Tag Archives: Dio Deka

Bay Area restaurants for Mother’s Day: Santa Cruz area and Los Gatos

A dish from a past Sunday brunch at Hult’s (not part of their Mother’s Day brunch): pulled pork eggs Benedict with cheddar, slaw & bbq sauce

A dish from a past Sunday brunch at Hult’s (not part of their Mother’s Day brunch): pulled pork eggs Benedict with cheddar, slaw & bbq sauce

Dining out on Mother’s Day is a popular plan, so if you haven’t made reservations yet, better hurry: here are a few restaurant highlights for Santa Cruz and the surrounding areas and Los Gatos, plus a Manresa Bread box (pre-order for breakfast at home).

Also see:

Santa Cruz Area

Shadowbrook
Popular with locals and tourists alike, the usually-dinner-only Shadowbrook will open its doors at 11:30 a.m. on Mother’s Day. Reservations are available until 8:30 p.m. and customers must call 831-475-1511 (no online reservations accepted). The dinner menu will be served all day, and Mother’s Day specials will include spinach/gruyere quiche,  chicken Marsala, and 14 oz. Angus ribeye with lobster Bernaise.
1750 Wharf Rd., Capitola

Chaminade
The Chaminade offers its annual Mother’s Day brunch buffet from 9am-3pm; the price is $64.95 (adults), $18.95 (kids 6-12), and free for kids under 6. Mother’s Day is the restaurant’s busiest day of the year; it always sells out. New executive chef Nicholas Church has created an extravagant menu including a savory seafood bar (including Dungeness crab legs), bourbon glazed honey ham with Jack Daniels glaze, prime rib, omelets made to order, and Belgian waffles with apple compote and fresh berries. Additional highlights: fresh fruit and vegetable medleys, chocolate fondue, and a sundae bar. The kids’ buffet features chicken strips and fries, mini pancakes, and mac and cheese. Call (831) 475-5600 for reservations.
One Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz

Sanderlings
Sanderlings at Seascape Resort has a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2:30 pm; the price is $47.95 for adults (with a mimosa or a glass of champagne or sparkling cider) and $21.95 for kids 12 and under. Selections include a prime rib carving station; a fresh seafood bar; a salad assortment; fresh fruit; and baked breads. There will be special entrees for kids. Call (831) 662-7120 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
One Seascape Resort Drive, Aptos

Hollins House
Hollins House at Pasatiempo has a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2 pm; the price is $65 (includes a glass of champagne). The menu will include made-to-order omelets; Applewood smoked bacon; a carving station with prime rib; Skuna Bay salmon; French toast bread pudding; a meat and chees board; and several gourmet salads. Desserts include crème brulee and carrot cake. Their more casual restaurant next door, MacKenzie Bar & Grill, will be serving an a la carte menu with brunch selections for adults (corned beef hash, eggs benedict, burgers, etc.) and kids (including eggs and grilled cheese sandwiches).
Call (831) 459-9177 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
20 Clubhouse Road, Santa Cruz

Los Gatos

Manresa Bread Mother’s Day Box
Pre-order breakfast for mom this Mother’s Day at Manresa Bread. The Mother’s Day Box includes two kale parmesan scones, two monkey breads, one bag of Manresa Bread almond granola, a 4 oz. jar of Big Sur marmalade, and an optional bag of Verve Street Level coffee. The Mother’s Day Box is available for pre-order on the Manresa Bread web site to pick up at Manresa Bread in Los Gatos. Pricing is $27 without coffee, $40 with coffee. The last day to pre-order is May 5.
276 N. Santa Cruz Ave., Los Gatos

Campo di Bocce
Campo di Bocce will offer a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2 pm; due to the popularity of the restaurant’s brunches, table reservations are limited to one hour. Food selections will include made-to-order omelets, a prime rib carving station, waffles and pancakes, sausage and bacon, fruit, pasta, salads, and strawberry crepes pastries. There are two prices: one for brunch only, and one for brunch and playing an hour of bocce. Adults are $34.95 without bocce and $47.45 with bocce; kids under 12 are $17.95 without bocce and $30.45 with bocce. Call (408) 395-7650 for reservations.
565 University Ave., Los Gatos

Dio Deka
Mediterranean/Greek restaurant Dio Deka will offer a special a la carte brunch menu. Selections will include Eggs Benedict, Strapatsada (baked eggs with tomato sauce, greens, chickpeas and Greek spices), Paithakia (mesquite-grilled boneless lamb-loin chops), and caramelized “Greek” toast with citrus-marinated strawberries. Call (408) 354-7700 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
210 E. Main St., Los Gatos

Hult’s Restaurant
Hult’s is serving a prix fixe brunch for $49, with reservations from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Customers can select from two to five selections for each course. First course options include Swedish pancakes; main courses include chicken and waffles (sous vide fried chicken and cinnamon waffles plus bacon hash) and Eggs Benedict. Desserts include raspberry sorbet. Call (408) 354-3434 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
165 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd., Los Gatos

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Bay Area restaurants for Mother’s Day: Santa Cruz, Los Gatos, San Jose

A dish from earlier this year at Hollins House, as posted on their Facebook page February 24, 2015

A dish from earlier this year at Hollins House, as posted on their Facebook page February 24, 2015

Dining out on Mother’s Day is a popular plan, so if you haven’t made reservations yet, better hurry: here are a few restaurant highlights for Santa Cruz, Los Gatos, and San Jose.

Also see:
Mother’s Day menus for Monterey, Carmel Valley, Pacific Grove

Santa Cruz Area
Hollins House

Hollins House at Pasatiempo has a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2:30 pm; the price is $75 for adults (includes champagne or mimosa) and $25 for kids 6-12 and under, inclusive of tax and gratuity. The menu will include made-to-order omelets featuring Glaum Ranch eggs and egg whites; duck fat hash browns; Applewood smoked bacon and Corralitos sausage; a carving station with items such as spice-rubbed NY Strip Steak with horseradish cream, veal demiglace, and cilantro pesto; seared Morro Bay swordfish with herb crust and lemon-ginger emulsion; asparagus with lemon and pancetta; and several gourmet salads (including red quinoa/padron/feta and roasted gold & red beets with goat cheese mousse). Other highlights include chocolate dipped strawberries, cupcakes and bourbon bread pudding.
Call (831) 459-9177 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
20 Clubhouse Road, Santa Cruz

Chaminade
The Chaminade offers its annual Mother’s Day brunch buffet at Linwood’s Bar & Grill from 9am-3pm; the price is $55.95 (adults), $18.95 (kids 6-12), and free for kids under 6. Mother’s Day is the restaurant’s busiest day of the year; it always sells out. Selections include bourbon glazed honey ham with Jack Daniels glaze; prime rib; a seafood bar with whole poached salmon, Dungeness crab legs, and smoked salmon; omelets made to order; and Belgian waffles with apple compote and fresh berries. Additional highlights: miniature sundried tomato/olive quiches, cheese ravioli (with porcini crème, fried leek, sauteed mushrooms), chocolate fondue, and a sundae bar. The kids’ buffet features chicken strips and fries, mini pancakes, and mac and cheese. Call (831) 475-5600 or visit chaminade.com or opentable.com for reservations.
One Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz

Sanderlings
Sanderlings at Seascape Resort has a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2:30 pm; the price is $47.95 for adults and $21.95 for kids 12 and under. I dined there last year with my family and it was quite good, plus we sat outside and had a beautiful view. This year’s selections include a prime rib carving station; a fresh seafood bar; a salad assortment (last year’s included roasted beet-feta-arugula, spinach with avocado-walnuts, and Indian-spiced chickpea with cucumber and red onion); fresh fruit; and baked breads. Other highlights include desserts and a special kids’ menu. Call (831) 662-7120 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
One Seascape Resort Drive (at Seascape Beach Resort), Aptos

Los Gatos
Campo di Bocce

Campo di Bocce will offer a brunch buffet from 10 am to 2 pm; due to the popularity of the restaurant’s brunches, table reservations are limited to one hour. Food selections will include made-to-order omelets, a meat carving station, waffles and biscuits, sausage and bacon, fruit, pasta, salads, and homemade pastries. Campo di Bocce will also be serving $10 bottomless mimosas. There are two prices: one for brunch only, and one for brunch and an hour of bocce. Adults are $34.95 without bocce and $42.95 with bocce; kids 5-15 are $14.95 without bocce and $25.95 with bocce. Kids under 5 eat free. Visit campodibocce.com for details. Call (408) 395-7650 for reservations.
565 University Ave., Los Gatos

Dio Deka
The popular Mediterranean/Greek restaurant will offer a special a la carte brunch menu. Selections will include Eggs Benedict (traditional, or with smoked salmon or crab cakes), Strapatsada (eggs with tomato, feta, and Greek oregano), Paithakia (mesquite-grilled lamb chops), sirloin burger, and cinnamon “Greek” toast. Visit diodeka.com for details. Call (408) 354-7700 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
210 E. Main St., Los Gatos

Hult’s Restaurant
Hult’s is serving a prix fixe brunch for $39. Customers can select from two to three selections for each course. Three first course options include Swedish pancakes and Caprese salad; three main courses include North 38 Farm’s duck confit hash and Eggs Benedict. The two dessert choices are rum raisin bread pudding and fruit with sorbet. Visit hultsrestaurant.com for details. Call (408) 354-3434 or visit opentable.com for reservations.
165 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd., Los Gatos

San Jose
Fairmont San Jose

The Fairmont is serving a special Mother’s Day Buffet in its Fountain Restaurant from 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. The cost is $62 per adult and $31 per child 5-12. Kids under 5 are free. The buffet will include entrees such as Petaluma chicken breast wrapped in prosciutto and topped with mushrooms and saltimbocca sauce, and grilled Pacific salmon with strawberry-red onion salsa. Other highlights include starters such as sushi and a grilled baby octopus/cannellini bean/pancetta dish, an omelet station with organic eggs, a carving station, and Caesar salad with a 2-year-aged Parmesan wheel. See fairmont.com/san-jose for full menu or call (408) 998-3960 for reservations. There is also a more expensive brunch buffet at the hotel’s Imperial Ballroom.
170 South Market St, San Jose

Il Fornaio
Il Fornaio, located at The Saint Claire Hotel, is serving a Mother’s Day brunch buffet with complimentary champagne. The cost is $50 for adults and $20 for kids 5-12. Kids under 5 are free. Call (408) 271-3366 for reservations.
302 South Market St, San Jose
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Bay Area Valentine’s Day dining Part 3: San Jose area & Los Gatos restaurants

King crab, heart of Palm, uni mousse, passion fruit, bok choy at Alexander’s Steakhouse SV in November 2013. Credit: Alexander’s Steakhouse SV Facebook page

King crab, heart of palm, uni mousse, passion fruit, bok choy at Alexander’s Steakhouse SV in November 2013. Credit: Alexander’s Steakhouse SV Facebook page

It’s less than a week to Valentine’s Day 2014—here are some menu highlights for restaurants in San Jose and Los Gatos; soon I’ll publish a bit of info on Monterey & Santa Cruz.

If you are interested in other cities, see my menu highlights for San Francisco and the North Bay & East Bay.

San Jose Area

The Loft Bar and Bistro (Downtown San Jose) & Capers (Campbell)

Sister restaurants The Loft and Capers are offering special Valentine’s Day menus. Make reservations and get more information by calling 408.291.0677 (The Loft) or 408.374.5777 (Capers).

Alexander’s Steakhouse Silicon Valley (Cupertino)

Cozy up in Cupertino for a sumptuous 6-course tasting menu with optional wine pairings at Michelin-starred Alexander’s Steakhouse. The restaurant will offer dishes such as Butter Poached Maine Lobster with golden beets, vanilla, and fennel and Certified Angus Beef Prime Filet Mignon with parsnip, black trumpet duxelle, and bordelaise sauce. The dinner is $175 per person with optional wine pairings for an additional cost.

A Bellagio (Campbell)

Italian restaurant A Bellagio is serving a four-course prix fixe dinner in celebration of Valentine’s Day. Dishes include Ravioli d’Argosta allo Champagne e Gamberetti (Ravioli stuffed w/ lobster, served w/ creamy Champagne sauce & bay shrimp) and Costolette D’Agnello (Roasted Rack of Lamb served over polenta w/ fresh green beans, finished in a black truffle & cognac demi-glace). Dinner is $75 per person and reservations can be made via OpenTable.com or by calling 408.370.7705.

Los Gatos

Dio Deka

Mediterranean restaurant Dio Deka is serving a four-course prix fixe dinner for Valentine’s Day. There will also be live music, memento photos, and long-stemmed roses at each table. Dinner is $95 per person and reservations can be made via OpenTable.com or by calling 408.354.7700.

The Lexington House

The Lexington House is the newest addition to the Los Gatos’ dining scene. For Valentine’s Day, Chef Philippe Breneman will offer dishes from the regular menu such as Diver Scallops basted in brown butter with winter squash, furikake and dashi, Chicken Liver Mousse with seasonal pickles on Watsonville sourdough and Llano Seco Pork Sugo Gnocchi with crispy artichoke served with a Gremolata egg. The Lexington House presents an ever-changing menu featuring unique Northern California food, classic, inspired cocktails, small batch spirits, craft beer, and limited production wine. For guests looking for something new and unique this Valentine’s Day, The Lexington House is a perfect way to celebrate in style. The Lexington House is a walk-in only restaurant but does consider reservations for larger groups of 6 or more by calling 408.354.1600.

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Santa Cruz and South Bay restaurants open on New Year’s Eve, Part 1 of 2

Innovative cuisine at The Lexington House in Los Gatos

Innovative cuisine at The Lexington House in Los Gatos

Planning to celebrate New Year’s Eve 2013 at a restaurant in Santa Cruz, Los Gatos, or another nearby South Bay city? Here are details and menu highlights for a variety of venues; I’ll publish a few more tomorrow.

Santa Cruz Area

Aquarius
Located at the Santa Cruz Dream Inn overlooking the Wharf, Aquarius is hosting two seatings for dinner on New Year’s Eve: 5-6:30 p.m (three courses, $65) and 9 p.m. (five courses, $85). The second seating includes a DJ and live music, dancing, hats/noisemakers, and a midnight toast. Call 460-5012 for reservations or more information.
175 West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz

Johnny’s Harborside
On New Year’s Eve, Johnny’s is serving a prix fixe, three-course dinner for $48 that includes a glass of champagne. Call 479-3430 for reservations; the first seating is 5 p.m. and the last is 9:30 p.m. Customers choose one selection from each course. Appetizer options include fresh local crab and citrus bisque. Second course choices include half steamed fresh local dungeness crab with pan-seared crab cake, herb-roasted potatoes, and green bean almondine, and grilled New York strip loin with mashed potatoes, sauteed spinach, provencal stuffed crimini mushrooms, and roasted garlic butter. Dessert selections include Meyer lemon & cranberry bundt cake.
493 Lake Ave, Santa Cruz

Michael’s on Main
The Soquel restaurant is serving a fixed-price $55 four-course dinner with seatings from 5:30 – 9  p.m. Dinner includes a glass of champagne and New Year’s party favors. Call (831) 479-9777 for reservations. Appetizer choices include Corralitos sausage and blue cheese stuffed mushrooms; second course choices include lobster bisque. Entrees include salmon wellington and desserts include cheesecake infused with late harvest moscato.
2591 Main St., Soquel

Hindquarter
The Santa Cruz restaurant is open on New Year’s Eve from 5 p.m. onward. It’s serving the regular dinner menu plus holiday specials. Call (831) 426-7770 for reservations.
303 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz

The Cocoanut Grove
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at the oceanfront Cocoanut Grove from 7 p.m. – 1 a.m. Tickets for dinner and the dance are $84; the dance only is $41 in advance and $46 at the door. Entertainment will be provided by The Alison Sharino Band, The Surfing Magician, and Innisfree Celtic Music. The dinner buffet is from Crown Café Catering and includes a glass of sparkling cider or champagne. A no-host full bar will be available.  Call (831) 423-2053 for information or buy tickets at brownpapertickets.com.

Los Gatos Restaurants

The Lexington House
The Lexington House just opened in September 2013, and it’s already gained many fans. The restaurant’s menu features products from local, organic, and sustainable sources skillfully prepared by Chef Philippe Breneman (formerly of Dio Deka and Moana Restaurant and Hotel Group, as well as a stint at Manresa).  For its first New Year’s Eve celebration, The Lexington House is offering a five-course $85 menu featuring “the best of the season.” Beginning with a Cauliflower Veloute and a Caviar Cracker, guests will have options including Diver Scallops with parsnips and brown butter; Fettuccine with uni butter and Dungeness crab; Mills Farro with wild mushroom and a slow cooked egg; Rendered Lamb Tenderloin with golden turnips and hedgehog mushrooms, and Textures of Chocolate and Maple Truffles. Call (408) 354-1600 for reservations.
40 N. Santa Cruz Ave, Los Gatos

Dio Deka
Award-winning restaurant Dio Deka is offering its annual New Year’s Eve party with two seatings: the first from 6-8:30 p.m. ($95) and the second from 8:30 p.m. to past midnight ($125).  Each features a four-course menu with Greek specialties from Chef Jeff Fitzgerald such as Keftethakia lamb meatballs (I highly recommend these!), Octapothi Scharas – mesquite-grilled octopus, Avgolemono – classic egg-lemon soup with orzo; Lavraki – mesquite-grilled Mediterranean Branzino; Paithakia – Mesquite-grilled double-cut lamb chops; and Brizola – mesquite-grilled prime bone in rib eye. Guests that attend the second seating will receive party favors, a midnight complimentary champagne toast at midnight, and encouragement to ‘dance the night away when the bar opens up onto a dance floor with a live DJ.’ Call (408) 354-7700 for reservations.
210 E. Main St., Los Gatos

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More Halloween 2013 festivities in Santa Cruz & nearby, including Los Gatos

Brokolo at Dio Deka, celebrating its 7th anniversary on Halloween

Brokolo at Dio Deka, celebrating its 7th anniversary on Halloween

Here are more festivities to consider for Halloween 2013 in Santa Cruz, Aptos, and Los Gatos, including a wonderful-sounding anniversary party at Dio Deka. See Monday’s Halloween roundup for Santa Cruz, Capitola, and Monterey. Also check out some Halloween treat recipes, both traditional and non-dairy.
Santa Cruz & Aptos

Seascape Village in Aptos will hold a Halloween party from 4-6 p.m. featuring games, trick-or-treating, and snacks.
Location: Intersection of Seascape Boulevard at Sumner Avenue

Downtown Santa Cruz is holding its “Downtown Trick-or-Treat” from 2:30-5 p.m. Local merchants will hand out treats during the family-friendly event.

Los Gatos
Dio Deka
is celebrating its 7th anniversary on Halloween! A beautiful restaurant in Hotel Los Gatos, Dio Deka is offering complimentary appetizers–spanakopita and meatballs–and music on its outdoor patio on Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013. Music is being provided by the Los Gatos DJ Company, which specializes in top 40 and classic hits. Guests who dine in the restaurant itself will receive a complimentary glass of champagne to toast Dio Deka’s success.
I had the opportunity to dine at Dio Deka a couple months ago, and I highly recommend visiting this fine restaurant. Some highlights were the exquisite appetizer platter Pikilia, which included Keftethakia (moist, flavorful lamb meatballs and citrus-infused yogurt) and dolmathes (grape leaves stuffed with ingredients including braised beef cheeks and mushroom puree), and Brokolo (see photo), a unique and savory dish featuring charred broccoli, a slowly cooked egg, chili flakes, and more. I also enjoyed the side dish Gigantes, which was a generous portion of crisp-fried gigantes beans flavored with urfa pepper and smoked taramas. I never would have ordered this without my server’s recommendation, so I have him to thank. And of course, the talented Executive Chef Jeff Fitzgerald!
Location: 210 Main St., Los Gatos, (408) 354-7700.

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Last-minute Father’s Day restaurants in Santa Cruz and Los Gatos

Lamb meatballs at Dio Deka in Los Gatos

Lamb meatballs at Dio Deka in Los Gatos

Father’s Day is Sunday – some restaurants in the Santa Cruz and Los Gatos areas are fully booked, especially since it’s also graduation weekend at UCSC – but others are still available. Below are a few that offer reservations via OpenTable.com.

A couple places worth mentioning that don’t take online reservations (you need to call for availability) are Bittersweet Bistro in Aptos and Dio Deka in Los Gatos. Bittersweet (831-662-9799) is serving Father’s Day dinner specials including several $15 steaks such as Top Sirloin with gorgonzola cabernet demi-glace, crispy onion rings, garlic mashed potatoes, and roasted asparagus, or New York Steak with cabernet demi-glace, garlic mashed potatoes, and sauteed garlic spinach. Dio Deka (408-354-7700) is serving special Father’s Day brunch items including Dio Deka Steak & Eggs with grilled prime filet mignon, poached eggs and sauce béarnaise; Keftethakia lamb meatballs, blistered grapes, Kalamansi yogurt and a light herb-broth; and Zambonopita – a crispy puff-pastry stuffed with Virginia smoked ham, green onion, feta, Kasseri and ricotta cheeses. Dio Deka is also open for regular dinner service that evening.

BRUNCH

As of 10:30 p.m. on Friday, June 14, the following restaurants (listed alphabetically) still had selected Father’s Day brunch reservations available. Call or make reservations through OpenTable.com:

  • Aquarius (831) 460-5012
  • Café Mare (831) 458-1212
  • Chocolate the Restaurant (831) 427-9900
  • El Palomar (831) 425-7575
  • Hoffman’s Bistro (831) 420-0135
  • Lago Di Como (831) 454-8257
  • Laili (831) 423-4545
  • Main St. Garden & Café (831) 477-9265
  • Oak Tree Ristorante (831) 335-5551
  • Solaire Restaurant & Bar (831) 600-4545

DINNER

As of 10:30 p.m. on Friday, June 14, the following restaurants still had selected Father’s Day dinner reservations available.

Eight out of the 10 restaurants listed above in “Brunch” are ALSO available for selected dinner reservations (El Palomar and Main St. are not). In addition, the four below are available for dinner. Please call restaurant directly or make reservations through OpenTable.com:

  • Johnny’s Harborside (831) 479-3430
  • la Posta (831) 457-2782
  • Michael’s on Main (831) 479-9777
  • Soif Wine Bar & Restaurant (831) 423-2020

On Twitter? Follow me @santacruzfoodie.

 

 

Three Mediterranean food recipes from Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka

Lamb chops from Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka

Lamb chops from Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka

Looking for another way to celebrate National Mediterranean Diet Month? How about cooking your own Mediterranean food? Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka has graciously shared 3 recipes. If you missed my article on Dio Deka and a few other Mediterranean Bay Area dining spots, including ones in Santa Cruz, Carmel, and San Francisco, you can read it here. That article features a photo of Dio Deka’s Greek spreads including tzatziki, which you can make with the easy recipe below.

Unfamiliar with Dio Deka? It was awarded its first Michelin star in 2010, one year after Jeff Fitzgerald became chef de cuisine. The chef greatly enjoys creating dishes that blend fresh ingredients with Greek flavors. “California and Greece have very similar climates, so it’s easy to work with our amazing local farmers and purveyors to create our interpretation of Greek cuisine,” Chef Jeff says of marrying the two cultures. “It’s all about respecting the traditions of Greece while at the same time using the most seasonal ingredients from close to home.” And now you can create a few Dio Deka selections at your own home! If you want to visit the restaurant itself, it’s at 210 E. Main Street in Los Gatos, (408) 354-7700.

On Twitter? Follow me @santacruzfoodie.

 

RECIPES

 

Dio Deka Lamb Chops

Ingredients

¼ cup minced shallot

2 Tbsp minced garlic

2 Tbsp onion powder

2 Tbsp garlic powder

¼ cup salt

2 Tbsp black pepper

3 Tbsp chopped rosemary

3 Tbsp chopped thyme

2-3 racks of lamb chops

Directions

  1. Combine first eight ingredients in a bowl
  2. Add lamb chops and let sit for 24 hours in the refrigerator
  3. Grill until they reach desired doneness – for medium, cook to an internal temperature of 135˚F

 

Dio Deka Tzatziki

Ingredients

2 quarts of drained Greek yogurt

1 bunch of chopped dill

3 tbsp of minced garlic
3 tbsp of lemon juice

3 tbsp of red wine vinegar

2 cups of finely diced cucumber

1 tbsp of ground black pepper

Salt to taste

 

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl with a rubber spatula
  2. Enjoy!

 

Dio Deka Tirosalata Dip

 

Ingredients

1 jalapeno – use half raw and half grilled (seeds and all)

4 cups of feta cheese

1 Tbsp of distilled white vinegar

3 Tbsp of EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

2 Tbsp of Greek yogurt

 

Directions

  1. Add jalapeno and cheese into a food processor and blend until smooth and incorporated
  2. Slowly add in EVOO, incorporate yogurt and vinegar until smooth
  3. Serves best when chilled slightly

 

Fun pairing: Serve with lamb sweetbreads

Celebrate National Mediterranean Diet Month at Bay Area spots like Dio Deka, Dametra, Laili

An assortment of Greek spreads at Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka

An assortment of Greek spreads at Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka

As I mentioned in my article on the recent Santa Cruz Greek Food Faire, May is National Mediterranean Diet Month so I wanted to highlight a few Bay Area restaurants that offer great Mediterranean food. Another benefit to eating this type of cuisine, besides the fact that it’s delicious? Many folks believe it is extremely good for your health! A Mediterranean diet can be rich in fish, olive oil, yogurt, fruit, and vegetables. Research studies have shown that a healthy Mediterranean Diet can reduce the risk of diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

In the Bay Area, Los Gatos-based Dio Deka is a premier spot for Hellenic cuisine. The culmination of the dreams of five Greek restaurateurs, the Michelin-starred venue is led by Executive Chef Jeff Fitzgerald. Dio Deka’s menu fuses Greek and Mediterranean influences. Selections include healthy fare such as fresh fish, top-quality meats, and seasonal fruits and vegetables. Examples include Lavraki – Mesquite-grilled Mediterranean branzino with sautéed spring greens, roasted potatoes; Octapothi Scharas- grilled octopus, romesco sauce, lemon vinaigrette, grated hazelnuts; and Mithia ke Kalamari – lightly seared mussels and squid, pickled peppers, crispy olives, barrel-aged feta cheese.

Location: 210 E. Main Street, Los Gatos, (408) 354-7700

Other great spots include:

–          Kokkari(San Francisco)

–          Evvia (Palo Alto)

–          Frascati (San Francisco)

–          Vasili’s (Santa Cruz)

–          Dametra Café (Carmel)

–          Laili (Santa Cruz)

 

On Twitter? Follow me @santacruzfoodie.

 

 

Mother’s Day in Santa Cruz & nearby including Los Gatos and San Francisco: Restaurants part 2

Dessert at Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka, one of many Bay Area restaurants with special Mother’s Day menus

Dessert at Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka, one of many Bay Area restaurants with special Mother’s Day menus

Dining out on Mother’s Day is a great way to honor the mom in your life, and Santa Cruz and the Bay Area have many restaurants offering special menus this Sunday. See Part 1 for more restaurants in the Santa Cruz area plus one in Monterey, and see below for the second and final group of restaurants I am highlighting. Happy Mother’s Day!
Santa Cruz & Soquel

Chocolate
For Mother’s Day, downtown Santa Cruz restaurant Chocolate is offering all-day brunch specials such as Crab Cream Puffs, Roast Duck Crepes, & Creme Brulee French Toast. Call (831) 427-9900 for reservations.
1522 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz
Main Street Garden & Café
Soquel restaurant Main Street Garden & Cafe is doing a prix fixe lunch for Mother’s Day from 11:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. The cost is $40 and includes a mimosa which you can enjoy on the restaurant’s outdoor patio. Call (831) 477-9265 for reservations.
3101 N. Main St., Soquel

Tortilla Flats
Soquel restaurant Tortilla Flats is serving a special menu all weekend, including Mother’s Day. Savory selections include Aji Limo Crepes with lobster and prawns, Jalapeno honey ribs, and Crab Enchiladas, and desserts include Strawberry Mango Mousse and Raspberry Tarts. On Mother’s Day Tortilla Flats opens at 11:30 a.m. Contact the restaurant at (831) 476-1754.
4615 Soquel Dr., Soquel

Los Gatos

Dio Deka
Michelin-starred Los Gatos restaurant Dio Deka offers “a Mother’s Day filled with traditional Greek favorites seasoned with California technique.” The patio will be open with limited seating outside and a complimentary rose will be presented to all mothers. The a la carte menu will feature dishes such as Dio Deka Steak & Eggs with grilled prime filet mignon, poached eggs and sauce béarnaise; Keftethakia lamb meatballs, blistered grapes, Kalamansi yogurt and a light herb-broth; Zambonopita – a crispy puff-pastry stuffed with Virginia smoked ham, green onion, feta, Kasseri and ricotta cheeses; Plevrakia – slow-cooked pork ribs rubbed with Greek spices, Attiki honey and lemon glaze, and sour cherries with ouzo; and Cinnamon “Greek” Toast with whipped vanilla butter and maple syrup. Brunch will be available from 10:30am – 2:30pm and entrees range from $8-$46. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling (408) 354-7700. Regular dinner service will resume that evening.
210 E. Main Street, Los Gatos

San Francisco Restaurants (see restaurant web sites for individual addresses)

A16
Located in San Francisco’s Marina District, A16 focuses on Southern Italian cuisine from regions including Campania and Naples. Known for its wood-fired pizza, A16 boasts a certified pizzaiolo, Chef Christopher Thompson who has made a mark on crafting this specialty from Naples. A16 will celebrate Mother’s Day with extended dinner hours from 4:00 – 10:00 p.m. and Executive Chef Christopher Thompson will prepare a special dinner menu featuring dishes such as Zuppa di zucca with spring squash, house made ricotta and herbs, Olive oil poached local halibut with mussels, baby octopus, tomato, peppercress, white wine and bread crumbs and Limoncello Tiramisu with blueberries and genoise. A16 will also offer a special Mother’s Day beverage of Sgroppino alla fragola, Prosecco with homemade strawberry sorbetto and each mother will be sent home with a bag of A16 cookies. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling (415) 771-2216.

Absinthe Brasserie & Bar
At Absinthe in the Hayes Valley neighborhood, Executive Chef Adam Keough will be offering a new Mother’s Day Special in addition to the regular menu. The intriguing Baked Salmon Wellington will be served with peas and favas, wild mushrooms, and a caramelized potato speck ham broth. Brunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Reservations for Mother’s Day can be made by calling (415) 551-1590.

Chambers Eat + Drink
Chambers Eat + Drink boasts that it has San Francisco’s only poolside patio. Executive Chef Trevor Ogden offers innovative California cuisine and guests can choose from dishes such as Japanese Omelet “Tamago” with house-smoked chorizo, sweet potato, cana de oveja, and scallions; Eggs Royale with two sous vide eggs, crispy hash browns, cold smoked salmon, mandarin hollandaise, caviar, chive, and dill; Tofu Hash with Brussels sprouts, oyster mushrooms, red onions, garlic confit, farro, and almond; or the classic Egg in a Hole with two eggs in brioche toast, house smoked bacon, seasonal greens, champagne vinaigrette. The restaurant is also known for its Bloody Marys mixed with housemade sambal. Reservations can be made by calling (415) 829-2316.

CHAYA Brasserie San Francisco

CHAYA Brasserie is known for its beautiful views as well as cuisine that blends European and Asian flavors. CHAYA celebrates Mother’s Day with a special brunch menu created by Executive Chef Yuko Kajino. The three-course Chef’s Menu will include dishes such as Crispy Goat Cheese & Pickled Beets with red watercress, marcona almonds and cabernet vinaigrette; Buttermilk Fried Organic Chicken Breast with jalapeno bacon cornbread, maple syrup and Sriracha ketchup; and a Sea Salt Caramel Ice Cream Sandwich rolled in oatmeal and currants. Brunch will be served from 11 am – 2 pm for $42; bottomless mimosas will also be available. There will be a young adult menu for $15. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling (415) 777-8688. Regular dinner service will resume that evening.

Luce
At Michelin-starred Luce in the InterContinental San Francisco, mothers will receive complimentary roses for their special day. Dish highlights include Niman Ranch Short Ribs Hash with organic poached egg, root vegetable, and Weiser Farm fingerling potatoes; and Smoked Salmon Benedict with spinach, hollandaise sauce, and cucumber fennel salad with Weiser Farm fingerling potatoes. For reservations, call (415) 616-6560.

One Market Restaurant
One Market Restaurant has received a 3 ½ star review from Michael Bauer, San Francisco Chronicle, and has consistently been on the Chronicle’s “Top 100” list. Acclaimed chef Mark Dommen’s menu of farm-fresh American cuisine changes daily, depending on the best available ingredients and highlighting the best of local purveyors. His Mother’s Day a la carte brunch menu served from 10:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. will be no exception. Dishes will include Bay Shrimp Tacos with jalapeno and shiso; Savory Cheese Doughnuts with bacon aioli; Grass Fed Steak Tartare with quail egg yolk, parsley, and country bread; and Spit Roasted Prime Rib with horseradish, spinach, and potato puree. For reservations, call (415) 777-5577.

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