Not one, not two, but three highly acclaimed restaurants call The Inn at Spanish Bay at Pebble Beach Resorts home. Whether you are in the mood for lasagna, sushi or something deep-fried there is truly something for every palate. Did I mention that they are all served with a view of The Links at Spanish Bay and the Pacific Ocean?
Pèppoli at Pebble Beach
Pebble Beach, California or Florence, Italy? That is the question as soon as you step foot into Pèppoli; this Tuscan-style eatery resembles a high-end villa with all the authentic décor one could hope for. The rustic color palette puts your mind at ease while the aroma from the open terra-cotta tiled kitchen gives you immediate hunger pangs.
During my last visit Chef Angela Tamura whipped up quite the feast, and the ricotta cheese crostini was just the beginning. The crispy Italian bread was slathered in homemade ricotta cheese and topped with a buttery caramelized onion. Delish!
Soon after, her award-winning lasagna (at least in my eyes) came out piping hot. The pasta’s crunchy shell gave way to an oozing inside of mozzarella cheese, thick tomato sauce, succulent sausage and the smell of Italian herbs.
Time for some protein! The bistecchina, a.k.a. Angus steak, was no joke. This honkin’ piece of meat was cooked to perfection on the oak grill and then sprinkled with a dash of sea salt. The accompanied slices of caramelized onion and creamy blue cheese made the smoky flavors from the steak pop. I can only imagine what this meal would have been like with a glass of vino from their extensive wine collection.
Roy’s at Pebble Beach
It is amazing that just to the side of this Tuscan haven sits a much different International delight. Roy’s at Pebble Beach may overlook a Scottish-influenced golf course but the cuisine is straight out of the Pacific Islands. Roy Yamaguchi’s masterpiece of a menu includes a blend of unique flavors in what he dubs as “Hawaiian-fusion.” The contemporary and modern design puts you on island time but the high-paced energy surrounding the kitchen keeps things alive. The master behind Roy’s creations in the Pebble Beach kitchen is Chef Pablo Mellin. During a recent visit Pablo noted some of their specialty items like their various sushi rolls, bento boxes and mixed plates.
Needing to try some of Pablo’s concoctions I dove into a Lakanilau Roll. This was not your average over-the-counter sushi roll. Dynamite crab, panko crusted asparagus and avocado surrounded in rice and wrapped with a thin layer of, wait for it… Kobe beef! The Kobe beef literally melted in your mouth and the crunch from the fresh asparagus gave this dish an unexpected burst of freshness.
I also had a little tester of their blackened rare ahi. The fresh slab of tuna had a spicy kick to it but the soy mustard butter sauce cooled it all down, I could even gather a hint of a sweet berry as I devoured my tasty morsel.
Those looking for a little comfort food can find just that, and then some, at casual hangout STICKS. Here you can easily envision yourself kickin’ back and watching the game, grabbing an ice-cold beer or chowing down on some tasty chicken wings without being judged.
The casual bar resembles a refined Irish pub with epic views of the golfing greens, multiple TV screens, cozy fireplaces and plaid accents scattered throughout. Things like black truffle popcorn, bacon-wrapped meatloaf and country fried chicken with waffles make you feel like you instantly gained five pounds.
Needing some comfort I opted for the blue bacon slider. A rich blue cheese and jalapeno spread was doused on a toasted fluffy bun with salty pieces of bacon and a savory Angus burger on the inside. The collaboration of meat and aioli sauce made my taste buds dance. The tater tots served on the side were not your grocer’s freezer section tots. I was slightly embarrassed that the guests across from me could hear the deep-fried crunch from across the table but then I realized they were too good to care.
Did I mention this came with a bacon lollipop? At first bite I was in love, juicy goodness oozed from the core while hints of bourbon and maple were evident in its preparation.
Next time I am STICK-ing around for dessert; as I was leaving I got a glimpse of the 7-layer carrot cake and warm apple pecan bread pudding, I swear as I walked through the door they were calling my name!