Orange County Business Journal

Fifi Chao is a chef, lecturer, author, educator, radio personality and publisher of Chao's Dinesty, a private subscription restaurant, wine and travel newsletter. She has been reviewing local restaurants for the Business Journal since 1990.

Recent Stories

South County Gains in the Gastronomic Department

South County is getting more sophisticated on the dining front.

South County is getting more sophisticated on the dining front.

News Flows From All Corners of OC’s Food World

Novel Ventures; Cookbook Morsel; Retooled Irish Fare

After decades in South Coast Plaza’s Crate and Barrel/Macy’s Home Store wing, Nello Cucina is no more. Antonio Cagnolo shuttered the operation in late February, focusing on his three other restaurants: Antonello Ristorante, Quattro Caffé and Antonello Espresso Café.

Restaurateur of the Year Built 2nd Career on Memories

Italian Food at Home, Trips To Italy Inspired Eateries

Cathy Pavlos, co-owner and chef of Lucca in Irvine and Provenance in Newport Beach, has earned her place as one of Orange County’s most admired chefs. She is our 2016 Restaurateur of the Year.

Supper Club Gets Love From Culinary Friend and Fifi

Brasserie Just Ahead Of Admirer’s ‘Farmhouse’

It’s refreshing to see restaurateurs help advertise each other’s new venues. In this case, Rich Mead, highly regarded for his former Sage restaurants, sent out positive commentary on Jack Jasper and his Campus Jax restaurant—full name Campus Jax, a mindful kitchen, brasserie & Supper Club.

Favorite Dining Choices to Help Start 2016 Off Right

Plus Fifi’s Rundown Of Departures, Newcomers

As I start the new year, I think back on good food I’ve had and what I look forward to now.

Dine in Holiday Style With the Best Seasonal Trimmings

Eateries Put as Much Time Into Decoration as Food

This is the time of year when all sorts of nostalgia takes over. We used to stop by and see the decorations at some of the upscale restaurants—there are now so many.

Recent Restaurant Closing No Surprise, Another Sad

Tamarind Dashed Hopes, Scott’s Ends on High Note

Double bombshells hit diners in the past month with the sudden closing of Tamarind of London at Newport Coast and news that Scott’s would be closing at the end of the year.

New Chefs, Enriched Eateries Offer Fresh Opportunities

Bistro Comes Into Its Own, Plus OC’s Best Indian Food

I mentioned two months ago that Little Sparrow in downtown Santa Ana had parted ways with its chef.

Restaurant Anniversaries Coincide With New Players

Plenty of Stalwarts, Fresh Fare Options to Browse

Moulin Bistro, Newport’s cute little culinary bôite filled with French aromas, ambiance, food and wine, and happy patrons, celebrates its first anniversary this month.

Abundant Restaurant News Starts Sad, Ends Glad

Chef Departs, Kids Fed, Laguna ‘Reunion’

Lots of Tidbits today: • The sad news: The shock of the month came with the announcement that Bruce Marsh, owner of Little Sparrow, the darling little restaurant in downtown Santa Ana, let chef Eric Samaniego go.

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