I hope you aren’t sick of reading posts about all the awesome places we are eating in our new hometown…because they won’t stop coming…ever. We’ve already been to this little gem twice, and we haven’t even moved in yet. It’s just good folks.
As you can see, the inside looks a little like a downtown brewery/restaurant that might be more comfortable in Chicago than in a little beach town. But it’s here, and I am pretty darn glad that it is. Not sure if the stainless steel tankards are functional or not (they certainly look as though they are), but they, along with the exposed brick walls, open rafters, and visible ducting and pipes all make this feel, as I said, very downtown Chicago.
The ambience is great, and it has the benefit of being in a warm coastal California town with friendly people, who apparently love dogs. I freakin love Ventura.
Their brews are great! Kristina got the sampler (she’s a lush), and her favorite was the White Cap Wit. I got a pint of the Old Mission Brown, which reminded me a little of Boddington’s, but smoother with a nicer finish.
The food was American style bar food (burgers, sandwiches, salads, etc.) but with a bit of a twist. For example, I got the Scorcher Burger, which has fried jalapenos and ghost-pepper jack cheese on it. It was warm…but in all the right kinds of ways. So delicious. Kristina got some packed mac n’cheese that had all the feels of something your mom used to make.
The next time we came, I got what was potentially the best sandwich I have ever had in my life. So my favorite animal to eat is pig, and my favorite sandwich of all time has been, for the past 4 years, a South Carolina style pulled pork sandwich I got at a rooftop bar in Charleston. This sandwich was also made with pig, but the extras made it pretty special.
On a soft brioche roll, imagine heaps of pulled pork in a delicious kind of spicy, kind of sweet BBQ sauce. On top of that is a cool, crunchy, sweet cole slaw. On top of that, bits of applewood smoked bacon (because a pork sandwich can always stand to have more pig sprinkled on it), then an onion ring, and then some more of that amazing (and spicy) ghost-pepper jack cheese. It was, in a word, a revelation. Honestly. Every part of this thing worked to make the most complete, perfectly imagined and crafted sandwich ever. It’s called the Pulled Pork Stack Attack. You need to try it. In fact, come and visit us; we can go try it together.