Roy's Restaurant (La Jolla) - dinner

Dennis and I have date nights for celebrating special occasions and have found ourselves at Roy's La Jolla a couple of times (including their happy hour recently). From Faye's Fork, I found out they had recently rebranded this location to "Roy Yamaguchi’s Pacific Rim Cuisine" which is quite a mouthful! After a quick phone call today, I found out that it was only a test run and had been changed back to just Roy's. Thank goodness!

For our most recent visit, we decided to try their Sunday Special 2 course, which contains a salad appetizer and a two meat entree for $29.95. They were out of ceasar salad, Dennis's favorite type of salad, so we went with the Baby Greens Salad. The dressing was described as a Japanese Yuzu Honey Emulsion but had a slightly citrus-y taste, like a tangerine. It was spread over an otherwise very simple salad with shaved carrot, cucumber and grape tomatoes. I feel like the ceasar would have been better had it been available but at least this one was a reasonable size.

This is half of my main entree, the Misoyaki Butterfish. I was checking the menu online and noticed that butterfish was in quotes! So in reality it's Alaskan black cod! I never knew this but found it listed that way on our Roy's misoyaki butterfish recipe. Anyway, it's always delicious, super tender and flakes and melts in your mouth. On the side was baby bok choy and furikake rice. I didn't really care for the rice because it was sort of like a chewier block of grains!

This is the other half of my main entree, the Braised Short Ribs. The tasty beef, surrounded by its own braising sauce, fell apart so easily. It was beautifully paired with creamy mashed potatoes and some broccolini. I thought the main course meats was scrumptious and made up for the poor appetizer salad!

Dennis ordered the Seared Sea Scallop. The sauce around the scallops reminded me of a sweeter cinnamon. These were three very large scallops with a good amount of sear for the size. It felt a slight bit gritty while eating though because there was sea salt on it (or what i assume to be sea salt!) I sure hope it wasn't sand!

We also had the complimentary Edamame which has seasoning I really like. The secret ingredient is shichimi (Japanese red pepper seasoning) with the recipe available here.

We also ordered the Lakanilau Roll, which contains wagyu beef, snow crab, tempura asparagus and avocado in it. The beef is extremely soft and the little green sprouts were interesting. It's a different taste since it's not the typical sushi fish but with a higher price of $16 per roll, I probably wouldn't order it again.

We were mainly here to celebrate a birthday and the staff brought out this candlelit surprise.

The dessert was like a mini pecan pie with very little of the sugary sweet filling! I liked that the nuts were glazed slightly with the easy to bite outer crust. We were more or less full at the end of our meal.

To our surprise, the waitress brought a roy branded paper picture frame with a picture of us (taken earlier in the evening). On another occasion, they had printed a 'happy anniversary' message stuffed into our menu. I've always been satisfied with the service here because they put in the effort to make a customer happy and return to the place! For the deal-hunter in me, we used costco gift cards ($80 for $100 worth) and made a reservation with a code for $20 off $40. The total was still around $75 after tax and tip but the food was super tasty and Dennis had a great birthday dinner! Give us butterfish any day but none of that plain salad!

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Roy's Restaurant (La Jolla)
8670 Genesee Avenue
San Diego CA 92122
(858) 455-1616

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Comments

Jinxi's picture
Submitted by Jinxi (not verified) on Mon, 06/16/2014 - 8:52pm

Happy birthday to Dennis! I still haven't been to this place even though it's down the street from my home lol. The butterfish looks so yummy!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 1:21pm

Thanks! These posts are a little behind cuz we celebrated over a month ago! I don't really know of any other places that have butterfish so this is one of my 'indulgences'! I'm also into sea bass and similar softer fishes and seared fish if done properly.

J.S. @ Sun Diego Eats's picture
Submitted by J.S. @ Sun Dieg... (not verified) on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 7:48am

I have a Roy's date night post to put up too haha. Unfortunately we went to the Roy's dt and our experience was not so great. We loooove the 7 spice edamame and instead they do this cold edamame with a weird tasteless dressing. Should've gone to the La Jolla location :/

And thanks for the recipe for that edamame, now we can just copy it at home :)))

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 1:32pm

How weird about the edamame! I've only had this version, but I've also only been to this location. I believe the entrees and desserts have been consistantly good for us but a few of the other items can be so-so, like their boat appetizer and some of the hh menu. Also, the first time we tried the wagyu roll, I remember it being pretty awesome but this one did not live up to the memory.

Mary's picture
Submitted by Mary (not verified) on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 10:03am

Happy birthday, Dennis! I like how the drew on the plate in addition to writing the words out. So cute! Those seared scallops look so good. Looks like you had sort of their take on a surf and turf meal!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 1:40pm

Ooh I just noticed that it's a birthday cupcake drawn on the plate! Super cute! Also, good point about surf and turf! I only remember that phrase when it's written on the menu!

Faye's picture
Submitted by Faye (not verified) on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 3:46pm

Happy belated bday! I'm glad dinner was a success. The scallops look nice. I'm still kicking myself for not knowing about the free edamame on my last visit. I can't believe the cool service you guys have had here (the surprise pic in frame is too cool!)

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 5:17pm

I posted the recipe so you could maybe try it yourself if you had the special seasoning! I looked at the hh menu before posting this and didn't see the sliders. I wonder if those are gone now... I'd be sad.

When we make reservations anywhere, we always mention special celebrations in their comments box or to the person answering the call. They usually seat us somewhere more quiet or more private. The occasional complimentary desserts are a plus. The restaurants are happy that you come there to celebrate, or at least they should be!

Sam Nguyen-Kwok's picture
Submitted by Sam Nguyen-Kwok (not verified) on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 11:53pm

Hey Lynn! My wife and I went to Roy's for our anniversary last year, and it was AMAZING. We actually got a few of the dishes you guys did (butterfish, scallops, and edamame). It was nice to re-live the experience here in this post. :) Mmmmm...

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 06/19/2014 - 8:22am

Hi Sam! We like Roy's a lot and the parking is so much easier than downtown and some other areas. Another nice restaurant is Trulucks with their seafood dishes and decadent carrot cake! In fact, I think we ought to revisit that place this year! Thanks for checking us out.

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