What's in the shaker at Grant Grill and Lounge? Read on to find out!


New Seasonal Cocktail Menu – The Giving Tree

November 28th, 2016

Chef de Bar Cory Alberto launched a new seasonal cocktail menu just in time for the transition from Fall to Winter.  Inspired by his favorite children’s book, each cocktail on The Giving Tree menu features a gift from trees – oaky flavors, cedar and blossom foam, flaming cinnamon sticks and more.

Highlights of the Menu include:

Lost in Europe: Bols Genever, Galliano, Massanez Crème De Pèche, Aperol, Mascarpone Cheese, Cedar and Blossom Foam

The Cherry Picker:  Bulleit Rye, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, House Made Sarsaparilla Soda 

Fall in New England:  Johnnie Walker Red, Fresh Cold Smoked Apple Puree, Sapling Vermont Maple Liquor, Don Ciccio Walnut Amaro, Cinnamon Bitters




RECIPE: Mango Beignets with Mint Sauce

August 19th, 2015


Chef Mark had the fortunate opportunity to cook alongside Julia Child while in residence in Santa Barbara.  

Allow us to share with you one of Chef’s favorite recipes that he shared with culinary icon Julia Child, and as featured in our August  “Cooking with Julia” Dinner Series

Bon Appétit! 

Mango Beignets with Mango Mint Sauce

From the Kitchen of Executive Chef Mark Kropczynski

For Beignets Batter:   

  • 7 ounces all purpose flour
  • 3 each yolks
  • 3 ½ ounces champagne
  • 3 ½ ounces milk
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 2/3 ounces salad oil   
  • 3 egg whites 

For the Sauce:   

  • 4 tablespoons mangos — diced
  • 2 ounces Malibu rum
  • 1 ounce mango coulis
  • 1 ½ ounces butter
  • ½ tablespoon mint leaves — chiffonade

For Beignets and Plating:    


For the Sauce:

Sauté mangos slightly in a sauté pan with a tab of butter. Deglaze with rum, and reduce slightly until sauce consistency. Add coulis and bring to a boil. Finish with butter and mint.

For the Beignets:

Combine flour, yolks, champagne, milk, salt, and oil. Mix thoroughly and let rest for 1 hour. Whip the egg whites until stiff and then fold into batter. Dip mango into batter and then place in 350 degree fryer, making sure to evenly fry all sides until golden brown. Remove from fryer and place on a napkin to remove excess oil. Roll in granulated sugar and serve immediately.

For Plating:

Place 2 or three beignets on plate and place ice cream on top (we use crème fraiche ice cream!) Drizzle sauce over ice cream and around plate.   

Grant Grill Welcomes Cory Alberto as Chef de Bar

August 11th, 2015

Meet Cory Alberto – Grant Grill’s new Chef de Bar. Alberto is a seasoned and award-winning bartender who brings years of experience and a wealth of cocktailCory Alberto, Chef de Bar knowledge and innovation to one of San Diego’s premier dining destinations, known for its California cuisine, inspired craft mixology and iconic setting.

In his new role, Alberto, winner of the 2014 Chefs and Shakers competition; the 2013 Fortaleza Tequila and Illegal Mezcal Cocktail Competition and the 2012 Casa Noble Most Spirited Bartender award, will supervise bar operations and contribute his creative cocktail expertise to growing the extraordinary cocktail, wine and beer program at The Grant Grill Bar and Lounge. He joins the venue’s stellar bar team, led by Certified Cicerone, Level II Sommelier and Master Mixologist Jeff Josenhans.

 “Cory is a welcomed addition to our dynamic team and will be a wonderful fit for the overall vision of Grant Grill Bar and Lounge,” said Alberto Hollman, manager, restaurants and bars at Grant Grill. “With Cory joining Jeff Josenhans, we look forward to continuing to remain at the forefront of the cocktail industry.”

 In just a few short years, Alberto has commanded the mixology spotlight in San Diego. His unique and creative approach to cocktails calls regular attention to his work. Prior to joining the outstanding Grant Grill beverage team, Alberto served as beverage director at the acclaimed Table No. 10, where he oversaw the restaurant’s celebrated beverage program.  

Gentleman Grant Imperial Manhattan Rye Red (2015)

May 18th, 2015

With Jeff Josenhans’ newly acquired Cicerone achievement he has officially launched his very own signature US GRANT Imperial RedF74C7452 Ale, in collaboration with Mission Brewery, a local, award-winning San Diego craft brewery. The Gentleman Grant Imperial Red Ale is made using rye in a grain-bill and is infused with cigar-smoked Luxardo Maraschino cherries, and then aged in Grant Grill’s US GRANT Centennial Manhattan seasoned barrels for three months. As one of the first ever hotel and brewery collaborations, this is truly a unique project that has never been done in the beer world before.  The life cycles of the barrels used for the beer are truly fascinating: they began at High West in Park City, Utah for the distillery’s rye whisky aging process; next, the barrels were transformed into Josenhan’s Centennial Manhattan aging vessels which began in 2010; and fast forward to 2015, the barrels were shipped to the Grant Grill to be used for beer barrel-aging at Mission Brewery.

The Gentleman Grant Imperial Red Ale will be available at THE US GRANT starting in May 2015, adding to restaurant and lounge’s international craft beer collection and soon to be released cask ale. 

The Journey to Génépi Americana

October 8th, 2014

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The Génépi Americana project has been in the research and production for over a year in collaboration with local San Diegan Wayne Geiselman.   Geiselman holds a PH D in Food Science with a background in corporate America food product research, commercial taste profiling, and more recently the finalizing of his own book dedicated to his work on infusion techniques and flavor applications with alcohol.

It was in fact Geiselman who sought out collaboration with Mixologist Jeff via Linkedin after noticing Grant Grill’s media attention on the cocktail program. Jeff had long had ideas of reproducing Chartreuse and saw the possibilities immediately. Wayne has over two decades of studying not only what flavors infuse well with alcohol and other foods but also in what order they should infuse and for how long. This information was highly valuable in launching the first phase of Génépi Americana.

Génépi Americana is inspired by the traditional European liqueur based on wormwood, which consequently lead to the inspiration for both Chartreuse and Absinthe. On October 15, the Grant Grill will release its own version using local, organic botanicals and Southern California wildflower honey during the maceration process. The selection of botanicals includes a proprietary blend of over 25 ingredients that were developed through research with Geiselman analyzing Chartreuse from a historical and a reverse-engineering perspective. The Grant Grill’s version will add “American Spirit” not only in the sense that it will include local botanicals but it will also use what is essentially un-aged bourbon as the base for the spirit, as opposed to the traditional European brandy. October 15 will mark 6-months of aging the concoction in 100% New Allier French Oak (also never used in the cocktail world prior).  

Served  neat, in an antique snifter, the 6-month aged Génépi Americana will be available starting October 15 for $19, while supplies last.  In April 2015 after the concoction reaches its 1 year mark for aging, another limited quantity will be removed from the barrel for guests to order.  


For more information, click here to read Mixologist Jeff’s Q&A as featured in San Diego Magazine. 

Grant Grill Appoints New Chef de Cuisine – Meet Chef Sam Burman

June 10th, 2014

The Grant Grill is excited to enhance its world-class culinary programming with the new hire announcement of  Chef Sam Burman as Chef de Cuisine. Burman brings more than 14 years of culinary and hospitality_ING7614 experience to one of San Diego’s premier dining destinations, known for its California cuisine, craft mixology and iconic setting. In his role, Burman will be responsible for the restaurant’s operations and Burman will be responsible for the restaurant’s operations and creating seasonal menus to feature local produce, seafood & meats.

 Born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, Burman has been fascinated by the culinary world since a young age, having spent much of his childhood cooking alongside his mother.  At age 13, Burman lost his mother to cancer and his passion for cooking grew stronger. After 10 years of culinary adventures throughout Chicago’s dining scene, Burman landed San Diego.  Prior to joining The Grant Grill, Burman most recently served as the Corporate Chef at Whisknladle Hospitality, where he spent two and a half years overseeing the success of both Whisknladle and Prepkitchen’s culinary programs with Chef Ryan Johnston. Prior to his role at Whisknladle Hospitality, Burman served as Executive Chef at Quality Social in San Diego.

Burman describes his culinary style as simple and honest, allowing the true flavors of seasonal ingredients to take center stage.  A plate is work of art, and Burman believes working with food should celebrate creativity, innovation and community.  With Southern California’s bounty of fresh produce and the advantage of a rooftop garden, Burman will highlight seasonal ingredients on the Grant Grill’s menu with a sense of playful sophistication.  New market-fresh dishes curated by Burman include a Crispy Veal Sweetbreads with Andy’s Orchard Cherries, Shaved Celery and Blue Cheese, as well as a fresh Hamachi starter with Crispy Spiced Corn, Sea Asparagus, Finger Lime and Peppadew Pepper Puree. Expect traditional dishes and flavors, prepared in new ways, all the while upholding Grant Grill’s longstanding tradition of excellence.


About The Grant Grill and Lounge

From the sumptuous surroundings – including classic mahogany wood, fleur de lis banquettes, and white linen-topped tables – to the ever-evolving seasonal menus, the Grant Grill carries a tradition of excellence since opening its doors in 1951.  The culinary program sets the standard for San Diego fine dining with approachable epicurean elegance, acutely focused on highlighting only the freshest of ingredients, prime meats and Pacific seafood.  A fusion of classic technique and modern philosophy leads to Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Lounge menus that elevate California Cuisine, complimented by Grant Grill’s extensive wine list and craft cocktail collection.   The Grant Grill’s fresh approach to fine dining has garnered national acclaim with accolades that include a 4-Diamond rating from AAA, a Wine-Spectator Award of Excellence, and a nod as one of the nation’s Best Hotel Bars by Food + Wine.

A Healthy and Happy New Year – Guest Blog by Master Trainer / Health and Wellness Coach, Derrick Sobotka

January 16th, 2014

As a special guest blog to start the New Year on a happy and healthy note, we are excited to share with you the “Cheating without Cheating” dining experience by THE US GRANT’s Work It Lifestyle Personal Trainer, Derrick Sobotka… 


As a creature of habit and professional in the fitness, health and wellness industry I have my favorite healthy food spots. I also have my favorite “cheat day” eateries. I was in the mood a couple of weeks ago toBLOG_menu have a cheat day. I always tell my clients that they SHOULD have a cheat day. I think it is great for your own personal sanity to have a meal where you go off course a little. And I mean a little…everything is okay in moderation. I was having a day just like this. So since I was in this “cheat day” mood I wandered into The Grant Grill at the US Grant Hotel. I’ve heard great things about this place and thought I would give it a try.

While carefully making our cheat day choices we decided it was cocktail time. I would say probably the best way to begin a cheat day right? So while looking over the craft cocktail menu we were quickly realizingBLOG_apple martini that this cheat day may not be firming up to be what we anticipated. This cocktail was completely catching me off guard. I’ve had Appletinis before. I’m sure we all have at one point or another. THIS was no standard Appletini though. Made with fresh apples and a hint of cilantro this one was a good start….I was sold. We then went on to realize that it was also made with some of my favorites. Tequila! The concept that a tequila martini could be about 200 calories…I was double sold. I know…appletinis are made with vodka not tequila. Well…not this one and they nailed it. The cilantro gave it this unexpected freshness and the tequila was such a new concept to me for any kind of martini but it absolutely worked. If this was any indication of the rest of the meal we were in for a lot of little surprises and blind sides.BLOG_chef chris

I was with a fellow foodie so we were primed for some serious eating. When we opened the menu we were both so thrilled to find some great options. Many times it is very difficult to keep a good balance between creativity and just plain overboard on a menu. We found ourselves mentioning how creative the menu was, however, never finding ourselves confused at what we were about to order. We went on to order our appetizer. After careful consideration (it was a tough choice) we decided to start with the Roasted Autumn Apples and Quail. I thought I was starting off my cheat day the right way! I was convinced that we had just ordered the richest dish on the starter menu. I was quickly proven very wrong when the plate was delivered to our table. The quail was cooked perfectly and not gamey at all. The apples were roasted but not soggy which is not an easy achievement. Plated in such an artistic way, yet, still keeping the dish simple and allowing the ingredients speak for themselves. Nothing overpowered anything else on the plate and every bite seemed to give you a little more to look forward to. The most shocking part of this was when my dinner companion and I were figuring out how much of a cheat this really was. I was so amazed at how the chef could create something so contemporary, rustique, and with so many simplistic background flavors. How he could create something that never got in its own way, yet, added to this incredible blending of flavors. The shocking part….this indulgent starter was only about 120 calories per serving. I was loving my realization that our original plan of having a cheat day meal was quickly becoming a health nut’s dream!BLOG_scallops

Now if this isn’t already sensory overload we choose our entrees. I am a bit ashamed to admit that we may have been a pain to our, amazing by the way, waitress by asking a ton of questions about our choices. We just couldn’t decide! I must have changed my mind about 4 times because once I made a choice I realized that something else seemed a little bit more exciting. Alright so we finally landed on our entrees. I ordered the Scallops with Butternut Squash, Swiss Chard, a beautiful and light red wine glaze, and Guanciale. Now if you knew me you would know that rendering me speechless is next to impossible. Well the impossible was made possible. The scallops were seared so lightly and exactly right. The subtle sweetness from the butternut squash was offset by the faint saltiness of the scallops. All of this was taken to a new level of flavor with the peppery bite of the swiss chard. I know…swiss chard…boooooring! Not at all! This was perfect. It was cooked perfectly. My greatest pet peeve in this foodie world I find myself in is that I can’t stand overcooked vegetables or greens. I want texture. I want crunch! The swiss chard was hitting every single expectation. I know what you’re saying. Stop making a big deal about swiss chard. Just go and have it…you’ll see what I’m talking about. There was this incredible and careful balance. The portions were just right too. It was enough for one but not so much that we walked away uncBLOG_salmonomfortable. We can attribute this walking away comfortable with the revelation that this entire entrée was hovering around 310 calories per serving. Yeah…just take that in for a little bit. My cheat day has now completely taken a nose dive. This entire meal has only set me back 570. I know…a cheat day can’t be less than 600 calories. Well it just happened thanks to The Grant Grill and the brilliant Chef Chris.

My dinner companion had the Salmon. We were collaborating on how these dishes are comprised from ingredients that we are familiar with. The Grant Grill figured out how to make what we know and are familiar with into something so much more exciting and fresh, new and innovative. honest, I’m not a fan of salmon. Never have been and as much as I’ve tried to acquire the taste for it (because I know the nutritional. Well I have a little taste of this salmon. I have to be benefits of it) I just haven’t been able to. This was incredible! My mind has officially been changed. Paired with the coconut curry broth, artichokes and roasted marble potatoes and onions I was having a taste explosion in my mouth. This was so fresh and light! The coconut curry broth was so flavorful but not taking control over anything else on the plate. The salmon made sense with the artichokes and onions and the blending of these, seemingly conflicting tastes, was on a completely new level. I definitely got a lesson on what good salmon is after this dish. Now get this, we did the math…just at 300 calories per serving. Gorgeous, fresh and flavorful cocktail, amazingly robust starter and an entrée that changed everything I thought I knew about salmon and all for 560 calories.

My dinner companion and I walked away from this beautiful Grant Grill feeling completely shocked. We arrived for our reservation having convinced ourselves that we were going to completely throw all inhibition and guilt out of the window and just enjoy a guilty pleasure. Well we, without a doubt, enjoyed ourselves, however, realizing that we completely felt indulged by some of the freshest and healthiest meals we have had in quite some time. We felt spoiled on this meal with such a small cost of less than 600 calories per serving. There is a continuing wave of more healthy and smarter choices when it comes to food in Southern California. I walked away from this experience with a changed mind. I walked away with a changed opinion. The Grant Grill is at the forefront of a smart food movement and if you are looking for guilt free indulgence….from one health nut foodie to another trust me, I highly recommend.


Written By: Derrick Sobotka

Master Trainer / Health and Wellness Coach 

Facebook: derrick.sobotka

Twitter: @derrickondeck 


A “New” Chapter to our Mixology Program

September 4th, 2013

Historic discoveries can open chapters to our storied past that we didn’t even know existed.  In August 2013, once such discovery was made, opening the investigation for a bottle of US GRANT gin from the 1930′s with connections to the Chicago mob.  

The discovery began as many have: a guest calling after finding US GRANT treasures tucked away in a home, and wanting to return them to the hotel.  Specifically, this guest was visiting from Alabama, cleaning out her late Mother’s San Diego house, where she found a collection of cocktail-related items, including a US GRANT liquor. Curious, I returned her call and let her know I would come to the house to take a look.   After sorting through dusty boxes, I later returned to the hotel with a few sets of vintage glassware, a punchbowl, and our prize discovery —  two bottles of a US GRANT Hotel label Gin. 

From what we can tell s0 far, basically the hotel was buying custom-made gin from Alfred Hart, who was connected to Al Capone and the mob in a pretty big way. Just google him and the info alone is pretty intriguing. The gin was made by Alfred Hart Distilleries and it’s somewhat apparent this was a front for laundering money – lots of shady connections between Agua Caliente, Del Mar Race Track, Capone, Vegas, etc.  

As our own investigation continues, we will dig deeper into these connections, and how they relate back to THE US GRANT.  For instance, dots are already being connected to our Speakeasy which operated during the days of Prohibition, and also the fact that when our original open-air Palm Terrace was closed, the fountain was relocated to the Agua-Caliente Racetrack and the palm trees  planted at the Del Mar Racetrack.  

Coincidence? Probably not.

With our two bottles of US GRANT Gin, we intend to keep one on display as it adds a “new” chapter to our custom bottled beverage program, making history alongside our US GRANT 100 Day Aged Centennial Manhattan, and our own line of Cocktails Sur Lie.    As to the second bottle… stay tuned for details on how YOU can become the owner! 

- JJ 

* If anything is known about THE US GRANT Gin or about Alfred Hart Distilleries, please contact our Marketing Department at! 

Meet Spider-Grant

July 17th, 2013

Swinging through the San Diego night sky with Grant Grill’s “Green Goblin” cocktail, the “Spider-Grant” limited edition comic was created exclusively for THE US GRANT by Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, Steve Breen, to commemorate Comic-Con 2013.

As home to the first Comic-Con in 1970, THE US GRANT began the tradition in 2012, each year debuting a new comic, imagining namesake President Ulysses S. Grant as a Superhero, letterpressed onto a coaster. Each year, guests can return to the Grant Grill during Comic-Con to collect the newest addition to the limited edition Grant Superhero series.

“Spider-Grant” collectors coasters are available July 18-21 in the Grant Grill Lounge, complimentary with purchase, while supplies last. Limit one coaster per person.  The “Green Goblin” cocktail features Walls of London Gin, a dash of Midori and fresh pressed apple juice. 

Arts Celebration in Singapore

July 9th, 2013

I am excited to share with you that The St. Regis Singapore has invited me to their sixth installment of the signature Arts Celebration series. Featuring a week-long tribute to American culture and arts,  the celebration will highlight American performing arts with the Whiffenpoofs of Yale, American visual arts with Gregory Burns, and American culinary arts with yours truly – including a 5-course Dinner (which of course includes Grant Grill’s famous Mock Turtle Soup) served at Brasserie Les Saveurs, gourmet tastings at The Grand Astor Afternoon Tea and special pass-around canapés at The St. Regis Champagne Brunch.  

For more information of the St. Regis Singapore American Kaleidoscope Arts Celebration, click here, and be sure to check back next month for photos from my culinary journeys in Singapore! 

- CK 



Gin on Trend Watch

June 19th, 2013

Gin, much like other spirit categories, is growing in the boutique producer arena like it has never before. Smaller, more local, distillers are gaining traction in the consumer market as well as in the world of top-notch mixologists. As a matter of fact, the mixologists out there are embracing these artisan spirits. Furthermore, the gins being produced by these craft distillers are being more adventurous when it comes to the botanicals being used. St George uses all California botanicals in one my favorite gins right now and other brands like Tru are macerating the botanicals after distillation, thereby unconventionally creating a gin via a different production method. I continue to see keg cocktails and bottled cocktails grow on list as well. Negroni is a staple for these cocktails as it is spirituous and does not have fruit matter in it. Here at THE US GRANT we are working on gin cocktails that have been fermented through the champagne method as part of our Cocktails Sur Lie line.

Click here to see more thoughts on “Simpler, Lighter Gin Classics Shining Bright this Summer” by fellow Nightclub & Bar enthusiasts.  

- JJ 

Brewer’s Bollywood Blend

April 30th, 2013

The Challenge:  Create a Specialty Cocktail with Van Gogh Vodka to be served alongside the collaborative dinner menu from Food Network Celebrity Chef Maneet Chauhan (and judge on Chopped!) and our very own Chef Chris Kurth. 

The Idea:  To blend San Diego’s reputation for micro-brewing into the cocktail, as well as highlight the Indian inspiration for Chef Chauhan (the culinary world’s go to figure when it comes to Indian cuisine and spices, as evidenced by being Iron Chef’s only female Indian contestant, and  chosen as the only chef to cook at the first ever Indiaspora Inaugural Ball, honoring the re-election of President Barack Obama.)

The Result:  Brewer’s Bollywood Blend, featuring Van Gogh Caramel, Pomegranate Molasses, Cardamom Bitters, Coconut Water, Palm Sugar,  Fresh Lime and Kaffir Lime Leaves, and a Ballast Point Pale Ale float.  


We hope to see you tomorrow night, Wednesday, May 1, at our Collaboration Dinner with Food Network Celebrity Chef Maneet Chauhan, not only because this will be your one-and-only opportunity to taste the Brewer’s Bollywood Blend, but also your once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be filmed for Chef Chauhan’s new reality show.  The cameras will be rolling throughout dinner service, and all guests will be required to sign a release.   




Meet JJ & CK

April 17th, 2013

If you’ve ever tasted our food or sipped our cocktails, you (hopefully!) taste innovation, inspiration and passion.  No, we are not saving lives (but we are trying to keep you living a healthy life with fresh, organic ingredients).  And no, we are not rocket scientists (though we do know the science of cocktails).  We do, however, love what we do, and couldn’t imagine living life any other way than enjoying each moment spent perfecting a new recipe for you.   


With this blog, you will get an exclusive first look behind the curtain of our culinary wizardry as to who we are  and how our life experiences, personalities and passions translate to the glass/plate for you to sip/savor at Grant Grill & Lounge.    



Jeff Josenhans & Chris Kurth