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Westcliff – Eat.Sea.Do

March 4, 2020

Situated just minutes from the bustle of PCH, Westcliff is one of Newport Beach’s best kept secrets. One of ten neighborhoods in the city, it’s compact and compelling with its mix of great dining, chic shopping, and beautiful views.

You can easily spend a whole day in Westcliff, Westcliff Court in particular, if only because you need to bide time between meals. With the abundance of options in a few short steps, you will be glad you did.

Let’s start at the beginning, breakfast. Beloved since 1990, Haute Cakes is where many of us start our day, or long too. The cozy café and patio are much-in-demand, especially on weekends, so arrive early and don’t sweat a short wait. In addition to delicious scrambles and the ubiquitous staple, avocado toast, the orange ricotta haute cakes are a must-order. Moist and slightly sweet, they’re perfect with a creamy latte.

After lunch, explore Jarbo, a sleek boutique offering modern women’s fashion with a minimalist aesthetic. A muted color palette and clean lines give these pieces a distinctly timeless appeal.

Exploring the boutiques has worked up an appetite, so stroll to Gracias Madre, one of Newport Beach’s newest restaurants. Elevated organic vegan cuisine and inventive cocktails in a gorgeous setting have made this one of the city’s coolest spots for lunch or dinner. Try the gorditas, accented with almond cotija and cashew crema, and the mushroom fajitas. You won’t miss the meat. Bar manager, Luis Del Poza, recommends El Caballero made with añejo tequila, tawny port, orange bitters and cinnamon infused smoke.

If lunch left you feeling sassy, it’s time for Love Lola, a boutique for those who keep up with their crunches and annual pilgrimage to Coachella. Flirty dresses and festival staples are mixed in with breezy maxi-dresses perfect for an evening at the beach.

Right about now, with the afternoon sun low in the sky, is the perfect time to head to one of the most beautiful vantage points in Newport Beach, Castaways. Walk or park at Dover and 16th street, then take the path toward the water. A glorious 180-degree view of the harbor and Back Bay awaits you.  The salty breeze is a natural pick-me-up as you head into the evening.

Olea. Cellar. Craft. Cook is a family-owned restaurant with a devoted following for its spin on wine-country cuisine. They are also renowned for their bar program. Wrap up this casually elegant exploration of Westcliff at Olea with an order of their (locally) famous duck wings appetizer and say “Cheers!” with a Rich Girl cocktail.

 

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