Beaumont's Neighborhood Eatery opened a week ago, just in time for the Labor Day holiday. It is located in Bird Rock, a nice area with many homes and condos. The massive SeaHaus development is a short distance away.
"We researched the area for a long time before deciding on the location," said Beaumont's owner, Megan Heine. "We were looking for a good, convenient location that would appeal to the people who live in the neighborhood," she said. Heine took over the spot of an Indian restaurant and then remodeled it.
One has to look for the location deliberately because the outdoor sign hasn't arrived yet.
"My dad is making the sign for me," Heine said, "so it will be very special to me."
Heine has deep roots in the restaurant business. Her family founded the Pannikin chain of coffee houses. She also owns and operates the popular Brockton Villa restaurant, which serves amazing food along with a sensational view of La Jolla Cove.
Despite just opening, the eatery was crowded when I visited. It seems that the buzz is traveling through the neighborhood and residents are coming out to welcome the restaurant.
"Our bar has been exceptionally busy because so many local people find it to be a comfortable place to meet," Heine said.
Beaumont's Neighborhood Eatery is in a storefront location, with an outdoor patio that runs the width of the restaurant. The restaurant has a homey feel to it. At this time, the interior is almost minimalist; concrete floors support a number of tables and booths that line the rooms. The restaurant features a full bar that fills about half of one room. The expanded kitchen is behind stainless steel doors that swing continually as servers parade out with platters of food.
The ambiance is casual and, in keeping with the neighborhood spirit, many diners brought their children along. The kids really seemed to be having a good time. It was a relaxed place to dine.
The menu is limited but offers some interesting items. The "Beaumont's Burger" and the meatballs are blends of three meats -- beef, lamb and pork -- to give the dishes a unique flavor. "Bucatini Pasta" is thin but hollow long noodles that absorb the tastes of the sauces accompanying the dishes. "Taste of Bird Rock" is a salad heaped with fire-roasted lamb, feta, avocado and pine nuts. These are not your everyday dishes served all over town.
The menu, under the direction of Chef Scott Cathcart, is decidedly "American" in type and has most of the fish selections available only for dinner.
"Everything is made in house from scratch, except the breads. All our desserts are prepared here," Heine said. The bread, which was excellent, was served with a roasted red pepper dip in place of butter. This dip was made with red pepper, tomato, basil and oil and was just superb. I ate more bread than I should have because was so good. Pistachio Baked Brie and Duck Spring Rolls were tempting appetizers.
Chef Cathcart may have a problem keeping Beaumont's as a neighborhood eatery because, when word gets out about the quality of the food, people may come from far and wide to enjoy it. I'm always asked to suggest good places where locals eat. Beaumont's would be an ideal answer.
Entrees were superb. Horseradish Crusted Salmon was delightfully moist on the inside and full of flavor. The Cowboy Steak was 24 ounces of bone-in rib eye, perfectly grilled and served with a marsala reduction that simply raised the level of flavor to new heights. Fingerling potatoes are like long, thick scalloped potatoes that can be crisp on the outside and soft upon biting -- in other words, thoroughly delicious.
The beer and wine list represent West Coast bottlers at fair prices. The pinot noir and pinot gris offered were both from Willamette, Ore., an exciting wine growing region that is now getting more recognition.
Desserts were homemade and delicious. Big Chocolate Cake will satisfy a chocoholic searching for a sweet fix. Apple Pie Ala Mode had a homemade rather than store-bought taste and texture, something like my mother used to make.
Beaumont's Neighborhood Eatery deserves being welcomed to the 'hood. Its good food and casual dining at moderate prices are sure to be a hit. Be among the first to discover it. Beaumont's Neighborhood Eatery is located at 5662 La Jolla Blvd. in Bird Rock. Call 858-459-0474 for directions and information.
Rottenberg is editor of Dining San Diego Magazine and member of the California Restaurant Writers Association. Send comments to the firstname.lastname@example.org. All letters are forwarded to the author and may be used as Letters to the Editor.