The (culinary) Empire strikes back...

New restaurant so retro a cave man would feel at home:

This place looks pretty interesting, going to give it a try. Will report back.

sounds good, let us know how it is Tom

I’ll check it out also. I wonder what corkage is. Hopefully free. [cheers.gif]

goes well with csj i bet

“While Shuck was certainly noteworthy for Orange County, Arc is emphatically one of the most important restaurants to open in America this decade.”


I think I’ll try it for lunch today. Will report back. Shuck is an over priced oyster bar that serves great raw oysters, but poor oyster po-boys…steamed clams…ect. Hopefully Arc will be more impress a little more given its status as one of the most important restaurants of the decade.

per the review “First bottle free, subsequent bottles $5”

This place sounds like you’d better wear old clothes–unless you like to smell like BBQ!

dawg. you should have told me. I was in costa mesa today!

Went last night around 6:15 and got last booth. Small space, about 35 seats plus 10 at bar. No reservations yet. Everything out in the open including large wood burning oven and grill. Huge hood ventilated the smoke well so no smoke taint like article says. In fact never even smelled smoke at all.

Been open only a few months so if you are impatient with new/learning service, stay away for a while - they are still getting their feet wet. Interesting cocktails, but a little on the small side - $10-12. Small beer selection but very good ones all priced at $6. Wines by the glass only, $10 & $20 and maybe 10 of each, but some interesting selections. Leans more towards old world which suits me fine and much better paired with the menu.

Menu is all small sizzling pans to be shared. We had the calamari with peppers and baby potatoes - very good, beets with an aged goat cheese and herbs - delicious but simple, green salad - boring (off menu they had a couple interesting salads but were too much for this night - $20 wedge that feeds 4), bacon and gruyere tart - delicious, pork and beans - roasted pork with white beans and herbs, again delicious.

The owner/chef hand delivers all plates and gives a quick description which was nice because his waitstaff didn’t have a clue. $120 before tip for 3 and we each had a cocktail, I also had a beer and no corkage on a bottle of wine and we were stuffed and had to doggy bag a couple items. So with these prices it is relatively inexpensive and the food is very good.

Would I travel long distance to try - no, but if your in the area it is definitely worth a try. Looking forward to trying the rest of menu and also some of the off menu items. One of these off menu items last night was goose egg wrapped with prosciutto and roasted on top of new potatoes, didn’t sound too good but looked insane coming out of oven. No dessert.

Nice write-up Tom. I’m gonna give it a try. 1st bottle free and $5 for all subsequent bottles is very friendly. I applaud this policy.

That sounds really good!

Sorry to dredge this thread back up, but I wanted to comment on Arc. Go for the great cocktails, but I suggest eating elsewhere. The “secret menu” steaks are expensive and average in quality. The burger which is mostly slab bacon and duck confit held together by a bit of beef is way too much of a good thing. I like the concept, but for me, the food falls short. Cocktails are very tasty if a bit small.

+1. only one data point but similar opinion. Too much char on the meat for my taste. Really good cocktails. Doesn’t take reservations and waited 90 minutes. I would have left but was in the minority.

heh, I saw this thread pop up and was gonna post on it. Curry and I went to arc shortly after this thread first came about. I agree 100% with his comments. The chef tried to steer us away from the steak as he insisted “we would not appreciate” a wood fired steak. More like we wouldn’t appreciate a 16oz steak for $78 dollars that was too heavily charred and just wasn’t that good quality of a piece of beef to start with.