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Encore Champagne Bar and Dining Room

http://www.encoregaslamp.com/

I rode by last night. Encore is located at the southwest corner of 6th Avenue and F Street. The room is not finished yet but so far it looks...well...pretty. Maybe a little Ikea, but pretty. It is a small space, a'la Cafe Chloe or Farmhouse. They open for mock service next weekend and I believe you can sign up for an invitation on their website.

I am so tired of seeing empty storefronts in the Gaslamp so I hope they succeed.

Dag

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  1. I LOVE champagne! I will have to check this place out!

    1. It'll be interesting to see what they mean by SD "fresh" cuisine. Presumably, most things on the menu will pair well with champagne!

      1. By mock opening do you mean a soft opening.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cstr

          yes, well, I think she (the manager, cannot remember her name), meant they were going to be open for invitees only so the staff can have a couple of low pressure runs before they officially open.

        2. LOVE this place...just returned from the soft opening. Same owner as Blue Boheme.

          Went with a group of friends and enjoyed a number of shared plates such as the pate, duck confit, and potato gnocchi with bacon that almost had me wetting my pants. For entrees, the group ordered scallops, the burger, jidori chicken, and whitefish which was all good.....one of my friends owns the largest wine bars/wine shops in the San Diego area and we washed down this great food with a bottle of Perrier Jouet Rose and a magnum of Quintessa. For dessert, we shared the devils cake chocolate and lemon tart that were equally fantastic.

          I heap praise on Gaslamp and Seaport Village restaurants about as often as San Diego professional sports teams win championships....in other words, this place is great and I will definitely return....love the ambiance and furnishings of this place as well....they even have a private dining table for a group of 4 that I will have to take advantage of. Muah.

          2 Replies
          1. re: El Chevere

            Thanks so much for your review. Can't wait to try this place!

            1. re: melee

              I just hope there is enough local support to keep it sustainable. Lots of attention to detail. I forgot to mention how much I also liked the chef viewing bar area in the main dining section in the rear with white tufted leather chairs that seat 2, not 1, persons. Very cool.

          2. I went this past weekend and wasn't all that impressed. I didn't eat there---just sat at the bar. Ordered the Schrambsberg Champagne and they were out ($60), so they recommended another type of champagne priced at $120. I thought that was kind of ridiculous. We ended up opting for a bottle of wine. No one had tried it so couldn't tell us about it. The vintage on the menu was an '08. The one they served was an '11. Not sure how such a new place can already have vintages that don't match up. It was just okay. I don't think I'd make a special trip to go back. Unfortunate, because I was SO excited about this place as I LOVE champagne.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Bretzel Girl

              Hoping it was just a bad night... I have dinner reservations there for Saturday. Will report back. Question - is parking an issue?

              1. re: Bretzel Girl

                How frustrating. Sounds like they could have made your dining experience better with just a few little service tweeks...recommend a champagne in a logical price range, not twice what you originally ordered, train the staff, and then offer an explanation/compensation for the incorrect vintage being served to you.

                For Firecooked: parking in the Gaslamp is always a bear. I would suggest looking for a parking lot on the outskirts of the Gaslamp, around 7th and F. The prices for the lots range between $5-10, and you save the hassle of driving in Gaslamp traffic.

                1. re: Dagney

                  Thanks... Also considering taking the ferry over (we are on Coronado) and a cab...

              2. Been there 3 times, Duck Confit Risotto is great, followed up with the Piquillo Peppers stuffed with albacore was wonderful, Lamb chops were done jut right with a purple mustard sauce. the seared albacore was done to perfection.

                All 3 times I rolled past the meat market meet and great bar area, too old for that stuff, the service is top notch and with the open kitchen you can see the crew is hand picked. Meals and service were great. dessert menu is great.

                1. We had a really nice dinner there last night. We sat at the bar overlooking the kitchen and did shared plates: smoked salmon (very good), apple/fig tart (interesting but messy), duck confit (very good, rich), brussels sprouts on polenta (good but the sweetness was distracting for me), dessert cheese course (very nice), panacotta (surprising to me... my favorite course of the night, and paired well with rose champagne). Ryan the executive chef was there, he explained several of the dishes, some of the sources they use, etc. Love that they had so many champagnes by the glass (and not at a huge mark up over the bottle price... which were not a huge mark up over retail for the ones I knew).

                  A couple of nits -- the service to start was a bit rushed, and we didn't get new small plates after ours were messy (although we we when we ordered dessert, we were clear that we wanted the cheese then the panacotta they were appropriately paced). Note that the bar seating is 2-person chairs, perfect for a couple... would recommend a table if you are there with work colleagues. The other is that a vegetarian would have trouble ordering off the menu.

                  1. Just talked to a guy who knows their staff members. They are possibly closing in 8 weeks. Will reopen as something completely different.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Dagney

                      If so, it was certainly a short-lived experiment.

                      1. re: DoctorChow

                        business related (food quality) or stemming from the bad publicity (something they had nothing to do with) as a result of the murder in front of their resto the other month?

                        1. re: El Chevere

                          He said business related. They have two dining areas and he made mention of a lack of "focus" in the restaurant.

                    2. It will be long gone in less then 2 weeks from today. Watch for Chef Ryan to land real fast, landing gears are down.

                      1 Reply