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

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.

Fifi's Best

It always happens.

Golden Truffle’s Alan Greeley Has Recipe for Satisfaction

Creative, Eclectic, Friendly Style Cooks Up Delicious

I don’t even want to count how many restaurants I have eaten in this past year. But I can tell you that no chef has consistently impressed me more over a few decades, and still does, than Alan Greeley, the chef and owner of Golden Truffle in Costa Mesa. This special guy is my pick for Chef of the Year because he thinks globally about food and he makes culinary memories for all of us.

Lark Creek Recalled as Group Partner Cuts New Path

Chef Ogden Opens Diners, Works With New-Chef Son

Still sad over the quiet closing last month of the Lark Creek restaurant in Fashion Island. It had some of the best food in that upscale center.

Musings on Departing Eateries, Good, Bad Memories

Charlie Palmer Latest In String of Closings in OC

It came as a shock to serious diners that Charlie Palmer is closing his eponymous restaurant at Bloomingdale’s South Coast Plaza at the beginning of May.

Chef Built Beloved Restaurant on Natural Talent

Mixes Ethnic Food Smarts, Hunger for Better Dining

Our now legendary Orange County lady chef and restaurateur Zov Karamardian set out to introduce the dining public to Mediterranean food 27 years ago.

Upscale Bars Offer Comfort, Sociable Dining Alternative

Claim Center Stage With Inviting Decor, Food, Drink

Having a glass of wine with friends is no longer the cutting-edge trend. We are now having cocktails.

Ode to Local Pioneer; New Twists in Familiar Places

Larry Cano Left Stamp On Ever-Dynamic Food Scene

We recently lost Larry Cano, a true icon not only in Orange County dining but a major player in introducing America to sit-down Mexican dining and cuisine at a sophistication level way above the familiar taco genre.

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