San Diego’s Restaurant Week starts Sunday, January 11 and runs until the 16th with more than 150 venues serving three-course prix-fixe dinners at $20, $30 and $40; check the website for menus and prices.  If you’ve been wondering about a particular place and just haven’t made there, this is the time to try something new.

Should you find yourself traveling to New York City soon, their restaurant week runs from January 18th to the 23rd and then again from the 25th to the 30th with more than 250 possible choices.  New York is the place the idea started back in 1992 and restaurants serve lunch for $24.07 and dinners are all $35 for three-course prix-fixe meals.

For political and foodie junkies, the bipartisan Senate committee that plans the inaugural luncheon after the president is sworn in, will be eating a seafood stew, pheasant and duck and apple cinnamon sponge cake washed down with California  wines from  Duckhorn, Goldeneye and Korbel.  Here’s the menu with recipes in case you decide to have a party.  And for the historical side of things, check out the 2001 Inaugural Luncheon.

4 thoughts on “Bits and Bites: Restaurant Week and Inaugural Luncheon

  1. I was curious about some of the participating restaurants charging an additional 20% service fee on top of their Restaurant Week menus. Is this a new practice? In some cases, if you do the math it doesn’t add up to much of a savings.

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  2. Interesting that we went to a Restaurant Week restaurant last night and they are including a 20% service charge during Restaurant Week. We would have made exception but got good table service. The kitchen unfortunately ignored my wife’s nut allergy, and two of the courses included walnuts.

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  3. I guess the “service charge” is more of a mandatory gratuity but the word service charge is misleading. It may be a response to the notion that while Restaurant Week may be good for business it doesn’t necessarily attract serious “fine diners” who are apt to be repeat customers or good tippers. It seems to me that this designated week is a chance to experience the restaurant as it is, for a discounted price and a special service charge should not be adopted if its not already in place. Curiously, I have been to restaurants during Restaurant Week where the service went downhill once the prix fixe menu was requested.

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  4. When I saw Phil’s barbeque had joined the line-up, I laughed. You serve yourself there and everyone has probably tried Phil’s at least once. Any place that does more take-out than dine-in should not be in “Restaurant Week.”

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