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DINING NEWS
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Landmark is back

The longtime Corona del Mar fixture is under new ownership with a revamped menu and artful renovations.

By Susan BelknappPublished: December 01, 2012

Landmark restaurant in Corona Del Mar has a long and storied history of fine dining, live music and great nightlife. New owners Kelly and Scott Polston are stressing its original “landmark” tradition with a new design, a retooled menu and enhanced service offerings.
   
The Polstons purchased Landmark earlier this year with the goal of jazzing up the customer experience. They began by hiring Travis Flood as executive chef and educating the wait staff about food preparation and ingredient sourcing, as well as improving their knowledge of wine, beer and craft-cocktail pairings. The Polstons have also incorporated 25 pieces of original art into the eatery’s décor in an effort to develop a brighter, lighter aesthetic.
   
“We’re creating a chef-centric dining experience, where the food is the centerpiece,” Kelly Polston says. “Our vision was to redesign the restaurant’s surroundings in such a way that they enhance every bite and every part of the meal experience. We want to provide the kind of food and ambience that diners expect from the best restaurants in San Francisco while preserving the touches that celebrate the best of the Orange County lifestyle.”
   
Standouts in Landmark’s new menu include fresh oysters with lemon granita and a tomato-horseradish emulsion; lobster croquettes with grits, fennel, shallots and lavender honey; hand-crafted pastas; Pacific yellowtail jack with cauliflower gnocchi; and Sonoma lamb loin.
   
Chef Flood brings with him experience from Michelin-star restaurants and the knowledge that he accrued by working under renowned chefs such as Wolfgang Puck 
and Laurent Gras; he considers Gras his mentor. Flood is adamant that farms and seasons should determine a restaurant’s offerings, and his new menus feature seasonal, local ingredients.
   
Landmark is open every day for dinner. Happy hour begins at 4 p.m. and a late-night menu is available at 10 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays.  landmarknewport.com


SIDE DISHES

Wild Goose Tavern lands in Costa Mesa

There’s nothing quite so nostalgic as a neighborhood pub, and residents of Costa Mesa now have a new place where “everybody knows your name.” The Wild Goose Tavern opened in November in the Westcliff area and aspires to be much more than a local watering hole. goosebar.com
   
The bar, owned by Mario Marovic and Andrew Gabriel, will provide guests with traditional, world-class cocktails, seasonal beers and sophisticated pub grub in a space that’s cozy and causual.

Five Crowns launches Facebook contest
Five Crowns in Corona del Mar will host a special Facebook promotion through Dec. 27. The grand prize is a culinary adventure with renowned Executive Chef Greg Harrison. To enter, go to 
facebook.com/fivecrownsrestaurant.

A grand slam 

The Cannery’s 9th Annual Hot Stove League baseball-related dinner series is currently under way. If you missed the first pitch in November, it’s not too late; there is still a chance to buy into the rest of the remaining dinners. The series is hosted by Dennis Kuhl, and diners interact with Major League Baseball legends while enjoying an exceptional food experience. cannerynewport.com