AR Valentien at The Lodge at Torrey Pines

4.8
926 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Californian
In our signature restaurant, A.R. Valentien, Chef Jeff Jackson showcases, fresh market driven seafood, meats, produce and dairy products.

The menu is determined and influenced by what is available at any given time during the various seasons. Certain farms have been commissioned to produce items specific to the Lodge. Local small fish and seafood companies who deal in regional Southern California and Baja "catches" are utilized, as well as other west coast purveyors.

Out of respect for the quality of the foodstuffs available, the cooking is somewhat restrained in order to take advantage of the natural flavors and textures of the ingredients.

Because of this more "hands off" approach and the use of simple seasonings, various olive oils, and intense broths and juices as flavoring mediums, the dishes retain their nutritional integrity as well.
What 926 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.8
service
4.8
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Quiet
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was a really special evening, with excellent service, total attention to detail, superbly cooked and crafted dishes, and wonderful ambiance on the patio at sunset. Highly recommended!

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SB
San Diego
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service is excellent. Everything you would expect from the finest hotel; five star hotel dining & food was delicious ...the ambience is warm, beautiful with real wood burning in the fireplaces. It’s a great lodge ...my first selection for all business and social entertaining ... valet and maître d’ service is also the finest... as good as any Ritz in the world .. right up there with the lodge at pebble beach

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p
San Diego
15 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Classy place. Old fashioned charm. Nice for a business lunch. Service is a bit fussy but excellent. Food is great.

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b
Richmond
4 reviews
Dined on March 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The food was good, but we would like to see more choices, and more simple choices.
Example .. top appetizer being heard over and over again was quail eggs...really how many folks order quail eggs? The atmosphere was better than the choices that evening.

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LL
Minneapolis
75 reviews
Dined on March 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Of course the setting is superb. Service was attentive and good explanation of menu items. The two course menu offering was a lot of food for a noon lunch so we ordered the crab salad. Perhaps I didn’t listen well enough to find out that the crab salad didn’t have lettuce, only tasty crab salad filled avocado with a few sprigs of asparagus, egg and tomato. The caviar on the avacado was a nice touch. The other entrees of Caico spaghetti and brick chicken were very tasty and served on lovely artistic plates.
I was disappointed they didn’t offer their famous Drugstore Hamburger on the menu, We enjoyed the experience very much and will return.

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s
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We appreciate the unique choices offered and the way the foods were presented. We also liked the 'extras' that were given for each area of foods. Excellent chef and service!

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BM
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great time! delicious food, beverages, outstanding service and beautiful setting.
Our favorite place to have birthday celebrations or to spoil ourselves at anytime.
Continuing successes!!!

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U
San Diego
28 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The very best for outside dining. Views of the golf course and the weddings!

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JO
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We were celebrating St Patrick’s Day. Love the view and atmosphere. Service is terrific!
Just one issue-patrons brought their large dog with them in the outdoor lounge area and sat next to us. I am a dog person but was put off by sharing this beautiful place with a smelly dog. We asked the hostess to be moved.

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OT
Palm Springs
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The ambiance and setting overlooking the pool, golf course and Ocean was fantastic

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K
San Diego
65 reviews
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely birthday dinner for my husband. Steve G,,our server, was excellent and made the beautiful evening special. Food.....perfect. View,,,,,awesome. Love A R Valentien !

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FL
Los Angeles
7 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great steak! Great service.

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B
Philadelphia
749 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We enjoyed a fine dinner at Valentien’s from Amuse Bouche to complimentary sweets, enhanced by great service from our waiter, Steve. We ate outdoors, enjoying both a lovely sunset and the pleasant sounds of an accomplished guitarist. We began with delicious duck pate, and moved on to lovely scallops broiled in brown butter and succulent veal cheeks, perhaps the best I’ve ever eaten. The accompanying breads were tasty as well. Finally, a great Pinot Noir from the extensive wine selection complemented every morsel. Even the kilt-outfitted valet parking attendant provided a classy touch. Lovely evening.

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b
Los Angeles
24 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very positive experience. Easy , convenient and elegant.

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KH
Columbus
12 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Sitting outside, the view is beautiful. The food was very good and the service was excellent.

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HB
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on March 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Service was impeccable aand food was very good but pricey. Smoked trout appetizer was out standing, Prime Rib steak was very good, and scallops were good. Limited menu and quite a few dishes were cooked or marinated in garlic. I was surprised that they did not offer a fillet or more fish just grilled without all the sauces. Nice place but we were in a very noisy corner booth with 4 very loud internationals from the Middle East & Japan.
Nice experience but not somewhere we’d frequent due to the menu.
Breakast was $ $34.00 for one. And diner for two without wine was $140.00 for two with a lot of noise.

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OT
Nashville
5 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

If the service wasn’t sub-par, this could have been a great dinner. To start, the younger hostess was aloof and borderline rude. She could care less if you were there or not. We had a reservation and there was not an ounce of hospitality. After we sat in our booth for a while, we were greeted by our waiter. He quickly gave us the menu’s and disappeared. Again we sat there long enough that we were about to get up and leave when a young gentleman came over to try and fill in for our waiter, who he said was extremely busy. He tried his best at explaining the menu but couldn’t really answer any other questions we had. We told him we wanted a bottle of wine and he left to retrieve it. The bread boy came by followed by our waiter a few minutes later with our wine. He did apologize for being busy and he tried to smooth out any ruffled feathers we had about waiting. We ordered the chicken liver pate, grilled salad, ribeye steak, and roast chicken. All were absolutely fabulous. For a Sunday evening dinner, the food was perfect. At first, we said we would never come back to the restaurant but the food MIGHT make us think otherwise. Note to manager- The hostess is the face of your restaurant, if she is rude and not hospitality, you lose patrons. The first point of contact a person dining should have is a great hostess who is energetic and nice. They set the tone for the dinner and restaurant.

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OT
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love the gorgeous sunset through the Torrey Pines trees. The beautiful craftman decore and ambience. Excellent service, like we are family. Excellently prepared and delicious entrees. Perfect date night!

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MS
Los Angeles
9 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great time with friends. If I were being picky, I’d say the Caesar salad needed more dressing, and as soon as I asked for it, they brought extra right away! Those biscuits are to die for! Loved the scallops!

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SS
Central Coast
6 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thank you for providing such a wonderful restaurant experience . One of my favorite places.

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LP
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 5

Disappointing
Having had the place recommended we thought we would give it a try as we were going to see a play at the La Jolla Playhouse.
Arrived at 5:25 for a 5:20’reservation and was told to wait in lounge. No one ever came to get us so at 5:40 went back to hostess and got seated.
We allowed 2:20 for dinner but had to really stay on top of them to get us served in time for our show. We sat for 20 minutes before we even had a chance to
Order a drink. Staff was knowledgeable about menu and wine.
Very disappointed in our meals. I had the sturgeon and it was unusually fishy and this is
something I always order when given the opportunity. Spouse had the aged prime cut of something very tough. It was even served sliced. Had to ask for a steak knife

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J
New England
6 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent meal and service. It is always a pleasure to see a team from kitchen to waiters all on the same page. A very pleasurable experience.

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JJ
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

I've been wanting to go to A.R. Valentien for years because I've heard great things. For the price, this is not worth it. The menu is lacking options, and the service was not up to par with what you would expect out of a fine dining experience. We had to ask for refills and bread multiple times as they kept forgetting. I ordered the chicken which came with a soupy mess on the bottom. My husband ordered the Rib Eye; it came already cut which seems like something they should give as an option but serving a cut steak isn't a great idea if it's a high end steak dish. I will say they have some fantastic wine options that most restaurants do not offer and the cinnamon donuts at dessert were wonderful. Overall though, the wine and dessert wouldn't entice us enough to return.

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DA
Orange County
19 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Elegant evening to celebrate a birthday. Service, food, view all excellent. Highly recommend for a special evening for someone special.

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d
San Diego
44 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We returned to Valentien's after celebrating my wife's birthday last year. Again, we were not disappointed. Bradford, the waiter, was outstanding with his service and suggestions. We shall return to enjoy another wonderful evening and dinner in the near future.

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h
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Such a lovely setting for a celebratory lunch or romantic dinner. A.R. Valentien never disappoints. The food and service is first rate and the views are glorious.

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OT
Minneapolis
51 reviews
Dined on February 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had an absolutely amazing time at AR Valentien. One of the top 3 meals we have had anywhere. This was our second visit and we will go back next time we are in San Diego. Thank you!!

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DM
Phoenix
21 reviews
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was outstanding. Veal cheeks were best we.ever had. The ambiance was very inviting. And the service was excellent.

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OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

Even though we had booked our reservation month in advance (to celebrate a birthday), we learned the morning of that we were booked on the patio. With an ocean breeze and a high in the 50s, it was quite chilly to say the least. When we asked to be moved indoors, we were told that we could go to a sort of makeshift dining room that was temporarily set up. It was akin to convention tables and chairs, certainly not the same ambiance as the restaurant. We would never choose to pay AR Valentines prices for that ambiance and probably should have cut our losses there and gone to a different restaurant. And unfortunately, the food that evening did not make it better. It was fair but not great. We have dined here several times before and always had a good experience, but this night was extremely disappointing. It felt like the restaurant had overbooked and was scrambling to accommodate people. Despite having made the reservation a month in advance, I felt extremely frustrated and lost in the shuffle. I’m not sure we will ever go back.

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s
San Diego
45 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the best restaurants in town and our favorite.

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j
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Highly recommend! Food and service were amazing.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely restaurant.

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S
Tulsa
14 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love Torrey Pines Lodge & dining there was really special. I wish I lived closer!

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R
Dallas
26 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is a special date place. Hard to beat. Start off by the fireplace for drinks. Go outside for one kind of ambience or more formal inside

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BR
Cleveland
21 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic food. We’ve got a new favorite restaurant in the area.

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M
San Diego
20 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Disappointing! From the lack of service to the poor menu options AR Valentine does not deserve 5 stars. Will be dining less at this restaurant.

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LA
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Beautiful. Service is somewhat less than 5 star but you can’t beat the beautiful view and lovely surroundings! Food is nearly always very good.

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AO
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had a wonderful meal at AR Valentien - Feb 2019. The craftsman decor was stunning and the food was outstanding. My wife had the tasting menu with wine and everything was paired perfectly.

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LW
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Took my mom for a birthday lunch. The food was great and the service was outstanding! Will definitely be back soon.

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v
San Diego
19 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always appreciate new taste experiences. Why order what you can have anywhere or prepare at home? They had “veal cheeks” on the menu, something we have never encountered. Why not trust the chef? Glad we did. Amazing dish, tender, like a “light meat pot roast,” with a depth of flavor unparalleled from the deep dark sauce. The roasted baby vegetables were the best I’ve had. A complimentary braised endive also had an amazing caramelized flavor. Our salad and fish dishes were also nice as was the amuse bouche. Service was excellent, the room cozy and comfortable.

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