If everything went well for you on Tax Day, you’re hopefully basking in the glow of an IRS refund. If that’s the case, time to treat yourself.
Decadent restaurants with price tags slightly on the steep side may be out of reach on a regular basis, but today, you might just have a little extra change to splurge. This week, Yelp has compiled a list of fancy places and plates to purchase with your newfound wealth. Enjoy!
Market (Del Mar)
Market is a truly upscale experience with services to satisfy any sort of spender. To start, order the Duck Liver Pate & Strawberry Rhubarb compote served with a fennel salad, grilled toast and balancing vinaigrette. For your entrée, ignore the price tag and get what you really want: the Cabernet-braised and drenched short ribs or the Yellowtail paired with tempura shrimp. No regrets! The Market is committed to local and boutique wines too, so ask your server for the perfect pairing.
Veladora (The Inn At Rancho Santa Fe: Rancho Santa Fe)
To begin, valet of course. Valet parking is complimentary at the Spanish-styled Rancho Santa Fe resort location that houses this restaurant. At Veladora, the cuisine is extraordinary, and worth every penny. Begin with the Maine Lobster and citrus salad, or inquire about the Chef’s daily-inspired risotto. Then go for the gold with the 16-ounce Brandt Farms New York Strip, plus house-made truffle fries on the side. You deftly did your taxes on time, so you definitely deserve dessert. The caramelized apple crisp, perhaps? Go on -- splurge! (Insider Tip: If you arrive early for your reservations, sip on a cocktail in The Pony Room across the hall.)
Addison (The Grand Del Mar: Del Mar)
If a dining experience by Relais & Châteaux Grand Chef William Bradley and his excellent staff can’t make you feel like French royalty, we don’t know what will. The wine list here is downright impressive; begin there if you dare. The menu is offered as a multi-course experience with items like saffron and garlic Prince Edward Island Mussels and Kobe Beef Short Ribs served with mushroom gratin and potato croustillant. The venue alone is a five-star experience and the perfect reward for keeping track of your receipts all year.
Vivace (Park Hyatt Aviara Resort: Carlsbad)
This AAA Four-Diamond restaurant in Carlsbad has a Italian-inspired cuisine arranged into several tasting menu offerings. Don’t hold back, pick the “adiago” option, which includes two appetizers, pasta, entrée and your choice of dessert or cheese. Kick off your feast with the Local Albacore Crudo with pine nuts and currents and the Prosciutto con Gnocchi Fritti e Fragole (Berkshire Prosciutto, strawberries, fried yeast doughnut and 25-year-old balsamico). Don’t get full so fast. You have a long ways to go with the deeply-satisfying menu options.
The Restaurant at Ponte (Ponte Vineyard Inn: Temecula)
While a wine country lunch at this stunning Temecula venue may be a steal, dinner – served only on the weekends – is totally worth the higher price tag. The current Spring Evening Menu is sublime. Sit in the garden-like patio and bite into the Crab Stack with generous lump crab and a refreshing mix of cucumber, mango, avocado, onion, pea shoots, ruby grapefruit and baby greens with grapefruit vinaigrette. Stick with seafood and order the sustainably-farmed Sapphire Salmon for your entrée: pan seared with a lime citrus rub and balsamic glaze.