These Orange County Restaurants Are Perfect When You Don’t Feel Like Doing the Dishes on Thanksgiving
Written by: Tyler Holland 15 OC Restaurants to Wine and Dine at on Thanksgiving
It’s that time of year again. The air is getting (slightly) cooler and stores are putting up the Christmas decorations. That means it’s almost time for Thanksgiving! While we look forward to making time in our busy schedules for our friends and family, the post-meal clean up can be a nightmare. After all, the worst part of a party is always the cleanup. This year, skip the dirty dishes and let one of these fine establishments take care of everything. Whether you are looking for the traditional turkey and stuffing meal or something a little different, there are options for everyone that will delight even the pickiest of eaters and leave everyone satisfied. Each restaurant is beautifully decorated and packed with enough charm to make you feel at home. For those who still prefer to actually be at home, but would rather spend time with friends and family than cooking and cleaning, take away options are also available and include all the variety of the in house menus. Continue reading to find the perfect fit for all your Thanksgiving needs. Just remember to check in with your choice restaurant, as space can fill up fast.
Balboa Bay Resort
Balboa Bay Resort is set on a 15-acre plot of land just off Pacific Coast Highway. The resort’s waterfront restaurants offer modern and casual dining options set against scenic Newport Harbor. Guests can choose from three restaurants, the Waterline Newport Beach, A&O Kitchen & Bar and Blend. This year, Waterline Newport Beach is offering their traditional Thanksgiving dinner for $86 per person and $43 for children from 1 p.m.-6 p.m. The four course traditional meal is sure to please, especially considering you’ll be dining waterside in one of the most beautiful locations in the United States. The restaurant’s nautical design lends itself perfectly to the environment and will make for the perfect evening of relaxation.
1221 W Coast Hwy
Newport Beach, CA 92663
949.630.4145 | www.balboabayresort.com
Crow Bar and Kitchen
The Crow Bar and Kitchen is a gastropub that specializes in high quality food steps above the “pub grub” found in most bars. The atmosphere is a mixture of local pub and upscale gourmet restaurant, maintaining the comfortable feel of the neighborhood without sacrificing quality. Being a pub at heart, the perfect beer and/or wine to compliment your evening is sure to be readily available. For Thanksgiving, you can order a traditional meal that serves 10-12 people for $259.99. The meal includes a 12-14 pound whole local honey roasted turkey, apple sausage and sage stuffing, brown butter mashed potatoes and much more. All orders must be placed by Nov. 20, so don’t wait till the last minute to place your order.
2325 E Coast Hwy
Corona Del Mar, CA 92625
949.675.0700 | www.thecrowbarcdm.com
During Thanksgiving, Harborside Restaurant will be having a buffet, costing $35 for adults and $14 for kids from noon-7 p.m. The buffet will offer traditional Thanksgiving items, as well as other options such as prime rib for those who are looking for something a little different. For dessert, customers can choose from items, including an assortment of treats dipped in the chocolate fountain. Food will be served in the restaurant’s grand ballroom, giving people a rare chance to see a space only open for special occasions. Beautiful 180 degree views of Newport Harbor are sure to delight and the beautifully designed interior will spoil guests as they enjoy the comfortable and inviting atmosphere of the restaurant.
400 Main St
Newport Beach, CA 92661
949.673.4633 | www.harborside-pavilion.com
Splashes restaurant and bar is located inside Laguna’s Surf and Sand Resort, making 500 feet of California’s stunning Laguna Beach the backdrop to a perfect evening. Treat yourself to a 4 course prix fixe lunch or dinner with all the traditional Thanksgiving trimmings you could ask for. Lunch will be served from noon-3:45 p.m. and is $80 per person, while dinner is from 4 p.m.-8 p.m. and costs $95 per person. You get a choice of several appetizers, main meals and desserts, including herb crusted crab cake, roasted turkey and pumpkin cheesecake. Dishes such as filet mignon are also available for those who prefer something other than the traditional fare.
1555 S Coast Hwy
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
949.376.2779 | www.surfandsandresort.com/splashes
Back Bay Bistro
Back Bay Bistro is located on the edge of beautiful Upper Newport Bay. Fifteen-foot panoramic windows and a retractable roof provide a wide view of the environment and treat guests to stunning vistas. Dine with luxurious yachts dotting the seascape. This Thanksgiving, a buffet will be made available from 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. with your choice of salads, soups, hot offerings, a carved to order station and desserts. Prices are $45 for adults and $19 for children 10 years and younger. Whether you’re after the turkey or prime rib, you’ll find whatever you’re looking for. Be sure to call for reservations or to request additional information.
1131 Back Bay Dr
Newport Beach, CA 92660
949.729.1144 | www.newportdunes.com/back-bay-bistro
The Pacific Ballroom is an expansive 12, 000-square-foot ballroom showcasing monumental coffered ceilings, bronze chandeliers and beautiful pastoral scenes with connected outdoor lawn space. It is also home to the critically acclaimed Stonehill Tavern and its four course Thanksgiving feast. The heritage turkey breast and leg confit with Ceylon cinnamon cranberry sauce with tarragon gravy and the wild mushroom Napoleon with fricassee, oven dried root vegetable tuile and dill come highly recommended. Also, be sure not to miss the traditional brioche stuffing or kabu turnips with pearl onions, which will only be available for a limited time. In the Pacific Ballroom, a variety of children’s activities, including arts and crafts, will be available outside the ballroom from noon-3 p.m.
1 Monarch Beach Resort N
Dana Point, CA 92648
949.234.3200 | www.michaelmina.net/restaurants/southern-california/stonehill-tavern
The Ranch offers a four course Thanksgiving dinner for $75 per person as well as a children’s dinner with all the fixings from 2 p.m.-7 p.m. The entire dinner is derived from The Ranch’s seasonal Thanksgiving Day menu. The vegetables served with the meal are from the restaurant’s own organic heirloom farm on Edwards Ranch Estate. Guests can enjoy dishes such as their organic free range turkey and forest mushroom gravy. The Wyoming-raised buffalo prime rib is a savory option sure to delight. The welcoming, elegant dining atmosphere will please guests who want to go out without losing the cozy feeling of home.
1025 E Ball Rd
Anaheim CA 92805
714.817.4200 | www.theranch.com
For Thanksgiving, Shades will be serving two unique buffets, one seated and one self-served. The seated and family style Thanksgiving dinner treats guests to the beautiful ocean views of the Tide Ballroom while they dine on all the turkey they can eat for $79 per person, or $29 for children under 12. Seating is limited, so reservations are a must. The Opulent Turkey Day Buffet features dishes such as fresh roasted turkey, stuffing and seafood for those who want to do Thanksgiving a little differently. An assortment of desserts will also be available, as well as champagne and mimosas. Again, reservations are recommended, as this event usually sells out. The cost is $69 for adults and $29 for children under 12.
2100 Pacific Coast Hwy
Huntington Beach CA 92648
714.845.8000 | www.waterfrontresort.com
Lucca Café offers a traditional Thanksgiving takeout menu for those who prefer to eat at home, but don’t want the hassle that comes with preparing a Thanksgiving meal. The menu features expertly cooked free range turkeys. The traditional takeout dinners feed up to 10 people for $325 and $32.50 extra for each additional person. Individual meals can be purchased for $32.50 each. Thanksgiving dinner items are also offered a la carte.
6507 Quail Hill Pkwy
Quail Hill Shopping Center 92603
949.725.1773 | www.luccacafe.com
Prego Ristorante offers Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings, such as house made stuffing and vegetables served family style. The à la carte menu includes items such as pumpkin ravioli, salmone alla griglia and their delectable seasonal pumpkin cheesecake for dessert. The Thanksgiving menu, priced at $36 per person and $15.50 for those ages 10 and younger, includes breadsticks, a cup of pumpkin soup, turkey breast, a small Caesar salad, mashed potatoes with gravy and more. With all the warmth of a Tuscan home and the elegance of an award winning fine dining restaurant, Prego Ristorante is sure to please.
18420 Von Karman Ave
Irvine, CA 92612
949.553.1333 | www.pregoristoranti.com
Salt Creek Grille
Salt Creek Grille is an upscale restaurant that still manages to maintain a laidback feel. Located in picturesque Dana Point, the exterior is reminiscent of a cozy cabin, while the interior oozes modern class and comfort, the perfect backdrop for your Thanksgiving feast. All the traditional favorites will served, from the succulent hand-carved, slow roasted turkey to the savory stuffing. The traditional turkey dinner is $39 for adults and $18 for kids. A limited menu featuring more of the mesquite grille favorites will also be available for those who want to mix up their feast. Salt Creek Grille will be open from noon-7 p.m.
32802 Pacific Coast Hwy
Dana Point, CA 92629
949.661.7799 | www.saltcreekgrille.com
Sapphire Laguna offers a diversity of food from around the world, made from the finest ingredients and paired with exceptional service. The restaurant is modeled after the beautiful high-end homes you find scattered throughout Laguna, with a view to match. For that at-home feeling without the post-meal clean up, look no further. The Thanksgiving menu consists of three courses, including dessert. From traditional turkey to panseared Scottish salmon, there is sure to be something for everyone. For those who prefer to eat at home, a to-go menu is also offered. For $415 plus tax, the traditional offers three side dishes and two desserts included with the main meal of an 18-20 pound whole herb roasted Diestel turkey that serves 8-10 guests. For those who want a little extra, for $625 plus tax, the Very Impressive Presentation (VIP) four course Thanksgiving dinner includes hors d’oeuvres, appetizers, turkey, dessert and coffee. An a la carte menu is also offered.
1200 S Coast Hwy Ste 101
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
949.715.9888 | www.sapphirellc.com
The Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Beach is set on more than 500 acres of coastline and offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. Pelican Hill offers multiple options for an evening of complete indulgence. The Ballroom Brunch offers a buffet with classic dishes, along with live entertainment and activities to keep children occupied while you catch up with friends and family. The buffet runs from 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. and costs $120 per adult, $60 per child under age 12 and $20 per child under age 5. The buffet includes cold and hot selections, cheese and fruit, freshly made salads, omelets and waffles, a carving station and desserts among other selections.
Andrea Ristorante offers up a Tuscan-inspired menu from 3 p.m.-10 p.m. The cost is $135 per adult. You can choose from selections such as poached lobster and citrus salad, various pastas, entrees such as traditional turkey or pan seared branzino and decadent desserts like apple pie sfogliatella.
The Pelican Grill & Lounge offers a four course grill menu from 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m. For your listening pleasure, a pianist, bass player and vocalist will perfectly complement your evening. The cost is $125 per adult and $60 per child. The meal includes heirloom pumpkin soup for the amuse bouche, appetizers such as pan seared scallops, lightly smoked free range turkey and a choice of chocolate pot de crème or a pumpkin cheesecake bar for dessert.
The Coliseum pool & Grill will offer a classic California breakfast buffet from 7 a.m.-noon. From noon-10 p.m., a Thanksgiving a la carte menu will feature various Turkey specials. The buffet is $60 per adult and $30 per adult. The à la carte menu will feature items like smoked butternut squash, organic turkey and grilled New York steak.
22701 Pelican Hill Rd S
Newport Coast, CA 92660
888.507.6427 | www.pelicanhill.com/dining
Bayside Restaurant overlooks Newport Harbor and includes a rotating modern art exhibit, adding to the ambience and creating a classy and sophisticated, yet relaxed atmosphere for your Thanksgiving meal. Built in heaters and sun drapes keep the patio comfortable year round, so there’s no need to confine yourself to indoor eating this holiday season. The Thanksgiving menu includes a Diestel farms oven roasted organic turkey breast and choices of an appetizer such as autumn salad and compressed smoked salmon salad. Dessert includes either a pumpkin pie or warm chocolate soufflé cake. Prices are $48 per person and $19.75 for children 12 and under. An à la carte menu is also offered. You can choose from starters such as the tiger prawn cocktail and blackened pacific wild swordfish or oven roasted rack of lamb for the main course.
900 Bayside Dr
Newport Beach, CA 92660
949.721.1222 | www.baysiderestaurant.com
The Montage Resort
Located 2.6 miles from Laguna Beach on an oceanside bluff, the Montage Resort offers a postcard setting perfect for a day of unwinding and feasting. The resort sits on 30 acres of prime real estate with stunning views. The Loft, Studio and Mosaic Bar & Grille offer a wide array of impressive dining options. The Loft features a four course, prixe fixe menu from noon-10 p.m. The price is $95 for adults and $35 for children ages 4-12. The Studio offers Thanksgiving dinner from 4 p.m.-9 p.m. at a cost of $125 per person or $200 per person with wine. An a la carte menu is also available. The Masterpiece Celebration goes from noon-5 p.m. and costs $110 for adults and $40 for children ages 4-12. This celebration includes a holiday buffet featuring live musical entertainment and complimentary family photographs so you can treasure the memories made for life.
Over Thanksgiving, The Loft offers a four course holiday tasting menu, the studio has a five course tasting menu and the masterpiece holiday celebration will have a 12-station buffet. With such variety, even the pickiest of eaters is sure to be satisfied. The Loft is situated on the fourth floor of Montage Laguna Beach and has stunning panoramic view of the pacific. The four course holiday tasting menu will be available in the main dining room and the bistro menu will be available in the bistro area from 3 p.m.-10 p.m.
30801 S Coast Hwy
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
866.271.6953 | www.montagehotels.com/lagunabeach
T U R K E Y /// Time: Check Out These 16 OC Restaurants Cooking Up Thanksgiving