Summer dinners at The Cottage - La Jolla, CA

With school starting this week, the summer is beginning to wine down. Luckily San Diego continues to have beautiful weather for longer than that! We were invited to check out the summer-only dinner menu at The Cottage La Jolla. Most people are familiar with this restaurant's popular brunch so we were curious how an evening meal would be! Plus, it's always wonderful to enjoy a quiet dinner on a patio with a loved one. 

It was a lovely Tuesday night to dine. The breeze was soft and the candles were already lit on the patio!

There's also seating inside but everyone sat outside to enjoy the serenity of the summer evening. We picked out a couple of items and waited patiently for our meal.

Capellini Crabcakes ($14) - pan seared lump crab, old bay aioli

Did we order noodles? That was the first thing that popped into my head when I saw this unique take on Crab Cake breading. The crispier noodle shell really pulled the soft crab together. The crab mix had minimum filler and was very lightly seasoned, working well with the slightly tangy aioli. The huge patties seemed like something we could easily put into a burger as well! The simple bed of arugula was last to leave on the plate... maybe some folks enjoy it raw but we'd probably enjoy it more with some kind of dressing. 

Ahi Nachos ($14) - seared ahi, wonton chips, asian vegetables, ginger vinaigrette, wasabi cream

We had no idea this appetizer would be so massive! Tuna on chips! These cuts felt very meaty but the vinaigrette could have used a tad bit more salt. I could definitely feel the slight burn from the wasabi cream though! The crunchy chips were sturdy and six pieces would be easy to share with a group! Surprisingly, all the portions here at The Cottage were bigger than we had anticipated!

Dennis ordered a drink too although I've already forgotten the name. The frothy layer reminded me of passion fruit bubbles. The liquid was juice-like and easy on the alcohol.

Crispy Fried Shrimp Tacos ($16) - grilled pineapple, corn salsa, cumin sour cream, napa cabbage, corn tortilla; Cottage Fish Tacos ($16) - corn tortilla, cilantro-avocado sauce, napa cabbage, pico de gallo, sour cream

Since it was Tuesday, it seemed like a taco kind of day. Typically two tacos come in each plate with a side of black beans. We were able to request one of each flavor instead. The favorite was the shrimp, freshly battered with a crispy crunch and some sweetness here and there from the pineapple. The fish was dressed with a yummy cilantro-avocado sauce but needed a little more of it. There was just so much cabbage everywhere and it seemed a little expensive for the portions.

Pepper Crusted Salmon ($22) - sweet potato hash, haricot verts, tarragon butter, crispy bacon a la plancha

My absolute favorite dish of the night paired healthy fish with a bit of indulgence! The main star was the salmon, presented with a lovely pepper crust and moist meat. The accompanying sweet potatoes were perfectly bite size and generously sprinkled with crisp caramelized bacon. It was a satisfying oiliness of bacon with the sauted sweet potato that kept me digging in, even as Dennis urged me to save room for dessert!

Cheesecake - peanut butter, chocolate, strawberries and raspberries

The desserts were stored in a showcase just inside the restaurant. We ended up with the Peanut Butter Cheesecake, subtle but creamy PB taste. Berries added a little fruity tart to it. The only miss was that dessert seemed to be drowning in chocolate sauce (kind of Hersheys sweet).

On the Tuesday night we dined, there was live music just a table's length away from us! Mr. Vinny Dee serenades the crowd every Tuesday night! His eyes were closed as his passionate voice and guitar strumming filled our hearts with soulful songs.

Dinner was comfortable but nothing too fancy. We have yet to try their brunch (lines are crazy on the weekends) but are looking forward to experiencing their best known feature soon. The lunch sandwiches like the crab melt are tempting too! This is the last week for summer dinners so stop by while you still have a chance. If you miss out, it will be back next summer and the ever popular brunch is reliably year-round!

Disclaimer: We were invited to dine here and the food was complimentary. We were not otherwise compensated and all opinions stated are my own.

The Cottage (La Jolla)
7702 Fay Avenue
La Jolla CA 92037
(858) 454-8409

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Comments

Soo's picture
Submitted by Soo (not verified) on Thu, 08/30/2018 - 8:22am

Nice dinner! Can't go wrong with tacos and salmon. I bought a bunch of salmon when it was $5.99/lb.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 09/06/2018 - 11:24am

Ooh great price! I remember that you have special techinique for crisping up the salmon skin! :)

Sharon's picture
Submitted by Sharon (not verified) on Sat, 09/01/2018 - 6:01am

Ahi Tuna nachos are my favorite. Street tacos are on the meals I planned for the week! Your posts keep my mouth watering! And my meal ideas flowing!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 09/06/2018 - 11:25am

Happy to help give ideas! Eating food and reading about it are some of my favorite pasttimes! :)

Marianne's picture
Submitted by Marianne (not verified) on Sat, 09/01/2018 - 1:43pm

All that food looks so good! I am going to have to try that place the next time I am in the area.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 09/06/2018 - 11:25am

I'm hoping to check out breakfast soon. They are so popular for brunch!

Stephanie's picture
Submitted by Stephanie (not verified) on Sat, 09/01/2018 - 8:10pm

That dessert looks amazing! The restaurant looks like a very fun atmosphere.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 09/06/2018 - 11:26am

The dessert display is so pretty! I think this place looks so perfect for a weekend brunch!

Stacy Craft's picture
Submitted by Stacy Craft (not verified) on Sun, 09/02/2018 - 10:07am

Yum this all looks so good! The shrimp tacos would be my pick.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Thu, 09/06/2018 - 11:26am

I thought the battered shrimp were tasty! Good choice ;)

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