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Burton House & Grill — Fine Dining in Nipomo

A new, white-table-cloth restaurant has emerged in the burb of Nipomo called, “The Burton House and Grill,” and we came for dinner and were immediately drawn in by the soulful standards of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Harry Connick, Jr.

Greeted very politely by William “Bill” Guilfoyle, the operations manager, we were seated and served a wonderful cheese plate of grilled brioche and focaccia bread, crumbly goat cheese, brie and savory walnuts, cranberries, and cherries. I ordered a bottle of Talley’s Bishops Peak Cabernet Sauvignon for the table to share.

This was a night of firsts, as I was honoring a silent auction donation from the Taste of Nipomo, Dinner With A Food Writer.

I would be taking our guests to the restaurant of their choice and during the meal would explain how I gather my information for each article. Jim and Linda Avila joined us and the fun began!

Gary started with salted caramel Pot de Crème, rich and creamy salted caramel custard with raspberry sauce and a bourbon meringue. He loved it and gave us each a try; it was like flan on steroids.

I had the veggie pesto soup special with a basil base and ribbons of corn, broccoli, celery and hominy. Linda had the roasted cauliflower salad with large purple florets, diced avocado, kale, and candied walnuts, with lemon Dijon vinaigrette. It was big enough for at least two to share and we spent time wondering who massaged the kale to make it sweet.

Jim started with the Mojito ceviche served on house made tortilla chips. It consisted of white cut fish, white rum lime, jalapeño, roma tomato, and we added lime juice to finish it off.

Executive Chef, Armida Garcia, came out to meet us and we shared foodie tips. Armida loves to explore the wonders of different cooking techniques, combinations of taste, and international food samples.

Even though Armida has sampled and created all kinds of international dishes, her expertise is found in gourmet Latin American cuisine. Graduating from the Culinary Arts in Southern California at the top of her class, she spent a number of years traveling and learning different culinary techniques all over Latin and North America.

Our entrees came and we all tried a bite of every one.  Jim had the

braised short ribs flavored with red wine and herbs, with carrot ribbons and garlic mashers underneath.

Linda had the New York steak, a 14-ounce full-flavored USDA prime cut, served with grilled asparagus and a Chimichurri sauce. It was large and Jim was excited that she took half to go so he could have steak and eggs for breakfast.

I had the coconut chicken, with two large breasts breaded and topped with a coconut, almond and spinach sauce. My sides were the potato galette and grilled mushrooms. The potatoes were sliced thin and done in olive oil and the huge portabella mushrooms were a savory accompaniment.

Gary had the grilled Caesar salad with N.Y. steak slices on top. It is a different take with a whole wedge of romaine lettuce, grilled crisp and served with house made traditional dressing, heirloom cherry tomatos, avocado, focaccia croutons and shaved Parmesan cheese.

The Burton House and Grill is a pure restaurant focused on the service, ambiance, and food quality (SAF) principle. They do special catering events and have weekend brunch every Saturday and Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Located at 151 West Dana St., in Nipomo, they are on the corner of Dana and Burton.

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