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Inside Scoop: A Look At Harbor Restaurant’s Fall Specials

Inside Feature

September 24, 2017

Story By: Kelli Shiroma |

Lobster and Saffron Risotto ($42) Harbor Restaurant At Pier 38

Now that autumn finally has arrived, there are plenty of new flavors to look forward to at Harbor Restaurant at Pier 38, both now and into the coming months.

Regular diners at this waterfront mainstay already will be familiar with the risotto of the week option. Starting today, executive chef Rob McDaniel will be launching a delicious Lobster and Saffron Risotto ($42), featuring a 1-pound Maine lobster.

“I take the meat out of the tail, chop it up and put it in the risotto itself, along with fresh herbs,” he says. “This entree will be available until next Sunday.

Beef Carpaccio with Lemon Truffle Vinaigrette ($14)

“The risotto of the week will stay on (the menu), but, of course, the flavors will change,” McDaniel adds. “I’ve been doing a different risotto of the week for years — you never run out of risotto (ideas).”

This fall, customers will be able to try a Prosciutto-wrapped Shrimp with Balsamic Reduction ($10) appetizer, as well as Beef Carpaccio with Lemon Truffle Vinaigrette ($14). These specials will be available at different times throughout the holiday season.

“The (shrimp) appetizer features three shrimp wrapped with prosciutto and grilled in our Brasa ovens,” McDaniel says. “It’s served with an arugula salad with Dijon vinaigrette and topped with a drizzle of our house-made balsamic reduction.

Prosciutto-wrapped Shrimp with Balsamic Reduction ($10)

“The Beef Carpaccio comes with a salad featuring a lemon truffle oil vinaigrette,” he explains.

“A lot of our food features clean flavors — a lot of citrus and olive oil. I try to stay true to our Mediterranean flavor profile,” McDaniel says.

Aside from perfecting these fresh bites, McDaniel is already gearing up for Harbor Restaurant ‘s next menu change, which will take place in February.

The creative chef is currently in his “R&D (research and development)” phase, to work out recipes for next spring and gauge how the new menu items will do among customers.

“Come February, we’ll see what’s going on the menu, based on how customers respond,” McDaniel says. “We don’t do seasonal menus; we only change our menu twice a year.”

Whether customers try these fall specials or order signature dishes on Harbor Restaurant’s regular menu, they can always guarantee a high-quality feast.

“I try to source locally, as much as possible,” McDaniel says. “Our fish is all sustainable, long-line caught fish.”

Reflecting on the restaurant’s new menu items, McDaniel shares, “I like to go back to the basics — real clean, simple food. People go back to classics because they’re classics. I like to cook things that I like (myself), or something I’ve seen that inspires me. The flavors in each dish have to marry well together, too.”

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