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New Head Chef for Cusp Dining & Drinks

Plus, new brunches at Madison & Urge Gastropub

Ingrid Funes
Ingrid Funes

LA JOLLA— Cusp Dining & Drinks' chef de cuisine has been promoted to lead the kitchen at the sky-high Hotel La Jolla restaurant; Ingrid Funes steps in for Donald Lockhart, who departed to help open Parc Bistro-Brasserie in Bankers Hill. Funes has just released her first menu as head chef; the summertime lineup includes watermelon 'tartare' with cucumber, avocado, frisée and jalapeño vinaigrette, roasted Scottish salmonwith black rice, parsnip puree and pine nut orange reduction and seafood tagliatelle with sundried tomato, fresno chiles and chorizo bread crumbs in a smoked paprika wine sauce. Among her new desserts is a deconstructed pavlova with fresh lime curd, seasonal fruit and mango purée. [EaterWire]

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTSFreshly-launched at Madison on Park is a new brunch menu served Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m that spans boozy beverages and brunch-y plates. There are twists on the classics, ranging from waffled churro sticks to avocado toast with egg and a carnitas Belgian waffle stack, plus originals that include braised lamb and grilled leeks served with a potato and beet hash, topped with a poached egg and a strawberry feta chile sauce. Brunch sippers range from house mimosas available by the glass or pitcher in flavors like lemon-blackberry and cucumber-honey to the beer-based Radler, which doctors up Ballast Point's Sculpin with blanco tequila, grapefruit, lime and cilantro. [EaterWire]

OCEANSIDE— Another weekend brunch has debuted at Urge Gastropub, where on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. they serve a modern comfort food menu of hearty brunch dishes including, drunken challah French toast stuffed with apricot cream cheese, pork belly hash, steak and eggs and a cinnamon pancake stack served with vanilla whiskey syrup. Bracing brunch cocktails include the high-octane Enjoy or Die, which mixes barrel-proof rye with Mostra Coffee and creme de cacao. [EaterWire]