We’ve noticed a few restaurants that have decided to start offering affordable tasting menu for guests. Some chef’s want to offer super seasonal plates, while others want to offer a unique experience different from their dinner menu. Either way, this is your chance to try multiple plates for a great price!
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Pacifica Del Mar serving the community high atop its Del Mar Plaza perch. It’s a feat many restaurants will never achieve, and one of the things that makes Pacifica Del Mar such a special place to dine. Last year, the ocean view seafood restaurant welcomed back longtime Chef and Partner, Chris Idso. The tenured chef is kicking off the new year with a 30th Anniversary Tasting Menu. The seasonal menu will showcase a variety of small plates, offering a taste of Idso’s talents. First course options include options like Hamachi Carpaccio with pickled bean sprouts, yellow pepper coulis, shaved radish and kazami wasabi and Blue Lump Crab Cake. Move on to the second course and choose between plates like Zinfandel Braised Short Rib or Seared Atlantic Sea Scallops with heirloom cauliflower, cauliflower puree and pickled raisins. Lastly, end on a sweet note with dessert or a glass of bubbly to toast to Pacifica’s 30th. The 30th Anniversary Tasting menu is available nightly and must be ordered before 6pm. The cost is 3 tastes for $30. www.PacificaDelMar.com
A new year at Cusp provides an opportunity for its executive chef to flex her creativity muscle. Chef Ingrid Funes is starting the year adding a tasting menu that will be offered Monday-Thursday. Each menu will change seasonally, focusing on MEAT in winter, FLOUR in spring, VEGETABLES in summer and SEAFOOD in fall. The menu features three small plates meant to share with the table. Winter is up first with a tasting of plates focusing on meat. The dishes include Beef Carpaccio Salad with arugula, parmesan and truffle oil vinaigrette, Duck Confit Mini Flatbread with goat cheese, port wine and caramelized onion and Lamb Skewers with chimichurri. The Tasting Menu is $40, and available Monday-Thursday. www.CuspRestaurant.com
La Valencia’s signature restaurant, THE MED, is known for show-stopping dishes that showcase the peak of each season. Premium ingredients are arranged in beautiful presentations, making it one of the most unique dining experiences around. There’s no better way to dive into such an experience than with their new Taste of THE MED menu. The nightly three-course tasting menu from Chef Alex Emery and team features seasonal creations, like King Crab Salad and Surf & Turf, for just $55 per person. Guests can enhance the experience with an optional wine pairing for an additional $25 per person. www.LaValencia.com