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Review of Sage Grill in Encinitas

eric | Mar 17, 200611:59 PM

My wife and I tried the new Sage Grill in Encinitas tonite. It's located on Encinitas Blvd near Trader Joe's. I've heard good things about it and it read this comment from the U-T's reviewer Wolfgang D. Verkaaik:

On my personal ratings scale for restaurants, the ultimate accolade is the “wow” designation. Basically, that means I think the restaurant is so enjoyable, you won’t be able to wait to get back again and again! Sage in Encinitas has made the “wow list” with flying colors. In fact, I feel this restaurant is one of the best along the entire North County coastal corridor. Located in a small center on Encinitas Boulevard, just east of El Camino....

I think there must be 2 Sage Grills because the one I went to didn't match this billing. While a pleasant place it seemed quite ordinary to us. The restaurant is large and fairly modern, but has wood floors and no draperies and is quite loud. At the rear is a seafood bar.

The menu is varied from burgers to a pork chop, chicken, ribeye steak, etc. that range from about $18-$24. We each had tri-tips at $22. A Caesar salad was $4 extra. (The turkey salad does not use roasted turkey but pressed turkey roll. We did not order that and ordered the caesar instead.)The salad was fair. No hearts of romaine, just small pieces of the outside leaves. The dressing was good. The bread is a good piece of a sourdough loaf served with three small dollops of spreads, olive, pesto and dried tomato.

The main course was good, but not exceptional. There were three strips of steak about 1 x 3 inches each. The meat was exceptionally tender, but not seasoned and fairly bland tasting. Potatoes were smashed potatoes that were excellent. My wife had skinny fries, similar to McDonalds and quite good.

There's a $10 corkage fee and a variety of wines by the glass and bottle, all moderatley priced. There are four deserts including a brownie sundae, a fruit compote, and a bread pudding and a forth which escapes me.

Sage Grill is a very decent place, perhaps better for lunch, but is a far cry from a wow and certainly nowhere near one of the best along the north coast. I'd say it's very mediocre in comparison with restaurants I like such as Pacifica Del Mar, Meritage, and even Beach Grass Cafe.

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