Best Orange County, CA Restaurants

Local Expert Restaurant Recommendations

About Orange County, CA Restaurants

The restaurant scene in Orange County is an eclectic mix of small local restaurants beloved by surfers, casual dining with a view and upscale fine dining at area resorts.  Many offer nightly happy hour specials and entertainment on weekends.  The culinary scene continues to evolve as more restaurants source local produce and ingredients for their seasonal menus.

One thing you should not miss is a meal with a view. There are many restaurants with ocean and harbor views where you’ll often see a sea lion lazily swimming around or a pod of dolphins gliding by. In the Dana Point Harbor diners have front row seats for the show between the sea birds and the fisherman.  At the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel floor to ceiling windows and an outdoor patio take in the sunset over Catalina Island.  Or try one of the restaurants on the local piers for a close up look at the surfers and marine life. 

And only in Orange County at South Coast Plaza does the dining scene rival the shopping scene.  Seasonal ingredients at Seasons 52, date night worthy dinners at Marché Moderne  and a monthly fashion show at Anqi are just a few of the dining highlights at the mega upscale shopping center.  

About Kristi Marcelle

Originally from Wisconsin, Kristi Marcelle found her passion for travel after studying and volunteering in Quito, Ecuador for two years.  She’s lived in Southern California for over ten years and is continually impressed by the natural beauty and the endless travel opportunities.  Orange County’s eclectic mix of beach towns and...  Read more »

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