San Diego Part 3
Palm trees and sea lions
We started our day by getting breakfast at The Grill which is the other restaurant attached to The Lodge, we went in thinking, okay, light breakfast because we have lunch after and we know the drill by now… Lol... I resisted for about 5 seconds, and went with the granola and blueberry pancakes, what a beauty they were (and tasty af).
We drove to La Jolla, the landscape was screaming “California, bitch!” to my tourist's face, pink buildings, exotic flowers, Pacific ocean on one side, sunglasses and light dresses everywhere, summer all year round! I didn’t plan my outfits very well, living in the North-East of England made me forget what “summer temperatures” are, luckily I got lent a short for the rest of that day and it was so much better! You read the title, we spent the day by the sea, surrounded by California palm trees and adorable sea lions (we took so many pictures…) we had time for a little stroll by the Oceanside, sunscreen application and photo session with the seal lions (eeeeeeeeeek seaaaaaaaa lioooooons, cuuuuute)
Our booking for lunch was made at Puesto, a restaurant opened by brothers Eric, Alan, Alex Adler– along with cousin Lombroto – first-generation Mexican American, that has now 6 different restaurants (and has award-winner tacos!). First thing you notice besides the warm orange colour of the sign? The queue in front, people don’t really seem to mind as they shield from the sun, waiting for a table to be free. The decoration of the place is super cool, a mix of modern and rustic with lovely paintings on the wall (I also fell in love with their glasses, props lover in da place)
I barely had a drop of alcohol during the trip, but the sun and ocean and warmth made me order a Piña Colada on this one, that was brought to us with some nachos. Obviously, we ordered guacamole but the nachos were also served with salsa, which is made from smoked tomatoes, we went with the “Nogada” Guacamole, which, as you can see, was served with pomegranate, mango, chile de Arbol (a type of peppers) and candied walnuts. Best Guacamole I’ve ever had, but the tacos, oh my… This is when you understand the reason for the “award-winning” title, we decided to share and went for the Filet Mignon, Grilled Shrimp and Carnitas ones, like in Mexico, they are served in blue corn tortillas, the flavours were so rich! I took a little break and went have a peek into the kitchen.
One of the perks of being the official photographer, you can go everywhere! When I came back to the table, that lovely mango cheesecake was waiting for us, loved it. (This probably sounds like a light lunch, but remember it’s like 35° real feel and I had a massive pancake for breakfast only 3h before).
We had a few hours before dinner (we knew we would have to head back take a shower before coming back to La Jolla) so we went exploring the town for a bit, and went back to the beach, because I was the annoying one wanted to try the Pacific Ocean water, well I tried it alright, butt soaked with water for the rest of the afternoon I went, those tricky waves man, you think they’re going to be tiny and they smack you in the face, fun times (refreshing and warm at the same time)
We were supposed to be back for dinner at George’s at the Cove at 7 as it’s right above the sea and you can see the sunset from there, but we were a bit late so we actually saw the sunset from the hotel lobby and then headed to the restaurant. That meal was, well, gastronomic and gigantic at the same time, you see, we were booked to try the Chef’s tasting menu, a six-course experience, except that when you’re from the press, you’re here to really try it all, which led us to have a 10 course meal, yep, you read correctly.
So let’s talk about that food, I will literally make a list in order of apparition because everything was very good, even though I wanted to throw up at some point (that was about after the fifth dish). The staff was soooo nice, and we chatted with all the tables around us because well, we had the chef coming and talk to us and I had a huge camera, so you know, we weren’t attracting attention at all…
Food list in order of apparition:
Tai Snapper Crudo, cucumber, charred strawberry, chilli, hazelnut, rice crackers
Ossetra Caviar, coconut, cauliflower
Northern Halibut, eggplant caponata, summer beans, sourdough, whey vinaigrette
Baja Stone Crab, melon, cashew, radish, smoked aioli
Chino Farms Corn, corn mousse, popcorn, peach
San Diego Spot Prawns foraged herb and flower butter
Orecchiette Pasta, uni butter, black truffles
Dry Aged Rohan Duck, plum B B Q, chanterelles, pepper relish
Then a very weird coriander granite with frozen strawberry yoghurt to refresh the mouth
Pernod Semifreddo, dark chocolate, Chino Farms berries, fennel
I was ready to roll to bed after that, which I did, to face the next and last day in San Diego.
Enjoy the next pictures, and the final day will be there at some point!