First, take a deep breath, aahhhh, relax, make yourself comfortable, let the sunlight caress your skin as you absorb the magnificence of the Pacific, brilliant sun piercing the sky on a clear day and you do feel as if you can see forever. Begin with a flute of bubbly or the world famous St. Regis Bloody Mary and realize how lucky you are!
Having been to the original St. Regis in NYC, there was no question that this gorgeous Sunday afternoon repast be ushered in with the famous St. Regis Bloody Mary. Although the origins of popular cocktails are generally disputed, most people agree that the St. Regis in New York City is the American birthplace of this signature cocktail, which they call the “Red Snapper”. Credit goes to Fernand Petiot, a Frenchman who became head bartender at the St. Regis Hotel in 1934 and brought with him the drink that he created while working at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris in the early 1920′s.
I’ve read that the original Red Snapper recipe did not contain horseradish — but this one definitely did, and if you like a Mary that packs a punch, you’ll love the St. Regis Bloody Mary. Each St. Regis has their own signature local Mary and the St. Regis Monarch Beach’s is the Agave Maria with tequila as the base spirit.
Located in Monarch Beach in Dana Point, you won’t find a more alluring choice than St. Regis’s European-style Motif for elegant oceanfront dining with true flair. Popular in Orange County for its Sunday Champagne Brunch, Executive Chef Frederic Castan offers a unique culinary experience featuring an array of eclectic international dishes in a warm and inviting atmosphere. Motif offers striking Pacific views for both terrace and indoor dining and lively weekend entertainment.
The brunch menu changes to reflect the seasons and the freshest ingredients available locally as well as Chef Castan’s creative touch. Staples of Motif’s Sunday Champagne Brunch are the carving station, seafood station with fresh crab, shrimp, and oysters in the half shell with changing ceviches, gourmet selections of salad, an impressive sushi bar, an Asian BBQ and wok station, and the omelet and pancake station with toppings that stretch as far as the eye can see. Fortunately, the amazing array of desserts are strategically placed near the entrance so guests know to save room and can contemplate what sweet delicacy(s) to choose as a grand finale to this royal feast.
My strategy to avoid pure gluttony at a buffet brunch of this caliber is to choose what I love most: egg dishes, salads, and seafood, and select carefully from the rows of elegant silver servers. On this day, I chose the Achiote marinated duck breast with orange quinoa and crisped sage and it was outstanding. Motif utilizes classic round chafers which are smaller than the more common rectangular servers and hot foods are brought from the kitchen in small batches to maintain quality.
This well thought-out approach also allows for maximum enjoyment from the stunning array of decadent dessert delights that await.
As you can see, I managed to exercise some restraint!
What better way to celebrate a special occasion; whether a birthday, visiting family, bridal shower, or treating yourself to a rejuvenating day by the sea.
Have a fabulous weekend and remember Easter, Mother’s Day, and Father’s Day are just around the corner!
Edit 6/19/16: The St. Regis Monarch Beach debuted June 1, 2016 as Monarch Beach Resort following a $40 million renovation.
Sunday Brunch is served at AVEO Table +Bar:
This month, Mediterranean brunch menu features flavors from Greece with a coastal influence that befits the resort’s seaside location.
$90 per person | $45 children, ages 5-12
Make reservations by calling (949) 234-3900
Monarch Beach Resort
One Monarch Beach Road
Dana Point, CA 92629
Photos of property courtesy of the St. Regis.