Though Mission Valley isn’t historically known as a dining destination, a restaurant set to open there in mid-August is hoping to boost the neighborhood’s culinary cred. Arlo is an entirely new stand-alone eatery built within the Town and Country, the longtime Hotel Circle resort which is just emerging from a $90 million renovation that includes revamped rooms and the addition of pool complex. Leading the kitchen is chef Josh Mouzakes, who returns to San Diego from Houston, where he was executive chef of the JWMarriott. Mouzakes, a Johnson and Wales grad, previously spent four years at the Hotel del Coronado and also cooked at the The French Laundry and Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand Las Vegas.
Telling Eater that the best part of coming back to San Diego is being able to work with local ingredients again, the chef’s menu for Arlo revolves around a custom wood fired oven and reflects the region in dishes that range from Carlsbad strawberry and tomato salad to Baja shrimp and avocado to sea scallops with peas and carne asada with saffron frites. Mouzakes, who said that he wants to channel his fine dining background into a more social and interactive style of dining, also created shareable, “center of the table” plates include a seafood charcuterie platter and a California paella.
Open initially just for dinner, Arlo will have a significant amount of outdoor space, with room for 100 seats on its patio.