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The Art Institute of California -- Orange...

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Gourmet Dinners at Fast Food Prices Help Take the Heat Off Summer

The Art Institute of California Orange County student-run restaurant, 50 Forks, is now serving dinner.

Santa Ana, CA, July 25, 2008 --( When you can't take the summer heat, get out of the kitchen and head to 50 Forks. The Art Institute of California – Orange County student-run restaurant opened for summer service on Monday, July 21 and in addition to its standard lunch service Monday – Wednesday from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., 50 Forks will be open for dinner Wednesday – Friday from 6:30 – 9 p.m.

“Evening hours will allow the rest of Orange County to discover what the local business lunch crowd already knows,” said Culinary Arts Academic Director Chef Daniel Mattos. “50 Forks is the place to go for innovative menus featuring seasonal ingredients at unbeatable prices.”

The dinner menu offers guests the chance to enjoy pan seared striped bass with sweet shrimp, steamed vegetable “papardelle” and fresh corn polenta for only $9 or diners can create a complete four-course meal for $30 or less. Guests can start the meal with the zucchini basil soup, followed by a second course of caramelized sea scallops, then enjoy filet mignon as their main course before topping it off with an Earl Grey crème brulee for dessert – all for only $29 (before tax).

50 Forks is a final passage prior to graduation for senior-level culinary students. Before their education is considered complete, culinary arts students are required to run all facets of a fully-operational restaurant. The restaurant is under the direction of two professional chef instructors.

“The students you see in the restaurant are taking everything they’ve learned in the past two years and putting it to practice,” Chef Mattos said. “With the guidance of two experienced chefs, they get first-hand knowledge of back of the house operations such as menu development and line food preparation and front of the house experience in managing service staff, bartenders and money handling.”

The restaurant accommodates more than 50 guests in a casual, stylish setting within The Art Institute located at 3601 W. Sunflower Avenue in Santa Ana. The restaurant features comfortable chairs, natural light, a fully-equipped professional exhibition kitchen where guests can view students at work and a 20-foot culinary arts mural painted by local artist Jan Le Doux.

50 Forks is open to the public Monday – Wednesday, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. for lunch and Wednesday – Friday 6:30 – 9 p.m. for dinner, with the exception of quarterly class breaks. Restaurant goers interested in reservations, private parties or more information about 50 Forks should call 714.429.0918.

Media Contacts: Tricia Cook can be reached at 714.338.1303 or Veronica Orozco can be reached at 714.830.0221 or

The Art Institute of California – Orange County is a design, media and culinary arts school providing bachelor’s and associate’s degree programs in Advertising, Culinary Arts, Culinary Management, Fashion Design, Fashion Marketing & Management, Game Art & Design, Graphic Design, Industrial Design, Interior Design, Media Arts & Animation, Visual & Game Programming and Web Design & Interactive Media. Located in the heart of Orange County’s South Coast Metro region, The Art Institute is ideally situated in close proximity to Orange County’s thriving business community, cultural attractions, shopping, entertainment and its famous beaches. The school is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 40 education institutions located throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals.

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The Art Institute of California - Orange County
Veronica Orozco

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