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Restaurants & Bars 3

Iva Lee's -San Clemente

Midlife | Oct 31, 200502:10 PM

Iva Lee's has ben touted to me as one of the 3 or 4 best restaurants in deep-South OC. We went there Saturday night, and my overall reaction was.... good but not great. The theme here is New Orleans food and atmosphere.

Starters were brie-beignet salads (small fried beignet-shaped brie on top of greens) for 3 of us, and fried green tomatoes for me. We all enjoyed what we were served, but none were ecstatic.

Entrees were aroasted salmon (wife thought it was very good), a filet mignon (good, but ordered medium-well and came well), a rib-eye (ordered medium and came rare; sent back and was perfect.... later saw it was entered in kitched as rare, though not ordered that way), fried catfish (very good). The best parts ofthe meals (except for the salmon, were the accompaniments (grits, pickled okrah, and the like).

Desserts (bread pudding and pumpkin cheesecake) were extremely good.

Blues combo was fun and added a lot of ambience.

Total tab (includingtip) was $225. For that much, I think we'll stick to Vine, just down the street.

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