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LUNCH REVIEW
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The next culinary craft

Portola Coffee Lab’s Theorem has opened its barista-driven gourmet concept to savor the joy of java.

By Jason WheelerPublished: October 01, 2012

Think you know coffee? Think again.
   
Last month, Irvine-based Portolla Coffee Lab opened its first barista-driven coffee bar, Theorem, at OC Mart Mix in Costa Mesa. Theorem will be available by reservation only from 1 to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Theorem offers barista-created coffee selections that change weekly and will help deliver fascinating 
details about Portola’s coffee, and its roasting and brewing techniques.
   
The coffee bar will focus on ingredients that are sustainable, local and seasonal with complex textures and global flavors. Innovation will be key when baristas (a word derived from “bartender”) use their extensive knowledge, skill and creativity to develop a tasty assortment of coffee concepts that are more similar to premium cocktails than a basic cup o’ Joe. Some of the concoctions featured on the inaugural menu include:

• Barrel-Aged Kyoto old fashioned: iced coffee with fermented Kintimani coffee from Bali that’s aged in barrels for six months. Presented with a touch of muscavado simple syrup, it is served over ice with orange peel garnish.

• Liquid-Nitrogen Affogato: Freshly brewed espresso poured over heavy cream that has been turned into ice cream by the addition of liquid nitrogen. The creation is finished with fresh extractions of espresso decanted over the ice cream.

• Coffee flights: Side-by-side comparisons of Portola Coffee to educate customers. The tasters will understand varying body, acidity, roast levels and methods of processing.



≈ SIDE DISHES ≈

SOL Cocina launches Drink Pink!

SOL Cocina in Newport Beach is introducing a fundraising campaign called Drink Pink! as part of October’s National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The restaurant will donate $1 per watermelon margarita sold to Breast Cancer Solutions. Matt Baumayr, the restaurant’s managing partner, hopes the watermelon, tequila, syrup and lime juice concoction will raise a significant amount for a great cause.

Savannah Chop House offers cooking classes
Savannah Chop House in Laguna Niguel is offering cooking classes on the first Wednesday of the month and will teach three dishes based on a theme. Classes start at 11:30 a.m. and include lunch and a glass of champagne for $35. This month features Asian food, with sake, sashimi, seafood stir-fry and sticky rice.

Islands offers new football specials
Islands Restaurants has kicked off football season by unveiling new game-day specials. During games every Monday and Thursday, an extended happy hour will include drinks and appetizers for under $5. Islands will also offer its new guilt-free Beach Bowl with grilled chicken or fish over rice, as well as three new drinks: Jager Bay, Maker’s Wedge and Paradise’s Mai Tai.