Carmel Magazine

Carmel Magazine, Summer/Fall 2018

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Page 237 of 315

Manager Roxanne Roark, Owner Dominic Mercurio s a child, Dominic Mercurio used Fisherman's Wharf as his playground, frolicking and fishing with friends. Decades later, the wharf is still home as he puts in tireless days as owner of Cafe Fina. The restaurant depicts his life, from his carefree childhood, to the legacy of his Sicilian fishing family, to the influence of his mother Josephina, the cafe's namesake. When Mercurio serves Mom's Meatballs, the recipe is genuine. When he orders fresh fish, it's been caught by his fishing buddies from Monterey or Alaska. And when he serves "homegrown vegetables," he tended them in his quarter-acre garden. It's all about authenticity, a rarity among restaurants in tourist centers. "We have something for every taste," Mercurio says. He describes a dad sipping a cocktail and ordering a ribeye seared in the 600-degree wood-fired oven, a mom gravitating toward Spanish paella, or youngsters enjoying popcorn shrimp, pasta and pizza. Cafe Fina is a favorite haunt for NFL legend John Madden (Mercurio is his personal barbecue chef) and the Food Network's Rachael Ray, who featured Cafe Fina on air and in her "Best Eats" cookbook. —Larry Harland A Photos: Kelli Uldall 236 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S U M M E R / F A L L 2 0 1 8 47 Fisherman's Wharf Monterey • 831/372-5200 good taste Cafe Fina Cioppino, Pacific White Seabass, Pasta Napoli, Brick Oven pizza

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