The Crow Bar & Kitchen in Corona Del Mar (Newport Beach) is the brain child of Steve Geary, a long time resident who envisioned this gastropub to exist as neighborhood eatery with quality food in a relaxing ambiance. Definition of a GASTROPUB? It is the British term for a public house (pub) which specializes in high-quality food, steps above the more basic “pub grub”. The name is a combination of pub and gastronomy and was coined in 1991 when David Eyre and Mike Belben opened a pub called ‘The Eagle’ in London. Gastropubs typically have an atmosphere which is relaxed and a focus on offering cuisine prepared as well as it is in the best of restaurants. Staying true to the format requires a menu that complements the assortment of beers and wines the gastropub offers.
The Crow Bar & Kitchen boasts of a pub style menu that showcases local and seasonal food with an amazing variety of beer and decent wine to make pairings enjoyable. As seen on the “Specials Board” below, the humble organic egg is a ubiquitous feature on the menu. The chef loves to accentuate a lot of dishes with this kitchen staple!
The grilled cheese sandwich special above looked appealing and I went for it. It arrived on the table with thick white lightly toasted buttered bread with generous topping of crunch smoked bacon and cheddar. The soft fried egg yolk added another level of creaminess … every bite was home food comforting!
I chose to wash this creation down with the Avery Rascal Belgian style wheat ale from Boulder, Colorado. This brew was unfiltered, cleverly spiced and a refreshing thirst quencher.
Appetizer was followed by an ahi nicoise burger. Served on a whole wheat bun, tapenade aioli, roasted tomato, sliced organic egg, red onion, grilled green bean ‘fries’. See what I mean … the organic egg appears again. The ingredients work well but as I worked my way trough chomping it down, one of the two pieces of ahi was fibrous and stringy. Ruins the complete experience but the manager worked quickly to bring me a fresh seared piece within minutes.
Ahi – part deux freshly seared from the kitchen. Cooked to perfection.
I chose a pinot noir from Marlborough region of New Zealand. It was so so. I like restaurants that bring their wine in mini carafes rather than pouring glasses full to the brim that make swirling impossible.
We also ordered The Kitchen Sink salad with fresh seasonal vegetables and local organic lettuces, bacon, nuts, hard cooked organic hen’s egg (ha – there’s the egg again!). Veggies were fresh and the chicken (Mary’s organic).
Due to time committments we did not get to sample the desserts, but what I saw on the list looked good … Butterscotch pot de creme, Bread pudding, S’mores and Gelatos.
Some interior shots of the restaurant – the main communal table dining area and the bar.
The “Egg Guy” art on the wall …
Overall – a good experience. The service is friendly and the food worthy of return. Highly recommended. Y’all come back now he crows …