Best Thing We Ate

Eat These 10 Summer Dishes Before They’re Gone

By Darlene Horn  |  August 21, 2015
Credit: The Hake

Summer is fleeting. Although the local climate transitions from mild coastal temps to warm Santa Ana winds and there's no impending snow in sight, we have local produce — think watermelon, peaches and tomatoes — to mark the end of the season. Before you start thinking about pumpkin-laced beverages and pecan pies, we recommend grabbing these summer dishes before they’re gone.

Seasonal Farm Salad at The Hake Kitchen & Bar

Watermelon gets a pickled turn in this salad alongside silvers of grapefruit, basil, pea leaves and mint that are tied together with a tangy avocado vinaigrette garnished with pumpkin seeds.

1250 Prospect St., La Jolla; 858-454-1637


Lemon Meringue Milkshake at Draft

Cool and creamy milkshakes help beat the summer heat. For a limited time, you can get the fresh-baked pastry blended into a drinkable dessert: a slice of sweet and tangy lemon meringue pie meets a scoop of vanilla ice cream plus milk to form this refreshing concoction.

3105 Ocean Front Walk; 858-228-9305

Fig n’ Pig Pizza at Regents Pizzeria

Taste the season’s bounty in this savory-sweet pie topped with figs. Layers of thinly sliced prosciutto provide a savory bite, while aged mozzarella and gorgonzola baked on top adds a sharp note.

4150 Park Row #170, La Jolla; 858-550-0406

Summer Vegetable Pasta at The Patio on Goldfinch

Celebrate the last summer days with this creation using heirloom tomatoes and housemade pappardelle pasta. Colorful additions include rocket arugula pesto, pattypan squash, opal basil, shallots, white wine and Asiago cheese.

4020 Goldfinch St.; 619-501-5090


Seared Scallops at Kitchen 4140

This restaurant likes to keep it seasonal and one of the best dishes soon leaving the menu is this number pairing local scallops with a sweet-corn purée. It gets even better with slices of candied bacon.

4140 Morena Blvd.; 858-483-4140

Arugula and Watermelon Salad at AVANT

Nothing cools you off quite a watermelon, and we recommend it in salad form paired with heirloom tomatoes picked from AVANT’s on-site garden. Frisée and a spiced balsamic caramel finishes off this dish, adding a peppery-sweet finish.

17550 Bernardo Oaks Dr.; 858-675-8550

Strawberry Dessert at Kettner Exchange

Executive Chef Brian Redzikowski is planning to transition several summer dishes off the menu like soft-shell crab and San Danielle prosciutto soup. If those two aren’t enough reason to visit stat, go for the strawberry dessert. It’s a creation that incorporates marscapone mousse with rhubarb and shaved strawberry ice.

2001 Kettner Blvd.; 619-255-2001


Summer Fruit Salad at Counterpoint

Peaches are the star of this dish, a creation of chef Rose Peyron, which compresses the summer fruit and mixes it with pickled cherries. Rounding out the dish is frisée, rye croutons and pistachios for crunch and texture while goat cheese and an apricot vinaigrette ties everything together.

830 25th St. #100; 619-564-6722

Caramelized Peach Mousse at Juniper & Ivy

Stone fruit gets a major upgrade if only for a fleeting moment. At this Little Italy restaurant, the natural sweetness of white nectarines is foiled with a housemade almond sorbet and granola.

2228 Kettner Blvd.; 619-269-9036

Summer Salad at Whisknladle

Grab this popular dish featuring sweet Chino corn and grapefruit before the days grow shorter. Also included in this hearty summer salad are hearts of palm, avocado, diced celery and a golden balsamic vinaigrette.

1044 Wall St., La Jolla; 858-551-7575