I’m going to start this blog with the first thing I said when I walked into the bar of this restaurant. I turned to Ian (my lovely boyfriend) and said, “Oh my gosh, when I die I hope heaven looks like this.” When we walked over to the bar at Campfire in Carlsbad, we were greeted by bearded gentlemen wearing suspenders and varying styles of Deadliest Catch/vintage train conductor clothing and serving up some fantastic drinks (have y’all noticed I have a thing for hipster men yet? You’ve seen Ian, right?). Ian forcefully scoffed and then sulked for a little while, rightfully so. The bar is BEAUTIFUL and fully stocked with all the booze a gal could want. The service is phenomenal as well. As soon as we sat down, we were greeted by those lovely bearded men and our drinks served faster than I think I have ever gotten a drink in a bar. I strongly recommend the Campfire (bourbon, scotch, demerara, smoke, chocolate bitters, and roasted malts). It tastes like camping and happiness. Honestly, they all sound delicious. I know what you’re thinking. Ok Arielle, enough of bearded men (your boyfriend is right there!!) and booze, we are here for the food! Fine, fine you are right I will talk about the food. Fine.
The second time we visited Campfire in Carlsbad, was with Ian’s parents, Sean (his brother), and Tara (Sean’s girlfriend). Naturally, I was on my best behavior, and did not drool over the bar this time. We actually had dinner and not just drinks. And boy, were we just as impressed with the food and we were the cocktails! This restaurant is adorable and hip and welcoming in every way. Campfire serves up fresh food in shareable portions that are cooked over a big fire (omigosh the name makes sense now). Their whole concept serves to bring people together and make you feel welcomed and warm. The food is incredible. We started with some shared dishes/appetizers for the table. These included the sprouted porridge bread, farro salad, roasted carrots (topped with everything bagel seasoning and wonder), fig and burrata salad, and the roasted beet salad. The farro salad had a good Mediterranean flair with eggplant and mint as the star players. Fig and burrata are the perfect creamy, rich, and slightly sweet combination. I should mention there were six of us… but yes, that is still a lot of food. We didn’t even get pictures before the Bassett clan descended on the food! (We have some pictures of mainly empty plates). Everyone then proceeded to eat their entrees. I got the roasted chicken– it was awesome. Smokey and mouth-watering with a side of creamy polenta. Ian and Sean shared the grilled ribeye (for two– they didn’t just split one, there is a twin joke in there somewhere). It came with a rich, smooth potato puree that was otherworldly. I honestly don’t remember what everyone else had because I was too busy stuffing my face with my own food. Ian and I don’t talk when we eat. I think the wait staff always think we are in a fight. Anywho, the food was all amazing and homey. We were too full for dessert, but they have s’mores and I was dying to have one. Ironically, I would have died from stomach explosion if I did eat one.
Campfire is a really special place. It’s the perfect dining experience with the most amazing atmosphere, fun ambiance, full-bodied drinks, great service, and hearty food. Put on your best hip(ster) clothing, and drive up to Carlsbad to check it out!