Here's the thing/s:
10 to 12 of us on a Friday night after a funeral.
All but one - me - don't know a lot about or care about good, interesting or regional Mexican food but that's what they want. They want margaritas, good chips and salsa and then the "old favorites." (I would happily forego the margaritas, chips & salsa, etc. in favor of really good, interesting or regional food, but I'll be outvoted. And I'd be surprised if it is to be had anywhere that near Newport Beach anyhow.)
They're not going to want to drive very far from the Newport Beach peninsula - maybe a 10 minute radius.
Any thoughts on the matter? What would be the place that fits the bill but has the best food?