It’s all about the basics
BOTH THE MARINE ROOM and The Shores are overseen by personality-rich executive chef Bernard Guillas. And while the Marine Room is about elegance and fancy food and dazzling water views, The Shores is dressed-down, straightforward, and half the price point.
After much-needed physical upgrades (and more planned), The Shores now has Amy DiBiase running the kitchen on a day-to-day basis. DiBiase has a lengthy local pedigree that includes Laurel, Roseville, Baleen, Glass Door, Cosmopolitan Restaurant and several others.
Happily, what she’s doing at The Shores is her most mature work yet.
DiBiase keeps her cooking to five ingredients, so whether a diner orders vegetable and fish stew, mushroom baklava, short ribs, or even a half-pound Angus burger, five ingredients is what you get. The simplicity and directness of the cooking is remarkable because what’s highlighted is the taste of the basic ingredient — not the seasonings, sauces, or other embellishments. Potato gnocchi with braised veal and rabbit ragout is wonderful. Crispy skin salmon is luscious. And all of it is about the taste, which is abundant.
Worth noting is that the view from the bar is so spectacular it’s worth a visit on its own. Some evening go perch on a bar stool, order dinner or a drink, gaze out at the moving water through the fabulously framed view, and be awestruck. It’s why we live here, folks.
Service: The Shores can feel like an upscale coffee shop: it serves three meals a day to folks staying at the La Jolla Shores Hotel. Waitstaff, though kindly and attentive, still display some coffee-shop roots.
Patrons: An eclectic mix of locals and hotel guests, some dressed up and some dressed down.
Parking: On the street, but there’s also parking at the hotel, which the restaurant validates.
Noise: Hardly any.
Details: Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. At dinner, appetizers are in the $9-$12 range and entrées are $16-$26. Full bar. 8110 Camino Del Oro, La Jolla Shores.
Restaurant Reviews: By Stephen Silverman • Photography by Martin Mann
Photo above: Provencal fish stew in red-pepper broth
Photo right: Bernard Guillas and Amy Dibiase