Chapter One: the modern local

4.5
342 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$30 and under
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Gastro Pub
Our eclectic food and spirits fuse the exotic with the traditional, always created with our own playful twist. Our kitchen, led by executive chef Jason "Chicken Wang" Montelibano, features local, sustainable, seasonal and all-natural ingredients. The atmosphere blends the pleasures of elegant dining with the relaxed conviviality of a local pub. Our cocktail list, highlighted by our award-winning fresh ginger Moscow Mules, also features over 200 whiskeys from around the world.
avatar copy

Private Dining

Book your next event with us

View details

Specials

Valentine's Day Special Menus & More

Chapter One will feature a special Valentine's menu from WEDNESDAY Feb. 13th 'til'- SUNDAY Feb. 17th!

Thursday, February 14, 2019

What 342 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.4
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Newest
Filters
SW
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Chapter One was not a good experience and we will not go back. We were there more than half an hour and were not even offered a drink or menu and it was not busy. People adjacent to us walked out without ordering. Finally I got up and asked for service and the waiter gave us attitude. The food was mediocre at best and the $27 salmon was barely edible. Poor service and food. Go somewhere else.

Report
Helpful
A
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Chapter One is a very energetic place to go with very good food,comfortable, good service in a very nice area.

Report
Helpful
KO
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Our server was great and the food was great! I did not enjoy waiting for (what felt like) 10 minutes for the hostess to acknowledge us after seating someone else who came after us while we had a reservation. She then seated us in the bar, where our nice dinner turned into a yelling match because the music was loud. I guess we should have been more demanding but I was hoping a reservation was a clear sign that we wanted a nice dinner at a restaurant not a nightclub.

Report
Helpful
JP
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was fun place for drinks and for taking people from out of town.

Report
Helpful
MG
1 review
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service was excellent, the food delicious, and the atmosphere was beautiful. Our servers were friendly and made the experience even better. The mac and cheese is to die for!

Report
Helpful
RM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

This is my favorite brunch restaurants in OC. Sadly, this time we were placed on the back room with a bunch of large parties. The noise level was exceptional & the table we were placed at would have had a difficult time accommodating a high chair (something I made note of needing & was not available to us when we arrived). This was a rare miss for Chapter One & I will look at it as the exception rather than the rule.

Report
Helpful
SP
Orange County
1 review
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have been here about 5-6 times now since June, we found that the bartenders make great mixed drinks, nice and friendly too.
I chose this place for my birthday on Saturday, due to location since I had people coming from all over the place. We had never had their food before, all of us enjoyed our dinners.

Report
Helpful
VH
Los Angeles
18 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 2food 5service 1ambience 3

Sadly, I have had my last visit to Chapter One. Maybe I will order take-out because the food is great, but the hostess staff was so unwelcoming, our waiter was not the greatest either. We felt like we were being hounded to leave from the moment we arrived. It was not quite 30% full, so what's the hurry? One of the strangest restaurant visits ever.

Report
Helpful
PT
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Waitress was helpful and attentive

Report
Helpful
OT
Orange County
7 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Yummy food! Awesome service!!!!

Report
Helpful
OT
Los Angeles
8 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 2

Very good food. Really slow service and not attentive at all.

Report
Helpful
SS
Orange County
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I’ve been meaning to write a review as this is our hidden gem we’ve been going to for Sunday’s for about half a year. Bomb food, lively music & they never fail to get us a seat even if it is last minute. The hostess is always accommodating, and my champagne glass is never left empty longer than two minutes. Even the buss staff keeps an eye on the champagne! Love it all, and the food is delicious.

Report
Helpful
D
Orange County
21 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

One of the items that we ordered was the mushroom pasta. Uh, where the heck were the mushrooms??? That was a big miss and should have been taken off the bill.

Report
Helpful
CN
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Our server was very slow and inattentive to our needs. He was busy chit chatting and texting in the bar area. We would literally have to wait 10-15 minutes for him to come to our table if we need something. Worst service ever!!!

Report
Helpful
MM
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and good place to have a social gathering.

Report
Helpful
GL
Los Angeles
9 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Their autumn menu is delicious and our server Abner was the greatest.

Report
Helpful
NB
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

We were really looking forward to this restaurant based on the menu and location. It was close to Santa Ana stadium and the corner location was a bonus during the electrical storm. Our server was great and friendly, but the food overall was way too spicy. I had the Royale with Cheese and that had quite a kick, my son had the ceviche which was too spicy for him, and my husband had the shrimp and grits which he said was all hot spices and was overall terrible. It's too bad b/c he was really excited about his dish. And then the price we paid for what we got didn't line up.

Report
Helpful
j
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 4

I have usually gotten good service here but not this time around. Our waiter wasn’t paying attention and took a while to get our orders. I asked several times for champagne refill, he said he would be back shortly but didn’t. I am unhappy with the service this day.

Report
Helpful
JM
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere, good food with attention to detail.

Report
Helpful
L
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We celebrated our coworkers going away here. The drinks were great and the appetizers so savory! Can’t wait to come back!

Report
Helpful
VD
Orange County
103 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed the fish & chips and rice noodle stir fried dishes! Delicious and healthy portions! Great service!

Report
Helpful
MS
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great time. One of our favorite lunch spots near the office.

Report
Helpful
JH
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the true gems of DTSA, the staff are very friendly and make sure you are taken care of. This has been a regular spot for my family and I for a few months now. I highly suggest you try it. As for the food, everything is amazingly delish!

Report
Helpful
K
Los Angeles
27 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

I had originally reserved this restaurant for my birthday on July 4th - made the reservation through Open Table, got my confirmation, but when we got there they were closed. They apparently did not block out the holiday, so we drove to another restaurant and celebrated elsewhere. I wanted to give them another shot so I booked another reservation and made note of the prior issue. Nothing was mentioned at all during the evening, nor after contacting Open Table. Disappointing a simple 'oops' goes a long way.

We were seated immediately next to the DJ table, and the music in the background was lively and fun. It's an old bookstore and remains of it's history adorn the walls still...nice vibe. Menus were left on the table and after a few minutes our server came over and offered to take a drink order. No gluten free beer and only a pineapple cider. I liked that they had Murphy Goode Pinot though so I selected that and a couple of appetizers. The Sisig fries we ordered with the egg on the side, but were very good. The brussel sprouts had several large dollops of piquillo romesco and it completed the dish well.

Ate the royale with cheese for dinner and it was good - they had the lamb chops, smothered in a white sauce that distracted from the flavor of the lamb. The souffle for dessert was really well done...a white chocolate souffle that went down very easily.

Overall worth going back to - the local scene was really much busier than I realized, there are several local bars that were extremely active as the evening went on. The DJ in the restaurant come on about 10.

Report
Helpful
DF
Louisville
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2018
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 1

Food was good but the service all around was terrible. Would not recommend.

Report
Helpful
AF
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 8, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Server did not order our appetizer snd it came out after the meal. Two of us order omlettes and the eggs were very runny. Too expensive for a plate of undercooked eggs and brocolli. Would not return.

Report
Helpful
A
Orange County
19 reviews
Dined on July 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great service. The pork fries were amazing. Solid cocktails. Will go again.

Report
Helpful
MW
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2018
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 5

We chose the $15.00 lunch and had the tomato basil soup (which was delicious!) and the chopped salad (which was not.). The salad had few ingredients except yellow lettuce that was tasteless. I have eaten here several times and have always had a wonderful meal. I am assuming this was a "blip" in their normal delicious food. The service was impeccable as usual.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on June 25, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

I will be back. A wonderful location when going to the Santa Ana Artists Village. A fun menu, wonderful pieces not found elsewhere. The beet salad was so good that I tried to duplicate it for dinner with my husband. Parking structure right across the street - the rest is metered street.

Report
Helpful
JH
Orange County
1 review
Dined on June 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food, decent prices and a fun Sunday Mimosa brunch. Service is always top notch, and staff is very friendly and accomodating.

Report
Helpful
OT
Los Angeles
24 reviews
Dined on June 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have been here a couple of times and it never disappoints, The ambiance and the unlimited mimosaso for $11 when you buy a dish is awesome, it's $17 without, recommend the food and great for Sunday brunch.

Report
Helpful
c
Orange County
38 reviews
Dined on June 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Menu changes every so often but the food is very good. Love everything that I have tried there! Must have dessert: white chocolate souffle!

Report
Helpful
GM
Orange County
12 reviews
Dined on May 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was delicious. We will come back

Report
Helpful
JM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 3

The food was over cooked and the salad had way too much dressing and very little steak.
The people taking care of us were lovely and I would try again. Maybe an off day.

Report
Helpful
DF
1 review
Dined on May 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I can't even begin to express how good this place is! The food, the drinks, THE MUSIC!!! all worth every single penny!!!!! I want to go here every day for the rest of my life

Report
Helpful
OT
Sacramento
14 reviews
Dined on May 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

We had Mother's Day brunch (party of 14). From start to finish, everything about Chapter One was on point. Food came out in a reasonable amount of time and everything was delicious! That mac and cheese though...so good!! We will definitely be back!

Report
Helpful
TH
Orange County
23 reviews
Dined on May 13, 2018
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 3

My Husband had been in the Hospital for a week not knowing if he was going to live or die. The doctors said it was good for us to go take a break. We had a reservation for Mother’s Day. I knew they were booked because we go there every year. My grandson needs a high chair but they only had a high top table for us even though the high chair would not work. We were the first in the restaurant when they opened at ten. Asked the hostess if we could move to another table. No they are booked!! But all the tables had no one sitting at them yet. Asked our waitress if we could move please. No again. Ask to talk to the manager. She was not very nice at all. So we ate taking turns holding a two year old on our laps trying to eat. The relaxing family time did not happen. They don’t care. They have so many customers. Why should they care. Because it would have be a kind thing to do. Not going back ever again. But I am sure they don’t care.

Report
Helpful
v
Orange County
6 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2018
Overall 1food 3service 3ambience 2

this place has seen better days...my friend had dined there 4 + yrs ago and really liked it. What happened?

Report
Helpful
CG
Tahoe
1 review
Dined on May 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed a leisurely lunch with a friend. Fantastic food, especially the chocolate molten lava cake. Service with excellent and friendly.

Report
Helpful
OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on April 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Everything was yummy good ! The waiters were very good with their recommendations! Loved everything we had ! Pork buns,pasta and the sauce was to die for !! The orange salad with burrata was delicious! Lavender ice cream with vanilla cake and strawberry OmG !!! I have spent way more money for far less tasting food!! So worth it ! 😋

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
9