Endive at Addison, photo by Dylan Jeni
Here are the best tasting menus in San Diego for all your culinary desires!
AVANT at Rancho Bernardo Inn is proving that the blend of French and new American cuisine could be the next best thing. With chef Christopher Gentile heading the dining options, AVANT presents a progressive tasting menu that showcases culinary techniques and inspiring dishes proving to be anything but ordinary. Start out with the West Coast oysters and bluefin tuna, then venture on to a small plate and main dish, and finally, wrap it all up with the mille feuille. Restaurant sommelier Joe Baumgardner has crafted an award-winning wine cellar and ensures that the wine selection is perfectly curated to serve as an ideal pairing for each entree. Of course, AVANT isn’t dropping the ball when it comes to cocktails either. The cocktail program, created by mixologist Jason Sorge, is mixing up artistic beverages from light to direct and thoughtfully enhanced by the aesthetic presentation.
At Addison, San Diego’s first and only two-star Michelin restaurant, experience what it’s like to travel around the globe, yet stay in one place. Send your taste buds on a journey through flavors produced with regional ingredients and Southern California influences. Chef William Bradley helms the nine-course tasting menu, which changes with the seasons and is best enjoyed with curated wine pairings to elevate your unique dining experience. Here, you’ll experience the true allure of California gastronomy.
Bonjour, mon ami. Jeune et Jolie is giving us the reimagined French cuisine experience we’ve always dreamed of, but this time, it’s through the lens of the surrounding sunny Southern California backdrop. Executive chef Eric Bost presents a four-course menu, where you’ll be swept away by the tartare followed by the saint jacques and wagyu dishes, and a finale of yaourt or fromage. And, let’s not forget about the optional wine pairing to complete your tasting menu experience. At Jeune et Jolie, it’s not only about celebrating life’s special occasions, but the ordinary ones too. Raising a glass to the restaurant serving as a home for the community is as easy as un, deux, trois.
Located just inside The Lodge at Torrey Pines is signature restaurant, A.R. Valentien. Overlook the 18th hole of Torrey Pines Golf Course while dining inside (or outside) immersed in the SoCal craftsman architecture. Handcrafted wood-framed windows, stained-glass lanterns, metal-strap post-and-beam structures and a frieze painted with pine boughs make up the elegant San Diego restaurant. Executive chef Kelli Crosson has curated the dinner tasting menu to highlight local provisions and seasonal fare such as Salt Spring island mussels and crispy skin sablefish. The restaurant also includes small rooms and intimate plush booths to accommodate those looking for a more exclusive experience.
If warehouse glow-ups are trending this year, we want in. What once started as an abandoned warehouse, Juniper & Ivy underwent a transformation period and has now become the main topic of serious food conversation. The impressive social dining scene is housed in a spacious dining room where guests are invited to indulge in executive chef Anthony Wells’ menu featuring seasonal ingredients and fresh catches. Passion, precision and inventiveness guide the chef’s kitchen, because at the end of the day, one thing remains constant: it’s all about “how food moves our culture forward.”
Whether you’re a Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa guest, or you’re just looking for an elegant end to your night, the resort invites you to its favorite restaurant, The Pony Room. Not only does the restaurant feature a wide selection of locally brewed craft beers and 100 different tequila variations, but The Pony Room is also pouring up high-end wines and creative signature cocktails. The restaurant hosts a total of ten menus, offering everything from breakfast, brunch and lunch, to midday delights and dinner cuisine.
We hear it takes two to tango, but Swagyu says it also takes two to eat a steak. Swagyu Chop Shop in San Diego is a wagyu-focused butcher headed by chef Steve Brown. Featuring premium cut wagyu, Swagyu’s passion for providing people access to “the most sought after beef in the world” is what truly laid the foundation for the business. In honor of the season of love, Swagyu has created the Valentine’s Day Fine Dining Tasting Menu *for two* where you and your significant other will be shipped a four-course dining experience, including a printed menu and instructions for cooking… and all within the comfort of your own home. Have your choice of six different steak cuts and let the flavors do the talking.
Step into the L’Auberge Del Mar for an oceanside dining experience at Adelaide. Turn your ordinary Valentine’s Day dinner into a tasting retreat your taste buds won’t soon forget. With five different courses on the menu, guests will be offered a variety of seasonal catches and premium meat cuts, plus three delicate dessert options. Additionally, Adelaide will be hosting a spring tasting menu featuring items such as citrus cured singing scallops, Ahi tataki, smoked halibut, grilled pea greens, crispy Spanish octopus, 45 day aged grilled ribeye, elderflower Pavlova and last but not least, pumpkinseed fudge.