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The Anthill Pub on the UC Irvine campus has a a great drink selection and amazing pub food menu. If you're not sure what to order the fire ants dish, buffalo popcorn chicken with Louisiana hot sauce and blue cheese dipping sauce, is especially good. The rotating beer menu is carefully curated and has one of the best selections in all of Irvine - the fact that this is on a college campus is a recipe for an interesting atmosphere. Live music and other events are held here often.
A favorite among locals because of its casual, yet sophisticated style. The ambiance is chic, in a comfortable sort of way and the views are amazing. Their menu offers mouth-watering selections that are recognizable, using unique and contemporary techniques, without being too fussy. Tempting appetizers include house-made potato chips with white truffle essence or Gorgonzola-stuffed dates wrapped in applewood-smoked bacon. For heftier appetites, try the blackened ahi, or the Kobe beef Gorgonzola burger. They also feature a variety of innovative gourmet sliders, and soups, salads, and pastas. The extensive wine list is reasonably priced, and the cocktails are showstoppers. After typical dining hours the feel is more of a nightclub, and this fashionable eatery gets super packed, especially on weekends. The ultra-trendy vibe can be a little much for some people, but the food and the views are hard to beat.
There is a reason why this adorable Italian restaurant has been around for over 40 years: great atmosphere, affordable family-style food, and attentive staff. Family owned since the summer of love, Spaghetti Bender still maintains that down-home feel that will make you think you are in a quaint restaurant in Italy, eating sauce handmade by somebody's grandmother. The marinara sauce has that lick-your-plate X factor to it, and try the garlic bread once and you will have dreams about it. Accompanying the cozy dining room, there is a patio and wine bar for those beautiful OC nights. A definite date spot for those with even the littlest romantic bone in their body.
As soon as you pull up to Lucille's Smokehouse and Bar-B-Que in Brea, you will know you're in for a time travelling journey to the South. The large, colorful building is reminiscent of classic homes found in towns across the South, and the interior is a perfect production of an old-fashioned soda fountain meets Bourbon Street bar. The menu is mouthwatering meats smoked to perfection with a delicious sweet and tangy BBQ sauce. You can get all the classics BBQ mains from three different kinds of ribs to brisket, tri tip, chicken and more. Round the meal out with classic Southern sides and appetizers like fried pickles, fried green tomatoes, macaroni salad, grits, greens and more. There are also great lunch specials, sandwiches and specialties like Jambalaya, Gumbo and fried catfish. Family-size and kids menus are also available.
Jack's is a casual restaurant and bar known for its incredible martinis and wonderful entrees consisting of Turner New Zealand all natural, grass fed meats and fresh wild fish. The diverse menu of Continental and Italian cuisine ranges from New York style thin crust pizza to delectable rack of lamb. Dinner is served nightly with daily happy hour at the bar and patio. They also cater events as well are available for banquets.