San Diego, CA

Farmer and the Seahorse - Cute Brunch Spot in La Jolla, San Diego

Dinh Lee

Farmer and the Seahorse is a super cute brunch and lunch spot in La Jolla of San Diego County. They offer an expansive outdoor dining area with beautiful decoration and just overall a lovely environment and experience to be dining in. They are nestled in the heart of Torrey Pines and has an expansive area leading up to and around the restaurant with lots of greenery and landscaping as well as nice photo opportunity spots with friends and family.

Farmer and the Seahorse focuses their menu on a quite fine American dining experience with extremely high-quality ingredients and demonstrates great culinary expertise in the way their dishes are cooked and served. Their breakfast menu ends at 11 a.m. so make sure to go before then if you want to make it to enjoy their breakfast offerings. I, on the other hand, was not able to make it to their breakfast so I got their lunch menu instead. Each of their menus are fairly small so I wouldn't say there is a vast amount of options here, but I will, however, say that despite having less options than other major restaurants like them, the options they do offer are spectacular and I feel that you really can't go wrong with any of the items and dishes that they offer.

As for my experience, I was able to order quite a few dishes to share with friends as well as cocktails to go around. First and foremost, I need to talk about their Scottish Salmon dish which is served with roasted vegetables and a carrot ginger puree. This dish not only blew me away by how absolutely perfect their salmon was cooked but also by how perfectly their carrot ginger puree complimented the dish. First of all, we must talk about the fish itself, the focal point. It was fully cooked through while maintaining a juicy tenderness that can only be achieved if cooked to the perfect temperature and time. It also had a lovely crispy crust to really tie everything together and add more texture to the dish. On top of that, the carrot ginger puree was extremely pleasant to taste and the mild sweetness and savoriness of it perfectly complimented the savory umami flavor of the fish. The puree made it so that it was more refreshing and helped change up the flavors to incorporate a bit of sweetness that makes the dish all the more addictive.

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Next, I want to talk about their appetizers. If you don't usually order appetizers at restaurants, I totally feel that, and generally, I am not too keen on appetizers either, but I genuinely believe that you simply must try at least one of their appetizers because they were amazing. And if you're only going to try one of their appetizers, I would have to recommend their crab louie. This is a salad made with blue crab, butter lettuce wedges, local tomatoes, bacon, and housemade Catalina dressing. When I tell you I don't even like salads, but I really enjoyed this one. For one, the toppings made the dish so much more than a salad and it actually made me forget that it even was a salad in the first place, now that's an accomplishment in my books. I also simply have to mention their housemade Catalina dressing and how amazing it is. The recipe is probably top-secret, and rightfully so, but I need it! It is the perfect balance of creaminess and tanginess that just rounds everything out in the salad. The dressing was so addicting and definitely keeps you coming back for more. The bacon adds a lovely bit of crunch and smokiness and I definitely prefer it as the source of crunch over croutons or shredded chips. The crab was obviously one of the best parts. They are generous with the crab meat and the flavor of it was a great addition to the salad. This is definitely a must-try and a fan favorite among my group of friends!

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Their farmer's turkey sandwich was also quite great. They put a lot of turkey in there but it doesn't become too redundant or heavy thanks to their delicious dijonnaise slaw and pickled red onion which adds such a great kick to it that you really don't get tired of it. I would highly recommend this as a great handheld or sandwich option if that is what you're looking for.

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Another honorable mention for appetizers would be their grilled artichoke hearts. This is perfect for the artichoke lovers out there (I know you're out there!) and the sauce they use for this (artichoke vinaigrette) goes so perfectly with it. The way they cook their vegetables somehow makes them addicting and you find yourself going back for more veggies!

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Last but not least, I also tried their lamb chops with quinoa. The flavors were quite good and the lamb chop itself was very tender. However, in comparison to the other dishes from that day, I would say this did not shine as much as I hoped it would, especially because I really do love lamb. I feel that the flavors could have packed more of a punch, but overall, it was still a solid dish for lamb lovers.

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Join me on my quest to eat at all the best restaurants in town and around the world! Follow me on Instagram @sanfoodiego for more food recs.

San Diego, CA
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