Favorite Restaurants Where I’ve Dined: Luxe, High-end/casual, Cheap and Over-rated

 

 

Favorite Luxe Restaurants where I have eaten:

Paul Bocuse:  Lyon, France

Le Bernardin: New York City, New York

French Laundry:  Yountville, California

Michel Rostang: Paris, France

Hotel Cipriani Fortuny Restaurant: Venice, Italy

Oustau de Baumaniere: Les Baux de Provence, France

Taillevent: Paris, France

Babbo:  New York City, New York

Masa: San Francisco, California

Tour D’Argent: Paris, France

Twist by Pierre Gagnaire at Mandarin Oriental: Las Vegas, Nevada

Picasso: Las Vegas, Nevada

Le Cirque: Las Vegas, Nevada

Providence: Los Angeles

La Bourgogne: Alvear Palace Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina

 

Favorite high-end restaurants:

Bar Boulud: New York, New York

Harry’s: Venice: Italy

Michael Mina: San Francisco, California

Crustacean: San Francisco, Beverly Hills, California

Papagallo: Bologna, Italy

Bar Tartine: San Francisco, California

Circo: Las Vegas, Nevada

Carnevino: Las Vegas, Nevada

Perbacco: San Francisco, California

Bouchon: Yountville, Las Vegas

Fifth Floor: San Francisco, California

Farallon: San Francisco, California

Julian Serrano: Las Vegas, Nevada

Miró (French): Bacara Hotel & Spa, Santa Barbara, California

Maravilla (Ojai Valley Inn): Ojai, California

Patina: Los Angeles, California

Baronessa Ristorante: Taormina, Sicily, Italy

Two Oceans Restaurant: Cape Town, South Africa

Azul (Asian fusion, Modern European): Miami, Florida

L’Origan (French): Chateau d’Artigny, Montbazon, Loire Valley, France

Circa 1886 (New American): Charleston, South Carolina

Westgate Room (French, Seafood): San Diego, California

Best casual/upscale eateries:

Bistro Paul Bert: Paris, France

Chez Denis-La Tour de Montlhery: Paris, France

Risorante Hosteria Vecchi: Modena, Italy

Trattoria da Gemma: Amalfi, Italy

La Regalade Saint-Honore: Paris, France

La Rotonde Brasserie (Hotel Negresco): Nice, France

Osteria del Tempo Perso: Ostuni, Puglia, Italy

Trullo D’Oro: Alberobello, Puglia, Italy

Benoit: Paris, France

Allard: Paris, France

Jacaranda (Seafood): Sanibel, Florida

Raco de la Vila (fire-grilled meats): Barcelona, Spain

Elizabeth on 37th (New American): Savannah, Georgia

Churrascaria Palace: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Brasserie Georges: Lyon, France

‘ULU Ocean Grill (Seafood) : Four Seasons Hualalai, Kailua-Kona

Palmilla Restaurant (Seafood; European-inspired): San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Café Epicerie: Lyon, France

Bistro de Saint Jean: Lyon, France

La Brasserie Bordelaise: Bordeaux, France

Olde Pink House (Southern): Savannah, Georgia

Vin Antico (Italian): San Rafael, California

Sansei Seafood: Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii

Merriman’s-Waimea (Hawaii Regional Cuisine): Kamuela, Big Island, Hawaii

Merriman’s Market (Hawaii Regional Cuisine): Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii

700 Drayton (New American): Savannah, Georgia

Il Cortile (Italian): Paso Robles, California

Koberl at Blue (New American): San Luis Obispo, California

Café de la Paix: Paris, France

Travatore: Venice, Italy

Ty Lounge (Tapas): Santa Barbara Biltmore, Santa Barbara, California

WP24 (Asian fusion): Los Angeles, California

Hidden Treasure (Garifuna, Belizean): San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Sunset Grill (Seafood, Central American): San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Hoppe’s Garden Bistro (French-inspired): Cayucos, California

Bertrand at Mr. A’s (New American; Great city views): San Diego, California

Crown Room (Sunday brunch): Hotel del Coronado, Coronado, California

Sevilla (Spanish): San Diego, Long Beach, California

Blue Point Coastal (Seafood): San Diego, California

George’s at the Cove (New American): La Jolla, California

Hexagone (French): San Diego, California

Jack and Giulio’s (Italian): San Diego, California

Chez Loma (French): Coronado, California

Trattoria alla Madonna: Venice, Italy

Jayne’s Gastropub: San Diego, California

Azu (Mediterranean): Ojai, California

Ranch House (Traditional American): Ojai, California

Payard Patisserie and Bistro: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

Mon Ami Gabi (French bistro): Las Vegas, Nevada

Roy’s (Hawaiian fusion): Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii

Prima Ristorante (Italian): Walnut Creek, California

Oak Grill (Best Cobb salad): Ojai Valley Inn, Ojai, California

Pacific Dining Car (Steakhouse): Los Angeles, California

Water Grill (Seafood): Los Angeles, California

Silk (Vietnamese): Portland, Oregon

Paragon Restaurant (New American): Portland, Oregon

Armando al Pantheon (Roman): Rome, Italy

Cicada (Italian; gorgeous Art Deco): Los Angeles, California

Osteria Mozza (Italian), Hollywood, California

Bacchanal (Buffet): Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

Rue de Jean (French bistro): Charleston, South Carolina

Biba Restaurant (Italian): Sacramento, California

FIG (New American): Charleston, South Carolina

Church and State (French): Los Angeles, California

Mario’s (Italian): Riverside, California

Oviedo (Spanish): Buenos Aires, Argentina

Sea Rocket Bistro (Seafood, Vegetarian): San Diego, California

Bistro Jeanty (French bistro): Napa, California

Waterboy: Sacramento, California

Kosebasi (Meze): Istanbul, Turkey

The Stonehouse (Contemporary American): San Ysidro Ranch, Santa Barbara, California

555 East (Steakhouse): Long Beach, Califonia

Plantation House (Hawaiian, seafood): Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii

Brown’s Beach House (Seafood): Fairmont Hotel, Kamuela, Hawaii

db BRASSERIE: Las Vegas, Nevada

Casa de Jamon: Altea, Spain

El Pescador, Altea, Spain

Great closed restaurants:

Daniel Boulud Brasserie: Las Vegas, Nevada

Alex at the Wynn: Las Vegas, Nevada

Sky Room at La Valencia: La Jolla, California

Copia: Napa, California

Angele: Napa, California

Mr. Stox: Anaheim, California

The Madison: Long Beach, California

Best cheap or dive eats:

Juanita’s Taco Stand: Encinitas, California

El Calamar (Mexican seafood): Santa Ana, California

Mama’s Meatballs (Italian): San Luis Obispo, California

Sea Chest: Cambria, California

Jean’s (French): Colton, California (sadly, he died last year; restaurant closed)

Joyful House (Chinese): Las Vegas, Nevada

Lotus of Siam (Thai): Las Vegas, Nevada

Jambel Jerk Pit (Jamaican): San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Bamboo: Hawi, Big Island, Hawaii

Schooner’s Wharf (Seafood): Cayucos, California

Clary’s (Breakfast, brunch): Savannah, Georgia

Brodard (Vietnamese): Garden Grove, California

Versailles Restaurant (Cuban): Miami, Florida

Papa Cristo (Greek): Los Angeles, California

R & G Lounge (Chinese, Seafood): San Francisco, California

El Fogon (Creole and Mestizo): San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Willow Creek (Comfort): Buttonwillow, California

Chiaro di Luna (Italian): Bologna, Italy

Hula Grill (Hawaiian, American):  Kaanapali, Maui, Hawaii

The Lobster Trap (Seafood): Avalon, Catalina Island, California

Valentina: Altea, Spain

Over-rated restaurants:

Mix (French, New American): Las Vegas, Nevada

L’Atelier de Joel Rubuchon (French): Las Vegas, Nevada

B& B Ristorante (Italian): Las Vegas, Nevada

Jaleo (Spanish): Las Vegas, Nevada

Valentino (Italian): Santa Monica, California

Comme Ca (French): Los Angeles, California

1500 Ocean (Traditional American): Hotel del Coronado, Coronado, California

Tapenade (French): La Jolla, California

Sensi at Bellagio (Asian Fusion): Las Vegas, Nevada

Scarpetta (Italian): The Cosmopolitan, Las Vegas, Nevada

Charleston Grill (New American): Charleston, South Carolina

Mr. Chow’s (Chinese): Beverly Hills, California

Donovan’s San Diego Gaslamp (Steakhouse): San Diego, California

Zeffirino (Italian): Venetian, Las Vegas, Nevada

Casa Cruz: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Ristorante Terrazza Danieli: Hotel Danieli, Venice, Italy

Lucky’s (Steakhouse): Montecito, California

Disappointing return visit:

Marine Room (Seafood): La Jolla, California

Fish Story (Seafood): Napa, California

Canoe House (Hawaiian): Mauna Lani, Kamuela, Big Island

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