at home.

The Nuts are toasted in the oven at 350° for about 10 minutes, then tossed with a little Butter, Sugar, Sea Salt, Cayenne Pepper and Rosemary.  That’s it.  They end up with a sweet, salty, smoky, spicy, herby flavor.  Our new favorite snack — The Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts.


While Nuts are toasting in ovens coast to coast, Kids in the Kitchen are playin’ in the NYC snow and we’re ready to toast on an OC beach.  We’re nuts over these Nuts — This time we used Almonds, Pecans, Cashews and Hazelnuts.  Use any Nut you want, and read what others are saying herehere and here.  We’re happy to have the recipe.

Endless Food & Fun In Huntington Beach – Who Wouldn’t Want It.

January 22nd, 2011 4 comments


Due to scheduling, I unfortunately missed this event at Endless Food & Fun in Huntington Beach.  It seems like my kind of place too — A giant one-stop destination for endless FOOD, fun and entertainment that includes a Buffet, Restaurant, Bars, an Arcade, Lazer Tag, and so much more.  The possibilities are seriously endless.  Our Guest Blogger, Bonnie was recently invited there and reports about it below.  I can’t wait to go.



Endless Food and Fun lives up to its name! There’s a brand new entertainment complex in Huntington Beach, Endless Food and Fun, and on Wednesday night they sponsored a private, complimentary event specifically for the local hospitality industry. Due to my connection with the Huntington Beach International Surfing Museum, which donated numerous items to one of EFF’s themed dining rooms, I scored an invitation.







In fact, I was personally treated to a VIP tour of all 47,000 square feet of this awesome complex.  Our first stop was their upscale restaurant, Delicioso! where parents can dine in comfort and style while the kids play nearby. The attention to detail was very much appreciated by the interior designer in me – they even thought to soundproof the room.



The next stop was the 200 foot long Las Vegas–style buffet, which serves fresh food that changes every night.  They even have a manned pasta “station” where you can personalize the dish any way you want. This night I opted to do just that — I asked the Chef to combine two different sauces, two kinds of cheese, asparagus, garlic and linguine, and my custom creation turned out quite tasty.





I dined with friends from the Museum in the Surf’s Up themed dining room, which is loaded with vintage surfboards and other memorabilia that was donated by the Museum. It even includes an exhibit board that I personally put together for the Museum’s Surfin’ Exhibit back in 2006. Plus, I got to meet two Surf legends, “Local Hero” inductee David Nuuhiwa and first ASP World Pro Champion Peter “PT” Townend.



After dinner, I continued on my personal tour with owner and operator Andrew, who showed me the other three themed dining rooms, the arcade, and the 7 private party rooms, which are used not only for parties, but for tutoring children after school as well. It’s a true multi-purpose facility.



Finally, we came to the pride and joy of EFF, which is their laser tag arena. The room is chilled to 64 degrees on a constant basis and it may be the most innovative laser tag arena in the nation. Though I did not partake in the laser challenge this night, it looks like a lot of fun.



Endless Food & Fun has two bars that serve an excellent selection of beer and wine. One bar is in Delicioso! which is only open on Friday and Saturday nights. I plan to take up their offer of dinner there in the near future, as I really had a great time and can’t wait to go back – Thanks Keeli!



Thanks Bonnie — I can’t wait to go to Endless Food & Fun.  Who wouldn’t want that?

Skatin’ The LBC Beach Path For A Patio Lunch In Shoreline Village.

July 11th, 2010 No comments

Chips and Tableside Guacamole Fresco at Tequila Jack’s Beach House Cantina in Shoreline Village, Long Beach (the LBC) — After skating from the Belmont Plaza Olympic Pool (near Belmont Veteran’s Memorial Pier) on the beach path to Shoreline Village, we relaxed with drinks, appetizers and Tacos at TJ’s.

We’ve skated, biked and walked the beach path in Long Beach hundreds of times before — It’s a particularly good path for skaters, since it’s extra wide and smooth compared to other local beach paths.  It’s generally less crowded and offers great views too.

Wanting more, we limited ourselves to one Hand Shaken Cadillac Margarita each, since we were already contemplating a ride on the Passport as an easier trip back to our starting point (haha), but we skated back — And no SUI or SWI for us!  Pictured is the Grilled Vegetable Taco and not pictured is the rest of the day, since the camera battery died after a long night.  We need a back-up for all the action.

It was a good day for a patio lunch — Tequila Jack’s always seems willing to accommodate.

Not Just A Restaurant In Newport Beach: It’s “A Restaurant” In NB.

May 30th, 2010 1 comment

Have you been to A Restaurant in Newport Beach?  It occupies The Arches original location.  We’re sorry to report that we don’t care for the name “A Restaurant” at all, but happily the menu, atmosphere and Happy Hour prices make up for it.  The bar lighting is irresistible too, especially during Happy Hour which starts earlier than most in town (3:00 – 7:00pm).  During that time ALL sophisticated appetizers and drinks are half off.  If trying to save, it’s the best time to treat yourself to A Restaurant food, since it’s a little on the pricey side.

Posted from top to bottom — We tried the Steak Tartar, which is rarely seen on menus these days.  We were excited by its offering, given that it’s been years since we had it.  And we shared the Chicken Liver Terrine.  We liked the creamy Pate, but unfortunately didn’t care for the Tartar, which was chopped too chunky and had too much Worcestershire mixed in.

We loved the Burger with Caramelized Onions, Blue Cheese, Bacon and Arugula that comes with French Fries, and the Flatbread with 3 Cheeses and Bacon is quite rich, but good tasting too.  It’s best to share these appetizers amongst as many as possible.

A Restaurant has A Market next door, which sells freshly baked goods, Wines, Cheeses, Sandwiches, Salads, pre-packaged gourmet foods and merchandise and more.  We couldn’t stop staring at the amazing Cinnamon Rolls.  Both A+ locations are worth frequenting.  Our recommendation is A Market for breakfast and A Restaurant for Happy Hour.

Direct to A Restaurant — They have one of the cutest websites we’ve seen.

We’ve Fallen In Love With SideDoor In CDM – Look For The Red Key.

April 10th, 2010 2 comments

SideDoor Entrance

Have you been to SideDoor yet?  It’s an English-style Gastropub in Corona Del Mar off Poppy and PCH.  You may not know about SideDoor until now, but if local you’re surely aware of the Five Crowns Restaurant.  It’s been in CDM for over 40 years.  Last year Five Crowns carved out a space to create SideDoor, which officially opened in November 2009.  It’s absolutely brilliant!  Just look for the red key hanging on the outside to find SideDoor.

Five Crowns Restaurant

We loved everything about this place and plan to go back many times.  It’s comfortable and stylish, serves amazing food, fun drink options and the service is well above average.  You’ll certainly have questions about the Cheese and Charcuterie and the servers will be able to answer them — We especially recommend Ben who is quite knowledgeable and cute.

Cheese & Charcuterie at SideDoor

In addition to the Cheese (Cow, Sheep, Goat & Bleu) and Charcuterie (Proscuitto, Salame & Bresaola) options, SideDoor’s Menu is impressive.  Our goal is to try everything.

Flight of Draught BeersCountry Duck PateMac'n CheeseChicken Pot Pie

We started with a Flight of Draught Beer — Favorite of all (this visit) was the Allagash Curieaux.  And we tried the Country Duck Pate, StilCheddar Mac’n Cheese and Fish’n Chips.  Also pictured is our neighbor’s Chicken Pot Pie.  We didn’t have it, but did try their Smokey Blue Cheese Potato Chips (not pictured) and really liked ’em.  Our pub table was a large shared one with nice, fun people, which added to the experience.

Fish'n Chips

The Fish’n Chips are excellent, which is important for an English-style Gastropub.  Having been to England three times and dined in several authentic English Pubs, we think SideDoor holds up in many ways — We appreciate its lighting, colors, ambiance, feel, comfort and decor.

GimmeMores Dessert

Pictured directly above is the GimmeMores, SideDoor’s version of S’Mores.  They’re assembled with homemade Marshmallows, rustic Bread and pressed Chocolate, similar to a Panini.  They’re different and surprisingly good.

SideDoor InsidePreparing the Cheese & CharcuterieSide Door Sampler (5 Choices)Inside Side Door

SideDoor is long and somewhat narrow inside with several cozy dining spots — Tall tables, cubby holes next to fireplaces, couch benches, large chairs, or belly up at the bar.  It’s an extraordinary place I’d like to frequent and look forward to going back soon.  It’s bloody awesome!

Lycheetini At 8 Steers Is A Favorite Martini In Orange County.

February 7th, 2010 No comments

Lycheetini at 8 Steers

Damn this Lycheetini is good!  It’s at 8 Steers Fish & Steakhouse Restaurant in Costa Mesa.  It’s a Martini made with Lychee Fruit.  Before walking over to The Art Institute of California (Orange County) for a fundraising event, we had the best Martinis and $2 Kobe Sliders during Happy Hour.  What a deal.  The Kobe Sliders are fabulous with Horseradish Mayo and Dill Pickles.  I already want to go back for the same — Both are too tasty to switch up8 Steers serves terrific food and drinks, so get in there.  They need more business and there’s no reason why they shouldn’t have it.

Do These Hangover Remedies Actually Work? We Post Them Just In case.

December 29th, 2009 1 comment

FernetI’m not sure if the following hangover remedies actually work, but thought the information was interesting and may be helpful to some.  Hopefully I won’t need ’em this year, but it’s handy just in case.

COFFEE:  While Coffee does NOT help sober you up, it can provide some relief for that pounding headache.

RAW EGGS:  Salvation for hangover sufferers could lie in downing raw Eggs as they contain a chemical ingredient called N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC).  It is thought that NAC boosts the body’s ability to mop up destructive chemicals called free radicals, which build up in the liver as enzymes break down alcohol.  Free radicals are normally destroyed by a naturally occurring enzyme called glutathione, but reserves can be low after periods of heavy drinking.  
BURIED UP TO YOUR NECK IN SAND:  In Ireland, it’s said that the cure for a hangover is to bury the ailing person up to the neck in moist river sand.  I don’t think I’ll be doing this.
PICKLE JUICE:  In Poland, drinking Pickle Juice is a common remedy.
Now why Fernet-Branca?  Fernet (pictured) is a type of spirit known as an Amaro – Italian for ‘bitter’.  One theory is that the bitterness is a cure for the body to begin producing saliva and digestive juices.  Herbalists say that it’s the combination of herbs found in Fernet that make it the ideal cure.  More than 40 barks, roots, herbs, fungi and spices go into Fernet.  These include Myrrh, Orris Root, Saffron and Cinchona Bark.  In fact, when the original formula was conceived in 1845, it was born as a medicine.  Decades later, Fernet is recognized as being healthful.  Give it a try, if necessary.

What’s Up With Tapas Restaurant In Newport Beach?

December 22nd, 2009 No comments


We finally visited Tapas Restaurant Night Club in Newport Beach near the John Wayne Airport — It’s only been open about 16 years.  Under the Hot and Cold Tapas Menu, we tried the Lamb Chops Madrilenas, Cheese Fundido and Artichoke Toasts


We prefer to emphasize the positive on Nibbles of Tidbits, but we’re also truthful in our reports.  I deferred the Tapas review to my dinner guest, who wants to remain anonymous (she’s infamous, ha).  She wrote the following:

After wondering for years about Tapas Restaurant Night Club in Newport Beach, we finally got the chance to visit this venerable institution, which has been tucked away in a strip mall for the last 16 years. The dictionary definition of Tapas is “small snacks that are often served as an appetizer along with alcoholic drinks, originally from Spain” — Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, after our visit tonight our conclusion is that this concept is all tapped out.

First, the restaurant itself has lost whatever appeal it used to have on a visceral level — it is now dirty, dusty and damaged. Second, the food sounds good on the menu but it is just plain BLAH. For example, the Artichoke Hearts tasted like they came straight out of a can (they even had that can smell to them). The bread was stale and tasteless and the Cheese “Fundido” — which was baked Manchego and Goat Cheese with Spanish Chorizo – sounded divine but was barely edible (congealed). Ditto with regard to the bland Potato (Bomba). The only good Tapas we tasted was the Lamb Chops.

Equally tasteless was the décor, with broken tiles lining the floors everywhere and Spanish outfits hanging from the walls that were literally covered in dust. Finally, we were served on plates that did not even remotely match! In sum, don’t bother with Tapas as they are all tapped out. 

TapasTapas InteriorTapas 010

Tapas Restaurant Night Club’s sustainability must be through the night club, bar and entertainment.  We wish all restaurants well, thus hope they take more pride in their Tapas (for its namesake and for Pete’s sake), and why not tidy things up a bit?!

Pomegranate Drink Taste Test Comparison Party.

November 3rd, 2009 1 comment

Pom 009

We were going to run this report on for National Liqueur Month (October), but didn’t have the necessary “Liqueur” to qualify for that category.  And since it’s now National Pomegranate Month (November) and I received POM Wonderful’s New Pomegranate Nectarine and Pomegranate Kiwi the very same day we planned this drink comparison, we substituted it in place of the Liqueur.

Pom 034

We set out to make 6 different Pomegranate Drinks and rate them.  The numbered rating cards are from one of my favorite boardgames, iMAgiNiff.  They come in handy for taste test comparison parties like this.  We got all our recipes from the PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur site, but used POM Wonderful’s Juice in place of the Liqueur.  We’ll post about the PAMA Liqueur later this month.  Overall, we found the recipes very adaptable and most tasted fantastic.

Pom 048

For this taste test, we made a Margarita and unblended Daiquiri, respectively posted above, and Pomegranate Juice with Club Soda, a Blushing Lady, a Pomegranate Juice Lemon Drop and a Martini, respectively shown below.  POM’s Juice substituted well for all — We particularly favored the Pomegranate Nectarine Juice, which is refreshing and flavorful on its own.

Pom 015Pom 006Pom 032Pom 021

And since Pomegranate Juice is so good for you, we felt we received a healthier buzz, if you will. 🙂

Pom 027

We garnished the drinks with a variation of Lemon wedges and twists, Lime slices and Pomegranate Seeds (fabulously in season), then determined our favorites.  Our number one cards were awarded to the Margarita and Martini— Both tasted as if they were prepared by a professional mixologist and thus made us very happy.

Pom 038Pom 043Pom 055Pom 046

We found the Pomegranate Juice and Club Soda a refreshing combination for any day, since it was the only drink without alcohol.  We’d probably pass on the Blushing Lady next time, but give the Pomegranate Lemon Drop an honorable mention.  Overall, we think PAMA’s recipes are good and look forward to trying their Liqueur.  And we always appreciate having POM Wonderful’s Juice — It’s the best 100% Pomegranate Juice.

Best Happy Hour In Orange County Is At Bayside.

September 11th, 2009 1 comment


So far we’ve determined that Bayside Restaurant in Newport Beach has the Best Happy Hour in Orange County.  Their Tapas Menu is fabulous.  This visit we had the Crab Cake with Herb Cabbage Slaw and Chipotle Aioli (above) and  Fusilli Carbonara with Bacon and Parmesan (below).


And the Sliced Beef Sirloin with Roquefort Blue Cheese Leek Fondue (below) is divine.  As like our last visit, the Tapas were top quality and excellent tasting.  The Bayside Tapas Menu is served daily from 5 to 9PM in the Lounge and on the Terrace.  Each item is only $5.95 and unique Martinis and select glasses of Wine are available for $6.


Most Happy Hours end at 7PM — We appreciate that Bayside’s Tapas Happy Hour lasts until 9PM.  We’re still searching for a restaurant that can top their selections, service, prices and hours.  If so, we’ll surely report about it.

Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar Deals.

September 3rd, 2009 No comments

During the month of September, Fleming’s Steakhouse & Wine Bar is offering a few great deals.  Be sure to stop in each Wednesday for a complimentary tasting of their Prime Burger Bar Menu.  They serve 5 Gourmet Burgers that you’ll get to try for FREE — Every Wednesday in September, between 5 – 7 PM, they’ll be serving a different mini version of each Burger.


And if you can’t make it there on a Wednesday, another September deal is the 5 for $6 until 7 — Translated, they’re dishing up 5 Appetizers, 5 Wines & 5 Cocktails for $6 (each) until 7 PM.  All menu items are usually twice the price.  Pictured here, we had the Tenderloin Carpaccio with Creole Mustard Sauce (excellent) and a Fleming’s Prime Burger with Bacon, Cheese and Onion Rings, along with a tasty Glass of Pinot Noir and a Kettle One Martini.  Our total bill was only $26.  This deal is available 7 nights a week throughout the entire month of September.

Durty Nelly’s Irish Pub & Restaurant – The Jig.

May 3rd, 2009 1 comment


This Durty Nelly’s is an Irish Pub in Costa Mesa, unrelated to the other Durty Nelly’s at the top of the Google results — They’re in Mallorca, The Village of Bunratty Co Clare, Nova Scotia and Perth City, far away from this one — I’ll get around to those someday. 🙂

Until in Spain, Ireland, Canada and Australia respectively, we visited the Durty Nelly’s in California — They advertise a lot in The Clipper Magazine and I drive by it often.  I had to get the place out of my system — It sounds fun and its ads promote Live Music, Karaoke, Happy Hour, and 2 for 1 Lunch and Dinner. 


I like all that, but we only caught the Happy Hour, which has good prices.  It appears that Durty Nelly’s is pretty much a bar with bar food, but in fairness they’ve got a large pub menu and I’m not aware of their specialties.  We shared the Fried Macaroni & Cheese Bites, a Hamburger & Fries and an Artichoke. 

The service was good, but overall I expected a little more from the place — I’m not sure why.  I was also hoping for a dart board, shuffle board, pool table, or games of some sort, but didn’t see any.  The appeal for me next time would be the Live Music, or a stiff Cadillac while watching people sing Karaoke, HA.

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Bar Food At The Harp Inn, An Irish Pub in So Cal.

October 22nd, 2008 1 comment

It’s been open for twenty years, but we just recently stopped in for the first time.  A friend called to get together — Her criteria was that she wanted to go to a place where she can eat, drink and smoke on an outdoor patio.  I told her there’s not too many places left for all that, but then called The Harp Inn to learn they’re still one of them.  She got what she wanted. 

And the food wasn’t bad either.  The Salads were fresh, the Jalapeno Poppers were served with Celery and Carrots (a healthy bonus), and the service was friendly.

The Harp Inn has live music most Thursdays through Sunday.  It starts at 9:30p.m., unless otherwise specified.  They also offer several television screens for sports enthusiasts.  It’s quaint and casual.  We’d go back again for the same and to perhaps catch one of the bands.

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