Originally famed for being on Bravo’s Top Chef, Brian Malarkey is now most notable for his growing restaurant group of some of San Diego’s hottest restaurants: Searsucker, Burlap, Gingham, Gabardine, and Herringbone. Today, it’s all about the social dining experience at his first success story, Searsucker.
The food is categorized as New American Classic, and they own this title. They’ve masterfully taken some of our favorite foods and they’ve created a whole new category of deliciousness. We started off with a salad that included sliced persimmons under a bed of shaved pear, blue cheese and prosciutto. Topped with a sweet and sour vinaigrette, it was a perfect combination of textures and flavors.
The next dish was the Chicken and Waffle small plate. This is another must-have on the menu. It is the most exquisite combination of sweet and salty dishes that I’ve had in a long time. Forget about the fact that it’s fried chicken which is pretty delicious no matter how you eat it, this chicken is filled with bacon, and the waffle is stuffed with ham and cheese. It was totally worth every penny and every calorie.
For the main dish, we had the Flat Iron Steak with Chimichurrri and Bernaise, and we paired that with two of Searsucker’s most popular sides, the Fried Brussel Sprouts and Walnuts and the Jalapeno-Chorizo “corn off the cob.” Both sides were fantastic. I never knew brussel sprouts could be so flavorful, and it’s clear why people go crazy for them.
And for our dessert, we had the Red Velvet Cake, and the Doughnuts and Chocolate. The Doughnuts are the most popular dessert and are a definite must-have. They are freshly made, warm and soft, and when you dip them in the dark chocolate, they make the perfect ending to your meal. The Red Velvet cake is moist and delicious. It comes with raspberry sorbet and white chocolate on top, an unexpected bonus (something Searsucker seems intent on doing with most of their dishes) to an already delightful dessert.
For cocktails, we had the most popular one on the menu, the Peter Rabbit. Made with Pimm’s #1, basil, pressed lemon, and carrot, this cocktail is fresh and delightful, and I highly recommend it.
Eating at Searsucker is truly a social dining experience. The energetic and exciting vibe is contagious. Everyone–from the servers, to the customers, to the back of the house people, to the fantastically dressed, suave hostesses and front house managers– all of them clearly want to be here. All of them are excited to be a part of this atmosphere, and all are anxious to make you a part of it as well. The social dining experience here is like eating at the cool table – in a high school where everyone is cool.