Greer's OC: Taste of Newport returns Friday

Newport's premiere food and entertainment festival, the Taste of Newport, celebrates 24 years at Fashion Island from Friday through Sunday.

More than 50,000 people are expected to attend the three-day party, where they will sample culinary delights from more than 35 local restaurants as well as wines, cocktails and handcrafted beers.

Bands will perform throughout the event. This year's main acts include Andy Grammer on Friday night, Blondie and Devo on Saturday, and Roger Hodgson, from Supertramp, on Sunday.

An earlier version of this column had Roger Hodgson's last name spelled incorrectly.

Sample cuisines range from casual to fine dining choices. A partial list includes Catalina's Avalon Grille, Casey's Cupcakes, Clay Oven Indian Cuisine, Fit Foods 4 Life, Le Pain Quotidien, Marukome USA Inc., Pizzeria Mozza and Tamarind of London.

General admission tickets at the gate cost $25. A limited number of VIP concert tickets are also available. More information is at

Taste of Newport is from 6 to 11 p.m. Friday; 4 to 11 p.m. Saturday; and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday at Fashion Island, 600 Newport Center Drive. For more information, call (949) 729-4400.


Topshop line now at local Nordstrom stores

The favorite British fashion-fix line, Topshop, just launched at Nordstrom in South Coast Plaza, and Topshop and Topman is at Nordstrom Irvine Spectrum Center.

On Saturday, both Nordstrom stores will be celebrating Topshop's cutting-edge styles at affordable prices with fashion and styling events.

During the event, shop from limited edition apparel, let stylists help you find great looks, get a sneak peek of Topshop's makeup line arriving later this year, and receive exclusive nail polish, lip gloss or a leather belt as a gift with purchase of $100 or more.

Nordstrom South Coast Plaza is at 3333 Bristol St. in Costa Mesa, (714) 549-8300. Nordstrom Irvine Spectrum Center is at 101 Fortune Drive in Irvine, (949) 255-2800.


Work out and look stylish

On the hunt for stylish and figure-flattering workout wear? Look no further than the new Lorna Jane boutique at Bella Terra shopping center in Huntington Beach. The popular brand from Australia, worn by celebrities like Charlize Theron, Jessica Alba and Vanessa Hudgens, is a great source of fashion-forward activewear. The clothes have high-tech fabrics in chic colors designed to resist shrinking and fading, and wick moisture and dry quickly, all inspired by runway trends.

The new store carries Lorna Jane's entire collection, such as running shorts, sports bras, hoodies, three-quarter-sleeve tops, headbands, tights, exercise mats and more, as well as the exclusive high-end LJBlack line, and for the young set, Little Miss Lorna Jane.

Another Lorna Jane is expected to open at Irvine Spectrum in late September. The Bella Terra store is at 7777 Edinger Ave.. For more information, call (714) 890-4499, or visit


Healthy Mexican food now in Irvine

Craving fresh and healthy Mexican food? Tortillaz in Irvine fits the bill, serving healthy alternatives of Mexican classic dishes by offering wheat tortillas, brown rice and cage-free eggs in its breakfast burritos ($5.50), grilled black Angus beef, grilled white meat chicken, Wahoo grilled fish, and fresh homemade salsas and sauces.

Go for the grilled Wahoo fish taco combo with cabbage, sprinkled with Monterey jack cheese, pico de gallo and cilantro sauces, and served with choice of two sides, white or brown rice, black or pinto beans, seasonal vegetables or seasoned corn ($5.25).

When you're extra hungry, the grilled carne asada burrito ($7.75) definitely will fill you up. It has lettuce, jack cheese, pico de gallo, guacamole and cilantro sauce.

The restaurant is open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday; and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Tortillaz Healthy Mexican Grill is at 2646 Dupont Drive in Irvine, (949) 261-6400; and 2222 Michelson Drive in Irvine, (949) 222-9100,


Whole Foods opening at Fashion Island

The highly anticipated Whole Foods Newport Beach will be opening at Fashion Island at 9 a.m. Sept. 19.

Natural and organic foods enthusiasts will appreciate the supermarket's emphasis on sourcing local products, and its reflection of the community with a coastal themed Back Bay Tavern, with 24 craft beers on tap, wine and spirits, and meals that include beef, seafood, vegetarian and vegan options, as well as debuting the first fusion café and tea bar called the Tea Hive.

Stop by and order an innovative green, black or oolong tea drink from the menu that comes frozen, sparkling, iced or steamed. Specialty drinks will include a Pomarita, a blend of pomegranate and tart lime with green tea, or a chocolate chai drink with black tea, spiced chai, chocolate and cinnamon. Fusion entrées to pair with tea includes bowls and wraps.

Feeling rushed for time? There will be an "express" beer and wine bar with 12 beers on tap at the front of the store.

Other exceptional features at Whole Foods Newport Beach include a 'Get Crocked' area to purchase easy meals that can be made in a crockpot; more than 1,300 gluten-free items to choose from; staple items under the Whole Foods 365 label; and skin care, supplements and vitamins.

Whole Foods Newport Beach is at 415 Newport Center Drive in Fashion Island. For more information, call (949) 555-5555, or visit

GREER WYLDER writes Greer's OC for the Huntington Beach Independent each Thursday and the Daily Pilot and Coastline Pilot each Friday. She's the founder and president of, a free daily e-mail service that provides the latest in Orange County fashion, dining, music, events and trends. Her blog can be viewed and she can be contacted at

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