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Irvine Blog - Posts from Local Experts

Posts for March 2014

Win OC Blues Tickets!

Posted by: Ellen Bell
Posted on: Wednesday, Mar 26, 2014

OC BLues Soccer

The era of professional soccer in Irvine is about to begin.

On Saturday, April 5, The OC Blues Football Club will open the season at UC Irvine's Anteater Stadium against the Oklahoma City Energy. Game time is 7pm.

To celebrate, Destination Irvine will be giving away a pair of free tickets  to Opening Night. Just comment below with the words, "Go Blues!" Make sure you include your email in the comment.

Winners will be selected at random and notified by email. Alternate choices for home games are also available.

OC BLues Soccer

Opening Festivities Planned

Fans in attendance will have the chance to be a part of several contests in giveaways.

– The first 1,500 fans in the gate will receive a OC Blues FC replica jersey, courtesy of our presenting sponsor, Sports 1 Marketing.

- All fans will be able to enter to win a chance at taking home a 2014 Ford Fusion Energi on a 2-year lease, courtesy of Theodore Robins Ford in Costa Mesa.

OC BLues Soccer 

- One lucky fan will win a 3 day, 2 night getaway at the Ponte Family Estate, Winery and Inn located in the heart of  Temecula Wine Valley, courtesy of World Travel.

Oc Blues Soccer 

For individual tickets to the home opener, you can purchase them here. For information on season tickets and multiple match packages, call (714) 738-8011 or email 

OC Blues FC                       OC BLues Soccer

 Comment with "Go Blues!" and be part of soccer history in Orange County!


Only in Irvine: Creamistry

Posted by: Ellen Bell
Posted on: Thursday, Mar 13, 2014

Unique Services and Shops That Can Only be Found Here

What's so special about the ice cream served at Irvine's new specialty desert location Creamistry?

It's simple. The secret is in the science.

OII Creamistry

The Chemistry of Freezing 

When you arrive at Creamistry, your ice cream is not sitting in a freezer waiting for you.

The magic happens in minutes, when fresh cream meets liquid nitrogen.   


Specially trained Creamologists inject liquid nitrogen into the mixing bowl and combine it with ice cream mix. The liquid nitrogen evaporates in a cloud of cold vapor smoke. Within seconds, the liquid nitrogen has vanished and you're left with fresh, creamy, indulgent ice cream.

Rapid Freezing Does the Trick 

Traditionally ice cream is made in a batch freezer which takes about 30-45 minutes to freeze cream into ice cream.

Because liquid nitrogen is so cold, the milk particles stay very small and don't form into ice crystals. The result is the freshest possible ice cream with an ultra smooth, creamy texture. 

The sleek, clean interior of Creamistry looks a lot like a laboratory, except the beakers and glass jars are filled with syrups and sprinkles.  

It's the perfect place to experiement with inifinite sweet possibilities...


The procedure is easy to follow:

First, select one of the ice cream bases; premium, organic or sorbet. 

Next, choose an ice cream flavor. Play it safe with Chocolate or Vanilla Bean. Think out of the box with Salted Caramel or Pina Colada. 

Finally, top off your new concoction with something sweet, like fresh bananas, Reece's Pieces, or Cherry Drizzle. 

With over 50 flavors and 50 toppings, you can create a new invention on every visit.

Only in Irvine.

Owners Jay and Katie Yim first encountered the texture benefits of rapidly frozen ice cream on a visit to Seoul, Korea. The couple brought the technology to Irvine and opened their only store in September of 2013.  They hope to expand and open new locations in the future. But for now, the store at Crossroads Center is the only place in Orange County where you can sample the creamy treat. 


      3972 Barranca Parkway #D.

      Irvine CA 92606 


Lenten Friday Night Dining in Irvine

Posted by: Terry Winkler
Posted on: Sunday, Mar 02, 2014

This Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, which marks the start of the 40 days of Lent.  If you're one of the millions planning on giving up eating meat on Fridays, you don't have to give up enjoying a delicious meal with your family.  Here are some of my favorite family-friendly Irvine restaurants for meat free Friday fasting with flair.

California Fish Grill

3988 Barranca Pkwy, Irvine, CA 92606 - (949) 654-3838

 Delicious fresh fish at affordable prices and yes, you can order to go. This place is always very busy. 

California Fish Grill Salmon

  Charbroiled Fish: 

Salmon, Trout, Tilapia, Ahi Tuna, Cajun Seared Ahi Tuna, Grilled Mahi Mahi, Cajun Seared Mahi Mahi, Catfish, Swordfish, Skewered Shrimp, Barramundi, Giant Shrimp.

All charbroiled items topped with our garlic butter sauce or Cajun style, fries or rice, coleslaw & bread.


 Battered Pollock, Cajun Grilled White/Fish, Seared Salmon Cajun, Seared Cajun Ahi Tacos, Battered Shrimp Tacos, Grilled Shrimp Tacos (Plain or Cajun), Grilled Mahi Cajun Tacos

Buca di Beppo

13390 Jamboree Rd, Irvine, CA 92602 - (714) 665-0800

 Not just about meatballs, Buca is delicisoso!

 Buca di Beppo

Eggplant Parmigiana:  topped with homemade marinara sauce, roma tomatoes, basil and mozzarella

Shrimp Florentine:  garlic shrimp, roma tomatoes and spinach with linguine in garlic butter sauce

Shrimp Fra Diavolo:  garlic shrimp and crushed red pepper with penne in spicy rosa sauce

Linguine Frutti di Mare:  shrimp, baby clams, mussels and calamari in spicy red clam sauce

Penne alla Vodka:  garlic, roma tomatoes and crushed red pepper in creamy vodka rosa sauce

 Ruby's Diner

57 Fortune Drive, Suite 240. Irvine, CA 92618 - (949) 753-7829

 Seriously, Ruby's is more than just burgers and milkshakes.


Rubys Seafood Combo

SEAFOOD COMBO:  Batter-dipped, golden-fried, flaky Atlantic cod fillets along with jumbo shrimp. Served with "Refillable" Fries, coleslaw, cocktail sauce and tartar sauce.

FISH & CHIPS: Batter-dipped, golden-fried, flaky cod fillets. Served with "Refillable" Fries, coleslaw, cocktail sauce and tartar sauce.

SHRIMP & CHIPS: Crispy, golden-fried jumbo shrimp. Served with "Refillable" Fries, coleslaw, cocktail sauce and tartar sauce.

VEGGIE TACOS: Warm, low-carb whole wheat tortillas with fresh lettuce, cabbage, shredded carrots, our secret taco sauce, vegetarian black beans, house-made salsa and black olives.

FISH TACOS: Warm, flour tortillas with crispy, fried, flaky Atlantic cod fillets, cabbage, shredded carrots, shredded cheese, our secret taco sauce,house-made salsa and chopped green onions.

SHRIMP TACOS: Warm, flour tortillas with grilled shrimp, shredded cheese, our secret taco sauce, cabbage, shredded carrots, house-made salsa and chopped green onions.

MEDITERRANEAN SALAD: Fresh romaine tossed with grilled chicken, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, Kalamata olives, Feta cheese and fresh oregano in a Chardonnay Vinaigrette dressing. Perfect for a Lenten dinner if you substitute grilled shrimp for a small charge.

 TEXAS GRILLED CHEESE: The ultimate grilled cheese sandwich! Slice after slice of melting American and Swiss cheese layered between slices of thick, golden-grilled egg bread.

 Champagne French Bakery Cafe

4628 Barranca Pkwy, Irvine, CA 92604 - (949) 653-6828

Feeling a little fancier?  Oui!

Champagne Quiche

Smoked Salmon Quiche:  With Herbed Cream Cheese and Egg Custard in a Pastry Shell

Spinach & Goat Cheese Quiche:  With Swiss Cheese and Egg Custard in a Pastry Shell

Tomato Mozzarella:  With Sun Dried Tomato Pesto and Basil on Puff Pastry

Goat Cheese Salad:  Mixed Greens topped with Goat Cheese, Toasted Almonds, Oranges and Croutons. Served with Sherry Vinaigrette

Salad Nicoise: Albacore Tuna, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Shallots, Green Beans, Hardboiled Eggs, Nicoise Olives. Served with Dijon Vinaigrette

Parisian Salad: Mixed Greens with Candied Pecans, Dried Cranberries, Blue Cheese, Apples, Shallots and Balsamic Vinaigrette

French Onion and Tomato Basil Soups


Daily Grill  

2636 Dupont Drive, Irvine, CA 92612- (949) 474-2223

 One of my favorite places (the Bloody Marys are exceptional).

Daily Grill Salmon


 Appetisers:  Fried Calamari, Spinach Artichoke Dip, Hummus, Seared Rare Ahi, Jumbo Lump Crab Cake

Baja Style Fish and Chips:  Cod fillet dipped in beer batter, served on a bed of fries with remoulade sauce. Malt vinegar and peanut cole slaw

Blackened Tilapia: Cajun spices, topped with lemon butter caper sauce and coulee of red bell peppers, served on top of asparagus and herb brown rice.

Pan-Seared Idaho Trout Amandine: Topped with toasted almonds and lemon butter sauce, served with herb brown rice and vegetable.

Cedar Plank Salmon:  with a BBQ Citrus Glaze, served with herb brown rice and vegetable.

Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes:  Seasoned with Old Bay, Served with shallot white wine reduction and French fries

Blackened Ahi Tuna:  Ahi tuna seared rare, mixed field greens, artichoke hearts, carrots, green beans, almonds and red bell peppers, tossed in an Asian style vinaigrette.

Pan-Seared Salmon Burger with arugula, sliced tomato and remoulade sauce, served with grilled asparagus.

Simply grilled Salmon served with grilled asparagus

Grilled Idaho Trout served with Peanut Cole Slaw

Crab Stuffed Salmon Baked salmon, filled with jumbo lump crab, served with a whole grain mustard sauce, arugula and grilled tomato.

Grilled Vegetable Plate a medley of grilled vegetables, fresh steamed spinach, broccoli, grilled asparagus, sliced tomato and herb brown rice.

And my childhood Lenten favorite...pancakes for dinner!

International House of Pancakes

18542 MacArthur Blvd, Irvine, CA 92612 - Phone: (949) 474-446

Need I say anything more than hot buttermilk pancakes topped with melting butter? Didn't think so.  Yum.


IHop Pancakes

Now go out and have a wonderful, spirit filled Lent. 40 days of prayer, penance, sacrifice and good works in preparation of the celebration of Easter. If you're looking for some ideas on how to fulfill the ‘good works' portion of Lent, give this older post a read. 

Terry Winkler is the founder of OC entertainment blog Enter Stage Write.

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