“I feel like I’m dining in someone’s backyard,” they say. The alfresco patio, akin to a Hawaiian lanai, is strewn with dim string lights and has Spanish guitar echoing in the background amongst plant heaven with an open kitchen to watch the chef work.

Coral Strong, owner and chef, opened Garden Kitchen with her husband in May 2015 having never worked professionally in a kitchen. With nearly 20 years of experience in the hospitality and service industry and a “failure is not an option” attitude, she jumped directly into the executive chef and owner’s role and soon became a leader in the farm-to-table chef community. Within a few short years, Garden Kitchen went from a no-name restaurant on a run-down corner to one of the most unique and sought out dining spots in San Diego.

A creative in the kitchen, Coral’s true passions are cooking and entertaining. With the continued success and growth of Garden Kitchen, she found herself in the kitchen more and losing touch with her customers. The desire to keep the intimate connection with her guests made it a natural transition to the current reservation-only private dining model, where she can cook with intention and focus on her locally sourced produce-driven tasting menus, and ultimately share that love directly with customers.

There is careful consideration of the food from beginning to end—purchasing, handling, preparation, and presentation—with a cooking style that reflects a love of all flavors.

Garden Kitchen offers a reservation-only, seven-course tasting menu only available on the weekends that showcases true farm-to-table, chef-driven private dining. A wine pairing expertly curated by her in-house sommelier is also available. The weekly changing menu showcases 100% local produce sourced directly from five San Diego farms. 

The dining experience is $125 per person, with optional wine pairing for $35.

Garden Kitchen is located at 4204 Rolando Blvd, San Diego, CA 92115. The wine lounge is open on Thursdays from 4–9 PM and their tasting menu experience is offered Friday and Saturday by online reservation only.

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