Click here for a list of 2017's top scenic restaurants.
Laguna Beach’s coastline has some of the most talked about views that are made up of a series of more than 30 coves and craggy points that snake down to seven miles of crystal blue waters. Some of the best places to enjoy these magnificent views are from our restaurants...and you don't have to sacrifice the quality of food for the amazing views. Come with us as we tour rooftops to coastal decks, and appetizers to after dinner drinks to find the most awe-inspiring places to enjoy a meal. P.S. This is a meal you’re going to want to bring your camera along to.
Nestled in Heisler Park on the cliffs overlooking Main Beach, Las Brisas offers up lush views of the Laguna Beach coastline. With a long 40-year history in Laguna Beach, they are the foundation of the Laguna Beach culinary culture. At Las Brisas, you'll find Mexican coastal inspired cuisine with a California flare. From surf to turf, the dishes at Las Brisas are only outdone by the beauty of the views of the Pacific.
For the best view ask for a table along the wall of windows that overlooks Heisler Park and Main Beach. For a more casual experience, dine on their open air patio. You may even see a Plein Air (in open air) painter work on a canvas along the nearby pathways.
Don’t miss the guacamole, it's unparalleled and made fresh all day, every day. Topped with red onion, Cojita cheese and garnished with tomato, it is an avocado delight. Even though the serving is generous and its the perfect starter to your meal, you'll find yourself scraping the plate to enjoy every last morsel.
Pair any dish with one of Las Brisas' signature cocktails. Wyland’s “Whale Tail” margarita is a refreshing twist on a traditional margarita with muddled citrus and blue Curacao tinging it with an ocean blue color.
Visit one of Laguna Beach's newest restaurants and soak in a bird’s eye view of downtown. Skyloft has a full dining room, bar and even a stage with live music offerings nightly, but the jewel of the restaurant is its rooftop lounge. On the rooftop, enjoy fantastic views of PCH as it makes it’s descent into the heart of downtown and then out over Main Beach and the historic Hotel Laguna. With a menu that includes a variety of dishes, it’s a reflection of the traversing and varied California landscape.
The best time to make the most of the view at Skyloft is late afternoon just as the sun is hanging low in the sky and slightly above the Pacific Ocean. The casual atmosphere and accessible location make it an ideal spot to walk in off the street (or the beach) to enjoy drinks and eats.
The appetizer menu is phenomenal. From street style “snack” tacos to sweet fire roasted Brussels sprouts, you could spend all day eating through the offerings. Don’t pass on the Stuffed Avocado. Served as a half avocado that is battered in tempura and then filled with chilled shrimp and crawfish tail and topped with a sweet relish. It is out of this world!
A bright and airy dining room plays host to a long stretch of sand and wide expanse of blue Pacific Ocean waters. Driftwood Kitchen is the oceanfront restaurant at Pacific Edge Hotel, above Sleepy Hollow beach. Chef Rainer Schwarz has crafted a balanced menu ranging from fresh seafood to hearty meats. Each dish is deliberate in its taste and presentation, creating the ultimate culinary experience that is made memorable by both taste and setting.
Sitting near the windows of the restaurant is ideal. If you prefer outdoor dining, Driftwood has a small deck overlooking the beach below.
It’s nearly impossible to highlight only one dish at Driftwood; as it's a seafood lover's paradise. The Yellowfin Tuna Tartare is a must, the Dungeness Crab Cake is 90% crab and is paired with an Asian pear salad that tastes like summer exploded in your mouth. Whether you’re a longtime fan, or trying escargot for the first time, the Escargot Gratin is a beautiful and rich buttery presentation. For the main dish you'll find no better Chilean Sea Bass than Driftwood Kitchen's. Atop a bed of lemon farro risotto and an eggplant salad, this dish will have you scraping your plate clean and wanting more.
Pair a wine flight or a handcrafted cocktail with your meal. The Stateroom, located on the backside of the restaurant, boasts one of the most extensive spirit menus in Laguna Beach.
Perched just above the sand at Surf & Sand Resort, you’ll find Splashes Restaurant, where it feels like the spray from the rolling waves below may actually splash against the windows. Last year, Splashes welcomed new executive chef, Ron Fougeray. His background in French cuisine and his passion for sourcing the freshest ingredients can be tasted in every bite.
To optimize the amazing views at Splashes, book your reservation at sunset and ask for a table near the windows looking westward. From there you won’t be able to peel your eyes away from the beauty of the beach. If you're lucky you may catch a glimpse of a pod of dolphins or a whale passing by.
It’s worth it to order each course at Splashes. Chef Fougeray creates a seasonal menu that features 24 new items each season that he painstakingly crafts to capture the flavor that the physical environment radiates. Currently, the Hearts of Palm salad is a perfect example of this with the hearts being harvested from a farmer’s front yard in Hawaii and flown in to Splashes. The Seared Scallops are cooked to perfection and brought to life with a port wine sauce. The French foundation of Chef Fougeray comes out in the main dish of Grilled Pork Chop that is served with a date stuffed apple that is so flavorful it could stand on its own as a course.
In lieu of dessert go for one of their exquisite ports and soak in the moonlight reflecting off the water before turning in for the night.