Sunday, April 7, 2013

Flavor Del Mar With Brian Redzikowski (Del Mar, CA)

I first encountered Chef Brian Redzikowski's talent at BondSt in the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills (the hotel has now relaunched the space as Caulfield's Bar and Dining Room). Redzikowski didn't have full freedom to serve the food that he wanted as there were "signature" dishes that had to be kept on the menu but he certainly had fun, creative takes on sushi and sashimi. After leaving BondSt, Redzikowski now joins Flavor Del Mar just north of San Diego. I hadn't realized that's where he had gone to until I saw his name and the restaurant recommended in a magazine article by a San Diego chef as the place to go.

At the entrance of Flavor Del Mar is the bar and lounge area, but thankfully we were then led to the spacious, quiet dining room in the back.


As we sat, they brought out an amuse bouche of Cherry tomato, pistachio, fried shallots and pickled radish

For the most part his menu caters to his new audience. Seafood is well prepared without the molecular bells and whistles that I've seen at BondSt. There are plenty of Asian flavors like the Sesame seared salmon sashimi, lemon soy, ginger, chive, hon shimeji mushrooms ($15) or the Thai coconut soup.
Every now and then you find some surprising and exciting flavor profiles, like in this Scrambled farm egg, charred broccolini, pine nuts, tomato confit, Humboldt Fog goat cheese ($12)
If you love the strong flavor of goat cheese, try this. The runny scrambled egg is a great vehicle for the bolder flavors of the tomato and goat cheese.

After the appetizers, Chef Redzikowski sent out a special dish! Locally caught California spiny lobster with green curry foam and kaffir lime.

Spiny Lobster
He says he usually only gets two lobsters a day and he reserves them for special guests. I'm so glad I was one of them that night! The kaffir lime gave it such a lovely aroma and the lobster itself was so tender and sweet, fresh and perfectly cooked.

Maine diver scallops, potato two ways, cauliflower, wild mushroom ($34)

Again, the scallops were cooked very well. The accompaniments were substantial and flavorful enough to make this a satisfying entree. I was already full from all my other courses though!

We were stuffed so I just ordered the lightest sounding dessert, a Crepe Suzette. Pretty light as far as desserts go and I liked the texture of the crepes themselves.

Chef Redzikowski is doing a great job at Flavor Del Mar and perhaps providing the best dining option in Del Mar. As his audience grows there, perhaps he'll start introducing them to his more innovative side.

Flavor Del Mar
1555 Camino Del Mar
Del Mar, CA 92014
(858) 755-3663
Flavor Del Mar on Urbanspoon


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