Monday, September 12, 2016

Common Theory Public House

The public house concept seems to be popping up left and right in San Diego, and believe me, I have not problem with it! One of the newest additions to the exploding culinary scene of Kearny Mesa is Common Theory, a public house with an impressive menu and beer list. Kearny Mesa is a community known primarily for it's Pan Asian restaurants, but Common Theory might make you want to skip the ramen and barbecue to sit down with a beer and some of their incredible brussel sprouts.

Like most of the restaurants of Kearny Mesa, Common Theory is located in a strip of shops and cafes.

The atmosphere is very casual, with a big screen television, a bar, and plenty of great pub food with a gourmet flair. For starters, the menu lists such favorites as ceviche, poke, pretzel bites, and brussel sprouts. We loved the poke that we had in Hawaii, and have been unable to find anything like it in San Diego, so we had to try it. The poke at Common Theory is served with taro chips, made solely with tuna (some pokes have other fish as well), and doused with that magical shoyu sauce that makes poke more than just raw tuna. I will pay this poke the highest compliment that I can and say that it is comparable to the poke that I loved in Maui. So fresh, and with a salty, slightly sweet sauce tying the dish together. The chips were a nice addition, making it more like an appetizer than the traditional rice. 

Did I mention the great selection of beers? San Diegans might not have the poke of Hawaii (although now I've found it!), but they certainly have their choice of great beers. Common Theory has a very extensive list of beers on tap from San Diego breweries as well as other small breweries. For our dinner, we chose the Get Thee to a Nunnery made by Burning Beard, Pure Project's Bright Side of the Moon golden stout. The Burning Beard was a great, stately Belgian ale, but the Pure Project was one of the strangest, most interesting things I've tasted. A golden stout is pretty innovative, in that it had all of the flavor of a stout, but lighter and cleaner. 

The brussel sprouts are one of the signature dishes for Common Theory, so of course, we had to try them. If you follow me on Instagram, you most likely saw my picture of these amazing sprouts, and I have to say, I've never had better green vegetables. They were so good, I hardly felt like they were something good for me! Baked in balsamic vinegar and topped with parmesan curls, I can hardly believe that something so simple could be so delicious.

It would be a fine thing to just sit down and snack all evening at this great pub, but dinner is pretty impressive as well. For our mains, we chose the mussels with Thai curry sauce, and the chicken-fried cheeseburger. 

The mussels are another of their signature dishes. They can be prepared with typical white wine sauce, mushroom and bacon, hellfire (very spicy), or Thai curry, which I chose. I've had mussels plenty of times with the white wine sauce, and enjoyed it, but it seemed too plain with all of these options, so I wanted to try the Thai curry, since I adore Thai curries. The mussels were cooked well, prepared to rest in the sauce to absorb its flavors well. The curry sauce was a surprising and delicious match for the mussels, and the garlic dipping bread was great soaked in the sauce! Fancy enough for a date, but still great drinking food.  

The chicken-fried burgers is just what it sounds like -- an all-beef, half-pound (!) burger patty, battered and deep-fried! Yowsa! Not something that my doctor would want me to eat every day, but we can't exist on kale, am I right? For an indulgence, it's just what the doctor ordered (see what I did there?). Juicy, crunchy, and everything that you want in a luscious burger. 
After a huge meal like that, of course we had some dessert! A homemade apple cobbler is just the sort of comfort food dessert needed after such a rigorous meal. I loved the buttery "crouton" bits of this cobbler, and the melty, caramel laced ice cream was perfection. 
There are many tempting, amazing places in the area, so it's hard to be the new kid in Kearny Mesa, but Common Theory is a great addition to this culinary kingdom!

September 12, 2016 / by / 0 Comments

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