The possibilities are endless at dinner. Go casual at Luna Grill, or see the creative mind of a chef at Trap Door Dining. Heck, get medieval and start eating with your hands! While you’re making up your mind, we’ll be ordering something slushy with our burger and movie at Hotel Irvine.
Trap Door Dining (Summer Edition) – Laguna Beach
Chef Kenny Seliger’s pop-up dinner series continues on June 2, as he presents the theme of Fire + Grain. With a goal of never repeating an ingredient on the same menu, expect dishes like kamut risotto with sea urchin, and organic lentils served with grilled fish in a smoked fennel sauce. Held this time around in a private residence, guests will discover the exact location a couple of days prior to the event date. Previously Sous Chef of The Loft at Montage Resort in Laguna Beach, he’s currently day tripping as Executive Sous Chef of Hilton’s Waterfront Beach Resort in Huntington Beach. His creativity is definitely memorable, as we experienced first-hand last month. Purchase your tickets at www.trapdoordining.com.
The Magical Belt Contest (a.k.a. MaxLove App-Off) – Costa Mesa
Four local chefs. One secret ingredient. Who will create the most kick-ass appetizer? Find out next Thursday, as they compete over at the newest location for The Lost Bean from 6-10 p.m. Proceeds benefit the MaxLove Project; we interviewed founder Audra Wilford in a previous On the Line. Chef participants include Blake Mellgren of Craft House, Cathy McKnight of Eilo’s Kitchen, Loreta Ruiz of La Vegana Mexicana, and Amy Lebrun of Lido Bottle Works. We love noshing for dinner, and this is no exception. Carve out some time and visit their Eventbrite page for tickets. 3335 Susan St., (714) 884-3180; www.thelostbean.com.
How Medieval Times Won Us Over – Buena Park
With a new storyline featuring a strong-willed queen, we decided it was about time to check out the jousting action off Beach Boulevard. In business for 30 years, the West Coast castle of Medieval Times is the definition of dinner theatre. If you’re celebrating a special event, they’ll allow cakes from Porto’s next door (and won’t charge cakeage!). Fact: We also learned that their full bar is available throughout the duration of the show. Don’t wait for someone to take your order; stretch your legs by heading out an exit door when you’re feeling parched. Our vegetarian meal included a filling bean stew, but the secret for either meal option is to hit up your server for hot sauce. We hear it gives an extra boost of flavor. Our last tidbit isn’t food-related, but if you’ve got time to spare, do pay the extra two bucks and check out the Museum of Torture. It’ll either get you Game of Thrones excited, or scare the kids you brought along. 7662 Beach Blvd., (888) 935-6878; www.medievaltimes.com.
May Fundraiser at Luna Grill – Orange County locations
Dining for a cause is always a win-win. Throughout the month, a dollar from every sale of Luna Grill’s Warrior Wrap will go towards Hope for the Warriors, a non-profit geared towards veterans, military families and service members looking to better their situation. Tucked into your choice of pita or lavash bread, enjoy gyros, spicy yogurt, fries, feta, lettuce and tomato. Order one at their Rancho Santa Margarita, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Aliso Viejo or Dana Point locations. www.lunagrill.com.
Things to do: Memorial Weekend Clam Bake – Sunset Beach
Outdoor games, giveaways and even live music are on deck for Saturday’s big bake. Stop by Fish Camp off PCH on the 26th, between the hours of 4-8 p.m. for all this and more. The event is free, but clam bake meals are $25 per person (lobsters and mussels as well). Their regular menu is also available, for those not partaking in the good eats. 16600 Pacific Coast Hwy., (562) 592-2267; www.samsfishcamp.com.
Coming Soon: Hotel Irvine Backyard Movie Series
The only way to improve upon movie night is to include excellent grub. Besides a stellar lineup (The Greatest Showman, The Last Jedi and Black Panther!), those attending a film can indulge in one seriously good snack bar over at Hotel Irvine. Grilled burgers and a full bar are just the start of a good evening. You can do nachos, ice cream and popcorn, too. We’ll order an artisan sammich with a tall glass of Froze (think slushy wine). Ten bucks for the film alone is already a good deal. Now upgrade to $55 (for two), and you’ll get unlimited eats and reserved front row seating, among other treats. Check out the schedule and dinner selection over at www.hotelirvine.com. 17900 Jamboree Rd., (855) 837-7003.
A contributing writer for OC Weekly, Anne Marie freelances for multiple online and print publications, and guest judges for culinary competitions. A Bay Area transplant, she graduated with a degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona. Find her on Instagram as brekkiefan.