Beef Tartare at California Modern

beef tartare

At California Modern, our menu changes often to incorporate the freshest ingredients of the season. And one dish our chefs are particularly excited about right now is our new beef tartare. When prepared correctly, beef tartare can be one of the most flavorful steak dishes you'll ever try. In fact, our beef tartare is so memorable that a previous version made it on San Diego food critic Troy Johnson's "Best Things I Ate All Year" review in Eater San Diego. Read on as sous chef Bradley Chance shares his perspective on what makes this dish worth trying.

Beef Tartare

"Our beef tartare is loosely based on Korean BBQ or more specifically, Bulgogi, which is the thin marinated strips of beef you find at all Korean barbeque restaurants. We play with the flavors of KBBQ, but instead of grilling the beef, we serve it raw. The beef is seasoned with a paste of fermented pear, grated ginger, scallion, olive oil and fresh lime juice. For texture we have a few garnishes consisting of pickled daikon radish, compressed pear, and puffed beef tendon chips, a few dots of gochugjang aioli, scallion oil and daikon sprouts complete the dish."

Wine Pairing


California Modern Wine Director/General Manager Matt Strickler: "We are pairing our beef tartare dish with a lovely rosé from Bandol in Provence, France. The producer is Chateau Val D’Arenc and the vintage is 2016. The wine is bright, dry, crisp and pairs beautifully with a myriad of flavors. The beef tartare dish has complexity with some sweet, savory and slightly spicy notes. The rosé complements the plate with its bright fruit notes, its minerality, and its great acidity. Bandol, in my opinion, makes the finest rosés in the world and this beautiful wine from Chateau Val D’Arenc is a great example."

With our nightly dinner menus, we strive to provide a flavor-forward dining adventure for guests to encounter a sense of place, a sense of time and an element of surprise. Come join the conversation and dine with us a California Modern.

California Modern is Temporarily Closed

In the meantime, join us for lunch and dinner on our Ocean Terrace.