The Raymond Restaurant’s Chef Tim Guiltinan Introduces a New Dining Menu After Almost 36 Years

Wednesday, April 30, 2014 | 5:25 am

L-R: The Raymond – Hawaiian Ahi, The Raymond – Organic Carrot Salad and The Raymond – Steamed Blue Mussels. Photo by Acuna-Hansen

The Raymond 1886 MenuIt’s been a big season of change for one of Pasadena’s most beloved, classic and iconic restaurants, The Raymond Restaurant in Pasadena. Hot on the heels of a major kitchen reconstruction last year, the restaurant is pleased to announce their brand new dinner menu created by Chef Tim Guiltinan!

Soon after the introduction of 1886 Bar in November of 2010, Owners Rob and Leslie Levy realized it was time to revitalize the dining program at The Raymond as well. For the past 36 years, The Raymond has stayed true to offering their beloved delicious and classic dishes long enjoyed by devoted patrons. This marks the first significant menu change at this popular dining establishment since its opening.

The addition of 1886 Bar in 2010 immediately put The Raymond on the radar as a restaurant that also offered a classic speakeasy space with a new and innovative cocktail culture. The success of 1886 then prompted the Levy’s to invest the money generated by their bar venture into other aspects of the restaurant. The Raymond’s dining patios were refurbished and refined so guests had a much more comfortable space to enjoy their food and the cocktails outdoors, in the beautiful Southern California climate.

On the heels of those improvements, the Levy’s then took on a major project in completely restructuring the kitchen to support Chef Tim Guiltinan and his talented staff in their culinary endeavors. With the new kitchen running at full steam as of this past spring, Chef Guiltinan set out to work on creating a new menu that would honor The Raymond’s past while simultaneously bringing it into the future.

Inspired by the immediate success of 1886 Bar and consequential demand for growth and expansion, Chef Guiltinan set out to create a new menu that would honor The Raymond’s glorious past, while simultaneously bringing it into the future.

Determined to craft a menu that stood out from the rest, he’s created a unique collection of dishes that are as fun and creative, as they are different. As such, the new menu is separated into three sections: Quick Bites, Starters and Entrées, offering those who want a heartier meal the option of a classic entrée, while those interested in sampling a variety of flavors have the opportunity to order a number of dishes designed to take them on a global culinary journey, all at a reasonable price point.

“In the past, the restaurant featured many tasting menus and three to four-course dinners that were more formal, and focused on more of an older, Franco-American approach to food,” explains Guiltinan. “There have been a lot of big changes at The Raymond over the past few years. This menu is a reflection and culmination of The Raymond’s gradual transformation. We have created a menu that’s accessible to a greater range of people, while still offering the exceptional dining experience that has become synonymous with The Raymond.”

The Quick Bites section starts by offering eight selections to kick-off your meal, including Small Farm Massachusetts Oysters with Chef Guiltinan’s house-made hot sauce, followed by “Oi Kimchi” – Persian cucumbers stuffed with Korean chili and radish, and the Alaskan King Crab Salad with cucumber, tomato, raspberry, salsa balsamico and crème fraiche.

It is in the Starters section that one will discover an impressive twenty menu items to choose from like the Salmon Creek Pork Belly Confit with house kimchi and grilled pears, the sushi house-classic Miso-Sake Glazed Hamachi Kama coupled with blistered shisito peppers and lemon, and even an Octopus and Bone Marrow Bruschetta with radish, carrot, tomato and toasted bread.

The Entrees section presents even more new Raymond dishes such as the Beef Cheek with Pasata Strappata, peas, carrots and a fried duck egg, and Broken Arrow Venison with maple turnips, American lardo, nasturtium and classic mashed potatoes. Seafood lovers will rejoice over the Panamanian Cobia served alongside sunflower seed risotto, hon-shimeji mushroom and fiddlehead fern.

Some of the menu’s highlights also include an expanded offering of vegetarian fare, including the Sticky Potato with sesame, Korean red chili, scallions and cilantro, Tandoori Cauliflower with mint-cucumber dip, and A Vegetable Mélange, a warm salad featuring the season’s finest vegetables.

“At The Raymond, we have always made an effort to use only the best ingredients,” he says. But what Guiltinan is most proud of is the way in which The Raymond kitchen is now sourcing its ingredients. “On this menu, we feature a venison that comes to us from a special ranch in Texas; the entire ranch is wild. It’s really an amazing product and our new menu is built to showcase that quality.”

But while the menu is fresh and inventive, offering an ever-evolving array of seasonal plates and specials, the true essence of The Raymond remains — the service. Returning and first-time guests will be introduced to this new menu of fresh, enticing flavors guided by a team of knowledgeable staff, who take pride in the tradition of offering thoughtful and friendly service to all of their clientele, both young and old.

“Be prepared to order things you’re not accustomed to seeing on any other menu, especially in Pasadena.” Says Guiltinan. “Bring an open mind, and an adventurous palate, but most of all, come hungry.”

The Raymond Restaurant is open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday from 5:30 pm to 10:00 p.m. For more information about The Raymond Restaurant’s new menu or reservations at The Raymond Restaurant, please call them directly at (626) 441-3136.

The Raymond Restaurant & 1886 Bar is located at 1250 South Fair Oaks Avenue (At Columbia), in Pasadena.

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