There are only really three things I want to say in this post:
1) I must seriously love you guys. Either that or I’m a complete blog nerd with no life because here I am, on a work-cation and again, I’m blogging from my hotel room. Say it with me now, de-di-ca-tion. Yeh.
2) The photos in this post are blurry. It wasn’t because the light was bad. We did have fairly dim mood lighting, but I’ve shot far better in far worse conditions. There’s no excuse really, the reason the photos are blurry is because I downed a spiced pear martini minutes before the food was served and Cadbury kid me, my heart was thumping so wildly I struggled to hold the camera, let alone hold it still. Apologiez.
3) I love being corporate-ly wined and dined.
Indeed I do.
So most of y’all know that I’m in California on a work-cation. That’s three days of work and three days of play. On Monday night we were corporate-ly wined and dined, a condition that I can definitely get used to. We were invited to Market Restaurant & Bar in Del Mar, a groovy little venue offering a sushi menu in the bar area and an adjacent restaurant area serving a “modern Californian” menu, whatever that is.
Aside from the awesomeness of being wined and dined, I also found out that the VP of Marketing of this company we’re working with is a fully fledged foodie. He and I talked non-stop about food all night ~ food in LA, London, Sydney & everywhere, and even better still, when the dishes were served, not only did he totally condone my taking of photos, he helped me style my shoots! I love him already 🙂
Now if only the photos actually turned out nice…
… because the food sure was delish.
As we browsed the menu, we were each served an amuse bouche of salmon on a watercress salad with a too-tiny-but-delicious piece of sweet potato crisp. Interestingly refreshing and a great start to the meal.
Being LA Restaurant Week, there was a superb set menu on offer ~ I ordered the caramelised onion & potato tart (as did four others) and one Lone Ranger opted for the artichoke soup. The tart was perfection plus ~ a crisp base encasing a soft potato centre, topped with caramelised onions, whole grain mustard sauce, greens, and a slice of sun dried tomato.
I don’t remember how the soup was, but the Lone Ranger did declare he’d eat that whole meal all over again, so I’m assuming he was happy with the soup.
The order of mains was a no-brainer. Initially opting for a simple beef filet, I was coerced into ordering the “duo” instead, which was the beef filet paired with the chef’s special braised shortribs. We all ordered the same thing and there’s a reason why: that shortrib, slow cooked since morning, it literally falls apart on contact and melts in your mouth.
The beef filet was also a star in its own right. I ordered it “medium rare, but closer to rare” to which the waiter said “rare plus, ok?”.. um, ok. It was smooth as silk and the knife slid through like a block of warm butter. Utterly delicious.
Boo to the blurry photos.
For dessert, again four of us ordered the “Market Bar”, literally a bar of chocolate mousse cake, topped with caramelised popcorn and served with caramelised banana. And again there was a Lone Ranger, a different one this time, who opted for the incredibly pretty cheesecake.
The Market Bar was fantastic. While the chocolate mousse was quite heavy and almost like a chocolate terrine, a layer of thin wafer ran through its centre and broke up the denseness of the cake. The caramelised popcorn and banana added the final touch which sent me to sweet tooth heaven and if I weren’t bursting at the seams, I really could have had another one of these.
We finished our meal with with a home made caramel each, and rolled out into the parking lot a group of fat (not phat) and happy customers. I guess there was never any doubt about Market Restaurant & Bar seeing as it’s the foodie-Marketing-VP guy’s favourite joint in the San Diego-ish area.
Anyway, I’m back in LA now and priming myself up for more LA-eating 🙂
Market Restaurant & Bar
3702 Via de la Valle
Del Mar, CA, 92014
(858) 523 0007