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A New Multi-Sensory Culinary Experience


Adding to Orange County’s vibrant culinary scene is NOVA Kitchen & Bar, the newest experiential dining destination that just opened in Garden Grove. Open daily for dinner, NOVA allows guests to explore the five elements – wood, fire, earth, metal and water – each in a unique setting with element-specific menu options that allow guests to indulge in each of their five senses.

Overseeing Nova Kitchen & Bar’s culinary experience is Executive Chef Abel Vargas, who presents the five elements through innovative Pan-Asian menus that highlight Japanese, Sichuan, Cantonese, Korean and Thai cuisines, among others.

The Wood section of the menu features shareable dishes such as chow mein, seafood fried rice and dan dan noodles, while Fire showcases specialty dishes such as Chicken Karaage and Peking Duck.

“My goal is the take the diner on a culinary journey that is memorable, yet unique during each visit,” comments Chef Vargas, who has spent time in kitchens throughout Orange County, including Mesa in Costa Mesa and Habana in Irvine. “We have three kitchens that work together to create a menu that is basically five parts, to adequately highlight each of the elements.”

As expected, Earth represents those vegetables that it grows with a highly unique twist, as showcased in NOVA’s Caesar Salad with Seaweed Powder, while Metal also showcases fun takes on the familiar, with chicken ginseng soups, a variety of dumplings and edamame hummus.

The standout menu represents Water and highlights talent of Sushi Chef Kenji Haruki, who oversees NOVA’s dramatic sushi bar. His experience from Katsuya in Los Angeles and SLS in Las Vegas comes through in his offerings, from sashimi to specialty rolls.

To complement the intricacies of the dining menus, NOVA’s bar features nearly 400 offerings on its beverage menu. In addition to unique signature craft cocktails featuring hand-made ice donning the NOVA logo, they offer wines by the glass, a variety of sake to pair with many of the Pan-Asian dishes, and craft beers, many of which are locally brewed.

The restaurant welcomes walk-ins and is capable of accommodating larger parties for private events and buyouts. Holiday bookings are now being accepted into the new year.

Open daily, 4 - 11 p.m. Sunday – Thursday and 4 p.m. - midnight Friday & Saturday.

The restaurant shares a parking lot with the Hyatt Regency, and validates up to 3 hours of free parking for guests. For more information about the restaurant, reservations and other information, please visit

NOVA Kitchen & Bar is located at 12361 Chapman Avenue in Garden Grove.

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