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La Costa's newest recipe is all about being 'green'

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The kitchens at La Costa Resort and Spa are cooking up something good -- for the plants, that is. In an effort to continue to reduce, reuse and recycle, the venue recently installed two industrial compost machines -- not to please the human palate, but instead to cater toward nature by turning kitchen scraps into a compost suitable for use on the golf course and in hotel plant and flower beds.

"La Costa is continually looking for ways to minimize consumption and waste without detracting from the quality of our guest experience," said April Shute, vice president and general manager. "The compost machine is a great example of how we accomplish this goal. It allows us to turn 182,000 pounds of food waste per year into a product that ultimately enhances the beauty of our resort."

La Costa is one of the first kitchens in San Diego to install the E-Correct Food Waste Decomposition System, which dehydrates food waste to produce a humus-rich soil in approximately 18 hours that is suitable for landscape use. The food waste is heated to 180 degrees in a decomposing chamber without the use of enzymes, by-product, fresh water or venting, resulting in zero sewer and landfill impact.

"With the exception of bones and a few other items, just about anything can be used in the compost machine," said Hans Weigand, La Costa's executive chef. "It's been fun experimenting with what goes into the machine to produce the best compost product. We created the La Costa recipe: two parts vegetable scrap from the kitchen, one part banquet scrap and one part table scrap from the restaurants."

Mission Bay's Paradise Point Resort & Spa is emerging with an exotic new look next month following a $20 million renovation of its 462 bungalow-style guestrooms and meeting facilities.

According to Geoff Young, vice president, managing director of the resort, 35,000 square feet of meeting space has been reinvented, and the property is slated to complete the makeover of its guestrooms by late February.

Originally built in 1962, the resort was originally known as Vacation Village and built by Hollywood producer and real estate developer Jack Skirball. It became Paradise Point Resort & Spa in 1999.

Angelo Ingrati has recently joined the sommelier staff at Addison, the fine dining venue at The Grand Del Mar.

Certified by the Court of Master Sommeliers, Ingrati most recently served as a lobby lounge manager/sommelier during the reopening of New York City's iconic The Pierre Hotel. Prior to that, he was beverage manager/sommelier at The Greenbrier Resort, an AAA Five Diamond historic property in White Sulfur Springs, W.V. Additionally, he worked for Sakonnet Vineyards in Little Compton, Rhode Island, and was also a lead pastry chef at Chatham Bars in Chatham, Mass.

At the same time, The Grand Golf Club at The Grand Del Mar has expanded its teaching staff, naming Derek Uyeda as lead instructor and Phil Rodgers as staff instructor.

The Gaslamp Quarter's nighttime celebrity haven, Stingaree, has been named one of four finalists for the Mega-Club of the Year category in the 2010 Nightclub & Bar awards. The nightclub is joined by the likes of nationally acclaimed venues, XS, Las Vegas; Pacha, New York City; and Rain, Las Vegas. Winners will be featured in the March issue of Nightclub & Bar Magazine and will be honored during the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade show in Las Vegas March 8-10.

The next step for Stingaree is the final judging process, where a panel of industry experts will decide the winners in each category.

The Hillcrest Farmers Market has added a Visiting Chef Series, which features chefs from local restaurants who provide live cooking demonstrations at the weekly event, provide taste samples and show patrons how to shop at local farmers markets.

Last weekend, the first visiting chef was Jeff Rossman of Terra Restaurant, who took patrons on a tour of the market as he selected produce and ingredients for his recipe.

To purchase tickets for the Visiting Chef Series visit fabuloushillcrest.com.

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