Owner Managed, Impeccably Maintained, Your Newport Beach Vacation Home Away From Home

Janice’s Blog

Check here often for the latest news about the “Sandcastle,” Newport Beach, & beyond!

Bill’s Baby Back Ribs are the best!

 

 

 

 

 

 

What better food to have on Super Bowl Sunday – than Bill’s baby back ribs!  Cooked over a slow flame for 4+ hours, these ribs are delicious and fall off the bone. Of course Bill is a fantastic cook in general, but his ribs are really special!

The secret(s) to his success? I will share with you that it is the dry rub he puts on them overnight to marinate.  It’s actually Meathead’s Memphis Dust dry rub, a recipe that he found on the web.   He cooks them on the BBQ on a low heat and also keeps a glass container of water (or even better – apple juice) that steams and keeps them super moist.

Then he just bastes them during the last 1/2 hour or so with our favorite brand of BBQ sauce: Stubb’s. We especially like the “Spicy” version, nice and spicy and tangy – but they are all quite good.

Try your hand at ribs using Bill’s tried and true secrets…or better yet, just try to get an invitation to our house when he makes them next!  Janice

 

California Wine Festival is coming to Dana Point – April 20/21

 

Wine, food, music, sea and sun. These elements create the quintessential wine tasting experience at the California Wine Festival – Orange County in Dana Point. At this sunny seaside setting, California’s best wineries pour hundreds of vintage red and white wines, complemented by dozens of the region’s top chefs and specialty food purveyors serving gourmet appetizers along with live music and an ocean view. Experience one of the California’s most popular wine festivals.

Visit the californiawinefestival.com website

EVENT SCHEDULE

FRIDAY, APRIL 20, 2018
Sunset Reserve & Rare Wine Tasting
Friday, April 20, 2018 6:30- 9pm
Laguna Cliffs Marriott,  Dana Point, CA
The “Sunset Rare & Reserve” Wine Tasting on April 20, 2018 will feature rare and reserve level bottles that winemakers will dust off and pour at this popular event. Top regional chefs will serve hot and cold appetizers while live bluesy jazz keeps things super cool. Ticket price includes all wine and food samples and an 18 oz keepsake wine glass.

SATURDAY, APRIL 21, 2018
Beachside Wine Festival – NEW TIME~
Saturday, April 21, 2018 – 12:30-3:30pm (VIPs 11:30am)
Lantern Bay Park, Dana Point, CA
Hit the grassy, palm-lined Lantern Bay Park to experience the quintessential California wine tasting event at our Orange County California Wine Festival grand finale. Ticket price includes all wine and food samples and an 18 oz keepsake wine glass.

_______________

“Don’t miss California Wine Festival, −one of the largest outdoor wine festivals in the state!”
Voted One of the Top Ten Best Wine Festivals in the USA by Americas Best & Top Ten

The California Wine Festival – Orange County will host the two-day celebration of wine and food in the quaint coastal town of Dana Point in Orange County April 20-21, 2018. An evening of rare wine tasting on Friday night, limited to 500 guests, kicks off the weekend.  Guests will sample rare and reserve super-premium wines selected especially for this popular sophisticated event.

The festivities culminate at Lantern Bay Park, when the Beachside Wine Festival takes over a peaceful palm-lined park and over 2,500 wine-loving guests sip and savor nearly 300 wines and dozens of gourmet food samplings. Craft brews will also be offered along with artisan cheeses, breads, fresh cut fruits, olive oils and much more.

The 2018 California Wine Festival – Orange County will benefit The Surfrider Foundation.

The infamous “Wedge” surf break in Newport Beach

The Wedge in Newport Beach is a hot spot for powerful and awesome surf. An area known for its shore-breaking waves, the Wedge is more a place to admire than to engage. Either way, this spot with the biggest swell in Southern California is a must see when you visit Newport Beach.

Because of the potential for 30-feet waves, you may find yourself seeing more bodyboarders or bodysurfers in action here than surfers. In fact, you may find some of the most skilled bodysurfers in all of Newport Beach at the Wedge. But you have more than the rolling sets to worry about if you get into the water. The backwash is often so strong that it creates new waves that can crash into oncoming boarders and bodysurfers.

Make sure you bring your camera to this hot spot to catch video of the impressive sets. If you want to see how the surf is before heading down to the end of the peninsula, check the Wedge cam to see if the big waves are rolling in. The best months to catch higher surf are during the summer and the fall seasons.

If you come between May 1 and October 31, you will notice that the raised black ball flag, outlawing the use of any type of board at the Wedge between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. (Body surfing only, no body boards, surfboards, or skimboards).

If the surf isn’t pumping when you’re there, you can always get an up close look at some of the beautiful oceanfront homes right on the sand, or you can sit at the jetty and watch the boats come in and out of the harbor.

The Wedge Newport Beach is also a hot spot for locals to catch the sunset and watch that beautiful orange orb melt into the Pacific Ocean.

WEDGE HISTORY

1916: Army Corps of Engineers starts to build west jetty to protect Newport Harbor from storms and make the harbor entrance safer.
1936: West jetty extended from 1,000 feet to 1,900 feet after George Rogers lobbies for safer conditions. East jetty at Corona del Mar also extended.
1960s: Formally dubbed “the Hook” by body surfers in the ’30s, the spot is re-named “the Wedge” by local body surfers.
1963: San Bernardino Superior Court Judge Roger Gardner, an avid Wedge body surfer, argues against residents who want the spot closed. Danger signs posted.
1964: The Wedge is featured in the cult classic film “Endless Summer”.
1982: Fred Simpson creates the Viper fin to help body surfers catch bigger waves at the Wedge.
1993: Wedge Preservation Society persuades City Council to implement “Blackball” banning boards from 10am to 5pm May 1 – Oct. 31.

from the visitnewportbeach.com website

Santa…and the 109th Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade – are coming to town!

Watch decorated boats, yachts, kayaks and canoes sail along Newport Harbor every night through the weekend in the 109th Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade.  The parade, which begins Wednesday, Dec. 13, brings out a million viewers.  And we were two of the million last year!

When: 6:15-9 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13 to Sunday, Dec. 17.
***Closing Night Fireworks: 9:05 pm Fireworks @ Balboa Pier (just after parade concludes)

Cost: Free           More Information: christmasboatparade.com.

Where: The route starts and ends at Lido Isle. The parade can be viewed from multiple spots on the shore. Marina Park is a popular area to watch the parade.  Arrive early for the best viewing spot.  Here’s the Parade Route & Schedule:

Parade Route and Schedule

Get ready. Get set. Go out and EAT!

It’s coming… Newport Beach Restaurant Week: January 15-28, 2 whole weeks to try some of Newport’s finest restaurants.  I know I can’t wait!   https://www.dinenb.com/restaurant-week-2018

Surf City Nights Street Fair and Farmers Market in Huntington Beach – EVERY TUESDAY NITE

HB1

Surf City Nights: Every Tuesday, 5-9 p.m. 

Location: Main Street between Orange & PCH
Events: Farmers Market, Food Vendors, Street Performers
Age: All ages, family-friendly! 

The warmer weather is here and it’s time to enjoy SURF CITY NIGHTS again! This weekly special event closes Main Street for a funky street fair with musical acts ranging from Spanish guitar to hip-hop dancers, tribute bands and other musical artists.

Take a stroll down Main Street from PCH for 4 or 5 blocks with locals and visiting families alike.  Cool breezes blow from the beach (which is just across the street), and enjoy a couple hours getting fresh air, listening and watching the entertainment, buying gifts, jewelry, art, clothing and food.
– HBDOWNTOWN.com is the official web site.
– Free admission, Free entertainment
– Fruits, vegetables, cut flowers, plants sold
– Street vendors sell everything from funnel cakes to kettle corn, roasted corn, tacos and hot dogs!
– Held every Tuesday evening from 5 to 9 p.m.

Balboa Island annual ART WALK was great!

balboa5balboa4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yesterday was a gorgeous day! Perfect to do the annual art walk stroll along Balboa Island’s South Bayfront.  Lots of vendors – and about six bands playing along the art walk. Couldn’t have asked for better weather…Summer is just about here!

And of course the day wouldn’t be complete without taking the car ferry across the bay from the Balboa Peninsula to Balboa Island.  And check out the sand sculpture commemorating the day – at least temporarily!

balboa2 balboa3

 

Discounted Entertainment/Events In Newport Beach

GoldStarWeekendPlanning a trip to Newport Beach with your family or friends?

Wondering what there is to do while you’re here? Let me share a TIP with you: There’s many sites that can give you a list of events, but here’s a link to a list of DISCOUNTED Entertainment events in the area. There’s discounts to live theatre, music, comedy clubs, sports events. There’s no cost for you to look, no cost for you to sign up and get a weekly email recap of upcoming events. They do charge a small fee when you’re purchasing a ticket, but hey, you’ve already saved a bunch!

Some listings are up to a month out, to help you in your planing. Some get listed the very same week. You don’t need a referral; Just check out www.goldstar.com/orange-county/events and see what’s hot – and cheap – during your upcoming visit to the “Sandcastle” in Newport Beach!

Our upgraded/redesigned Master Bathroom Shower

We’re so excited about our new Master Bath Shower!  It’s recently been redone!  Check out the great tile/stone work, and we really love the soap and shampoo area too!  There’s a seat for your convenience as well.  Come and enjoy it for yourself!

 

Laguna Beach’s Sawdust Festival celebrates it’s 50th anniversary!

Sawdust_50TH

 

 

 

It’s my favorite summer arts/crafts festival by a long shot – and it’s only open 3 more weeks!  The Sawdust Festival features the fine art and craft of over 200 Laguna Beach resident artists. Enjoy live entertainment, art demonstrations, classes, and an outdoor cafe set in a cool eucalyptus grove.  It’s got great ambiance!  I always make a purchase – or three, as the arts and crafts are reasonably priced one-of-a-kind items.  I love to bring out-of-town guests, and even as a “local”, it’s pure enjoyment, and lots of unique creativity!  Don’t miss it!

“Art enthusiasts, collectors, and novice artists have come to the Sawdust since our beginning in 1966 for our mix of fine art and craft. Medias include hand-blown and fused glass, painting, jewelry, surf art, ceramics, clothing and textiles, wood and metal sculpture, scrimshaw, photography, and so much more.”  Friday, June 24 through Sunday, August 28, 2016; open 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily. 935 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, CA 92651.