Chef Eric Ulbrich, formerly at Park Café in Greenwich, Connecticut, is the new chef, replacing Christophe Cadou at this bistro serving eclectic fare. Menu selections range from foie gras and oysters to burgers and fried calamari. Large raw bar offerings remain. The 45-seat patio now features a bar. Closed Mon and Tues. Dinner only Wed to Sat; opened Sun from 1 to 8:30 pm.
Best New Restaurant, North County 2005. Auberge Maxime owners Jean and Sophie Le Bris heard a little voice that told them jacket-required, special occasion restaurants were dinosaursus extinctus, so they transformed their 27-year-old haute French cuisine eatery into a more relaxed and approachable contemporary American restaurant with bowls of popcorn at the bar, a bold red logo and red walls, a 25-year-old CIA chef, and burgers and mussels on a short bar menu. A few Gallic dishes remain (seared foie gras), yet this is now a bold new experience for any day, not just a special one.
Best Appetizers 2006