RAYMOND 1886 IN PASADENA
CHARMING OUTDOOR SPOT LAUNCHES NEW COCKTAIL MENU
Pasadena(Spiritsman)11/21/16/–Raymond 1886 in Pasadena is not in the hip and crowded downtown area of city, but the location is a delight with a large outdoor dining area perfect for winter nights. The menu can loosely be described as American rustic, and I was also fortunate enough to visit the restaurant on the night their new cocktail menu was being launched. Executive chef is Tim Guiltinan and the Bar Manager is Peter Lloyd Jones.
They have also added a new Pastry Chef in Raymond Morales and the man behind the new and very progressive wine program is Maxwell Leer. More about that later, but the ideal way to start a meal here is the very fresh Artisanal Baguette ($7) with homemade butters that will set you up right to follow up with the Octopus and Bone Marrow Bruschetta ($17) w/radish, carrot, tomatoes and toasted bread. This is a dish suitable for sharing as was the Indonesian Shrimp & Little Neck Clams ($16) that are served in a Pale Ale and a Smoked XO Sauce.
A glance at the menu after my visit shows the creativity and versatility of the chef with such starters as “Coconut-Almond Cauliflower,” which is a half-head of the vegetable fully roasted and served with a sesame and sweet chili sauce for $14. Equally enticing appears to be the “Pork & Peaches,” a crispy pork belly, green onion kimchi, peach emulsion, grilled peach and white corn for $15.
For a main course I went for the “Marinated Young Lamb Chops,” four tender chops w/pepperoni roasted Brussels sprouts and mushrooms that I substituted for the menu listed mashed potatoes for $35. An excellent choice as it turned out to be sitting outside in the patio on a nice cool night. They do have plenty of outside heating, so no reason to go inside in the smaller space for dining.
My guest opted for the “Columbia River Salmon,” which again like almost all of the dishes here is extremely creative in selecting the sides which in This case with the salmon is Persimmon, grilled Japanese pumpkin and Hen-of-the wood for $35. Next visit will see me trying the Hand Harvested Scallops w/Chinese black garlic, quinoa, fried rice and fresh edamame.
The new wine program features all grower-producer wines and the staff At Raymond 1886 have all had a major voice in the very avant-garde selections. He has also ordered a change in the way that the wine is poured at the table by showing the bottle to everyone at the table instead of just the person who ordered it. That would include wines such as the K.Ruprecht Riesling White ’12 or the traditional Ch.Blaignan Bordeaux Blend Red ’12.
When it comes to the new winter cocktails at Raymond 1886 then all fourteen of the cocktails are priced at $14 and have been created by a talented mixture of mixologists. I went for the Rhum creation of “The Ice King’” a Julep variation with mint, Solerna Orange Liqueur and a Clement Cane Sirop and all sprinkled w/coffee grounds. Excellent as was the “Helen of Troy” for the Pisco lovers, a shaken cocktail that also had Mixed berry shrub, lemon, Falurnum and a black sugar garnish.
Raymond 1886-1250 S.Fair Oaks Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105
Open for lunch-Tuesday-Friday
Brunch-Saturday and Sunday starting at 9am
287 S.Robertson Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211