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Boathouse Collective is a Japanese restaurant in Costa Mesa. Garlands of lightbulbs crisscross overhead. And on long communal picnic tables, groups of people will eat, drink, take selfies and sing â€śHappy Birthdayâ€ť in an asphalt courtyard with potted trees and an herb garden. If a joyous summer-night wedding banquet were ever to be held at a Home Depot Garden Center, it would probably look something like this. The chef is Mathieu Royer, once a cook at Pizzeria Ortica, Hinoki and the Bird, and Morimoto, now inventor of dishes that demonstrate the Japanese virtue of artistic restraint. His grilled swordfish is a lone hunk of snowy moistness floating atop a Thai coconut curry with waves of potatoes sliced long and thin. A Zen-garden arrangement of crisp-skinned roasted fingerlings is further proof, a side dish found on the vegetarian side of the menu, where a halved purple potato leans on the humps of the yellows as it gazes into a puddle of lemon aioli, contemplating the meaning of life.