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Delish but conservative dinner in Costa Mesa?

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Meeting relatives I don't know very well in Costa Mesa and I am to pick a place to eat. Not sure how adventurous they are. Perhaps a California cuisine type place since they are from the East Coast? Or Mexican? Price isn't too much an issue but "moderately expensive" would be nice.

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  1. Does it have to be in Costa Mesa? I have always found it is a real treat to take people unaccustomed to So Cal to take them to Mexican food but most of the best do not have very nice ambiance.

    I would suggest to take them to the new Javiers in Newport. It has very nice upscale Mexican food in a beautiful restaurant that also has an ocean view. It would only be about 15 minutes away from Costa Mesa. Just make sure you make reservations.

    7 Replies
    1. re: cdmedici

      Perfect. Perfect. Perfect. Thank you! Do you know roughly what an entree would cost? I looked on their website but there were no prices.

      1. re: cdmedici

        Javier's is booked for the night I need! Boo! Any other suggestions?

        1. re: barclayspot

          There's a Javier's in the Irvine Spectrum as well if you want to look there. Taco Rosa would be in the same field as Javier's I would think. They have locations in Newport Beach and in Tustin Marketplace. http://www.tacorosa.com/contact.htm

          1. re: barclayspot

            For a good, solid, "conservative" meal in that area, try Gulliver's in Irvine on MacArthur Blvd., just south of the 405 and directly across from John Wayne airport. It's a Lawry's-style place, where they serve lots of prime rib with gravy, Yorkshire pudding, freshly made creamed corn, etc. Gulliver's is also one of the few restaurants that still has Baked Alaska on the menu. Decent comfort food at reasonable prices. See: http://gulliversrestaurant.com/

            1. re: Mel Gee

              While I have heard good things about Gulliver's, it seems like they can get that food all day long in the East Coast, plus it is in the Airport Business District. Not very memorable for out of town guests.

              How about The Cannery Seafood of the Pacific restaurant in Newport Beach. It is in a historic building on the water. It also has a nice lounge on the second floor. It was been a year or so since I have been but I heard they have recently stepped up there game. They are often bringing in other famous chefs from LA to work the the chef.

              Another suggestion for California cuisine would be Bayside. It is also in Newport close to the water and the crowd is conservative. I believe they also have live music on the weekends. I have had consistently great meals there.

              None of these places are too spendy.

              http://www.cannerynewport.com/
              http://www.bistango.com/bayside.shtml

              1. re: cdmedici

                I second the Cannery. It's a good place to take out-of-towners, given the "harborside" location of the restaurant and the cool coastal vibe inside. I've always been impressed by the food, particularly multitude of choices you have for small bites and appetizers to be enjoyed by many at the table. It's also less of a "scene" than Javier's, unless you really want to show them a real-life slice of "Real Housewives of Orange County."

            2. re: barclayspot

              Taleo in Irvine is also upscale Mexican and a little closer to Costa Mesa.

              http://www.taleomexicangrill.com/

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              Taleo Mexican Grill
              3309 Michelson Dr, Irvine, CA 92612