Monday, May 14, 2012

barleymash and ginger!

I'm out of town for one week, and a great new restaurant opens up! That's one of the things that I love about San Diego; there's always something new opening up. A new park, a new restaurant, new wine bar.  When I saw the buzz about a new restaurant, barleymash and ginger, I was immediately intrigued by the name. Just what sort of a place was this? After drooling over their menu online, I was determined to find out. And believe me, it was as good as I had thought!

The theme of their menu is alcohol-infused gourmet foods, which is an excellent twist on some pub favorites.

The name recognizes two bars combined into one. Barleymash, on the first floor, is a suave twist on a sports bar. Very hip and polished, barleymash loses none of the rowdy, jovial nature of a classic sports bar. Ginger is down the stairs, and contains a very different feel. Quiet and subtle, this bar would be excellent for an escape for a talkative drink. However, barleymash was not so loud that I couldn't carry on a conversation, due to the open air feel and hugeness of the space. Definitely a plus. 

Chill downstairs at Ginger

 We decided to start with a quiet drink downstairs at Ginger, which features an impressive cocktail list of delicious spirits. I ordered the Ginger, composed of vodka, ginger, cranberry, and orange. Amazing. My dining companion ordered the Silver Strand, which contained rum, ginger, lime, and strawberries. It tasted like jam. So good.

After we finished our drinks, we ventured upstairs to get some dinner. We were immediately served water in this charming bottle, with these adorable mini mason jar glasses. However, since they also offer a huge selection of beers, I ordered a Maui Brewing Company Bikini Blonde (my current favorite brewery!) as well. There's just something about the taste of good pub food and a beer.

 At our server's recommendation, we ordered the San Diego fries to begin. Barleymash features an entire menu of delicious-sounding fry platters (Iron Fries), but we thought that the San Diego, with the carne asada, guacamole, and sour cream, just sounded too decadent and yummy to pass up! 

 Check out how high it's piled! These fries were so savory and delicious, and certainly not diet food! These would be awesome to split with a table of friends.

Next, we tried a sample of the Duck Puppies. This dish was a duck confit meatball, seasoned, served atop a bed of dressed greens. Quite good, and a nice change from the fries, since it was a completely different type of dish.

More duck! The flatbreads are a featured menu item of Barleymash, and for good reason. Everything is homemade, with innovative ingredients and new twists on old favorites. We decided to go with the duck, since I love duck, and it was a great choice! The flat bread was very crisp and buttery, almost making a chulupa type of bread. The cabbage combined with the duck for a nice crunch overall. I'll certainly try more of the flatbreads. So good.

 Our last choice was the wings. Now, I'm normally not much of a wing person (my complexion thanks me for this), but these wings were awesome! They're baked! Rather than the double-fried, breaded, and coated in grease yuckiness that you normally find with wings, these babies are marinated in a beer and spice mixture for two days, then baked. They come with a choice of homemade barbecue or classic buffalo sauce. Both sauces that we tried were excellent.

We couldn't leave without dessert! A take on the popular s'more dessert, this dessert featured a homemade (!) marshmallow sitting atop a chocolate and bacon crust, then topped with a bacon glaze! For bacon lovers (and I know that there are a lot of you), this dessert is a must. The airy marshmallow was a nice end to the meal, since all the dinner food was so hearty! I was stuffed after all of the other food, but managed to eat the entire dessert! There's always room for dessert!

Barleymash has plans to expand with cigar sales and parlor (outside, of course), and their menu is growing each day. I'm definitely returning to sample some more of their delicious offerings (oh, and the enormous beer selection!)
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May 14, 2012 / by / 0 Comments

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