Monday, March 19, 2012
Rate-A-Restaurant #264: Mendocino Farms
Restaurant: Mendocino Farms
Location: 300 South Grand Ave. (Downtown); other locations
Type of restaurant: Sandwiches
We stipulated: I've been dying to try Mendocino Farms for a long time... but we are usually in downtown on the *weekends* when Mendocino Farms' two locations there (geared toward weekday business folks) are closed. So when I found myself in downtown one recent Friday afternoon, I knew I had to make a line straight for Mendocino Farms' California Plaza location to see what the fuss was all about.
They stipulated: "We like to try to reconstruct “Fine Dining” entrees to the sandwich level and take classic regional sandwiches and give them a modern interpretation. Mendocino Farms pays tribute to the county in Northern California that is known for its support of the Slow Food Movement and Sustainable Farming... Sophisticated wine country inspired ingredients composed with a fine dining approach to flavor pairing make Mendocino Farms the premier eco-artisan sandwich concept."
What we ordered: Mike -- "A Sandwich Study of Heat (Turkey Avocado)" $9.50 (fresh local farm turkey, avocado, chili aioli, jalapeno relish, tomato, romaine lettuce on panini grilled rustic white bread. "Ask your server how to make it daringly hot" -- and I did.)
Maria -- "Steak Blt" $9.50 (carved steak, applewood bacon, romaine lettuce, roasted tomatoes, herb aioli, caramelized onions on toasted rustic white bread)
spicy potato salad (for me)
High point: That potato salad was great, and I loved the spicy kick I got from my sandwich. They did not lie -- it was hot. Just like I like it.
Low point: It's so difficult to get to Mendocino Farms on the weekday; as downtown becomes more of a weekend destination, I wish they would consider weekend hours.
Overall impression: As far as sandwiches go, this is up there in a gourmet class. I also appreciate Mendocino Farms' seasonal sandwiches, as they try hard to keep from becoming too dull or routine.
Chance we'll go back: It may be tough, but I would like to try more sandwiches.