Today was date day and it was my turn to decide what to do. In 2021, you have got to be creative since we are still quarantining and outdoor dining at local restaurants are closed. I had planned to do a picnic at a local park, but my allergies flared up this morning and sitting in the middle of a field probably was not the best idea. So, I jumped onto Instagram and saw that Billy’s at the Beach was said to have “The best Mai Tai’s ever!” That sounded like a challenge to me, so I went to their website to see what they had.
Billy’s has been in Newport Beach for 20 years. I’ve passed by it hundreds of times, but I never have been there for dining. They are currently open from 12pm to 8pm seven days a week. No indoor dining or delivery but they are open for take out or duffy pick up. There is a dock right behind the restaurant so they make it easy peasy.
They are currently serving full menu, but what caught my eye was the two Aloha Packs. The first is the Mai Tai Survival kit. It includes four Mai Tais and two of their Beach Burgers for $89. The second is called the Mahalo If Ya Hear Me. This one includes a Pupu Platter, two Mai Tai’s, a Billy’s on the Beach tote bag and a choice of either two Billy’s glasses or two tee shirts. I’m a sucker for a tote bag and cocktail glasses so I chose the Mahalo If Ya Hear Me.
Before I go into the details of my Aloha Pack, I wanted to give honorable mention to a few of the items I saw on their menu that I definitely want to try the next time I go back. The pineapple soy glazed pork chop, the filet mignon with bok choy and the crispy skin seared salmon all sound amazing. Also, they have a Wine Wednesday. You can purchase all bottles of wine at 50% off to go.
So, we ordered online for a 12pm pick up time. There was free parking in front, and they ask you to walk around back to pick up the food. Everything is clean, the host is wearing PPE and greeted me with a hello and a smile. We got there a couple of minutes early and I saw the bartender finishing up the Mai Tai’s. The put crushed ice and the garnishes in to go cups. They then put the Mai Tai mix in a drip proof container, and they put the rum floaters in a 1-ounce ramekin. The host went over our order and made sure we had everything.
When we got home, I tried to make everything a little fancier since it has been so long since we had a date day. I replated our food, poured the cocktails and we ravished the spread. Here is the breakdown on the Pupu platter. It consists of everything on the appetizer menu. There are two Hawaiian BBQ Ribs that were amazingly tender and not overly sweet. There was a portion of black sesame Crusted Ahi that was perfectly seasoned and so flavorful. There were 3 of the Cho Cho Beef Skewers (we wished there were 4 because they were so tender and delicious). Two crab cakes and 2 jumbo coconut shrimp. In full disclosure, the crab cakes were very small. Over all, everything was really good. However, use this Pro Tip when you order…. ask for ALL sauces to be on the side. I live 21 minutes from the restaurant and a few of the items were a little mushy by the time we got home. Not the restaurants fault, but something to keep in mind when ordering from something a little further away.
Were the Mai Tai’s the Mai Tai’s ever???? Ever is a stretch, but most definitely in the top 3 that I’ve ever tasted. The best in Orange County for sure. There are definitely more than 2 cocktails in the take out container and they don’t skimp on the alcohol, plus once you put the rum floater and top and we were pretty happy at the end of our meal. I would definitely go back just for the takeout Mai Tai cocktail. They were flavorful and not too sweet, and we LOVED that they included garnishes and crushed ice. It really made it an experience for us.
I cannot wait until the pandemic is over and we can start dining out again. But until then, Billy’s at the Beach is should be added to your “must try list”.
Billy’s at the Beach 2751 West Coast Hwy, Newport Beach, CA 92663 949.722.1100