The next time you are visiting the beach or shopping in downtown Laguna Beach, consider having dinner at the Sorrento Grille. Just a few blocks from the ocean, the restaurant offers a wide variety of small plates and large plates, as well as a nice selection of red and white wines and cocktails.
We started with the wine list, most of which were from California, and the cocktail list. I chose one of their popular martinis, the PinaCranaKazi ($10), while my guest chose a 2005 Three Saints Cabernet Sauvignon from the Santa Ynez Valley (6 oz./$12, 9 oz./$18). Shortly after came some bread that went very well with the restaurant’s fruity olive oil.
Wood Grilled Salmon
The first course was a delicious flatbread (seasonal market price), that was thin and crispy topped with potatoes, artichokes, small ham pieces, and seasoned with parsley. When the manager, Lori, was telling me about the chef and his unique creations, she explained how she gives him the benefit of the doubt and trusts his instinct in combining interesting flavors. Using the flatbread as an example, she wouldn’t have chosen to put potato on a flatbread, but the chef did it and it works (which I have to agree with).
After the flatbread, we had the opportunity to try two of the main courses found on the menu – the Wood Grilled Salmon ($24) and the Tuscan Style Rib Eye Steak ($32). The salmon has a smoky flavor that was delicious without overpowering the white beans, chorizo, fennel, spinach, and brown butter vinaigrette with which it was served. The steak was coated with a crunchy herb paste and served with well-seasoned braised potatoes, onions, arugula, Parmesan cheese, and natural jus. Both portions were hearty but not overfilling.
For dessert, we were delighted with a Rustic Apricot Pistachio Tart ($8). The locally farmed apricots were packaged in a delicious pastry crust, and drizzled with a honey sauce. It went perfectly with the scoop of creme fraiche ice cream.
Sorrento Grille, Laguna Beach
I would recommend the Sorrento Grille for dinner or drinks with a friend, date, or for a small business meeting. The high ceilings and wall of windows give the restaurant and bar a patio feeling. Even though the tables were positioned rather closely together, I didn’t feel over crowded. We went on a Tuesday night, and although the restaurant was busy, the General Manager, Lori McLean, visited many of the tables to chat with the diners.
The Sorrento Grille is located at 370 Glenneyre Street in Laguna Beach (map). There is metered street parking all around the restaurant, and a pay lot across the street. Reservations are suggested and can be made by calling (949) 494-8686. While the official dress code is business casual, any attire is acceptable.
The bar opens nightly at 5:00 p.m. and the restaurant opens for dinner at 5:30 p.m.
Photo Credits: personal collection
Orange County in California is known more for spending money than saving it, but there are actually many things to do for the budget-conscious traveler. Next time you’re visiting Southern California, check out one of these free (or almost free) activities!
1. Summer Concert Series, various cities
May 8th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 1
Filed under: featuredarticle, Free Activities
Just an hour from Orange County, the city of Temecula is nestled among lush vineyards and rolling hills and just waiting for you to check out what it has to offer. Although it is known as Southern California’s “wine country,” Temecula Valley has much more to offer, making it perfect...
April 28th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 1
Filed under: day trips, featuredarticle, outdoor activities, Shopping, Temecula, wine
Starting with the earliest habitation of Native Americans in the Western Hemisphere 20,000 years ago to the Gold Rush of 1849, El Camino de Oro: A Journey Through Early California tells the story of the Golden State with a collection of historic paintings. From February 24th through June 5th, 2010,...
April 26th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: featuredarticle, museum
Whether your mother prefers red roses, white daises, or yellow daffodils, these Orange County florists will help you select the perfect arrangement!
Blooming Hills Florist, 1191 W. Central Ave., Brea,, (562) 690-3347
Blooming Hills Florist has been in Brea for over 20 years, and each of their designers...
April 25th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: featuredarticle, flowers, mothers day
With so many events going on all the time in and around Orange County, it’s easy to find fun events for the whole family!
Mother Goose Day at the Pretend City Children’s Museum, 29 Hubble, Irvine (map)
Come celebrate the legacy of Mother Goose by listening to familiar rhymes from the...
April 24th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: family events, featuredarticle
It’s time to start thinking about what to plant in your yard or spring garden this year, and the Orange County Great Park in Irvine is here to help! The workshops have been going on since March, but there are still three great opportunities to take advantage of – Tool Time, Smart Gardening,...
April 22nd, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: gardening
For 46 days starting April 16th, Disney’s California Adventure® Park and select locations at the Disneyland® Resort is hosting “The Art of Flavor,” Disney’s very own food and wine festival! Enjoy cooking demonstrations, seminars, recipes, and wine tasting that reflect California’s...
April 21st, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: Disney, featuredarticle, food and wine festival
For Mother’s Day, many moms just want to relax and be pampered. Why not start the day by letting her sleep in and then taking her to a delicious brunch at one of these fine Orange County restaurants?
Ambrosia in Santa Ana
801 North Main Street in Santa Ana (map)
Located at the OC...
April 20th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: brunch, featuredarticle, mothers day
If you own a boat or are a boat enthusiast, you won’t want to miss the 18th Annual Orange County Boat Show coming to Anaheim! From May 1st- May 2nd, the Anaheim Angels Stadium won’t be hosting a baseball game, but one of the most popular boating events in the southland.
The Orange County...
April 20th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: boating
The weather is getting warmer, and the days are getting longer, making it the perfect time for a spring bike ride. If you don’t feel safe riding on the streets, check out these three places that are perfect for a ride on your bicycle.
Fullerton Loop in Fullerton, CA (map)
The Fullerton loop starts...
April 18th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: bike riding, featuredarticle
Lights, Camera, Action! On April 22nd, the Newport Beach Film Festival is bringing the world’s best classic and contemporary filmmaking to Orange County. The 11th annual Newport Beach Film Festival (NBFF) will spotlight over 400 films from around the world, “showcasing a diverse collection...
April 17th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: featuredarticle, film festival
With Mother’s Day about a month away, it’s time to start thinking of what you’re going to do for one of the most important women in your life! You could go with a sentimental card and a touching gift, or really go out and pamper her for a day at the Hilton Orange County.
April 15th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: Hilton, mothers day
The Orange County Pet Expo, also known as America’s Family Pet Expo, will be taking over the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa this weekend! Touted as the largest pet and pet product expo in the world, this is the event in Orange County for pet and animal lovers!
Not just about dogs and...
April 14th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: pets
If you drive north, out of Orange County and through Los Angeles, to where all you see is the Pacific Ocean on one side and fields on the other, you will eventually come to El Capitan Canyon, where luxury meets nature. A unique resort property nestled in a canyon across the freeway from the ocean,...
April 10th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: luxury camping, top-feature
Ti Amo Restaurant is nestled in the heart of southern Laguna Beach on the Pacific Coast Highway, and serves up some of the finest Italian food in Orange County. Modeled after an Italian villa, the faux and fresca hand painted walls, the “stone tablet” menus, and the candelabras that decorate...
April 6th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 2
Filed under: restaurant, top-feature
Most people know that Earth Day is in April, but did you know that it is National Gardening month, too? Luckily, Orange County has some great events going on this month so you can take part in the celebration of spring, gardening, and Earth Day!
April 10 – Community Gardenfest in San Clemente
April 4th, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 1
Filed under: eco-friendly events, featuredarticle
It’s practically impossible to have not heard the buzz around Apple’s newest product, the iPad. Part laptop, part iPhone, it’s been said that the iPad will revolutionize the way we look at computers. With a 9.7″ touchscreen, 10 hours of battery life, and access to tons of iPhone...
April 3rd, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 1
Filed under: featuredarticle, iPad, Shopping
The Irvine Spectrum isn’t just one of the best places in Orange County to go shopping, it is also host to some great events each month! Check out what’s going on for April!
April 3 – Verizon Wireless will be hosting Los Angeles Lakers player Shannon Brown for an autograph session....
April 1st, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: Events, Shopping
If you want to dine in a traditional British restaurant or pub, the Five Crowns and SideDoor are great choices to meet that need. With 45 years of experience, the Five Crowns has fine tuned both it’s food and decor to give diners as authentic an experience as possible without actually being in...
March 31st, 2010 | Abbie Mood | Read More | Comments: 0
Filed under: pub, restaurant, top-feature