Honey-Roasted Ham, Rum-Soaked Pork Chops, Smoked Maine Lobster, Sweet Potato Pie and bottles of local wine. Now that we have your attention, it’s time to move past the massive turkey still digesting in your system from Thanksgiving and onto the next celebration: Christmas. While some may count gift-giving or movie-marathons as the main activities on this special day, we’ve found that it’s the simple act of eating that truly brings families and friends together. Whether an early brunch or an end-of-the-day dinner, meal time is one that causes everyone to pause their routines, bond and break bread.
Visitors traveling to San Diego for the holiday season, we welcome you with open arms. And those who call San Diego home and know no better place to spend the season, we encourage straying from the usual and trying a new way to toast the occasion. San Diego restaurants are debuting their 2012 Christmas menus, covering the coastline from Del Mar down to Coronado. Bring along the gifts and snag a kiss under the mistletoe on your way over, we’ve got your guide to 2012 Christmas at San Diego restaurants, on Tuesday, December 25th.
The Grand Del Mar: Christmas at The Grand Del Mar celebrates the flavors of the season with an artfully prepared dinner at Amaya and Addison, Southern-California’s only Five-Star/Five-Diamond restaurants. At Amaya, visitors are welcome to dine on Dec. 24th and Dec. 25th from 4pm-9pm. The three-course holiday tasting menu offers seasonal specialties such as Carmelized Butternut Squash Soup, Seared Squab Breast, Slow-Roasted Center Cut Pork Chop, Cranberry-Glazed Loch Duart Salmon, and for dessert, a Praline Yule Log. The menu is $75 per adult, $110 with wine and $30 per child. At Addison, guests can dine on Christmas Eve only, but enjoy seven courses of holiday fare such as Sea Scallops with Baby Romaine, Capers and Sauce Meunière, as well as Squab Rôti with Vanilla, Parsnips and Black Truffles. This menu is priced at $195 per person, $290 with wine, or a customary four-course menu available for $110.
Island Prime: The gorgeous bay views don’t hurt in making the succulent Christmas menu an unforgettable experience. The three-course menu features Christmas classics, cooked up the Island Prime way. Start with a choice of Wedge Salad, Butternut Squash Soup or a Salad of Local Baby Greens. Main course options include a Pomegranate Cornish Game Hen, Maple Glazed White Marble Farms Pork Chop, Cedar Plank Roasted and Herb Crusted Prime Rib. Be sure to save room for dessert, as Island Prime is offering choices of Pumpkin Goat Cheesecake, Dutch Apple Pie or Chocolate Pistachio Torte. For the little ones, the children’s menu offers an entrée choice of Prime Rib, Mac and Cheese or Chicken Fingers and a Marble Cupcake for dessert. Serving from 1-7pm, the Christmas menu is priced at $49.95 for adults and $12.95 for children.
Café Sevilla: On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, Café Sevilla will serve their regular menu and a festive holiday dinner menu priced at $29.95 per person. Entertain out-of-town guests with authentic tapas in this lively Spanish-inspired environment located on Fifth Avenue in the Gaslamp Quarter. Dine as the Spanish would, with Bocadillos, Tortilla Espanola, Fried Calamari, Sauteed Meatballs al Jerez, or Jamon & Truffle Stuffed Turkey Breast. Try some of the fresh options, including Ceviche, a Tuna Tartare Tower or the Green Mussels Escabeche. On Christmas Eve, head into Café Sevilla from 4pm-10pm with entertainment from 6pm-9pm. On Christmas Day, Sevilla celebrates from 4pm-11pm with entertainment from 7pm-10pm.
Terra American Bistro: For a farm-fresh Christmas feast, join Terra on Christmas Day from 2:30pm-6:30pm. First course options include an Arugula Salad, Mushroom & Brie Soup and Pumpkin Raviolis. Second course features Brown Sugar Mustard Glazed Ham, Herb Roasted Turkey, Herb Crusted Prime Rib, Grilled Pork Flat Iron and Pan Roasted Local Fish. End on a sweet note with dessert options of Egg Nog Crème Brulee, Pumpkin Toffee Cheesecake and Chocolate Mousse Napoleon. The Christmas Day feast is priced at $39 per person; $15 for children under 12.
The Prado: Nestled in Balboa Park, The Prado boasts multicultural flair in a sophisticated environment. Ideal for holiday dining, The Prado is serving a three-course Christmas dinner with seasonal dishes for everyone in the family. Start with the choice of Smoked Trout and Truffled Beans, Farmer’s Mixed Salad and Harvest Pumpkin Soup. Entrée options include Pumpkin Spiced Roasted Turkey Breast, Pan Roasted Sea Bass, Lemongrass Scented Scallops and Horseradish Crusted Prime Rib. For dessert, take your pick of Orange Crème Brulee, Cream Cheese Flan, a Pear Tart or a Chocolate-Hazelnut Mousse Bar. Children are not forgotten, as they can munch on Crispy Chicken Fingers, a Kid’s Turkey Plate or Three Cheese Mac & Cheese. Christmas dinner runs from 1-7pm and is priced at $49.95 for adults; $12.95 for children.
Hotel Del Coronado: Hotel Del’s lavish location by the sea is an elegant place to hold a Christmas dinner, while also giving guests a perfect picture of San Diego lifestyle. After skating by the sea, guests are invited to a bountiful Victorian buffet dinner in the Crown Room from 5pm-9pm on Christmas Eve. The buffet is $105 for adults, $45.50 for children 6-10 and free for kids 5 and under. On Christmas Day, the Oceanfront Ballroom and Crown Room will offer the traditional holiday buffet dinners, decked with all the trimmings from 12pm-6pm. Cost is $92.50 for adults, $38.50 for children ages 6-10 and free for kids 5 and under.
Hornblower Christmas Brunch and Dinner Cruise: For a Christmas celebration on the water, Hornblower Cruises & Events is offering a Christmas Day Brunch Cruise, as well as a Christmas Day Dinner Buffet. The Brunch Cruise will board guests alongside Santa Claus, cruising for 2-hours around San Diego Bay with free flowing champagne and sparkling cider, coffee, tea, soda and juice. The menu will feature traditional holiday dishes, a decadent dessert buffet and unbeatable new sights of San Diego. Cruising from 11:30am-1:30pm, the Brunch Cruise is priced at $59 per guest. The Christmas Dinner Buffet treats guests to a lavish and traditional holiday buffet in the evening aboard a luxurious yacht, with an appearance from Ol’ Saint Nick himself. The 2.5-hour yacht cruise offers a boarding glass of champagne or sparkling cider, a wine list and cocktails available for purchase, a buffet dinner, and DJ entertainment. Cruising from 3:30pm-6pm, the Dinner Cruise is priced at $84 per person.
Grant Grill: Spend Christmas Eve preparing for the big day at Grant Grill, inside the US Grant Hotel. The holiday menu offers elegance in the form of food. Guests looking for fine dining will find Fortified Chicken Bouillon, Molasses Cured Duck Breast, Dry Aged Strip Loin Roasted in Blue Spruce and Tahitian Squash Olive Oil Cake for dessert. The Christmas Eve dinner is priced at $85 and will seat between 5:30pm and 10pm. While you’re enjoying Chef Chris Kurth’s tasting, relish in the live holiday music.
Mistral at Loews Coronado Bay Resort: Waterfront dining steps away from the sand might be an atypical way to spend a winter season, but Mistral’s five-star dishes and Christmas menu is worth the change of scenery. The Christmas Eve Dinner in Mistral will offer modern cuisine while overlooking the San Diego skyline and Coronado Bay. Chef Patrick Ponsaty has created a special four course Christmas prix fixe menu for $75. Menu items include Maine Lobster Bisque, Brandt Beef Tenderloin, Mano de Leon Scallops and a Traditional Buche de Noel for dessert. Seatings will be at 5pm and 7:30pm.
**Check back for more 2012 Christmas dining options added daily.
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