Room with a Brew: Viewpoint Brewing Company
Posted on July 6, 2017
Craft beer has already had a transformative impact on communities throughout San Diego County. Del Mar residents are about to experience their first taste of local beer and its many positive effects care of Viewpoint Brewing Company, opening this summer. A for-foodies-by-chefs brewpub (the city’s first-ever sanctioned beer making operation), it is housed in a former warehouse along the banks of San Dieguito Lagoon. That facility will soon debut as a casual, modern restaurant with a fire pit and communal table-sprinkled patio, and fully functioning on-site brew house.
Ranch & Coast got a sneak peek of the 7,000-square-foot venue, which takes cues from one its past lives as a creative studio. Raw, industrial materials (steel, concrete, glass) are warmed up by stylish pops of color, a raw-edge cherry wood bar, contemporary light fixtures, and more. It’s a nice new spot for summer R&R or lifting a glass in elation over recent winnings from the adjacent race track. There’s something special to be said for performing that ritual with authentically local suds.
The brew house is the domain of Moe Katomski, also an accomplished pastry chef (Pamplemousse Grille), who cut his fermentation chops at Vista’s Bear Roots Brewing. Katomski fits right in working with Viewpoint owner, brewer, and former chef Charles Koll (Mille Fleurs, Prepkitchen), and alongside exec chef Gunnar Scott Planter (Morada, University Club, Mille Fleurs) to bring to life the sensual symbiosis between food and beer. Taster flights will present three beers with a trio of steamed bao buns stacked with ingredients that enhance each brew. The debut flight will feature a pale ale with salt-and-pepper shrimp and bacon jam; a red-rye India pale ale (IPA) with pork belly and kimchi; and a SMASH (single-malt and single-hop) Belgian-style farmhouse ale with oxtail and coconut hoisin sauce. In a county with more than 140 breweries — beers from some of the boutique members of that class pour from Viewpoint’s 20 taps — none is providing a food-and-beer flight of this nature.
With a trio of chefs, one might expect a laundry-list bill of fare on the menu, but Viewpoint plans on offering a variety without being overwhelming. “Chef-y” favorites like beef tartare with chimichurri and a cheese-and-charcuterie board will share space with fries (add oxtail or go for full-scale poutine). And watermelon and feta salad will make for a nice alternative for the health-conscious among us.
Entrées will run the gamut from pub grub — backyard burger on brioche made with stout ale, and smoked gouda mac and cheese with chorizo and pork belly — to other more composed fare reminiscent of Plantar’s old upscale roots. Those high style dishes include steelhead salmon with roasted tomatoes and a soybean purée, brick chicken with confit fingerling potatoes and porter au jus, and a creative vegetarian dish with red lentil pilaf and tarragon-peanut coulis.
With these clever dishes, stylish interior design, and a bevy of brews, this spot should be a welcome addition to the neighborhood. 858.205.9835, viewpointbrewing.com Brandon Hernández
Photography by Vincent Knakal