From Jan. 27 through Feb. 1 and June 22 through June 27, diners will have the opportunity to try some of San Diego's premiere restaurants at a special price.
"My goal (in participating) has always been that you promote San Diego as a culinary arts destination," said executive chef Bernard Guillas of the Marine Room. "You showcase your restaurant as who you are and what you do."
Guillas said his La Jolla restaurants, including the Marine Room and Shores Restaurant at the Sea Lodge Hotel, have been participating since the inception of Restaurant Week four years ago.
In creating the Marine Room's menu "” which includes macadamia-crusted Loch Duart Scottish salmon, hazelnut suneli-spiced Maine diver scallops and Oregon Kobe beef top sirloin "” Guillas and his staff are incorporating ingredients from around the world to take diners on a culinary journey.
"San Diego has experienced a renaissance in dining and culture over the past 20 years that parallels the community's growth," said Ingrid Croce, owner of Croce's Restaurant and Jazz Bar and founding chair of San Diego Restaurant Week, in a statement. "San Diego Restaurant Week is unique in that the event encourages local restaurants from all San Diego communities to band together to offer diners the opportunity to visit high-end dining establishments while indulging in "˜off-season' rates."
More than 130 restaurants across San Diego County are participating in this year's Restaurant Weeks. Each will feature a special three-course, prix fixe menu for either $30 or $40, depending on the location (tax, beverage and gratuity not included).
The event has been hugely successful, drawing more than 250,000 diners last year, according to organizers. This year, organizers decided twice is nicer.
Restaurant Week participants will include both return customers and newcomers, organizers said.
Charlotte Blanc and her husband went to Bertrand Mr. A's during Restaurant Week last year.
"It gives you a chance to visit restaurants that you may not go to otherwise," said the Point Loma resident. "Last year, I overheard diners taking about where they were going the next night, and who they were taking. It brings friends together."
The Blancs are hoping to try 1500 Ocean at the Hotel del Coronado this year.
Elijah Orozco, an East Village resident, said he hopes to use Restaurant Week as an opportunity to try dining hotspot Stingaree in his trendy downtown neighborhood.
San Diego Restaurant Week is sponsored by the California Restaurant Association's San Diego Chapter, the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau and San Diego magazine. Not only does it serve to highlight America's Finest City's finest restaurants, it's good for business, packing out eateries during normally slower weeknights (events run Sundays through Thursdays) during a slower time of the year.
No special tickets or passes are required for Restaurant Week. However, reservations are strongly recommended and can be made by calling the restaurants directly or by visiting www.sandiegorestaurant week.com.