Quick what do you think of when we say, “France”? Food, wine, love right? But you don’t have to pop for a plane ticket for a little taste of the glorious Gallic country. All you need to do is book a room at the charming L’Auberge Del Mar–a petite replica of a French countryside inn– and drive the few hours it takes from Los Angeles down the coast to the adorable seaside city. Actually you can also get there fast by rail on Amtrak (http://www.amtrak.com) from L.A.’s downtown Union Station direct to the heart of the village.
It’s a scenic ride, which the LA Travel Diva has done many times, and Amtrak has a nice business class car with WiFi, snacks and beverages, laptop tables and other nice amenities to occupy you–especially during the first 40 minutes of the ride when the views are industrial strength drab. But once past there, the ocean looms into view and you’ll want to look a the window and watch the action on the beaches and even look for whales and sea life.
Back at the inn–L’Auberge is dishing out the romance with some tempting treats for you and your Valentine this year starting with a special Yours, Mine and Ours five course dinner menus that include one personally tailored to your tastes plus decadent desserts made for two.
- Diver Scallop with Crispy Rice, Toasted Nori, Ponzu, and Shiso
- Asparagus Velouté with 62 Degree Egg, Black Truffle, and Porcini Chicharrón
- Artic Char with Char Roe, Foraged Mushrooms, Bone Marrow, and Pea Vines
- KobeBeef Cheeks with Celery Root Purée, Cipolline Onion, and Beet Greens
- Day Boat Scallop Crudo with Miso Uni Noodles and Hiramasa Consommé
- Cipolline Velouté with Black Truffle, Onion Gelée, and Puffed Gruyere
- BerkshirePork Cheeks with Root Beer Molasses and Pickled Mustard Seeds
- Wild Striped Bass with House Chorizo, Scallion Nage, and Baby Octopus
The grand finale is the “Ours” menu –a fantasy of Callebaut Chocolate dessert with Champagne Marshmallows, Doughnut Holes, Éclairs and Local Strawberries.
The Valentine’s Day menu is $75 per person. Reservations are required and can be made by calling 858-259-1515.
Love by the Sea Package
You’ll want to spend the night and this deal, which costs $599 and up, includes Valentine’s dinner at KITCHEN 1540 , a rose petal turndown and breakfast in bed with mimosas the next morning. For reservations, visit www.laubergedelmar.com and enter promo code: LOVE.
This picture postcard pretty 120-room inn sits smack in the middle of one of our prettiest seaside citys, Del Mar. There’s a delightful spa with top notch treatments (especially personally sampled massages and facials), a pool and an award-winning, signature restaurant, KITCHEN 1540. Be aware that sometimes when the surf’s up the young dining room staff slips out to sea causing a bit of a slow down in service (it happened to us), just a warning, chill out and let it happen.
The tiny town is chock a block with cute boutiques, shops, and eateries. You can browse hand in hand, stop for a bite to eat, or drinkor both. Or you can stroll along the beach, go swimming if your hearty enough to withstand the cold ocean temperature, cuddle up by the fireplace in the hotel or just snuggle and do what comes naturally in your romantic room.
For more information visit www.laubergedelmar.com or www.destinationhotels.com