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RestauRanting: Latitude By JR

January 29, 2019

 

CALIFORNIA INSPIRED CUISINE THROUGH A REFINED CASUAL DINNING EXPERIENCE

 

After a series of successful pop-up dinner events throughout the Temecula Valley, Chef Jason and wife Jakota Rivas, open a cozy restaurant, on October 2018.  They "want to bring back the true meaning or 'breaking bread."  

 

 

This new addition to Old Town Temecula brings us California inspired cuisine through a refined casual dinning experience.  

 

BITES

 

 Fig Toast ($8) 

 

The Fig Toast is no ordinary breadstick.  Studded with chewy figs and served with chive honey butter, this warm bread makes a fine prelude to social dinning.  Absolutely memorable, I am compelled to try their Fig French Toast on the weekend brunch menu.  

 

Shrimp Ceviche ($13.50) 

 

For me, ceviche is a dish that is ultra social.  Shareable and light, I can really enjoy time with friends without that "stuffed" feeling.  There are many styles of ceviche and here, it's served in Peruvian flare.  This requires that the seafood be cured in a special citrus-based, spicy marinade knows as Leche de Tigere (or Tiger's Milk).  The citrus and heat level seem milder than the Mexican style of ceviche.  Fresh ingredients is key to any ceviche.  A dollop of avocado creme elevates the shrimp, radish and cilantro.   

 

Smoked Burrata ($10) 

 

Perfectly charred brussel sprouts are laced with fine anchovy fillets and seasoned with Black sea salt.  Crowning the platter, we have smoked creamy burrata. 

 

HARVEST

 

Spiced Pumpkin Salad ($11) 

 

I really appreciate a fresh salad that is not only good for you, but that is very satisfying.  The Spiced Pumpkin Salad is a bright mix of seasonal greens, shaved shallots and Pointe Reyes Blue Cheese.  Adding nuttiness are fiery pecans with a black pepper vinaigrette that ties it all together.

 

Tuna Poke Salad ($14) 

 

Chef JR puts his signature touch on the trending Tuna Poke.  This special salad is tossed with fresh cabbage, ginger and drizzled with creme fraiche.  Ruby tuna is dressed in ginger vinaigrette and garnished with black sesame seeds. 

 

 Cucumber Avocado Salad ($10) 

 

The Cucumber Avocado Salad is prepared with some of my favorite ingredients and those I eat on a daily basis.  A base of kale-frisee has creamy avocado slices and long ribbons of cucumber that are seasoned with chili, lime and avocado oil.  Adding a bit of crunch to the dish is a sesame seed cracker.

 

PLATES

 

Sumac Pork ($23) 

 

Sumac Pork is done brilliantly with a Korean BBQ flare.  The moist chop is well seasoned and served with black garlic cous cous and a fresh frisee radish salad.  The dish is light yet filling, with a whimsical presentation. 

 

Mediterranean Skuna Bay Salmon ($28) 

 

I am one inclined towards a fish dish and I was very happy with the Mediterranean Salmon.  My flaky fillet is complimented with herbatious sorrel pesto and topped with a chunky coconut chimichuri that adds a ton of flavor.  Crisp chickpeas resemble pears near the fish while providing extra crunch, captain.

 

Coffee Rubbed Flatiron ($26) 

 

The only steak on the menu is a flat iron cut prepared with a coffee rub.  The delicious steak is served pre-sliced and has a visible bold crust.  I find the classic pairing of meat and potatoes so comforting.  A nice twist to this is pressed garlic potatoes, onion emulsion and the duo pepper salad keeps it vibrant.

 

 Harvest Gnocchi ($17) 

 

Every time I order gnocchi, it's usually made differently from the last restaurant I ordered from.  I don't mind a dish that keeps me on my toes.  Pillows of gnocchi and chopped pumpkin is cooked in sage brown butter.  The harvest dish is finished with Parmesan shavings and adorable baby popcorn.  

 

House Ramen ($17) 

 

Another trendy dish on the menu is the House Ramen.  Tender pork belly and shitake mushrooms sink in a Japanese dashi broth.  Complimenting the ramen is a silky egg that has been cooked slowly over 45 minutes.  The bowl is finished with nori and fresh spinach.  Now, this is how I like to beat the chills.

 

FIN

 

Mojito Fruits ($9) 

 

To properly close a social dinning experience there is a "Fin" menu.  On the menu is Mojito Fruits, a small bowl of honey whipped yogurt plated with berries and a short dough cookie.  This is no-guilt type of dessert.

 

House Made Ice Cream ($4) 

 

The best way to describe the hose made ice cream is in the way I used to order Mexican ice pops from the ice cream man, as a kid.  The man would stop his cart in front of my house and ask, "milk or water?"  Meaning would I like a strawberry ice pop with a milk or water base, for instance.  Both were amazing, it was just a matter of preference. 

 

Here I have a beautiful scoop of brown sugar chocolate chip ice cream that tastes more water based than milk based.  After a filling meal, it's nice to end with a light dessert like this. 

 

Cream Soda Float ($6) 

 

The Cream Soda Float is fun way to end a meal.  Feel the fizz tickle your nose and feel like a kid again.  This bubbly float is made with their house made ice cream. 

 

Snickerdoodle Sand ($7) 

 

If the mood calls for something a bit more rich, then a snickerdoodle cookie sandwich filled with peanut butter mouse, will complete you.

 

 

On the weekends, they offer a brunch menu from 10 am to 3 pm along with a bottomless bar that includes beermosas, black cherry mimosas, champagne and seasonal sangria.

 

 

Latitude By JR

41955 5th St Ste 102

Temecula, CA 92590

951.595.3711

 

 

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