The East Bay’s fanciest hotel and spa will get a new, appropriately fancy restaurant next month that it hopes will bring more locals up to the Berkeley Hills. The Claremont is replacing wicker-and-pastel-heavy Jordan’s with a new California cuisine concept called Meritage, already in soft opening, that will be a more staid alternative to the chic Paragon. Officially opening December 2, Meritage follows the format of two other restaurants of the same name, in Boston and in New Orleans.
Here’s how it works, according to the restaurant: “The menu is divided into two pages, a white wine page and a red wine page, each listing three categories of wines as follows; Sparklers, light whites, full bodied whites, fruity reds, spicy earthy reds and robust reds. Within each are three wine selections and three dishes reflecting the flavors of these categories.”
Chef Josh Thomsen comes from fine dining stock, with the Lodge at Pebble Beach, Michael Mina’s Nobhill Tavern, and the French Laundry on his resume. Right now they’re open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday, and brunch from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Sundays. Check out a PDF of the menu here, and then swing by to see the place for yourself. Fans of Jordan’s need not fret. There are still a few wicker chairs hanging around.