Brunos Italian Kitchen - Brea
If you're reading this and it's not yet March 11, you should know that right now--yes, RIGHT NOW--a near majority of our county's fine dining establishments are offering discounts via specially priced prix-fixe meals for OC Restaurant Week.
This review is about one of them: Brunos Italian Kitchen in Brea, which I can say unequivocally, is one of the better deals.
I picked it out of the bunch and, as I do every year, did the math. I took the most expensive items on the prix fixe list, found out what they cost on the regular menu, added up the total and compared it to the OC Restaurant Week price. This year I even made a spreadsheet to compare it to other restaurants' specials.
I found that Brunos' offering not only fulfilled my criteria that the savings must exceed 30%, but also, it didn't just include a wedge salad or a cup of lobster bisque as the first course.
These were quality appetizers.
There was a hot-from-the-fryer fritto misto with delicately battered shrimp, perfectly cooked squid, green beans and deep-fried lemons. It was a full-sized portion, too, served with a perky fresh herb and lemon aioli.
Also offered: an olive-oil poached tuna plated with sugary fire-roasted peppers, crunchy green beans, olives and boiled potatoes dressed in a preserved lemon vinaigrette. Each of these two apps are normally $14 each.
The main course we chose--a seafood linguini and the Duroc pork Porterhouse--would've been $22 each at regular price. And they are certainly already worth that.
The linguini swam in a light tomato-and-herb broth that reminded me of cioppino and contained trawler's worth of shellfish.
The pork Porterhouse was as thick as the last Harry Potter book, good and juicy if a little chewy, but served with a creamy polenta and whole roasted carrots that could not have tasted more comforting.
Dessert would normally retail at $7.50 and included a wedge of lemon-and-olive-oil cake, draped in fresh zabaglione, berries and crumbled amaretti cookies.
Best of all was the budino al caramello, a cocktail glass filled with layers of caramel pudding and rich chocolate ganache that's topped with whipped cream and nuts.
To paraphrase Orwell, not all OC Restaurant Week deals are created equal, but some are more equal than others...so make like an entitled pig and go to Brunos before the deal ends!
Brunos Italian Kitchen
210 W Birch St.
Brea, CA 92821
Phone: (714) 257-1000
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