The top 5 restaurant patios for dining with your dog 

Story and photos by ELIZABETH NUTT

Laguna Beach is known for being dog friendly. You can’t venture anywhere in town today—beaches, parks or shops—without seeing the tail wagging of a four-legged friend. And this is especially true of Laguna’s restaurants; nearly every restaurant in town with a patio boasts a “dog friendly” mentality. Because there’s nothing better than people watching and relaxing outside with your loyal sidekick. 

But, if you’re like me, you’re also wary of dining out with your dog. I have a four-year-old retriever mix, Barbie, who weighs 70 pounds and who I’m sure would much prefer to romp on the beach than to be carted out to a restaurant. 

Nevertheless, I went ahead and “dog-tested” some of Laguna’s dog-friendly patios to see if they met my requirements for comfortable canine companionship while dining out. The criteria? First and foremost, a pleasant outdoor area with a good view is necessary. Next, a restaurant that’s spacious enough for a large dog to stretch out without bothering fellow patrons is a must. And, finally, I love a restaurant whose staff is truly happy to see customers arrive with a dog in tow. 

Of course, there are many restaurants in town that meet those requirements. But these five locales also serve delicious food that I love and that’ll keep me coming back time and time again—with Barbie, of course. 

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Barbie Waits For Pizza at Gina’s Pizza 

Gina’s Pizza: Located at the corner of Oak Street and S. Coast Highway, Gina’s offers some prime people watching and views. There’s plenty of outdoor space and shade, as the restaurant offers three patio areas. I love bringing Barbie along as I sit and enjoy a cold beer and a slice of pizza and watch the beachgoers and sunset. 

Try: the House Special, a mouthwatering Gina’s original and bestselling pizza made with pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, roasted peppers, red onion, freshly made pizza sauce and mozzarella. 

Gina’s is located at 1100 South Coast Highway and is open Sunday-Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

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Avila’s El Ranchito 

Avila’s El Ranchito: Avila’s is a perfect, slightly tucked away place for dining out with your pup. Spacious but cozy, the patio area has plenty of heaters and a fire pit for optimal warmth on chillier nights. The staff is incredibly friendly, and if you get lucky, you just might be seated at a table with an ocean view. 

Try: the Shrimp Tacos. It’s a sizable portion, but you’ll eat the whole thing, as they’re some of the best tacos in town. The dish comes with two heaping tacos, made with Mazatlan shrimp sautéed in Avila’s “special garlic butter sauce”, cabbage, and pico de gallo on flour tortillas, served with rice and beans. 

Avila’s is located at 1305 South Coast Highway, and is open Monday-Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

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Sapphire Laguna 

Sapphire Laguna: Sapphire’s patio is relatively expansive, by Laguna Beach standards. And while you’re dining there with your dog you also get a view of the ocean and some excellent people watching—not to mention close proximity to Laguna’s ‘Greeter’, Michael Minutoli, who waves at passersby from the same corner. Though Sapphire is more on the upscale side, the staff remains very friendly to dogs of all sizes. 

Try: the unique and supremely flavorful Jamaican Curried Black Cod in Banana Leaf, served with tomato-okra stew, roasted plantains, and tamarind chutney. 

Sapphire is located at 1200 South Coast Highway and is open Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday for brunch from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Friday and Saturday for dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.  

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Zinc Café 

Zinc Café: Zinc is a fantastic place for dining with your dog because there’s not only plenty of room, but also plenty of shade in the restaurant’s covered patio area. And there are almost always a handful of other friendly dogs there ready to greet us when we stop in for breakfast or lunch. I also love that the restaurant is partially bordered by lush hedges, which make it feel less like a patio and more like a garden—definitely dog friendly. 

Try: The Thai Salad—it’s hard to believe this is a vegetarian dish. It’s filling and tasty, but it’s also light and healthy. This salad is made with brown rice, shredded Napa cabbage and carrots, bean sprouts, braised tofu, spicy peanuts, fresh basil, mint and a Thai ginger dressing. 

Zinc Café is located at 350 Ocean Avenue, and is open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. 

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Lumberyard Restaurant

Lumberyard Restaurant’s patio overlooks City Hall on the corner of Forest and Forest, the perfect location for a quieter meal out with your canine pal. Though the patio area’s on the smaller size, it’s quaint and intimate. And it’s always fun sitting on the outside of Lumberyard’s stunning historic building. A plus? Naked Dog Bistro, a pet store, is located right next-door, and it’s known for its freshly made dog treats.

Try: the Dungeness Crab Cake Salad, served with fresh asparagus, baby greens, pears and blue cheese. These are some of the best crab cakes in town. This dish is hearty, fresh, and perfect for lunch or as an appetizer at dinnertime. 

Lumberyard is located at 384 Forest Avenue, and opens daily at 11 a.m.


Taverna is now open on Ocean Avenue, serving authentic northern Italian cuisine

Story and photos by ELIZABETH NUTT 

Though it opened only 13 days ago, on Mar 5 to be exact, Taverna has seen a steady influx of curious diners looking to try Ocean Avenue’s newest addition. The chain restaurant first opened in Dallas, Texas nearly 40 years ago, and now has multiple locations in the US and in Mexico. Taverna is an authentic Italian restaurant that’s celebrated for its pizza and risotto—which have, apparently, already earned a few regulars at the Laguna location. 

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Taverna, Located On Ocean Avenue, Is Now Open

“So far, so good, especially because the locals seem to love it, and they’re our bread and butter—we don’t want to disappoint them,” says Vittorio Homberger, general manager of Taverna’s Laguna Beach location. “We have a few people who have been in every single night since we opened,” he adds. 

If you visit the restaurant, you’ll understand why. First, it’s a fresh, clean, well-lit space, whose design calls to mind a rustic countryside kitchen, but with modern light fixtures and artwork, which is purchased from local galleries. It boasts 125 seats, which include a sizeable patio area’s outdoor dining space. But you’ll still want to make a reservation—even on a Wednesday evening, hopeful walk-ins were added to a waitlist. 

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Taverna’s Patio

Of course, the real draw is the restaurant’s seasonally inspired menu. From focaccia and pizza, made in the restaurant’s Wood Stone Oven, to risotto and homemade pasta, everything is fresh and made in-house daily, following traditional Italian recipes. Even the prosciutto is cut to order. 

“From the feedback I’ve heard so far, people are saying, ‘Wow! We’ve been looking for something like this for years.’ There’s a lot of excitement around Taverna here,” says Vittorio.

The Taverna Taste Test 

Though there were many enticing options on the menu, I decided to go straight to the risotto and pizza. Risotto is the restaurant’s flagship dish, and it’s made with Carnaroli rice—the only rice fit for the Italian comfort food, according to Taverna. 

The particular characteristics of the Carnaroli rice, such as its firm texture, help it maintain its shape during the long, slow cooking process. 

Taverna has clearly nailed this dish. 

I tried the Risotto Al Parmigiano Con Salsa Tartufata E Funghi—creamy and delicious, made with Parmesan cheese, wild mushrooms and a black truffle sauce. It was so flavorful and rich, and yet it wasn’t an overwhelmingly heavy portion. 

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Parmesan, Wild Mushroom and Black Truffle Risotto 

It’s the perfect dish to share, or to enjoy as a complement to one of the restaurant’s secondi menu items, such as beef tenderloin, grilled Hawaiian tuna, or veal chop. 

Next, I sampled the Margherita Pizza—another classic. The pizzas are made in a Wood Stone Oven, which, according to Vittorio, ensures an even temperature that cooks to perfection each thin-crust pie. It’s a simple pizza—tomato, mozzarella, and basil—but it was perfect. 

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Taverna’s Margherita Pizza 

Of course, it wouldn’t be a quality Italian restaurant without an impressive list of Italian wines. And Taverna ensures that guests get to choose from the cream of the Italian crop when it comes to its wines. 

“I’ve never seen a company like this, they choose the best wines—they want it to be right,” says Vittorio, who is also a sommelier. 

The restaurant also offers bottled and draft beer, aperitifs, and a selection of bourbon, tequila, cognac and scotch and single malts. 

Locals will delight in Taverna’s daily, evolving specials, Happy Hour on Monday-Friday from 3-6 p.m., and weekend brunch offering.

Taverna is located at 222 Ocean Avenue, and is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday-Friday, and from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

For more information, visit http://www.tavernabylombardi.com.


Every hour’s happy at Big Fish Tavern—especially through March Madness 

Story and photos by ELIZABETH NUTT

In my opinion, the recipe for a good Laguna Beach happy hour is simple: throw in a few reasonably priced drink specials, a sizeable selection of menu items under $10, a view of the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean—and voila.

Laguna’s Big Fish Tavern has mastered this recipe, but taken it to a whole new level with a happy hour menu that’s comprised primarily of entrée-sized portions of mouthwatering, freshly caught seafood. 

Big Fish’s vibe is casual and easy. It’s the perfect location, complete with nautical-inspired décor and sweeping views of the ocean from its many windows, for a real happy hour. 

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Laguna’s Big Fish Tavern

“We are a casual seafood house—your local, friendly tavern,” says Louie Feinstein, who co-owns Big Fish with Jim Walker. “Our motto is, ‘The answer is yes. Now, what was the question?’”  

Feinstein and Walker purchased the restaurant’s space—which was formerly known as The House of Big Fish and Ice Cold Beer—in late 2014, and they’ve made some pretty significant changes and improvements to their restaurant thus far. Which include a happy hour that’s more like a happy day; throughout the winter, happy hour has run from 11:30 a.m. all the way to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

If you somehow missed this memo, worry not. Big Fish will kindly keep those hours through the month of March and into April—at which point happy hour will return to its regular 4-7 p.m., Monday-Friday.

 So, whether you’re gearing up to watch some basketball throughout March Madness, or you just love great food and an even better deal, head to Big Fish (which, by the way, still has ice cold beer).  

Low Prices, High Quality

When you order from Big Fish’s happy hour menu, you do not sacrifice quality or size. Take, for example, the “Peruvian Style” Crab and Shrimp Ceviche. It’s a heaping serving of fresh shrimp and crab, tossed with chile, onion, corn, sweet potato, avocado, cilantro and Peppadew. And everything’s been marinated in a citrus sauce so it’s tangy and flavorful. The dish is Louie’s favorite, and it’s a bestselling, signature item. 

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“Peruvian Style” Crab and Shrimp Ceviche

I also tried the Hawaiian Ahi Poke—another popular item at Big Fish. In this dish, the spicy soy, ripe avocado, wontons and onion perfectly complement the fresh ahi. 

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Hawaiian Ahi Poke

You can also get dishes like Chilled Shrimp Cocktail ($7), Oysters on the Half Shell (4 for $7), and Smoked Salmon Carpaccio ($6) from the happy hour menu. 

On the drink side of things, you can grab a well drink, a glass of house red or white wine for $6, a craft cocktail for $8, and you can choose from a selection of draft beers (Stella Artois, Prohibition Ale or the Mission Hefeweizen are available right now) for $5.50. All happy hour specials are available at the bar and at the bar area’s high-top tables only. 

Beyond Happy Hour 

Big Fish offers much more than just a good happy hour deal. Over the last year, the restaurant has brought in live music—primarily local musicians—three times a week, on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, from 7-11 p.m. 

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There’s Always Something Fun Happening at Big Fish

And then there are Big Fish’s nine TV screens. The restaurant is the perfect place to watch the March Madness games, because no matter where you sit, you’ve got a view of a flat-screen TV. And Big Fish will be offering drink specials throughout the tournament, too. 

The menu is also expansive, and there’s so much to try beyond the happy hour options. My personal favorite dish is the Thai Glazed Calamari—by far the best calamari I’ve had, because of its unique, robust Thai flavors. It’s served with peanuts, carrots, bean sprouts, cilantro and green onion, and it’s very shareable.

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Thai Glazed Calamari

Feinstein and Walker are also working to revamp the restaurant’s menu—starting with a new format. For example, previously, Big Fish’s “Catches of the Day” were showcased on its “Just Hooked” menu card—a small piece of paper attached to a mini clipboard that’d be distributed to guests. However, given the fact that the owners are working to place more of an emphasis on the restaurant’s fish offerings, adding new, fresh fish items, the “Just Hooked” section will now be embedded in the restaurant’s regular menu. 

Which is a good thing, considering the fact that it really steals the show. At Big Fish, the “Just Hooked” section includes swordfish from Australia, wild yellowtail from Mexico, wild opah and wild ono from Fiji, and mahi-mahi from Costa Rica. And you can order it prepared in one of four ways: simply grilled, with lemon, seasoned rice and vegetables; pan roasted, with a lemon beurre blanc sauce, kale and roasted mushrooms; blackened, with a lobster cognac sauce, baby potatoes and grilled asparagus; or grilled, with pineapple-mango salsa, quinoa and roasted vegetables. 

In addition to seafood, the restaurant offers plenty of “on-shore” items, which include everything from Grilled Filet Mignon and the “Hangover Burger”, to Pho Noodles and Garlic Rosemary Chicken. 

Keep an eye out for Big Fish’s new “Sunday Supper”, too: for $28, you’ll get a soup or salad, your choice of entrée, and dessert. 

And, of course, the restaurant does an incredible job of rotating its beers on tap, showcasing a wide variety of local Southern California brews—including Laguna’s own Laguna Beach Beer Company. 

“We really work hard to accommodate everyone—from highchairs to wheelchairs, and people come back to us again and again because we’ve got a varied menu with broad appeal, and the best prices for seafood,” says Louie. “And the menu continually develops and grows.” 

Big Fish is located at 540 South Coast Highway, #200. For more information, visit http://www.bigfishtavernlaguna.com.


Adventures in Gastronomy

victusandvinous.com

April Steinert

 

Mac + Cheese with a Twist

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This recipe is a different take on an old classic. I saw somewhere, ages ago, a recipe for mac and cheese that called for avocado. Genius. Since I have no memory of where I spotted this brilliant addition, I improvised and created my own version. 

In addition to the avocado, I added roasted tomatoes with a bit of basil. The tomatoes add some acid, the basil a bit of herbaceous-ness, both of which help balance the richness of all of that delicious cheese. Divine. Much like the bewitching powers the dynamic duo of grilled cheese and tomato soup have on people. Hard to beat. 

Here’s what you’ll need to feed 5-6:

1/2 Cup whole milk

8 oz. grated Gruyere cheese

6 oz. grated fontina

8 oz. mascarpone cheese

1 avocado, cubed

2 packages of Manini’s gluten-free rigatoni (or 1 lb. of regular pasta)

1 package of strawberry tomatoes 

1 Tbsp. EVOO

2 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly

2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. piment d’espelette (or cayenne) 

A handful of basil, julienned

In a 400-degree oven, roast the tomatoes in the EVOO until about bursting.   

Boil the pasta in salty water until al-dente. Drain and retain 1/4 Cup of the starchy pasta water. 

Put the pasta back in the pan with the hot pasta water.

Add the cheeses, milk, garlic, salt, and piment d’espelette to the pasta. 

Mix well over low heat. 

Once the cheese is nice and melt-y, toss in the cubed avocado and mix again. 

Add salt and pepper to taste, top with a few of the roasted, and hot, tomatoes, some basil, and chow down! 

Eat well!

April

 

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”  - J.R.R. Tolkien


Watermarc Restaurant: “a dining experience at its greatest height”

Story and photos by ELIZABETH NUTT

Watermarc Restaurant’s name was born from a clever play on words; it’s a nod to both its owner and chef’s first name, Marc, as well as to the word ‘watermark’, which means “a mark showing the greatest height”.  

Certainly, a “dining experience at its greatest height”—the restaurant’s maxim—would be a great dining experience. But imagine something even better than that. Imagine a restaurant where every single dish that comes out surprises you in some way. Imagine a restaurant that’s modern and yet cozy, perfect for a dressed-up or casual weekday dinner. Imagine a restaurant with a staff so friendly you might start to think that you’re eating in the chef’s living room, not at his restaurant. And that’s Watermarc. 

Chef Marc Cohen nails it with Watermarc because he’s got the pedigree, the experience, and the work ethic. 

He hails from Baltimore, and got his start on the East Coast, but couldn’t turn down an invitation to relocate to Laguna to help open 230 Forest restaurant 20 years ago. He credits the success of his first Orange County-area restaurant to his understanding of how to work with people, and to having honest conversations with his customers. 

“I don’t compromise. A restaurant is a partnership with its guests, and I offer my guests the best quality ingredients that are in season and at the best prices. It’s a relationship built on trust,” says Chef Cohen. 

He opened Watermarc in 2010 after listening closely to said guests. He’d spoken with a few of his 230 Forest regulars to find out what else they were looking for in a restaurant, and the answer surprised him. Despite it being one of the worst times our nation’s economy has seen, most of Chef Cohen’s regulars said that they were still willing to pay the price for a good meal, so long as they had options. And he took that feedback to heart. 

The result is Watermarc, which boasts an innovative menu that can be mixed and matched with dozens of cocktails and hundreds of wine options, so that no matter how often you visit, each experience is unique. 

He’s an award-winning chef who’s been continually recognized as one of Orange County’s best, and we’re lucky to call Chef Cohen—one of the greatest assets to Laguna’s restaurant scene—ours. 

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Chef Marc Cohen

Grazing Plates

Watermarc’s concept is centered on the idea of the Cohen-coined “Grazing Plates”. They’re not to be confused with ‘small plates’ or ‘tapas’; rather, they’re smaller portions of completed dishes, or mini entrées.

There are well over a dozen of these “Grazing Plates” on the menu, and they’re all enticing, from the Burrata Mozzarella and the Filet Mignon Pot Pie, to the Bacon Wrapped Dates and the Herb Crusted Lamb Chops. 

I opted for the Ahi Watermelon Skewers and the Sizzling Garlic Shrimp. Chef Cohen understands seafood, having grown up in Baltimore, and he explains that the menu is inspired by the Mediterranean—think Greek, Spanish, and French influences. 

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Sizzling Garlic Shrimp

The Sizzling Garlic Shrimp arrives literally sizzling in a skillet, and it’s served with sweet onion, fennel, and juicy chunks of citrus fruit. Next up were the Ahi Watermelon Skewers—a work of art. 

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Ahi Watermelon Skewers

These one-bite skewers pack a ton of flavor. The ahi is as fresh and flavorful as the watermelon, tomato, and seaweed salad it’s served with. 

Speaking of artwork, you can’t miss the Gazpacho Shooter. Made with golden tomato and cucumber, it’s served with a house-made crostini in a small martini glass on dry ice that puts on a show for you as you enjoy the unbelievably refreshing dish. 

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Gazpacho Shooter

Each day, there’s a different “Grazing special”, where something new and different is added to the list for anywhere from $11-$16. (There’s also Happy Hour pricing daily from 3:30-5:30 p.m., excluding holidays). 

I asked him from where he garners inspiration for the extensive list of “Grazing Plates”—which is revised and edited a couple times a year. 

“I am always trying to teach my staff new things, to come up with something that’s new and different and to reenergize our kitchen. I don’t sleep a lot,” he laughs. And he doesn’t. He has been working upwards of 80 hours a week for the past 10 years to build his successful career.

Beyond ‘Grazing’

Though I could have lingered on the “Grazing Plates” for a lot longer, the Cedar Planked Scottish Salmon, in the ‘entrée’ section of the menu, tempted me. According to Chef Cohen, the cedar is flown in from Kentucky. It’s then soaked in bourbon, soy, brown sugar and anise. Words can’t describe the flavors in this entrée—you just have to try it yourself. 

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Cedar Planked Scottish Salmon

I ended my meal with the Myer Lemon Pots de Crème, and I think I’ll be dreaming about this dessert for a few weeks. It has the perfect blend of flavors from the lemon, blueberry, whipped cream and crumble, and it’s served alongside a heaping basket of warm beignets. 

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Myer Lemon Pots de Crème 

When I leave, the first thing I think about is when I’ll be back, and who I’ll recruit to come with me to try the rest of Watermarc’s menu. And then I remember something that Chef Cohen told me at the beginning of our conversation.

“We don’t spend a lot of time advertising, or on social media, we really focus on the every day,” he says. “Every day a plate leaves our kitchen, that’s how we do our advertising.” 

Watermarc is located at 448 South Coast Highway. Lunch is served daily from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and dinner is served Sunday-Thursday until 10 p.m., and until 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. For more information, visit watermarcrestaurant.com


Project Juice: your one-stop shop for smoothies, juices, shakes and more

Story and photos by ELIZABETH NUTT

Laguna’s Project Juice, which boasts local, organic and plant-based health foods, serves so many purposes. In one week alone, I found myself heading there for a smoothie to help beat the heat, a protein shake post-workout, a green juice to feel a little healthier, and a ‘Flu Shot’ (one of Project Juice’s ‘Wellness Shots’) when I felt a cold coming on. 

I’ve been a faithful customer to one of Laguna Beach’s now few juice and smoothie spots for a while, and it seems like every time I stop in they’re adding something new—lunches to go, Kombucha on tap, new smoothies and cold-pressed juices. 

In my opinion, it’s one of the easiest, most convenient stops in Laguna Beach for something healthy, be it breakfast, lunch or a quick snack. 

Once you get to know Project Juice’s mission, practices, products and their above-and-beyond-friendly staff, you’ll probably become a regular customer, too. 

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Project Juice’s Manager Riley Madigan (L) and an employee, Arielle 

Make Juice, Not War

Some may remember Ritual Wellness—the Irvine-based cold-pressed juice and smoothie company that first opened the doors of what’s now Project Juice’s shop. Ritual Wellness merged in 2015 with Project Juice, which at the time had five other retail locations in Northern California. 

“The thought was, let’s make juice, not war. Instead of fighting all these other juice companies, we decided to collaborate with another company that shared our same values,” explains Project Juice’s Laguna location’s Manager, Riley Madigan. 

And those values are what set Project Juice apart from other juice and smoothie spots throughout California. For example, the company is one of few juice producers that use one hundred percent USDA certified organic produce. 

The merge with Project Juice—a bigger company—meant much better, widespread access to farmers. Everything that goes into the company’s smoothies and juices is from California, so it’s all local, fresh produce grown on organic farms throughout the state. This is incredibly important, considering the fact that every juice contains about 4-5 pounds of organic produce. 

Project Juice also uses a unique process to make its juices: cold pressing, which uses low oxygen levels and low heat.  

“When you cold-press juices versus using the typical centrifugal juicers, you get about five times more nutrients, and a smoother texture,” explains Riley. 

And with the merge came better smoothie recipes, too. Project Juice has an impressive list of smoothies and shakes, which range from light and refreshing (try the Sunset Beach, which is made with cold-pressed orange, carrot, ginger, turmeric, lime juice, house-made almond mylk, mango, pineapple and strawberry) to worthy of a meal replacement (try the Chocolate Protein, which has almonds, dates, banana, raw almond butter, cacao, ultra brown rice protein, kale, vanilla bean, sea salt and stevia). 

I tried the Peace, Love and Kale, made with raw coconut water, raw coconut meat, kale, spinach, dates and cinnamon. You can add boosters to any smoothie—for example almond butter for protein, cacao nibs for energy, or probiotics for immunity. It’s delicious, and tastes like a dessert, not a green smoothie! 

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Project Juice’s Peace, Love and Kale Smoothie

Project Healthy

 Of course, if you stop in to Project Juice, you’ve got to try one of their cold-pressed juices, too. They’re on the pricier side—they run for about $9 a juice—but the shop has a good rewards program, and there’s usually a deal to be had. According to Riley, they’re almost always running some kind of promotion. 

Right now, it’s the Immune Boosting Defense Kit for $24, which gives you a couple ‘Immunity’ Juices—made with orange, grapefruit, lemon, ginger and cayenne—and a ‘Flu Shot’, which is a smaller-sized cold-pressed ‘shot’ of orange, ginger, cayenne, Reishi, Echinacea, and lemon.

Fun fact: Project Juice also recommends the Immunity Juice as a healthier mixer for making margaritas. The ginger and cayenne make it slightly spicy, which is perfectly balanced by the lime and grapefruit flavors. 

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Project Juice’s Immune Boosting Defense Kit

There are countless other options, though. For those that are wary of a green juice’s taste, Riley suggests the D-Tox juice, which is primarily fruit-based. Other fruit-based juices like the Pomegranate Orange will taste less like romaine and celery and more like coconut water and fruit. 

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Some of Project Juice’s Fruit-Based Beverages

If you’re not on the juice bandwagon, worry not. The shop offers a wide array of other health foods, including vegan, organic lunches and snacks to go. Try the Thai Crunch Salad, or the Veggie Spring Rolls—both tasty and filling! 

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Lunch at Project Juice 

You can also grab other treats to go, such as organic granola bars, chocolate, tea, nuts and cold-pressed iced coffee, which Project Juice will shake for you, adding in natural sweeteners like almond milk, dates or cinnamon.  

If you have questions about ingredients, juice cleanses, or simply need help narrowing down all your options, Project Juice’s staff is incredibly approachable, knowledgeable, and helpful. Thanks to them, it’s never been easier to get something good, healthy and fast in Laguna. 

Project Juice is located at 1100 South Pacific Coast Highway, and is open from Monday-Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, visit www.projectjuice.com.

Kya

 

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