Baja California

Manzanilla Restaurant: Where the ingredients of Baja California and cuisine truly shine

Follow the Pacific Ocean to amazing flavors

The second dish, two different styles of clams and oysters, presented in a line with instructions on which side to start from. We started with a raw Kumamoto oyster that had a salsa Migonette. The second was a Clam with basil pesto. This I have to say was my favorite out of the four. The basil was so flavorful, that I could have eaten it by the spoonful, but add in the clam, and it was like winning a prize. The third, a grilled oyster with butter and chiles. The fourth and final, was a grilled clam with Gorgonzola cheese. Hello, if you have never had those two together, it is just fabulous!

The third course was a flavor combination, that at first might sound a bit different to some, Pig foot and oyster tostada.

The two were marinated in the Raspberry vinaigrette that came to the party a bit earlier, with persian cucumber, and chile powder. This was my first time experiencing such a tostada, and it was a pleasant surprise. Each ingredient was only enhanced by the acidity, and still had the ability to shine all on their own.

The fourth course was stunning. An open ravioli filled with quail, walnuts, and olives. I get more than excited when I hear that quail is in a dish. Am I the only one? I bet not. There was a short millisecond where I just stared at the dish, and admired its beauty, but then the aromas wafted up to my nose, and that was the end of that. Nice rich flavors, and a variety of textures, had this dish standing out as my favorite of the evening.

The final savory course, was a filet of Rock Cod resting atop a black bean puree. Grilled nopales came along for the ride as well. The crisp skin of the fish with a smear of the smooth black beans, and a bit of the nopales was just delicious. The nopales added the ideal texture to the fish.

The Cava de Marcelo cheeses were presented beautifully on a piece of lava rock, and the bent spoon filled with local honey was a lovely touch as well.

We concluded the evening with a piece chocolate cake and in house made Vanilla ice cream. Sprinkled over that were peanuts, and cookie. Rich chocolate, with the crunch of cookie bits, and cool ice cream are classic compliments to each other.

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By Kristin Díaz de Sandi

Kristin and Antonio blog at Life & Food and you can follow them on Twitter at @lifefoodblog and Facebook.



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