Andrei’s embodies all the elements you’d look for in traditional fine dining, with a fully modern splash at every touchpoint. Lavish, intimate atmosphere with tasteful, contemporary décor and just the right lighting. Cuisine based on the classic steak, seafood and salad, prepared with California flare and Mediterranean influence, and finished with remarkable presentation.
Andrei’s seeks to serve ‘conscious cuisine’ through and through, which means sustainable seafood, naturally raised meats and organic, local produce. Health and nutrition resonate throughout the menu, though most classic comforts are readily available. The restaurant itself is a nonprofit—a rarity in the industry—whereby the entire bottom line goes to the Andrei Foundation, dedicated to the owner’s late brother, for eye research and blindness support.
Highlighting the dinner menu is the filet mignon, a tender cut finished with a peppery spike. Sweet corn and cherry tomatoes alongside compliment the dish with exceptional sweetness. The salmon and Israeli couscous makes for a lovely seafood option. Add on a side of pesto risotto…you’ll be glad you did. Save room at the end for their peach cheesecake beignets, just as rich as they sound with a marvelous cinnamon whipped cream.
Make note, however, that Andrei’s is far from cheap. While that filet is quite good, $42 typically fetches a better steak. Most of the appetizers are priced over the quality or quantity they offer as well. Sadly, the cocktails fall into the same boat. Andrei’s gets credit for committing great care toward their cocktail program, but need to tweak the drinks a bit more for flavors to stand out.
Andrei’s is perfect for expense account dinners, largely from the business complex and Marriott nearby. For regular patrons, the happy hour, or perhaps lesser-priced menu items would suffice for better value.
Andrei’s is located at 2607 Main Street, Irvine, CA 92614. Open 11:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. Mon – Thurs, 11:30 a.m. – 10 p.m. Fri, 5 – 10 p.m. Sat. Closed Sundays. Average out-the-door price for appetizer, entrée, split side and dessert, and 1 – 2 drinks is ~$90/person. For more information and reservations call (949) 387-8887 or visit AndreisRestaurant.com.
Benjamin Brown is a seasoned restaurant writer and hospitality consultant, serving up SoCal's hottest food news and reviews.