Georges at the Cove (1250 Prospect St., 858/454-4244, www.georgesatthecove.com) is a La Jolla institution. The complex actually includes three separate restaurants. The favorite, Ocean Terrace (lunch and dinner, $15–20) offers casual outdoor seating on the roof of the building year-round, with unpretentious and delicious cuisine. Enjoy seafood as you look out over La Jolla Cove, or choose a simple salad or sandwich for a lighter meal.
Downstairs, you’ll find the ultra-urban Georges California Modern (dinner, $35–40). The industrial design of the dining room precedes the chic, if sometimes a bit overwrought, dishes you’ll find on the menu here. Windows offer views of the Cove, while cushioned banquetess make diners along the wall comfortable as they settle in for a multi-course dinner.
Finally, if you’re really looking for a cocktail out on the balcony, Georges Bar (lunch and dinner, $15–20) has just what you’re looking for. You can order from the Ocean Terrace menu, or just sip your drinks as you enjoy the warm evening air.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition