Monarch Beach Resort, Dana Point, CA USA

Moist Chicken

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Ordered at Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point, California, about 2 hours south of Los Angeles.

Overall Score 85.8/100
Presentation 8.1/10 Meat Quality 9.1/10
Fruit / Vegetable Quality 8.9/10 Bread Quality 9.3/10
Mayo / Sauce Usage 9.2/10 Value 7.3/10
Ingredients Ratio 8.1/10 Sides 8.4/10
Ambiance 8.8/10 Overall Taste 8.6/10

What’s the best 5 star resort within driving distance of LA? That question has several answers with many opinions. And perhaps after a few more years of living in LA, I’ll come to a conclusion… but for now, Monarch Beach Resort was our stop of choice.

Family friendly to the max. I’ve never seen a place so catering to kids and their parents. We were a bit out of place in that regard, but it didn’t stop us from enjoying every moment of the trip.

Our favorite place? Probably the Michael Mina restaurant, where we had dessert every night. Followed by the beach, which was absolutely fantastic. But in-between daytime activities and dinner, I needed a club sandwich to truly experience the best of this So Cal resort.

The description of their $26 Lemon Herb Chicken Club didn’t really excite me, but I put faith before fear and ordered this after the gym. At $26, I had high expectations.

Expectations that were tough to meet.

The execution of the sandwich as a whole left me a bit intrigued, as the items that went into it didn’t feel like sandwich items. This was a really juicy meal where the grilled chicken flavor overpowered everything else, including the nicely cut and not very fatty or salty bacon. The chicken was overly juicy – I would say it was made with a sous vide, which actually produced a fantastic protein, just a bit too juicy and too flavorful for this specific sandwich. The bread was fantastic, it had a smokey wood burnt flavor that added a wonderful essence… However, the bread became mushy from the moist chicken and the (absolutely delicious) avocado ranch. Great ingredients that didn’t do so well together.

I enjoyed the meal, but couldn’t help feel this would have been better served as a salad with chicken dish, accompanied by crumbled bacon, diced tomato, and sliced avocado, with ranch dressing, and a side of butter for the toasted sourdough bread.

Alas, we were off to play cards in the lobby lounge, and while I was content, I knew Monarch Beach Resort had room for improvement.

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