In the heart of Old Towne Orange, Citrus City Grille is a colorful, family-owned and operated restaurant that has been serving the community for over 25 years. The food and atmosphere is upscale but family-friendly, with a contemporary American menu featuring seafood, steak, pasta, pizza, and dessert. Their drink menu includes a list of beer, hand-selected globally curated wines, and craft cocktails.
Citrus City Grille Details
Citrus City Grille celebrates Happy Hour all week long. Every day from 3PM – 6PM, stop in for a refresher. The Happy Hour menu is available at the bar tops, lounge, and patio and features a variety of drink specials and small plates to choose from. They often include options that are not available on the regular menu, so it’s definitely worth it to try some of these delicious choices.
While lunch and dinner is served daily at Citrus City Grille, you have to come in for their breakfast and brunch! Breakfast is served every Saturday from 11:30AM to 2PM. Saturday mornings include a full menu of breakfast and brunch favorites, including baked caramel toast, pancakes and waffles, chilaquiles, omelets, and eggs benedict.
You can enjoy bottomless beverages like bloody mary’s mimosas, sparkling wine, or champagne both Saturday and Sunday during brunch service. Sunday Brunch is served from 10AM to 3PM and features breakfast and carving stations with crepes, waffles, prime rib, and ham, hot entrees, buffet style bars with seafood, dessert, fruit, cheese, and salads.
Holidays are always extra special at Citrus City Grille. An exceptional multi-course Thanksgiving dinner is served on Thanksgiving Day, or you can take home their prepared-for-you Thanksgiving dinner to-go. While they are closed Christmas Day, they offer a special Christmas Eve celebration menu with an indulgent feast and festive holiday music. The holiday menu includes a selection of regular menu items, plus additional Chef specialties.
Perfect Prime Short Rib
We were invited to dinner at Citrus City Grille and we tried several different items from the menu. Our favorite dish of the night was the Prime Short Rib. The sweet vermouth sauce and melt-in-your-mouth short rib were perfect with every bite and the pappardelle that came with it was exceptional.
The Best Mushroom Risotto
The mushroom risotto was our next favorite bite – rich and creamy, the risotto was the perfect texture. We argued a bit over who got the next bite. If you enjoy risotto, give this one a try. But I recommend getting your own – you won’t want to share it!
The King Salmon and Grilled Octopus were delicious and definitely worth ordering again. They also have wild ahi poki, clams, and Chilean Sea Bass. Bonus points for being able to add shrimp or salmon to any of their pasta dishes.
We had a hard time choosing which dessert we wanted to try. The menu includes several options like crème brulee, cheesecake, souffles, and bread pudding.
We chose the Chocolate Temptation. It’s the best flourless chocolate cake in town, in our opinion, and pairs perfectly with the chocolate sauce and panna cotta. If you’re looking for something sweet to end the night, we definitely recommend this one.
Location, Location, Location!
Citrus City Grille is right near the Orange Circle. Old Towne Orange Plaza dates back to 1886 and many of the homes and buildings in the area were built before 1920. This old-timey downtown is fun to stroll with plenty of places to browse and shop, including a number of vintage and antique stores. Perfect for an evening out or an afternoon adventure.
A Little Bit Of History
Citrus City Grille is located at 122 North Glassell in Old Towne Orange near the Orange Circle. The building that the restaurant is in was originally built in 1886 by D.C. Pixley, becoming Pixley Hardware. It was only the second brick building in Orange County at the time.
In 1909 it became Pixley Furniture Company, then Fordson Tractor Agency, and later, Daniel’s Food Market, Aames Rents and Sells, and The Stained Glass Eye.
Citrus City Grille moved into the location in 1996, becoming a modern neighborhood destination. In 2000, operations were taken over by Steve Tsirtsis and Steve Xenos.
Charlie Cosmas, a longtime patron of Citrus City Grille and restaurant industry veteran, took over the day-to-day operations in 2022.
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Heidi Deal is the author of the Newcomers Handbook to Living In Los Angeles & Orange County, and a children’s book author specializing in history and human rights.