Terranea: dinner at mar’sel

After checking out the bar bites menu at mar’sel, we headed in for a leisurely dinner. We sat inside but by the patio so we got the benefit of the ocean view.

mar'sel gardens

they grow their own artichokes!

Talk about fresh vegetables and herbs, mar’sel grows their own. Before walking into the restaurant, I had checked out the Terranea grounds and noticed the vegetable gardens right outside mar’sel’s doors. I was most amazed by the artichokes they were growing.

amuse bouche- fresh pickled vegetables

Chef de Cusine Michael Fiorelli impresses with his bar bites menu where I loved the pickled veggies that went with the crispy pig ears. I was more than happy when the restaurant sent out the same pickled vegetables with a bit of creme fraiche as our amuse bouche for dinner.

roasted young beets

crispy lamb tongue

Our server was very knowledgeable about the menu, describing in great detail how the dishes were prepared. I particularly was into the idea of the crispy lamb tongue with poached egg and warm pancetta vinaigrette. My friend had the roasted young beets which was a delightful salad. But being the meat eater I am, I tend to go straight for the unusual and the lamb did not disappoint. I will have to come back to try the duck leg confit with the four (4!) preparations of artichoke.

roasted Tolenas Farm quail

quail - ravioli cut open

Our friendly server recommended the quail which I really wanted but let my friend order have it. The ramps and the asparagus were of course wonderful accompaniments but the ravioli with a softly poached egg was the best part. Our server said to eat each bite with a bit of egg and it definitely made the dish.  I went with the proscuitto Idaho sturgeon.

proscuitto-wrapped Idaho sturgeon

My sturgeon was a tad bit salty from the proscuitto. The juices mingled with the bed of carmelized fennel,  melted leeks and trumpet mushrooms. There was even bacon in this dish, probably unnecessary but who can say no to bacon?

caramel pudding

orange-yuzu granita

In another case where I should have listened to the server who was most enthusiastic about the caramel pudding, I went with the orange-yuzu granita. My friend enjoyed her pudding which was fantastic with the vanilla wafers and fleur de sel. I belatedly realized I was never fond of the citrus-chocolate combination. Which is not to say I didn’t like the orange  yuzu  and the decadent chocolate. I just made sure to eat them individually.

Next time, I’m listening to the server!

mar’sel at Terranea Resort

100 Terranea Way
Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275
(310) 265-2836