I wanted a nice spot to take my dad for dinner on father's day this past year. Nice means people aren't wearing jeans, there's nice decor, we can hear each other talk and the menu doesn't include chicken fingers. Anything above and beyond this is a bonus so I figured being on the water would put us ahead for the evening before even sitting down.
Cast and Plow is the Ritz Carlton, Marina del Rey's new restaurant, replacing Jerne. We had a lovely table outside on the patio so we could watch the boats and the sunset, and we were easily able to hear each other speak. The service was friendly and accommodating, even when we kept waving them off so we could enjoy some Proseco and the view before ordering.
I learned during dinner that my dad had never had a kale chip. He was a fan and these were very likable - crisp, still fresh green with sumac and just enough sea salt. I think I'll be making kale chips for the next few holidays.
Beets are one of my dad's favorites and Cast and Plow did a nice rendition, sautéing them with a little hazelnut and mint. Things were off to a great start.
Then we waited. And waited. And waited for our mains to come. I will say that we took our time and ordered dishes with starts and stops, but our mains took over 45 minutes to arrive from the time we ordered. When I finally flagged the once helpful server, she hurried off and said, I'm checking now. The dishes came shortly after and eventually the waitress apologized and explained a large party had put their order in before our's.
My scallops were perfectly seared, sitting in pools of smoked potato creme, scattered with brussels sprouts. It was a delicious and beautiful plate.
My dad's fish was overcooked. Perhaps it sat too long before being served, but regardless, it was a bit tough and flavorless, and he mentioned it to the server after she asked how everything was. She was most apologetic and then told us she'd take the dish off of our check.
We debated dessert, but since my dad wasn't satisfied with his entree, we decided to try the brown sugar cake with toffee sauce and salted caramel ice cream. Our waitress ended up bringing an extra dish, which was a cast iron skillet full of sugar and sweet as further apology.
She also ended up only charging us for our drinks and appetizers. She reiterated how sorry she was for the long delay and that it shouldn't have happened. We both appreciated the gestures and in the end, we still had a lovely evening with a great view, enough quiet to talk, and no chicken fingers.