For years I've watched Anthony Bourdain visit exclusive restaurants all over the world. His best reviews primarily include places that serve you smaller portions of specialty recipes. He goes wild with one bite. i could not understand this.
I'm used to the eateries that serve you a meal on one plate. An expensive steak, lobster, etc. maybe start off with some sort of salad and follow up with the ever popular dessert of cheesecake or some kind of chocolate cake.
Sea and Smoke delivers the explosion of flavors in each bite. Now I get where the "food critics" are coming from. The expressions and exclamations of the guests I've brought to Sea and Smoke have been priceless.
Finally San Diego has grown up.
7/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Eating out on the patio beats
Eating out on the patio beats any other San Diego restaurant's ambience. Feels like a summer night in Italy.
7/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
The Dude abide again...
Matt Gordon's new joint is awesome,
We started with their original cocktails and Scotch flight, wonderful, then went into our starter
a great goat cheese and delicious cold cuts duck prosciutto, wild board, venison and black truffle.
The Lamb was just to die for, with the vinaigrette based sauce brought me back to my childhood, I just used any side dish to suck out the sauce, yummy. The scallops were excellent too. And we closed with a personal dessert prepared by Matt himself. Chocolate feast and the grilled peach. We can't wait to go back.
8/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great addition to Flower Hill
I didn't know what to expect since I love Urban Solace, but have found Solace and the Moonlight to be less than consistent in food quality and service. My friend and I were both pleased with our whole meal - the entire staff could not have been friendlier and accommodating and the food was delicious. The highlight of the meal was the Hamachi starter with compressed watermelon, pickled jicama and jalapeño ash. As strange as it sounds, the ash added so much flavor and the jicama - wow- these were just little pieces, but packed a lot of flavor. The arugula salad was balanced and fresh. The salmon entree was cooked perfectly and flavorful, but nothing earth-shattering. So excited about this addition the North County restaurant scene.
8/7/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great new restaurant!
This was our first time here and it was positive in every way. We shared starters, salads, ordered our own entree and shared desserts - all were cooked perfectly, had a beautiful presentation and were very tasty. The staff was very friendly, the service was very attentive but not intrusive. The restaurant was immaculate. We will definitely go here often and highly recommend it to others.
8/9/2013 12:00:00 AM
Two thumbs up!
Was a frequent visitor to the old Paradise Grille, so curious as to what went in it's place...was not disappointed!
Fantastic menu...selection of cheeses with the duck and wild boar to begin with.
Entree of the scallops were superb! (High praise from my friends on the duck and the pork shoulder as well)
The beet gratin...OMG...an extra hour on the treadmill, but so worth it.
Definitely try the Sea & Smoke dessert...it is interesting to say the least. Really enjoyed it, but not if you have a sweet craving.
Overall very happy...will be returning!
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great Addition To Del Mar
My only disappointment was the choice of chairs. I know for sure that my husband will not eat here because the chairs are too uncomfortable the Service was very professional and the food was relish
8/15/2013 12:00:00 AM
Came here for the first time. Waitress explained the family style concept which allowed my husband and I to share multiple things. Scallops and lamb shoulder were both delicious!
8/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
Another outstanding meal!
This is my 4th visit to Sea & Smoke in their short time of opening which speaks to how I feel about their restaurant. Once again they deliver. The horse races ran late and they accommodated my call to move our reservation back 15 minutes on a Saturday night. The hostesses were friendly and we were seated upon arriving. Our server was attentive, the food delicious and the back patio beautiful. We are wine club members at Scribe and their wine pairs well with the menu at Sea & Smoke. We will be back again and I want to try their brunch too.
8/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
2nd time still as good as the 1st
The food, service and hospitality are all amazing.
8/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
Enjoy a great meal and celebrated a friends birthday. The beef carpaccio was great, loved the charred green beans and enjoyed the most flavorful and moist pork chop! It is beautifully decorated...light, modern and fun. The service was attentive and informative. I will definitely return!
8/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great Food, Drinks and Staff
Like the layout of the building. The staff are all really nice and knowledgeable. The menu is fantastic. I highly recommend the beef marrow, the porkbelly, the asparagus and arugula salad.
Their selection of cocktails and spirits was also amazing. A lot of small batch stuff from local distilleries made this place very special.
8/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Still celebrating after the races
Even with our great GPS "Sea and Smoke"
was hard to find (we do not live in SD/Del Mar and didn't
realize this charming and winner of a restaurant was located in a small Mall
area. Sea & Smoke had only been open 1 month and definitely had its act together. The service was great, the food, was a bit pricey but Very Good. We were with friends who found the place charming as well and we all agreed to return.
8/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
We were in San Diego for Bike
We were in San Diego for Bike the Bay and wanted to take my son and wife out for a fun dinner. The Sea and Smoke fit the bill. They had a variety of items on the menu but ultimately decided on the half lobster, scallops, and lamb dishes. All were prepared well and served in a unique fashion such as the scallops came on a plank. Although we sat inside, the outside patio looked like a special treat. The inside noise level was energetic but we were able to have family chatting and hear across the table. The service was a bit below par but I ascribe this to a newly opened restaurant. All in all we had a nice meal in an up and coming place that appealed to the whole family.
8/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great Casual Atmosphere!
We drove by this place several times and decided to try it with a large group! It was great! We sat outside - the staff was very helpful with the heaters for the perfect temperature! We would definitely go back again!
8/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
Our second visit. After sitting in very noisy main indoor dining area last time, we requested the out door patio and found the area very pleasant. The food is outstanding. The portions vary in size. Some should be split while others would not be enough for two. More help from the wait staff would be helpful. The fact that bread is extra is a major negative along with very hard "city park" chairs in the patio.
8/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Another great meal at Sea & Smoke!
We love this gem of a restaurant and their menu. I believe this is our 5th time dining here and they only opened in July! We have had just about everything on the menu and have not found fault with any. The duck was overcooked just a bit though. The salmon has been our favorite along with the cheeseboard and speciality cocktails.
8/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Our overall experience at Sea and Smoke was great. Our favorite was the scallops.
9/1/2013 12:00:00 AM
well run, friendly and good food
We had dinner with a party of eight there and will go back. Interesting menu, well presented and tasty. We enjoyed the whole vibe of the place and will go bak again.
9/7/2013 12:00:00 AM
We had a group of.six woman. We started out.on patio on the.couches. our.waitress was outstanding and.the.appetizers were large and delicious. We.then moved to.a table.on patio and had a different waiter who was equally as good. Again food.was.excellent.
9/9/2013 12:00:00 AM
I took my husband here for his birthday and we had a great meal. The menu items are savory and really yummy just like Urban Solace, one of our San Diego favorites. The service was ok, the waitress was nice but gave us no inspiration what so ever. The other service staff was not very friendly either.
9/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great restaurant in north county
We actually have been there twice since we went to this restaurant. We have had great food, and great times. First we went to dinner. We loved the starters, Cauliflower dip with goat cheese and smoked toast, Not may places feature several styles of mescal. The Ode to Oaxaca was phenomenal. Dinner was superb. We tried the clafortis, classic french dessert with fresh berry....yum. All in all we had a great time, service was very caring and concerned about our good time.
We went to breakfast on Sunday, and we were not disappointed. the pour over coffee was extra special table side,I doubled back for the cast iron corn bread Benedict with salmon, and it was out for this world. We are glad to have this new addition to our neighborhood.
9/14/2013 12:00:00 AM
Extremely pleasant experience
Extremely pleasant experience overall. Highlight was the quality of the food and care in its preparation. The "open" kitchen, separated behind glass is a nice touch. You get to see the work being done without the noise and odors that often intrude into the dining area. My companion and I both selected fish dishes and shared a pair of sides, which was perfect. We shared the Peaches Foster dessert, which was outstanding! The service was prompt and helpful, but not overwhelming. Cost is on the pricey side, but the quality and experience offset that. My only complaint is the $20. corkage fee (wow!) and the high priced wine list. Did not see any wine "specials" at a lower price point. Strongly recommend giving Sea & Smoke a try.
9/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
My husband and I sat in the lounge/bar. If your in a hurry probably not your spot. Service is a bit slow but good. I had the sea bass, it was just okay. Started with a meat and cheese board. My husband couldn't stop talking about it. He also had the pork belly and it was delicious. We will definetly be returning. I will just try something other then the sea bass.
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
This was my first visit, and I was really impressed with what a great job they did on the interior if this place. The food was tasty, the service was great. We sat outside, and it was really enjoyable. I'll definitely be back!
9/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
The outdoor courtyard had a nice ambiance. Waiter was excellent, and food was 5 star in our book!
10/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
Very interesting, innovative
Very interesting, innovative and varied menu with nice relaxed atmosphere.
10/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great twists on familiar foods!
We were initially wow'd by the creative cocktails.....then the waitress lead us to consider a vegetarian dish that we normally would not have selected.....out of this world tasty! I liked that they have 3 size servings of wines so that you can either sample OR just have a little glass with dinner after a cocktail.
Dessert menu looks intriguing and promises to be a taste delight, but we were full after dinner, and could not eat one more thing this first visit. We will return!
10/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
I brought my own wine , corkage was reasonable$20, both appetizers bone marrow was excellent liver pate pretty standard. The duck and quail entries were terrific. I didn't have dessert not a fan of destructed desserts and that seemed to be what was on their menu. Breakfast are excellent, egg casserole and great Benedict's. I will be going back fine experience.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
It was our first time visiting
It was our first time visiting Sea and Smoke since it opened. Our food was great and our service was fabulous.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great place for Del Mar
My wife and I celebrated our 11th Anniversary there, as we are big Matt Gordon fans.
Lots of space here: indoor, outdoor and bar.
Once seated, we were offered free champagne! Nice touch :-)
The bone marrow was adventurous, but it paid off - delicious!
Scallops for me and Lobster for the little miss. Sides of mushrooms, carrots and brussel sprouts. Everything fresh and local.
Worth the trip up from North Park.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good to know
Loved the braised lamb shoulder and the chicken liver appetizer. Menu was hard to find something that I thought was appealing and not too much food.
10/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
Everyone in our group loved their dish. We started with the cauliflower dip which was delicious. But, I absolutely loved the beet salad. Such delicious flavors. the atmosphere was cool and modern. Just be careful of the drink that you order. I tried the cucumber, mint & pink lemonade. It was very good but it was the size of a cocktail and no refills. And, it was $6! Way too much. I wish I would have asked about refills before ordering. Even with endless refills I wouldn't order this non-alchoholic drink for $6 again.
10/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
Everything was really great - the drinks, the service, the ribeye and porkchop, the attentive staff. Would definitely come back and recommend to friends.
10/25/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great food and great service
Took my wife here for her bday and it was amazing, we had the carpaccio, the summer squash salad ( you have to order this), the burger and the sea bass. All were excellent and our server took great care of us, even bringing out a pumpkin sorbet for my wifes bday. We will be back
10/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Nice new Del Mar option
The menu is interesting and most dishes were well prepared. It is expensive though; they've gone the route of only an entree with no sides, and each small dish of sides is $6. That's a lot for 7 small carrots, if you ask me. So be prepared to spend money. Personally, I prefer a restaurant where the chef carefully creates the entree and sides as an entire complementary meal.
One complaint--the mixed drinks are pretty weak--a margarita in a small glass was packed with ice and very little margarita. Seems they are shaving costs off at the bar!
10/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Fun, but need to smooth some edges
Really interesting menu and concept. Definitely a good addition to north county. But, wome of the food was great, some was so-so. Ambience is nice. And the service was spotty. Took very long to get drinks, which seems odd. Hopefully, the wait staff is just getting their act together.
Small plates were the best, would definitely go there for the bar and appetizers
10/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Fantastic wine list and cheese board selection. Great food, lovely courtyard area. Would highly recommend.
11/1/2013 5:00:00 PM
Great new place!
I am particular on where I eat. I will go again! Loved the outside patio, very comfortable. The burger with fries and spinach salad were outstanding. Best fries ever! The Niman burger had wonder flavors and nice brown bits. Service bright, alert, helpful and friendly.
11/9/2013 4:00:00 PM
Great ambiance, food and service
We had a wonderful dinner with friends. The pork special was excellent. The vegetarian in the group was happy. Oyster (kind of Rockefeller) delicious and the server was friendly and extremely helpful. Reasonable noise level which allowed us to talk normally and carry on a conversation without interference. Not inexpensive but worth the price.
11/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Brasserie or not
Sea and Smoke bills itself as an American Brasserie. The food part make sense...bone marrow, the olives. chicken pate the great bread. The disconnect is the service. Brasserie's (at least in Europe) get the food out pretty quick. That isn't always the case here.
That being said, it is Del Mar, and I suppose many folks view the restaurant as more of a fine dining experience.
Next time I will ask the server to serve our food quicker. Burger was great Wednesday night Everything we have eaten there is solid, and we have been there 6 or 7 times.
11/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
Best of theNew
We were customers of the previous restaurant. Someone said to try the new Sea and Smoke. We did and we were
very happy. Could NOT have had a better lunch. Must try
11/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
wonderful new boutique restaurant
fantastic chef's table for 8 with view into the kitchen. great menu and nice happy hour. great creations from the chef
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
Early evening supper date
Lovely evening at Sea and Smoke. Cheese and meat board to start was fabulous. A great unusual selection with some delicious accompaniments such as toasted pecan and home made jelly. Our burgers were hearty and well made. Good wine selection and attentive but not obtrusive service.
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
Interesting food and cocktails. A nice sunny outdoor spot that was very pleasant, despite being in the middle of a shopping mall. Kids loved the deep friend french toast.
11/16/2013 4:00:00 PM
Good, unusual preparation
Good, unusual preparation of food. My lobster sandwich could have had a bit more lobster on it. Lobster benedict looked awesome, My friend had that and said it was delicious.
11/25/2013 4:00:00 PM
Friendly place great service
Starters were delicious
Most main courses and sides just ok-
pork belly and
Lamb shoulder pretty delicious.
Desserts almost inedible. How can you
mess up gelato?
Expected more for the price and the heavy
emphasis on fresh local ingredients.
11/28/2013 4:00:00 PM
Dinner for 8
Great evening at Sea and Smoke ... Good food, and very friendly service.
11/29/2013 4:00:00 PM
Well done S&S
I was hesitant to eat here because I head it was kinda spendy. But we had a great dinner (salmon and pork belly) and a chicken liver pâté app and it was only $66. Definitely worth another visit.
12/4/2013 4:00:00 PM
Lunch on a cold day, so we
Lunch on a cold day, so we ate inside, not the ambience we would have preferred, being outdoors. But food was universally delicious.
12/10/2013 4:00:00 PM