Chef Craig Strong has opened Ocean at Main, fulfilling a long-time career dream to open his own restaurant. The location is exceptional – 222 Ocean Avenue near Main Beach, and the 126-seat, 4,500-square-foot eatery is open daily for lunch and dinner. After nearly 25 years of working at luxury hotels and resorts around the globe, Strong has come full circle to his native Southern California roots with the opening of Ocean at Main. From growing up in San Diego and cooking with produce from the family garden, this chef/owner is now sharing his Coastal California cuisine with the community he has embraced for the last 10 years.
“I want to cook for our guests the way I cook for my family and friends at home. At Ocean at Main, I will celebrate the diversity, freshness and healthy lifestyle of Southern California. We will procure our ingredients from the local farmers and meat, seafood and specialty vendors whom I have been working and collaborating with for years. Coaxing the true flavors from exceptional products is always my goal.” says Strong.
Strong has assembled a team of talented culinary and hospitality shining lights who are an important part of his restaurant dream. Dylan Cloughen will serve as general manager and key front-of-the-house guest pleaser. Kristin Morgan, a certified sommelier, will manage Ocean at Main’s 50-bottle plus wine inventory featuring California wines and global selections and is in charge of the beverage program. The pro responsible for Ocean at Main’s deeply satisfying desserts like Tainori Chocolate Torte is Pastry Chef Keara Wilson.
The main attractions at the bar are creatively crafted signature cocktails such as the St. Clair with Ketel One Vodka, St. Germain, cucumber and mint; and the Lover’s Beach Retreat with jalapeño infused Arette tequila, passionfruit, lime, agave and hibiscus-basil foam. Two handsome, sleek Braumeister ceramic four-tap towers with a unique and classy Old World look dispense locally crafted beer, Kombucha and cold brew coffee.
Announcing the Menus…At dinner, the menu will begin with simply delicious temptations, perhaps Hawaiian Prawn Potato Soup or Charred Spanish Octopus with cauliflower ratatouille, carnival amaranth and parsley sauce. Then guests can choose Dungeness Crab Cavatelli, Pressed Organic Chicken, Pan Seared Pork Chops or Oxtail Kale Risotto.
Ocean at Main is located in the early 1940’s building designed by Aubrey St. Clair that once housed the venerable Laguna Federal Savings and Loan. Guests will now enjoy the quintessential Southern California dining experience in a space re-envisioned by Laguna-based Laurie Alter of Tuvalu Home. It’s handsome with wood beamed ceilings, oversized wrought iron chandeliers, custom upholstered chairs and more. It’s lovely with color accents in soft grey, ocean blue, sea glass and sea foam. Dining is available inside or on the intimate outdoor patio with its original fountain and murals created by Laguna Beach artist Boris Buzan.
For more information, visit www.oceanatmain.com.
Ocean at Main
222 Ocean Avenue
Laguna Beach, CA 92651