Newport Beach has something to celebrate: A stunner of a restaurant—a place where Sonoma meets Santa Barbara—has landed at the doorstep. Welcome, Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens. The alfresco ambience will captivate you, and the food will delight your senses. The owner and executive chef is Rich Mead, a garden veteran, admired for his Sage restaurant legacy and his farm-to-table commitment. He prides himself on his dedication to vibrant, big flavors prepared with a lighter touch while highlighting the best of the harvest.
Farmhouse is a gorgeous bistro in a sublime setting, nestled in a cozy corner of Roger’s Gardens. Diners are seated in the open air, either under a partially covered patio or embraced by the colorful flowers and rich greenery of the prized nursery. It’s a grand space, built from the ground up to boast modern charm and natural rusticity. The wood beam-and-canvas roof is adorned with swanky chandeliers. Handcrafted wooden tables fill the space. And nature’s beauty can be seen in every direction. During the day, the sun dances across the landscape onto your plates. And in the evening, the plush blankets that line the backs of chairs enrobe guests, protecting them from the chill of the ocean breeze. You would be hard-pressed to find a more tranquil spot, and the varied menu will keep you coming back for more new, fresh tastes.
The menu is driven by Mead’s commitment to locally grown and sustainably sourced produce, and his weekly jaunts to the farmers market motivate the carte du jour. The bar will draw you in first—and I encourage you to allow the expert mixologist to handcraft a unique and seasonally inspired cocktail for your sipping pleasure. I suggest you choose your drink on a whim—literally. The Farmhouse Whim is brilliantly devised at the market—a delightful concoction created from the season’s bounty. On my dinner visit, the Whim was gin-based, floral and beautifully balanced, bursting with passion fruit flavor and fresh from the fields of Fountain Valley.