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Apr 21, 2008 08:59 AM

Mother's Day Brunch - Laguna Woods area

I'm looking for something nice. It doesn't have to be a buffet, but can be. We've been to the Ritz Carlton and it was so crowded and awful. Also done Salt Creeke Grill. Mom is fairly adventurous.

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  1. Easy. Break of Dawn

    Break of Dawn
    24351 Avenida De La Carlota Ste N6, Laguna Hills, CA 92653

    5 Replies
    1. re: Professor Salt

      What's the ambience like at Break of Dawn? I'm dying to go personally, and we're going to be in south OC, where my MIL lives, that weekend, but she's not the type to enjoy excellent food in a not-so-posh location.

      1. re: Cicely

        "Excellent food in a not-so-posh location." Heh. Cicely knows me too well. I have a strong personal preference for dumpy holes in walls. Break of Dawn isn't like that, though. The closest analogy I can think of is Cafe Hiro in Cypress, except Break of Dawn is bigger.

        If you need a highly overstyled film shoot location like say, Simon LA / The Standard / Bel Air Hotel this ain't it. If you're looking for something timeworn in the style of John O'Groats this ain't it either. I'd describe the decor at BoD as Cal-Asian bistro on a restrained design budget.

        Not the kind of place where you know you're helping to pay off Richard Meier's design bill, nor somewhere you'd be embarrassed to bring your MIL for Mother's Day.

        Interestingly mismatched furniture says they spent their money on smarter things. The furniture could be more comfortable, or more sharply designed instead of merely comely and worksmanlike. There's lots of Asian style calligraphy (except in English) framed on the wall, and several of Chef Dee's retired chef jackets from prestigious former jobs. The accolades from local press are also neatly framed and displayed.

        Food is excellent, however. What places does your MIL like to go, just so I have a point of reference?

        1. re: Professor Salt

          Sounds like the kind of place MY mom would love, but she lives in Chicago.

          The only place my MIL likes to go is for Korean BBQ! I can't remember the name, in Garden Grove... something Oak or Jung or... I guess we can always fall back on that for lunch in a pinch. She loves it b/c they know her and treat her well there.

          Otherwise, I think she'd be more impressed by decor/location than food, although we can't afford a $75 a person brunch. Plus I really do need to make an effort, having forgotten her birthday last year (and still not forgiven!!)

          1. re: Cicely

            Maybe Mozambique for Cicely's MIL? I don't know what they're doing for Mother's Day, but I imagine it'll be mobbed.


      2. I agree with The Professor. Break of Dawn is great for food, not so great for interior design achievements. I would take my mom there. She would adore the fact that is ISN'T a buffet (which she finds *so gauche*). To me, it's a great meld of quality and unprententiousness.

        3 Replies
        1. re: OCBites

          Unfortunately, I put it to my mom and she nixed Break of Dawn. She's been there twice and didn't love it either time.
          Anyone heard of Bonjour Cafe in Dana Point?

          1. re: Sugar Jones

            Don't know anything about Bonjour Cafe.

            Have you tried Ramos House in San Juan Capistrano?

            1. re: Professor Salt

              We love Ramos House, but my mom walks with a cane and it's too much for her to get to from the parking. Plus the wait is brutal!