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Summertime Libations in Newport Beach

June 15, 2017

There are times when beer and wine just won’t satisfy – your eyes wander to the list of hand-crafted cocktails and the intricate ingredients with meticulous efforts put into each beverage. The highly-anticipated summer season sparks creativity, curiosity and provides that extra incentive to loosen up and just chill out. Newport Beach restaurants have an extensive list of libations that’ll give you the cube-clinking, colorful, cooldown experience you’re looking for on that bright summer day. This summer, oppose the instinct to regurgitate your standard order and dive into one (or many!) of these special, seasonal, warmer-weather cocktails. They’ll make for a sizzling sipping experience!

A&O Kitchen + BarA + O Kitchen & Bar
A&O Kitchen + Bar, along the water’s edge, is the ideal location for those long-awaited, cool summer nights. The open-air communal dining tables overlook the Harbor – you can sip and enjoy the summertime excitement and activity in Newport Beach all taking place right before your eyes! Acclaimed for their creative cocktails, you can’t miss this libation location. The proof is in these special summertime craft cocktails…

Black Poppy
Woodford Reserve Rye, Grand Poppy,  Carpano Antica, Orange Bitters
Juan Pablo
Ilegal Mezcal, Ancho Verde,  Cucumber, Cilantro, Lime
#SpritzLife  
Apertivo Select, Valdo Prosecco, Orange Essence, Bubbles
Clandestino
IXA Reposado Tequila, Grand Hops,  Spiced Mango, Lime, Firewater
Rosé All Day
Three Olives Vodka, Grapefruit,  Giffard Pamplemousse Rosé, Lemon
Atlas & Odyssey
Four Pillars Navy Strength Gin,  Chamomile Cordial, Celery, Lemon, Mixwell Dandelion Tonic
Strange Ritual
Stiggins Fancy Pineapple Rum,  Herradura Reposado, Masala Chai,  Coconut, Cinnamon, Lime

Aqua Lounge/Oak Grill
Oak Grill and Aqua Lounge at the Island Hotel know how to spice things up for every season. With remarkable specials, inviting events, and contemporary cuisine, both Oak Grill and Aqua Lounge should be high on your list as you venture to various happy hours and dinners out with friends around Newport Beach this summer. Any night of the week, happy hour is offered from 3-7 p.m. at both Oak Grill and Aqua Lounge. Score a comfortable spot on their outdoor deck! Here’s what they recommend you sip on this summer.

Oak Grill:

Paloma Nueva
Purita Verda Mescal, Corralejo Blanco, Giffard Creme de Pamplemousse Rose, Lime, Agave
Sangria Flora
House Wine, St. Germain, Cinnamon, Brandy, Fresh Fruit
Sandia Fresca
Don Julio Blanco, Watermelon, Basil, Lime, Agave, Orange Bitters

Aqua Lounge:

Blush Bowl
Nolet’s Gin, Grapefruit, Mint, Ginger Beer
Chile Set Aside
Corralejo Tequila Blanco, Lime Juice, Agave, Pineapple Juice, Serrano Chiles

Beachcomber

What if there was a place where the sand below your feet doubled as your cocktail’s coaster? In Newport Beach, there is (almost!). While you look upon the sunset with a refreshing cocktail in hand, the sand lies directly below as you’re perched upon The Beachcomber’s outdoor, beachfront deck. They have beach towels, chairs, sunscreen, and sand toys for rent, fire pits and food packages and an express, grab and go, summertime infused menu curated for the most memorable beach day. Whether you’re hitting The Beachcomber’s happy hour after a day at Crystal Cove or making a special trip to the restaurant – highly recommended – you’ve got to try this summer cocktail. Pimm’s Cup, served up in a mason jar and decorated with a strawberry and tropical beverage umbrella, is created using these fragrant and tasty ingredients; Pimm’s No. 1 Cup, Bombay Sapphire, fresh lemonade, sparkling soda, lemon, lime, strawberries, cucumber and orange. The Beachcomber will also be offering a Watermelon Mojito made with Cruzan rum, Cointreau, fresh watermelon juice, agave, lime juice, and mint.

Two fantastic concoctions you must try this summer!

Fly ‘N’ Fish

Fly-n-Fish is fresh, fun and friendly. Not just for alliterations sake – they really mean it. The restaurant prides themselves on serving the freshest seafood possible and a line-up of quenching craft cocktails that’ll attract your attention and have you (and friends!) flocking back. Fly-n-Fish Oyster Bar is high-quality in all facets – food, service and atmosphere. With summer comes their Island Mai Tai. It is a classic, go-to summer sipper and is made with freshly squeezed pineapple and orange juices, Bacardi Silver, Orange Curacao, Trader Vic’s Orgeat Syrup, Diamond Head Dark Rum float, and served in a tiki glass. Guests can enjoy this refreshing cocktail while listening to the sounds of the crashing waves and bustling boardwalk at this seaside restaurant.

Nobu

Recently opened and already tremendously popular, Nobu is a waterfront restaurant that offers an elegant atmosphere, luxurious aesthetic and top-notch sushi. It is set within Lido Marina Village with an exterior that mirrors the charming, coastal design of the seaside property. Long anticipated and world-recognized, Nobu brings high living to the already comfortable and classy elegant, Lido Marina Village. Given the breathtaking Harbor views, Nobu decided to dedicate an entire floor of the restaurant to the bar and lounge, making this the perfect pick for cocktail hour this summer. Nobu recommends the Rose Quartz as the seasonal favorite. It comes with Matthiason vermouth, Cappelletti, dry sparkling wine and an orange twist.

True Food Kitchen

Few things shout out summer quite like watermelon. It decorates trays at neighborhood BBQs, is packed with nutrients, and provides hydration for the warm summer months approaching. True Food Kitchen is making the most of this juicy, summer fruit. Starting July 12th, they’ll be launching three new, flavorful cocktails for the sun-sational season ahead. The Watermelon Mojito is sure to be a fan-favorite. Along with the distinctive watermelon ingredient that sets the tone (literally, it’s pink) for this beverage, other additions include, rum, mint pineapple and lime. Sticking to the same color palette, but switching gears slightly on the taste, the Cherry Bourbon Sour should be next on your list. It’s mixed utilizing an assembly of unique and poignant ingredients including, bourbon, lemon, cherry bitters and pinot noir float. It’ll go down easy and disappear before you know it. Another round? You’ll probably need to opt in for at least one more, given the other strong contenders on the True Food Kitchen cocktail menu. If you’re there for brunch, the Pineapple and Orange Mimosa is another newbie you’ll find on their menu (offered only on Saturday & Sunday).

Lighthouse Bayview Cafe

For all you Bloody Mary fanatics out there, bring on brunch at Lighthouse Bayview Café.

Buddy’s Bloody is Lighthouse Bayview Café’s oversized Bloody Mary, served in a Mason Jar! It’s larger than life, just like the legendary lifeguard that inspired it, who patrolled the beaches of Newport for 47 years! Served with all the fixings: pickled asparagus, celery stalk, lemon wedge, lime wedge, skewer of Gorgonzola cheese, cherry tomatoes, green olive, salami and a picked pearl onion, plus a chili salted rim. Sparkling Summer Berry Refresher is another liquid refreshment worth tasting. Made with red berry puree, sparkling lemonade, and berry garnish, it’s light, smooth and a true thirst quencher.

Sip and sail your way happily through the coming months – we’re sensing sunshine, relaxation many liberating libation ahead!

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Written by Rachel Sherman

Rachel Sherman is an upcoming photographer and writer from Newport Beach, California. Although she was born and raised here by the beach, Rachel’s passion for traveling has taken her around the world to places such as England, France, Italy, and China. She recently graduated with honors holding a bachelors degree in Communications, with a concentration in visual communications, and minors in both Radio/TV/Film and Psychology from California State University, Fullerton. During her time there, she hosted a weekly rock ’n’ roll based radio show on Titan Radio called Good Rockin’ Tonight. Rachel has always had a genuine enthusiasm for photography, travel, culture, and adventure. Drawing constant inspiration from her love for the cinema, simple beautiful landscapes, as well as vintage atmospheres, these details shine through her photographs and inspire her writing. For more information on Rachel Sherman, or to view her personal works, please visit: www.rachelssherman.com

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