Five Selections For Newport Beach Restaurant Week

Provenance grub
Provenance grub
Anne Marie Panoringan

You actually have two weeks (until February 1) to partake in the so-called restaurant week, but that's how it's being advertised. The longer we can save a few bucks, the better. While our debit card would rather remain in its wallet, we are not afraid to go out and motor along PCH for our supper.

With 64 places to choose from, it can be hit-or-miss at some of them. Newps price points go between $10 - $25 for lunch and $20 - $50 for dinner. Menus are pretty divided between showcasing current menu selections and crafting something special just for the occasion. Our biggest fear is receiving smaller portions, but being charged full-sized prices. That's the risk you take with these things. In any event, we're ready to throw in our two cents on where to try.

At the island known as Fashion, we would settle in at Fig & Olive for lunch ($25). Our primary reason: We can't tolerate the noise level at dinner. Daytime is easily more pleasant. Their trio of lunch courses looks promising, with multiple options at each course. Seafood lovers will be in for a treat, although we've enjoyed both the zucchini carpaccio and rosemary lamb in the past. Do their pot de creme, but beware of the supplements for your main and lobster starter; it'll easily add up otherwise.

For the best view, hit up Beachcomber at Crystal Cove right when they start dinner service ($40) at 4:30 p.m. Allot enough time to park and walk/shuttle down, and you're hopefully rewarded with a picture-worthy sunset. Dinner is the only meal we have yet to experience, so just remember the beach beignets and order a cocktail already.

New kid on the block The Waffle Affair offers a $10 deal in Bayside Plaza, right before crossing Jamboree onto Balboa Island. We've sampled the meat-and-cheese flavors cooked right into the waffle, not separated like sandwich layers. You get to choose one of three waffles, plus an iced tea or Illy coffee. If they allow you to call ahead, do it.

Five Crowns, an institution in its own right, is serving a $50 meal. If you need to ask "Why here?", don't. Because prime rib with the fixins.

Lastly, we are digging Provenance for both their lunch and dinner menus. At lunch ($15), they've got one of our favorite entrees (pictured), the free range turkey meatloaf sandwich. Dinner ($40) is user-friendly, allowing a mix 'n match of proteins in some of their options. We guarantee that part of your meal will be plucked from their on-site garden.

Do you have a favorite or despise one? Comment below. We want to hear what you're finding.

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