Cork | Fire Kitchen
Chef Matthew Steffen and Cork | Fire Kitchen were kind enough to welcome us into the restaurant to taste a few new menu additions and I'm happy to report that while I may have gained 5 pounds in two hours, I have found my new go-to for date night! There is one main ingredient that makes or breaks a restaurant for me-- passion. From the hand-crafted cocktails and wine on tap (yes, I said WINE. ON. TAP), to the on-site garden, and dishes bursting with the freshest of ingredients, Corkfire has put passion at the top of their menu and we're over here living our best life and opting for seconds.
Let's start with ambiance. Killer patio, craft cocktails, m u l t i p l e wines on tap (in addition to your traditional wine list), and sweeping golf course views make it hard to not to instantly relax. The butterfly haven, I mean on-site garden, is overlooked from the patio and chock-full of fruit trees, vegetables, and herbs galore. All grown organically and quite literally in their own backyard.
Now, onto the main course. The new menu is full of classic dishes with a fresh twist. The calamari was incredible (and I'm a calamari snob, so you can trust me), and the ceviche was the perfect appetizer for a warm evening with a glass of white.
For dinner, we were served the sea bass and Prime New York. You might want to turn on the Marvin Gaye... Again, there's no substitute for quality ingredients including 1855 grass-fed Blank Angus prime New York Steak with thrice cooked potato--as in the potatoes are cooked not once, not twice, but three times before making it to your plate. Served with a veal and red wine reduction and carrot and parsley salad, our plate was literally scraped clean. Let's not forget the fish, 4 ounces of fresh sea bass marinated in a blend of citrus, ginger, and Peruvian chili peppers known for their fruity flavor and subtle heat, it was refreshing and surprisingly complex. Red onion, cucumber, baby heirloom tomato, chilies, and radishes are all picked fresh from the on-site garden before becoming ingredients in the sea bass ceviche. To. Die. For.
My favorite of all the dishes was the stone fruit and arugula salad. There's just something about a salad with both sweet and savory flavor notes. A variety of stone fruits such as peach, plum and cherry top Arugula served with Serrano Ham dry cured from Spain, and topped with part and a 25 year aged sherry vinaigrette. YUM. The perfect starter dish for the warm evenings of Autumn.
It was an absolute treat to dine at Cork | Fire Kitchen and it is a definite must visit when in Temecula!
And a special thanks to Nicholas G Photography for the stunning photos.