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What You're Eating: Best Mother's Day Dishes In OC

oak grill 610
(Credit: Oak Grill)

Mother's Day was pretty much made for dining. Many of Orange County's restaurants go all out, honoring that special mom in your life with some fantastic meals. Whether you're at brunch, lunch or dinner, chances are you'll be presented with some unique options that aren't always on the menu. These specials are a great way to tell mom how much you care and satisfy her taste buds at the same time.

The Ranch)
(Credit: The Ranch)

Maryland Blue Crab Benedict
The Ranch
1025 East Ball Road
Anaheim, CA 92805
(714) 817-4200

Adding crab to a dish is a quick way to make it high class, so it's no surprise that The Ranch's Maryland Blue Crab Benedict is one of our picks for the best Mother's Day dishes around. Take in the rustic country décor as you enjoy the restaurant's brunch, complete with bottomless champagne or mimosas. Each guest will choose a first course, soup or salad, main course and dessert, but the Maryland Blue Crab Benedict is easily the standout dish on the menu. Crafted with poached farm eggs, leafy Swiss chard and a Hollandaise sauce, the dish offers a unique way to Eggs Benedict, an ever-popular brunch item.

Oak Grill Hand-Shucked Seafood
(Credit: Oak Grill)

Hand Shucked Seafood Station
Oak Grill
690 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 760-4920

Oak Grill's Mother's Day brunch will feature a variety of stations that offer guests a chance to customize their meal, but one station in particular stands out. The seaside community of Newport Beach is the perfect spot for the restaurant's hand-shucked seafood station, featuring fresh oysters along with prawns and crab claws. While oysters may not seem like a traditional brunch item, the oyster bar is sure to be a highlight of the restaurant's holiday brunch. Spring floral arrangements will adorn the tables, adding an extra touch to your favorite mom's special day, and live acoustic music will be played as well. As you sample the oysters and a variety of other food stations, enjoy bottomless mimosas or stop by the Bloody Mary and margarita bars.

Fig and Olive Rosemary Lamb Chops
(Credit: Fig & Olive)

Rosemary Lamb Chops
Fig & Olive
151 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 877-3005

Another popular spot for Mother's Day brunch is Fig & Olive, but one dish on their holiday menu stands out above the others. The Rosemary Lamb Chops blend dried French herbs with fresh smoked lamb chops, in keeping with the restaurant's French influence. Those who order this dish will also be treated to a side of braised eggplant and gnocchi with goat cheese, complete with thyme, honey and a rosemary and garlic-infused olive oil. Part of the thrill of ordering Fig & Olive's Rosemary Lamb Chops is the presentation, where a glass dome covers the plate until it arrives at your table, bringing with it a cloud of rosemary smoke to really seal in the flavor and provide a sensory surprise. The restaurant, which is located at Newport's Fashion Island, is offering prix-fixe deals for the special day.

Seasons 52 Shakshuka
(Credit: Seasons 52)

Seasons 52
3333 Bristol Street
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 437-5252

Though it is not only offered during the holiday, Seasons 52's Shakshuka is one of the most interesting dishes you'll find in OC this Mother's Day. The chef's take on a dish originally crafted in Libya, Shakshuka combines baked pasture-raised eggs with a finely crafted sauce. The sauce is made up of tomatoes and sweet peppers as well as chorizo and crumbled feta cheese, giving it a little bit of spice and a whole lot of flavor. The 620-calorie meal will delight taste buds as opens up diner's eyes to a new dish that they may not have heard of before. This unique dish can also be accompanied by a new morning cocktail as well. For Mother's Day, the chef has created the Shrubby Mary, which blends organic tomato vodka with a tomato-celery shrub and a little bit of Sriracha sauce.

Bayside Smoked Salmon Benedict
(Credit: Bayside Restaurant)

Eggs Benedict
Bayside Restaurant
900 Bayside Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 721-1222

Though Bayside isn't the only restaurant offering a version of Eggs Benedict this Mother's Day, their take on this popular dish isn't quite the same as The Ranch's. Instead of crab, Bayside Restaurant presents a Smoked Salmon Benedict. It, too, comes with a poached egg, but the salmon flavor is definitely distinct, offering a different way to try this upscale brunch item. The dish is served on housemade brioche alongside a serving of asparagus. The egg and brioche is then topped with a citrus hollandaise sauce. Don't forget to try the tasty mimosas as well—you can choose from a variety of juices, making it easy to customize these drinks along with your meal. Overlooking the harbor in Newport, Bayside is the perfect spot to enjoy your morning view while you eat. In addition to the landscape and the food, the restaurant hosts a rotating exhibit of modern pieces that mom can view as well.

Melting Pot
(Credit: Melting Pot)

Loaded Baked Potato Cheddar
The Melting Pot
2646 Dupont Drive
Irvine, CA 92612
(949) 955-3242

While many restaurants offer unique dishes for Mother's Day, The Melting Pot offers unique dipping options. A standout on their eclectic Mother's Day menu is the Loaded Baked Potato Cheddar, a cheese fondue that blends cheddar cheese with potatoes, bacon and scallions as well as a garlic and wine seasoning. Dip to your heart's content, but save room for dessert as well. Those with a sweet tooth will love the chocolate fondue dipping sauce known as the Mango Yin & Yang, a dark chocolate sauce swirled with a mango-infused white chocolate. You can add on bottomless mimosas or bellinis as well. Happy dipping!

Ashley Ryan is an Orange County native that loves traveling, live music and photography. She blogs at Pure Wander and freelances for a variety of publications including Newport Beach Magazine and Laguna Beach Magazine.
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