While it was not my intention to write back to back articles on a single restaurant, the combination of a busy schedule, back pain, and the fact I loved my first trip, lead me to do just that.
Campfire is the first solo project of John Resnick (Ironside Fish and Oysters and Craft and Commerce). It brings an open kitchen and open flame cooking to the north side of State Street in downtown Carlsbad. The building, formerly an auto body shop, is transformed into what a camping lodge would look like if all the campers were hipsters. That is not a bad thing, the build out itself is beautiful utilizing natural woods and coppers to give it a homey yet modern feel. The design firm “Bells + Whistles” did an outstanding job. Blue Ocean Sushi would be another example of their fine work in Carlsbad.
Nothing like smelling burning wood half a block away. Campfire 2725 State Street, Carlsbad.
Someone sucks at archery.
Campfire bar and open kitchen. That kitchen had to be hot as hell with how muggy and hot yesterday was.
Chef Andrew Bachelier has created a menu that capitalizes on the restaurant’s main theme, which is open fire cooking. You will see a lot of words like chargrilled and smoked throughout. This also carries over to the cocktail menu created by Leigh Lacap.
I started my meal off same as last time with the house made lemonade.
Char Grilled Oysters ~ cucumber. Meyer lemon. chili butter.
Mentioned in my previous post this was going to be a go-to dish for me and being true, it is. Beautiful dish.
OK, new stuff…………..
Broccoli ~ chermoula. lime. candied peanut.
This dish was recommended by the staff and was a hit. Perfectly cooked vegetables with a nice char flavor that set off well against the chermoula. Chermoula is a Mediterranean style marinade made of herbs oil, cumin, lemon, and salt or a variation of these ingredients, depending on region and chef.
Leek ~ fungi. creamy taleggio
As with the broccoli, the leek was cooked to a perfect al dente. The addition of the taleggio added a fruity tang to the dish. Again the act of char-grilling the vegetable added yet another flavor and texture component. This is a very rich dish with the cheese, perfect for splitting…I had to buckle down and eat the whole thing myself:)
Pork Middle Char Siu ~ farro. brussels sprout. apple
Chinese style pork set off against micro thin apple slices and farro. The brussels sprouts were fine but not essential to the dish. Solid dish flavor wise and well-executed pork.
Service was on point again. I plan on returning, still a lot of the menu to try.Plus I want to delve into the cocktail menu.
This is the end to a “bad weather day” in North County:)
2725 State Street, Carlsbad