Waves ho! The ‘ultimate in seaside dining’ describes La Jolla’s famed Marine Room
By Will Parson
Sprawling across your field of vision, the Marine Room’s ocean-facing windows provide a breathtaking panorama, especially at high tide when they face the waves head-on. To get an idea of how close you’ll be to the water, consider that in Marine Room’s first year, 1941, and again in 1982, stormy tides crashed through these windows. The view would be worth getting a little wet for, but manager Matthew Caponi can attest that the current tempered glass windows are strong enough to avoid another breakthrough. Though he does admit, “You never know, it could always happen again.”
Marine Room’s Chef Bernard Guillas and Chef de Cuisine Ron Oliver are gearing up for the Marine Room’s summer high tide dinners, which begin in May. This year’s high tide dinners will also mark Marine Room’s 70th anniversary, though special plans are not yet finalized.
The high tide dinners present Marine Room’s global cuisine — rooted in French classics — against the unique tidal backdrop, waves crashing against the windows themselves. With those high tide dinners around the corner, Chef Bernard is keeping busy. He recently returned to his home country to receive the prestigious Master Chefs of France award, honoring just over 200 chefs worldwide in the past six decades. Soon after, he appeared on NBC’s “The Today Show,” preparing monkfish bretonne with hosts Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford.
As of late, the Sesame Peppered Ruby Red Ahi Tuna, served with a white wine hibiscus sauce and black Tai rice, has been a popular dish. Chef Bernard’s crab cakes, with ingredients that vary, are a favorite appetizer. Every night of the week you can get a three-course meal from the “Taste of the Season” menu, with an optional wine pairing and featuring main courses like Maine Diver Scallops and Brandt Beef Short Ribs.
Mondays are lobster nights, when you can choose either the Maine Lobster Bisque, served with golden enoki, pancetta and yuzu cream, or the Cypress Grove Purple Haze Goat Cheese Brûlée — yes, that’s goat cheese baked crème brûlée style — for your first stop on the three-course journey. Then you can move on to lobster tail prepared in one of three ways: Pistachio Butter Basted, Sugar Ranch Dill Pollen Spiced, or Lilikoi Kalbi Glazed. With Chef Bernard’s touch, the lobsters definitely seem more at home on your plate than in the surf, crashing just yards away!
The Marine Room
Address: 2000 Spindrift Drive
The Vibe: Scenic, Fine, Global
Signature Dish: Sesame Peppered Ruby Red Ahi Tuna
Open Since: 1941
Hours: 5:30-9:30 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 5:30-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday
Phone: (858) 459-7222
Patio Seating: No
Take Out: No
Happy Hour: 4-6 p.m. Sunday-Friday
On The Menu Recipe
Each week you’ll find a recipe from the featured restaurant online at lajollalight.com. Just click Get The Recipe at the bottom of the story.
This week: The Marine Room’s Redwood Hill Goat Cheese Brulee.
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