Sierra Mar-velous

If you’re spending a getaway on the cliffs of Big Sur, watching the sunset as you enjoy the panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, chances are you’re probably thinking you’ve done pretty well for yourself. And if, in the back of your mind, you’re thinking that nothing could be better than this, we’d have to tell you—you’re wrong.

High atop the cliffs of Big Sur, right off route 1 (a.k.a. California Coast Highway), with majestic views of the Pacific Ocean lies The Post Ranch Inn and its culinary offspring, Sierra Mar—a restaurant equally revered for its scenery as it is its food.

While many restaurants with views this magnificent might offer food as an ancillary afterthought, Sierra Mar clearly does not. Enjoy an array of dishes and flavors artfully prepared using locally foraged ingredients, often discovered along the lush coastline and the nearby mountains—along with those grown right at the Post Ranch Inn’s own Chef’s Garden.

Local delicacies such as Monterey red abalone (right out of nearby waters) and morel and chanterelle mushrooms sourced from the surrounding forest floors is the name of the game at Sierra Mar. Chef Jonny Black, who served as the executive chef at the Michelin three-star Crenn Dining Group in San Francisco, CA—which includes the renowned Atelier Crenn, Petit Crenn, and Bar Crenn—then curates these local ingredients into a wonderful array of gourmet dishes.

Prior to Crenn, Chef Black was the executive sous chef at Pineapple and Pearls in Washington, D.C., where he created seasonal menus that earned two stars from the Michelin Guide. As chef de cuisine at the three-star Michelin restaurant Quince in San Francisco, he worked to develop new dishes and gather inspiration from the bountiful produce of Northern California.

Sierra Mar takes full advantage of its gorgeous locale, designed with floor-to-ceiling windows which render al fresco dining unnecessary. Accents of wood and slate effortlessly mesh the earthy with a fitting modernity, reflecting the progressive yet laid back and naturally chic vibe of the West Coast.

Externally stunning with an inside that rivals its outward beauty?

Photography by Kodiak Greenwood