Meet Mike Minor, the New Executive Chef at The Marine Room

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Welcome back to the Happy Half Hour! This week’s special guest is Mike Minor, the new executive chef at The Marine Room in La Jolla. The Marine Room has been one of the city’s most iconic restaurants since its opening in 1941, and Mike will be filling the shoes of Bernard Guillas, who put his French twist on the restaurant’s seafood fare for the past 27 years. Mike talks about his plan to make the mainstay restaurant even more sustainable when it comes to sourcing local catch, like swordfish and tuna. While he promises to honor the restaurant’s tradition, he also wants to evolve the menu around classic dishes and add his own flair. One example is the new Perfect Egg dish, which is an egg stuffed with corn veloute, sous-vide egg yolk, foamed egg whites, and caviar. Before his new gig, Mike was the executive chef at the acclaimed Border Grill in his hometown, Las Vegas. He also ran a “Mexicue” food truck that fused authentic Mexican cuisine with Texas barbecue which was voted Top 200 Food Trucks in the country. Aside from his chef life, Mike is a proud punk rocker with an intriguing background. He recalls his first job as a pool boy which may or may not have been tied to the mob, as well as other stories from Sin City that will be featured in his upcoming autobiography, Growing Up In Vegas. In Hot Plates, Brad Wise is opening the Solana Beach location of his steakhouse, Rare Society, this weekend. Pacific Catch, a sustainable fish house chain from the Bay Area, just opened up at Westfield UTC. The San Diego City Council recently approved making parklets permanent for restaurants. In Two People, $50, Mike chose Rocky’s Crown Pub in Pacific Beach and Mike’s Taco Club in Ocean Beach. Troy’s pick is Vaga in Encinitas for the warm rolls, bagna cauda clams, and signature burger—you can read his review on Vaga in our November issue. David recommended the Victory At Sea Beer Dinner from Ballast Point in Miramar, which comes with four courses that include creamy lobster risotto, pancetta-wrapped scallops, and filet mignon. Thank you for listening! The Happy Half Hour team will be taking a short break, and the show will return in December. As always, we want to hear from you. Need a restaurant recommendation? Is there a guest you want us to book on the show? Let us know! You can call us at 619-744-0535 and leave a voicemail, or if you’re too shy, you can email us at happyhalfhour@sdmag.com.

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