In addition to my preview of San Diego Restaurant Week at Prepkitchen, I managed to visit three more spots to take advantage of Restaurant Week deals last week. Let’s recap!
Davanti Entoeca / $15 Lunch
I went out for lunch last week with a few of my co-workers and we headed over to Davanti Enoteca for their $15 lunch menu.
[sweet corn + cremini mushrooms + pantaleo cheese + walnuts + rosemary oil]
There were a few choices available on the SDRW Menu (which apparently I didn’t photograph but thought I had…) and I started my first course off with a corn salad. The corn was nice and sweet and was paired with some delicious mushrooms, crunchy walnuts, arugula (which I didn’t eat) and a touch of cheese. It says there’s rosemary oil, too, but all I could taste was sweet, delicious, crunchy corn. I loved the addition of the walnuts here.
[paccheri con salsiccia e rapini … giant rigatoni + sausage + oven roasted tomato + chilies]
For my entree, I went with the giant rigatoni which looked like it was made in house. The rigatoni looked like big, flat, lasagna noodles to me since a few broke during cooking. I was a bit underwhelmed by this dish as I thought the tomato sauce was a bit too sour and the pieces of sausage seemed like a tease. I may have set myself up for disappointment though because I made a very similar dish the weekend before:
I much preferred my homemade ragu/pasta sauce that had beef/pork, tons of fresh herbs from the garlic, lots of garlic and onion and a mild sweetness to it. Sometimes homemade is a ton better since you can make it exactly how you like it.
Davanti, you still have that ricotta + bread thing that I love though so you’re not out of my heart forever.
12955 El Camino Real
San Diego, CA 92130
Draft Republic / $15 Lunch
[san diego restaurant week menu]
For another weekly co-worker lunch (MOR CO-WORKERS) we went to Draft Republic for their 2 course meal.
[chop chop salad with kale, brussels, radicchio, broccoli, cabbage, black mission fig, shaved almonds, feta, vinaigrette]
I don’t eat tuna so the tuna dish was out of the question for me and corn dogs didn’t seem that exciting, so I went with the chop chop salad. This is like a whole bunch of raw veggies tossed in sauce. It was really hard to eat with a fork as everything was chopped fairly fine. I like the bits of fig (which were dried, sweet, and chewy) tossed in which gave it a nice contrast of flavor. I got bored eating this, though. So much raw veggie power going on.
[draft republic burger with american cheese, (sans) housemade pickles, potato roll and parmesan herb fries]
Of course when I got my entree I noticed there was ANOTHER salad on my plate. Jeez. If I had known that I MIGHT have gotten the corn dogs instead for a little variety, but I didn’t like the taste of this salad at all. Something about it was incredibly bitter and after two bites of it I just left it on the plate.
The burger didn’t look that big but it was STACKED with two juicy patties making it a meaty ass burger. It was pure meat and cheese goodness! Actually it came with pickles which I kindly asked them to remove (bad pickles! ew!). The meat was incredibly juicy and there was so much cheeeeeeeeese. I loved that part: melty, cheesy, goodness. It worked really well with the patties. Side note: they only serve this medium well. The way it’s made requires it otherwise apparently it won’t hold together. I asked.
This was a crap ton of food and I felt really worth the $15 deal considering a normal burger on their menu is $13.
4282 Esplanade Ct.
San Diego, CA 92122
The Cosmopolitan Hotel and Restaurant / $20 Dinner
[san diego restaurant week menu]
My third and final romp into Restaurant Week was with the Cosmopolitan Hotel & Restaurant in Old Town. Laura and I went to see a play at the Cygnet Theater on Friday and the Cosmopolitan is right behind the theater. It worked out well in our favor.
[kung pao calamari with sweet chili sauce, peanuts, and asian slaw]
We each got two different appetizers so we could share them. I got the calamari which was a small portion and I suspect much smaller than a “normal” sized portion. The calamari was excellent though – it has a light, crispy coating that made the calamari nice and crunchy. The sweet chili sauce gave it a nice punch of flavor without really being all that spicy. This actually turned out to be my favorite item of the meal.
[rustico bruschetta with herb goat cheese, chimichurri bruschetta + rustic bread]
Laura got the bruschetta and I think we both made frowny faces when we saw it was just two pieces. It was a bit hard to bite into the bread as it was very tough. Does “rustic” mean “day old” now? It sure felt that way. I also thought the presentation on this was a bit sloppy, like they just threw the bread on and tossed the topping all over the place. There were hardly any tomatoes on it so it didn’t really feel like you were eating bruschetta. Suffice it to say, it was just not that good.
[gnocchi with heirloom tomatoes, yellow squash, and asparagus]
I decided to spring for the gnocchi. On the regular menu this comes with scallops but they made it vegetarian for restaurant week. This was terribly underseasoned despite the vast amount of sauce that drenched the dish. I had to salt it a couple of times to bring it up to par so I could really taste anything. The gnocchi was tender and generally acceptable but alas, it felt pretty underwhelming.
[espresso braised short ribs with (sans) garlic brussel sprouts, and potatoes]
Laura got the short ribs and asked for no brussel sprouts. Our very efficient and nice waitress (who made sure to put our order in before a very large party of 25 before us) said there could be no subs for the restaurant week menu so we go no other veggies in return. That was okay. We both think brussel sprouts are incredibly bitter and not to our liking. The short ribs were quite tender and luckily better seasoned than my gnocchi.
Churros. Again, kind of underwhelming. They do look housemade but something about the flavor of them just didn’t do it for me. They were more chewy than crispy and didn’t quite have enough cinnamon-sugar goodness.
Banana cheesecake. Not something I’d want to eat again, either. Not very creamy and again was on the bland side. Not sure what’s up with the bland tasting food, but there you have it.
The Cosmopolitan is extending their Restaurant Week offering for another week and is available until October 4th, if you’re super curious about it.
The Cosmopolitan Hotel and Restaurant
2660 Calhoun St.
San Diego, CA 92110
And that’s my recap for San Diego Restaurant Week! Did you visit any awesome places last week? Anything you’d have again?