With a number of award-winning restaurants, it’s no secret Newport Beach is a renowned culinary destination. The city prides itself on serving fresh, wild-caught seafood and curating wow-worthy dining experiences for locals and visitors. So whether you’re a Newport native or just stopping by, we’re making things easy by highlighting the six most unique dining experiences in Newport Beach. Leave your preconceived notions at the door—these restaurants know a thing or two about gourmet gastronomy.
Private Sushi Dinner With Daiji Yacht Club
Helmed by Japanese chef Daiji Uehara, Daiji Yacht Club offers private dining experiences aboard a luxurious yacht. Step on the Italian-made cruiser, Granchi, and watch chef Uehara work his magic as he prepares a ten-course omakase sushi experience. He’ll not only prepare the meal right in front of you but also explain the different types of ingredients used as well as the inspiration behind each course. Diners can also kick back and enjoy posh amenities like Bluetooth speakers, blankets and plenty of deck space to hang out.
Authentic in every aspect, Bello by Sandro Nardone offers a unique Italian dining experience in the heart of Newport Beach. Bello’s Chef’s Table combines the traditional methods of Italian cuisine with contemporary innovation and skill, resulting in an extraordinary and personal dining adventure for a maximum of 8 guests, guided by a dedicated chef. The menu is meticulously curated each week, showcasing ingredients sourced from local farms and the restaurant’s own stock. Embrace a unique culinary adventure exclusively tailored by your chef host!
Balboa Bay Resort curates one of the finest brunches in town! On Sundays, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., the resort’s scenic Lighthouse Room welcomes families, friends, guests and bay club members to indulge in a remarkable Sunday Seafood Brunch, guaranteed to satisfy even the most discerning brunch enthusiasts. With a mouthwatering spread of fresh seafood, an alfresco made-to-order omelet station, exquisite artisanal cheese and charcuterie boards and a delectable patisserie display, this weekly brunch is a must!
Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or want to capture some incredibly Instagrammable moments, The Picnic Collective is the perfect place to start. This local event company has a team of creative picnic-making pros that will arrange a stunning setup at your preferred location, be it the bluffs, the beach or any other scenic spot. Simply pick your desired date, time and location, and select the “experience” that best suits your preferences. Options range from the delightful “Duffy Experience” to the enchanting “Movie Night Experience” and the luxurious “Bliss Picnic.”
On Thursday evenings, Newport Beach’s Marché Moderne offers an exclusive Chef’s Tasting Menu consisting of five courses for $168, with the option of adding a wine pairing for $65. A meal at this chic French establishment is worth every penny, and the Chef’s Spring Tasting Menu is chock-full of culinary delights, such as the Prawns – Caviar – Chou Fleur: Prawn and Gelée De Crustacé, Kaluga Caviar, Cauliflower and Brown Butter Custard, Sablé Tarte of Buckwheat and Dill and Emulsion Citron-Persil. Other highlights include the Mesquite Lightly Smoked Duck Breast and the Bitter Sweet Boule.
Adjacent to Five Crowns in Corona del Mar, SideDoor is an English-style gastropub that serves up a selection of seasonal small plates, cheese and charcuterie and world-class spirits. Cozy up in the historic confines of this spirited locale and enjoy an artisanal cheese plate that the restaurant’s chef will personally curate for you. With everything from sheep, goat and bleu cheeses to Italian prosciutto, mezcal and lime salami and gourmet pâtés, the choices are endless.
Written by: Kaylin Waizinger