Bottega Americano

Bottega Americano, an Italian restaurant and marketplace, recently opened in San Diego’s East Village.

I had been eagerly anticipating this opening, especially after seeing some pretty amazing preview photos of the interior. I was a little confused about the restaurant concept at first. The descriptions made me think of Eataly in New York City, a gourmet Italian marketplace that also houses several individual restaurants. This is not quite what Bottega is like.

Bottega is one restaurant, with several separate kitchen areas. The dining area includes long communal tables, tables for small groups, as well as seats around the bars of each kitchen station. They also have a small market area with prepared foods.

The interior design is modern and elegant, with marble counter-tops installed at each bar area. It’s definitely one of my favorite in terms of decor.

We were seated at the bar in front of the Salumeria station. It was a lot of fun watching the cured meats be sliced, the cheese plates prepped, and the display of colorful pickled vegetables. Next to us was the wood fired oven pizza station. And in the distance, I could just make out the colorful, fresh-made pasta hanging from the pasta and cold seafood bar area.

The menu had an overwhelming amount of choices that all sounded delicious.

Complimentary Bread

Dinner service starts with a duo of fresh baked breads, made in-house. They were accompanied with oil and vinegar.

Fennel sausage / cauliflower panna / goat cheese / mozzarella / roasted tomatoes / kale 

This lightened up mug cake is perfect for the upcoming apple season, and it’s only approximately 171 calories.

I hope you aren’t tired about hearing about my book. I was going to stop talking about it for a few weeks, but I was really craving this skinny apple spice cake after seeing the excerpt shared on the publisher’s blog. I actually didn’t have any apples in the house and went to the farmer’s market to buy them. To my surprise, apples were really difficult to find. The vendors were carrying mainly summer fruits like peaches and figs.

One of my favorite chapters in my new book is the “Skinny Mug Cakes” section, where every recipe is under 200 calories. Making a cake that is low in calories but still tastes like dessert was definitely a challenge, but I was really happy with the ones that are in my book.

California Donuts opened a few months ago. I was curious about this little store, especially when I heard about their “California Dozen” of 14 donuts.

This shopping plaza will also house a future Rita’s Ice, which we already saw in the works.

When we visited California Donuts, the donut display was quite full. There were all the usual suspects as well as a few less common ones like blueberry donuts and red velvet donuts. They also had five different flavors of donut holes.

The donut prices were pretty reasonable. but I was definitely drawn to the California dozen, 14 donuts for $8.99.

All of the donuts on display, except for the top row of specialty oversized donuts, could be selected from.

Here was our selection (don’t worry, we did share!)