Temecula Creek Inn’s Temet Grill has long been a landmark on the local culinary scene, famous for brunch and all-you-can-eat prime rib on the weekends along with a full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu to support the casual elegance of the resort.
“We were ready to infuse some new life into the property and the cuisine, so we were thrilled when Executive Chef David Fuñe agreed to come on board in July,” said Inn representative Sara Baumann. “His experience and passion are bringing new life to the menu.”
Fuñe’s considers the position at Temet Grill as a bit of a homecoming.
“Growing up in San Diego I spent some time in Temecula and then had the good fortune to open Pechanga Resort and Casino as their ‘global’ chef,” said Fuñe. “After spending the past few years fine-tuning my food concept up in LA and Orange County, this was the perfect time to come back home.”
Fuñe’s menu focuses on fresh, local ingredients – tapping into the regions deep agricultural roots.
“We have amazing resources at our fingertips here – Crow’s Pass Farm, Temecula Olive Oil Company, local honey – it’s all on right up the road and on the menu,” Fuñe said.
Although the ingredients may be rustic in their original state, Fuñe aims to bring some refinement to the plate.
“I love the way art and food sit on a plate,” he commented. “I take fresh and local and make it architectural and pretty.”
Although he plays around with technique and preparation, Fuñe believes that elements are meant to be enjoyed in their raw form as well.
“I often serve a vegetable three ways on a plate,” said Fuñe. “I believe that the quality of produce we are working with calls for variety – a progression of seasoned raw, pureed and seared vegetable allows the diner to experience it in all forms.”
Regulars will be glad to hear that their favorites will remain on the menu alongside the more adventuresome options. Now that the new menu is launched, it will remain steady while sides and specials will change with the seasons. In addition to his farm-to-plate approach, Fuñe brings another twist to the table.
Heavily influenced by global cuisine, Fuñe’s style facilitates a communal dining experience. Each small plate and meal is prepared in such a way that guests can easily share with others.
“We tend to cut things creatively so guests can share easily,” said Fuñe. “Dining should be fun – full of interaction and conversation – sharing inspires that ideal.”
With Chef David Fuñe blazing the trail with his cuisine, Temecula Creek Inn has plans for a major renovation project, infusing the landmark property with new ideas and fresh approach to familiar favorites.
Temecula Creek Inn is located at 44501 Rainbow Canyon Road, Temecula.
To learn more, visit www.temeculacreekinn.com.
Corie Maue is a local writer and regular contributor to SWRNN.