Cantonese (and if possible great egg rolls) in Irvine/Costa Mesa/Newport?
I'm planning a family get-together in the OC and a request has been made for great Cantonese. My cousin in San Diego insists that there is none to be found in San Diego so she's hoping that I can find something for our dinner in OC.
Because it's a family event with some picky eaters/diners, I'd love to find somewhere that has some sort of ambiance and is on the American-Cantonese side of Cantonese. In other words, authenticity is not essential.
Not 100% familiar with the area, so if there's a potential spot somewhere off the 5 or 405 around there that would be fine too!
I'd second May Garden. As good as American-Chinese gets around here and it has very nice banquet rooms. They do sweet and sour everything. My favorite is the crispy shrimp. Yum! Inside, it looks like the library of an old English country inn. Very counter-intuitive interior, but perfect for the OP's request.
Great gringo Chinese is hard to come by around here. That said, my best candidate for this shindig is Crystal Jade. It's a nice room, so you got your ambiance. Most other Irvine Chinese places are pretty dumpy.
It's authentic Cantonese, so don't expect chop suey / moo goo gai pan on the menu. Don't recall if they have egg rolls or not. They do dim sum during brunch hours (menu style ordering, no carts). The food is solid, and I think it will work well for your group.
EDIT: Another possibility is Sam Woo on Culver Drive. They have three separate rooms: a takeout BBQ side, a casual eat-in, and a white tablecloth eat-in room. Menus and prices change accordingly.
Crystal Jade Asian Fine Dining
6511 Quail Hill Pkwy, Irvine, CA 92603
re: Professor Salt
I second the rec for Sam Woo. Also nearby off the Jeffrey exit is SW Seafood, another authentic place for Cantonese. Another good option, although often crowded, is China Garden, across the street from SW Seafood. If you're further up north in OC, King Lobster Palace has pretty good dim sum.
Can't say I've found any good egg rolls at any OC Chinese restaurants, so I don't have any recommendations. I seem to have better luck with egg rolls at Thai restaurants.
Irvine China Garden
14825 Jeffrey Rd, Irvine, CA 92618
Sam Woo Restaurant
15333 Culver Dr Ste 720, Irvine, CA 92604
S W Seafood & BBQ Restaurant
5406 Walnut Ave Ste A, Irvine, CA 92604
King Lobster Palace
2045 N Tustin St, Orange, CA 92865