Friday “Chef’s Supper” at Five Crowns
I will admit that when initially invited to inaugurate the new Friday-night “Chef’s Supper” at Five Crowns, I was curious to see how far this British-themed Corona del Mar institution and part of the Lawry’s family of restaurants planned to step outside of their somewhat traditional prime-rib-focused box. I am happy to report: pretty far.
The first thing served – a kick-in-the-pants cocktail called The Red Derby – seemed like the drink your grandmother might make, if your grandmother were Dorothy Parker. This solid libation, daintily served in a shiso-lined champagne saucer, packed a punch with its mix of red Dubbonet, bourbon, honey, and grapefruit.
The adventure continued with the first course – a seafood trio – that featured tender charred octopus, served individually on a hot stone, alongside two sharable ice-filled crates delivered to the table, each containing generous amounts of Santa Barbara uni and surprisingly effervescent Blue Point oysters topped with cucumber gelée, caviar, and Pop Rocks. (Yes, Pop Rocks.) Indeed, Chef Greg Harrison (formerly of Morimoto Napa and Michael Mina’s Nobhill Tavern and SeaBlue restaurants in Las Vegas) was off to a great start, showcasing a playful and innovative five-course menu perfect for holidays or special occasions. “We really wanted to create an experience that featured great, locally sourced produce,” noted Chef Harrison. “Where friends and families could gather together and maybe try some ingredients, cuisines, or techniques not normally on the menu.”
Subsequent courses of the well-paced and expertly served dinner included:
- a Southeast Asian-inspired whole-roasted red snapper with julienned jalapeño, scallion and ginger accompanied by a rich and velvety Spanish romesco sauce
- succulent and perfectly crispy fried jidori chicken and Belgian waffles with maple butter, juicy sweet watermelon towers and unquestionably the moistest corn bread I’ve ever eaten
- deliciously meaty bone marrow served with black garlic-smeared crostini, spare ribs in a tangy barbecue sauce worth licking your fingers in public for, and a super-sour mustard seed sauerkraut that offered the perfectly tart foil for the course’s rich meat
- finally, a sweet tooth-satisfying deconstructed “s’more” that was really more of a brownie over bruléed marshmallow served with house-made ricotta doughnuts
Reservations are required for the Five Crowns Friday night “Chef’s Supper.” Dinner begins at 6:30 or 7 pm and costs $100 per person (plus tax and tip) for a minimum of eight diners. Each course is expertly paired with a wine or cocktail.
Five Crowns is located at 3801 East Coast Highway in Corona del Mar, CA.
For reservations or additional information call 1-949-760-0331 or click here.