I went to dine at Fig & Olive this past Friday in the excitement of checking out their menu for Orange County Restaurant Week! I have been to Fig & Olive twice in the past, once for their grand opening party (see link about the opening party here) and once my hubby took me for Valentine’s Day! They have several locations, but the one I have frequented is located in Newport Beach in Fashion Island at 401 Newport Center Dr., Suite 151 in Newport Beach, California.
I absolutely love the ambiance at Fig & Olive as there is lively music, decadent seating and unique décor! The restaurant turns into a lounge after hours and is open till 1am! It is a super cool place that I recommend checking out, so I was quite happy to be invited in to see what Fig & Olive had to offer for Orange County Restaurant Week in addition to enjoying some awesome libations and of course wine, my personal favorite!!
We chose to each start our meal with a signature cocktail that was also accompanied by Fig & Olive’s amazing fresh baked bread and a variety of 3 different olive oils! I love Fig & Olive because everything is cooked with a wide variety of different olive oils that originate from locations all around the world. Olive oil is used in all dishes instead of butter, except for desserts that is…but come on I needed butter in my shortbread cookies…but I will discuss dessert later. 🙂
Our 2 cocktail selections were the Sweet Red Pepper cocktail prepared with tequila, aperol, freshly muddled strawberries, lime juice passion fruit syrup, sweet red pepper, and bitters. The cocktail I selected was the Pear Blanche which was designed with 14 Gin, St. Germain, Bartlett pear, clove syrup, egg white, and fresh citrus, then garnished with mint and a pinch of black pepper. The cocktails were quite complex with a multitude of mouth watering flavors. I have had this obsession with drinks that have egg white lately and I love pear, so I was all about this cocktail! I was bummed to find that since cocktails are seasonal, the Pear Blanche is no longer on the menu, but I guess this gives me an opportunity to go back to Fig & Olive and try something new!
To pair with our cocktails, we started with appetizers. I selected the Grilled Maine Lobster Main Dish which was cooked to perfection alongside artichoke tapenade, puff pastry, mushrooms, and a smoked pimenton olive oil. I enjoyed each and every single bite of this dish and although I could have eaten more, this was very satisfying and there was a great amount of lobster.
My husband chose the Beef Tartar which he insisted I loved when we were in Paris several summers ago. The Beef Tartar dish is not something you see very often, so he was excited to get this dish! This dish was prepared with marinated hand cut grass fed filet mignon, capers, shallots, parsley Dijon olive oil emulsion, crackers and Manzanillo Olive Oil. He ate each last morsel on his plate and raved about how delicious the flavors were in this dish.
Next, we each ordered a glass of wine to accompany our main entrees. I settled on a nice bold Cabernet Sauvignon from the Paso Robles region in California & he decided to go with a California from the Cambria winery in Santa Ynez Valley. These selections paired nicely with our selected entrees. When in doubt about wine, feel free to ask your server. Fig & Olive staff is very helpful in helping you decide which wine will pair nicely with your meal.
For the main course, I opted for the filet mignon. I always love this cut of steak as I enjoy not having to work through any fat to get to the meat. It is always nice and tender with juices bursting through! As can be seen in my photos, this steak was cooked perfectly! My filet was as an 8 ounce cut of grass fed beef marinated with rosemary thyme, garlic, haricot vert, caramelized shallot, olive oil chive mashed potato, and an Arbequina Olive Oil Béarnaise! This was such a lovely dish and overall I truly felt so much healthier knowing that my mashed potatoes were made with olive oil, rather than butter! 🙂
My husband ordered the Paella Del Mar and ironically I bumped into another friend after dinner that evening that ordered the same dish and both of them were quite pleased with not only the presentation, but the blend of flavors. The Paella contained black tiger shrimp, sea scallops, calamari, mussels, and saffron rice with chicken, green peas, red bell peppers, artichoke, saffron aioli, pimenton, and oregano with Hojiblanca olive oil. The olive oil added such a unique flavor to this dish & the plate was cleaned of each last morsel of food by my hubby just as I was making a dent in my meal. He eats very fast and I like to talk and eat slow. 🙂
I was excited for dessert to come as I already knew which item I would select since I had sampled their dessert at a pre launch party of restaurant week 2 months prior. Fig & Olive seriously has the most amazing dessert crostini and I was so excited for these small bites of heaven to come on a plate that looking at the other dessert on the menu was not even an option for me! For dessert I selected the Dessert “Crostini” of course which are pistachio shortbread crackers decked out with micro-basil, mascarpone and amarena cherry. There is such a decadent flavor about these and the cookies just melt in your mouth while the cherries give off a huge burst of flavor!
My husband opted for the other dessert offered on the prix fixe menu. He selected the Chocolate Pot De Crème which was prepared with vanilla crème and crunchy praline cookies! This item was also a delicious choice, but since I was so obsessed with my crostini, I did not do much sharing to get a big sample of this dish.
Overall, Fig & Olive is a fine dining experience each time I go which leaves me walking away with a full tummy and a large smile on my face. The atmosphere, along with the food and service is always top notch! I look forward to visiting Fig & Olive again in the near future! Have you been to Fig & Olive? Please share your experience below in the comment section! Happy dining! 🙂
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