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Top 5 Spots for Cauliflower Bites

By Kirk Mattu


With its mild taste and versatile texture, cauliflower is popping up on menus all over San Diego. Here, the top five restaurants to visit to try the season’s newest “it” dish.
George’s cauliflower San Diego
George’s roasted cauliflower is served in a caramelized veggie demi-glace.
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1. Civico 1845
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Civico 1845, Little Italy’s buzzy eatery, has created an Italian niche for vegan and gluten-free diners. Its forward take on generational Italian cuisine has lead the chefs to put their own spin on this uberpopular white veggie. The resto’s heirloom cauliflower ($5) is offered as a side, while the veg takes center stage in both the fusilli dell’orto organic kamut ($15) and gluten-free orto di maria ($14). Grab a seat in the chic dining room or outside on the patio for an authentic alfresco experience. 1845 India St., San Diego, 619.431.5990,

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2. George’s at the Cove’s California Modern
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Dine at George’s at the Cove’s California Modern and request the roasted cauliflower ($28). The hearty entree is served with sunchokes, Buddha’s hand (or, fingered citron) and a vegetable demi-glace. Elevate the meal by opting for the four-course tasting ($75), which includes two starters and a dessert with the cauliflower entree. Order the fish tacos as one of the apps and end the meal with the whipped coconut sorbet. 1250 Prospect St., La Jolla, 858.454.4244,

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Carnivores beware: The seared cauliflower steak at KINDRED will have you questioning your attachment to meat. Packed with just as much flavor and seasoning as flesh favorites, the seared cauliflower steak ($12) is laid over a puree of orange squash and drizzled with steak sauce. For a shareable plate, try the Fried and Pickled ($9)—a savory option overflowing with battered pickles and buffalo pickled cauliflower. Don’t forget to take a look at the stellar bar menu: The Sweet Leaf ($9) scotch cocktail will add a nice balance to the dishes. 1503 30th St., San Diego, 619.546, 9653,

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4. True Food Kitchen
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Fresh is an understatement at True Food Kitchen, which champions health-driven flavor. Order up the gluten-free charred cauliflower ($8) tossed in North African harissa and served with dates, pistachios and herbs. Make sure to try the Chamomile Cooler ($11), which tones down the spices and highlights the smoky char of the vegetable. 7007 Friars Road, San Diego, 619.810.2929,

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5. Water Grill
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Water Grill is known as the premier seafood spot in San Diego, and its coupling of cauliflower and wild eastern sea scallops is not to be missed. The cauliflower is presented two ways on the plate—curried and roasted, and as a puree, which serves as the creamy base to the scallops (lunch portion $29, dinner portion $36). Pair the dish with a refreshing local craft beer like Saint Archer Blonde ($6) or consider the Queen’s Park Swizzle ($14) for a minty palate cleanse. 615 J St., San Diego, 619.717.6992,