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Laguna Beach Restaurants before Pageant of the Masters

mikester Jul 17, 2006 04:15 PM

Hi there,

Interested in your opinions on the following places for a pre-Pageant of the Masters dinner in Laguna, for a group of four, two of whom are pretty much "meat and potatoes" types (Thanks in advance!):

Tabu Grill
Cafe Zoolu
Five Feet

  1. MEalcentric Jul 17, 2006 07:40 PM

    Here are some past threads, hope they help




    1. t
      torta basilica Jul 18, 2006 01:08 AM

      Although I, too, am tired of the same exact question being asked over & over, ad infinitum, this time of year, since the OP wants feedback on specific restaurants & obviously has done some research, here's my take:

      I would definitely go for a restaurant within walking distance of the Pageant, so you can park once in a flat rate parking lot. In that vein, I'm sure you will find with a little research that 230 Forest is probably the best choice for you & definitely will make both the meat & potato lovers happy and those interested in a little more adventure, or at least great fish, glad you chose it. Plus, it's fun!

      Picayo is well north of the Pageant - would have to move your car & has 2 set seatings, which might make it difficult for you.

      Tabu - way way far south - it's ok, but I don't think the meat & potato eaters would be that happy, unless they like the pork chop (which is fancied up too).

      Cafe Zoolu - my favorite, but a bit of a haul from the Pageant - you can walk it, though. Problem is, they excell in swordfish - their swordfish 3 ways is to die for, along with the coconut mashed sweet potatoes (ask to sub these if your dish doesn't include). I honestly have never had any carne there, (& know no one who has either!) so have no idea if they'd be happy or not.

      Savoury's - go for the rooftop bar, not too much recently on the restaurant - it used to be great, but from what I hear, has been on a downhill slide. Way too far to walk both ways.

      Clae's - Excellent seafood, I know nothing about their meat, definitely walkable, although their valet parking is by the hour & can get steep, even with having eaten dinner there.

      Five Feet - Pretty close to the Pageant - this gets really mixed reviews & I think the best dish is the catfish.

      There is the trolley that goes up & down PCH, but it is packed trying to get on after the Pageant gets out.

      If you really don't mind parking twice, Mozambique in S Laguna seems to be everyone's new fav & would make everyone happy. Plus, it has a fun bar upstairs to return to after the Pageant! Don't miss the ahi appetizer & the fresh mozzarella. mushroom, arugula salad if it's on the specials!

      230 Forest is still my top choice pre Pageant (or the Sun Dried Tomato cafe is also good too!)

      2 Replies
      1. re: torta basilica
        mikester Jul 18, 2006 03:45 PM

        Thanks very much for the great reply, this is very helpful !

        1. re: torta basilica
          Ernie Jul 18, 2006 07:00 PM

          I agree about Cafe Zoolu, the swordfish is excellent, and I dig the small, local beachy vibe of the place. In fact, I have to thank you Torta Basilica for the recommendation last year. Their portions are large but having the leftover swordfish made a perfect snack on the beach the next day!

        2. 1000steps Jul 18, 2006 02:36 AM

          Great Job by TortaBasilica...

          I other I would reccomend would be Partners Bistro. Excellent food, good Jazz. That or, to second an opinion would be 230 Forest.

          1. b
            Becca Richards Jul 26, 2006 09:40 PM

            Which is better between 230 Forest or Sun Dried Tomato Cafe? Thanks.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Becca Richards
              mikester Jul 28, 2006 04:10 PM

              We ended up making reservations at SDT Cafe, based upon input here and elsewhere. Our friends don't like a lot of noise, and we've heard that 230 Forest can get quite loud.

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