Orange County Restaurant Week celebrated its seventh anniversary this year, continuing to showcase some of the OC’s best restaurants through stunning (and affordable) prix fixe menus. And this year, I went out with a group of good friends to Newport Landing. Right on the waterfront, Newport Landing has lovely views of Newport Harbor and Balboa Island. The location makes it ideal for a romantic dinner followed by a walk on the iconic pier or a moonlit ferry ride.
My group opted to sit out on the patio and enjoy the weather. The restaurant’s patio is separate from the restaurant’s main dining room and is located right next to a small dock so you can enjoy the view of the water but also do some people watching. It’s a little cold out there but the restaurant has heaters installed in the canopy of the patio. Another option for scenic views is to sit in their upstairs oyster bar. However, the restaurant does not do reservations for the upstairs so if you’re planning an outing come early to reserve a space.
We had the dinner prix fixe menu which included a starter, a main entree, and a dessert. For me, I had crab and artichoke bisque, lobster and langostino pasta and creme brulee. The presentation of all the food was beautiful. I loved that the prix fixe menu had many different offerings whereas many of the other OC Restaurant week venues only had two or three entrees to choose from. I found the appetizer and dessert to be just ok, but I really liked the pasta. The pasta was very flavorful and I appreciated that there was actually a good amount of lobster in the dish. Many of my companions had the Hawaiian Nut Opakapaka, a pink snapper dish, and assured me that it was also a very good selection.
Overall, I think that the Newport Landing was a great place to try out. I think it’s a very romantic venue and a great place to take a date.