Portola Hotel & Spa Debuts New Restaurant: Jacks Monterey
The AAA Four Diamond Portola Hotel & Spa, overlooking Monterey Bay and Fisherman’s Wharf, announces the culmination of its $6 million dollar lobby renovation, as they cut the ribbon on a new lobby and introduce a new lobby bar/restaurant; Jacks Monterey, in its entirely reimagined new space located in the Portola's lower lobby.
The new restaurant and lobby bar, welcomes patrons for lunch and dinner in the beautiful atrium lobby. Designed by the San Francisco-based Puccini Group with an eye for the inspirations and colors found across Northern California's Monterey Peninsula, Jacks Monterey evokes the spectacular scenery that has made this area a world-famous vacation destination.
“The coastal Monterey landscape, wildlife and local artist community had a tremendous influence on our design and materials palette,” says Puccini’s Chief Creative Officer, Rob Polacek. Patrons of Jacks Monterey will find modern furnishings reflecting the weathered woods of the nearby docks and canneries, the crisp blue tones of the nearby Pacific Ocean and the pink and sage flora that dots the coastline. Live trees bring the outside in to the atrium, where guests will find renowned Chef Danny Abbruzzese's California Cultural Cuisine, centers on locally sourced produce, and products unique to Monterey Bay.
Chef Danny's California Cultural Cuisine reflects the melting pot of ethnicities that is exemplified in both California and America. The result is a wide-ranging, palate-pleasing menu of different flavor profiles unique to cultures from around the world, all created with sustainably conscious ingredients found throughout Monterey County.
Abbruzzese and his culinary team work closely with local purveyors including Coke Farms, Monterey Farms, Christopher Ranch and Route 1 Farms to serve the freshest local produce grown throughout the Tri-County regions. Guests will delight in beef from California's famed Harris Ranch, sustainable seafood from Monterey Bay and cheese sourced from Schoch Farms Monterey, all served in a lively, stylish setting that is neither pretentious nor pricey.
Jacks Monterey lunch menu is moderately priced and features salads, sandwiches, pizzas and more including a Strawberry Fields Forever salad created with locally grown strawberries, arugula, almonds, goat cheese fritter and aged balsamic; Chef Danny’s mama’s secret recipe for Eggplant Parmesan; and Pizza of the Season with asparagus, pesto and burrata cheese prepared in the new kitchen's Marri Forni Neapolitan gas-fired oven.
The dinner menu includes solo plates and sharing plates to provide patrons with a chance to sample a variety of menu items and engage in a shared dining experience with their family, friends or colleagues.
Sharing plates feature the Chef's Signature Bread with creamy artichoke and pecorino cheese baked in a cast-iron skillet; Jacks N’ Cheese Bake created with locally sourced Schoch Farms Monterey Jack cheese and persillade; Halibut Paupiette served with Asian vegetables, shitakes, steamed rice, black beans and garlic sauce; Pajaro Pastures Goat Moussaka with herb béchamel sauce; and the Harris Ranch New York Strip with potato gratin, prosciutto, watercress salad and pink peppercorn butter.
For libations and beyond, Jacks Monterey’s bar menu also has a hyper-local focus, offering numerous Monterey County wines served by the glass or full bottle. Jacks Monterey also offers wine on draft from 10SPAN Vineyards, featuring their Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. 10SPAN supports the Ventana Wildlife Society’s mission to conserve the native wildlife and habitats of California’s Central Coast.
Beer lovers can sample award-winning craft beer made onsite at the Portola's craft brewery, Peter B’s Brewpub, or choose locally made guest draft beers or one of two locally crafted ciders from William Tell. And fans of premium mixology will find a wealth of unique libations created by onsite mixologist Tuyet, who also uses local ingredients in her crowd-pleasing concoctions.
For some crowd-pleasing fun, Jacks Monterey has partnered with Elyx Vodka to offer a “Group Effort” experience curated by Tuyet. Guests can order bespoke drinks served in a copper pineapple for two to share, or in a larger copper pineapple for four or more, accompanied by a serving ladle. One favorite features a mashup of Elyx Vodka, hibiscus bitters, mint-honey syrup and soda.
“Our team has created a truly unique menu, drawing upon favorite recipes from around the world. Chef Danny Abbruzzese’s creativity comes to life by introducing us to rich international flavors in a very simple clean style. Best yet, he draws on a variety of locally sourced produce and other unique products found throughout the Central Coast,” says Janine Chicourrat, General Manager of the Portola Hotel & Spa.