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Mangia Bene’s Under $20 Meals Rock O.C.'s Eats
by: Michael Varma
Bene's bambini-friendly menu boasts thrifty $7.50 meals.
Bene's bambini-friendly menu boasts thrifty $7.50 meals.

Mangia Bene is South Orange County’s ten-year trendy "Fresh Italian Food Experience" ristorante, cozily tucked away between Henry’s Farmer’s Market and the Home Depot shopping center off of La Paz and Pacific Park in Laguna Niguel. Ideal for a relaxed corporate casual lunch or dinner, Mangia Bene, which translates to "eat well" in Italian, serves fine Italian cuisine based on recipes handed down for generations.

Festive full-wall murals adorn the Tuscany villa style interior and half a dozen skylights provide and an inviting and bright atmosphere to your afternoon dining experience. Nibble on perfectly toasted parmesan bread (complimentary) but be sure to save room for your pending feast.

A variety of pastas meals, all under $20, can be paired with a bountiful wine selection available by glass or bottle starting respectively at $6 and $23. Whether you choose delicately seasoned veal, chicken, Italian sausage or fish, the chefs combine your favorite meat with fresh vegetables and sauces to design a colorful presentation that is equally pleasing to your palate.

Lunchtime budget and diet conscious patrons can split a salad ranging from $10 to $16 and be satiated – like enjoying a Cesar with chicken (add $4) which has a magical balance of dressing to salad to white meat chicken ratio. Ah, just right.

The Bambini meal, for kids ten and under, is a bargain at $7.50. Little ones choose a small pizza, cheese ravioli, penne pasta or fettuccini for the main meal and a scoop of ice cream for dessert – beverage is included.

Dining options: Dine inside or alfresco; take or delivery for 10 or more; and catering half trays serve 8-10 and full trays serve 18-20.

The Combined Men's Ministries holds a Men's Breakfast Saturday mornings at Mangia Bene with a prixe fixe menu for a reasonable $10. This community service is open to all, but reservations are required. Featured guest speaker for February 6th and 13th is gospel musical director and keyboardist Bill Cantos.

949.831.0140 | 27281 La Paz Road, Suite #1, Laguna Niguel |

Michael Varma is a freelance writer, professional magician for more than 20 years, and an award-winning distinguished Toastmaster and knows what it takes to entertain an audience. Varma is a published author of educational puzzle books and games and frequently performs at the Magic Castle in Hollywood, Calif.

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