Published on October 17th, 2012 | by Kaela Miltimore
Pastrami Sandwich & Bacon Wrapped Dates @ Prepkitchen
Prepkitchen La Jolla Review
A seasonally inspired, rustic eatery is the best way to describe this petite restaurant called Prepkitchen – a little sister to its fancier counterpart, Whisknladle. The owners wanted to create the same gourmet feel of their original, pricier restaurant with an everyday price tag. In my opinion, they have succeeded immensely.
My absolute favorite part about the Prepkitchen menu, besides the farm fresh mentality is the Tapas menu they serve daily from 3-6pm. Now for all you manly men out there who think tapas are just not going to satiate the hunger pains of a grown man, or think tapas are just down right too dainty for your taste, you should really reconsider. This place makes some wicked tapas, including bacon wrapped dates (which of course we had to try), and even house made salami. Considering the “Happy Hour” menus at most places consist merely of fried this and nachos that, this cheapie menu rocks, and really brings a fresh perspective to the “Happy Hour!”
We decided to check out Prepkitchen for lunch one day on our way home from La Jolla Cove. Since it was only 2:30 we decided to start off splitting a sandwich and then order a few different tapas at 3. Which I must add, the waitress was really cool about. We ordered the “House Cured Pastrami.” It was topped with melted gruyere, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. The cheese was a delicious addition to the peppery pastrami. On the side was a unique Horseradish Apple Slaw and coarse grain mustard; my favorite. The slaw was sweet and offered a deconstructed play on the usual horseradish spread that would traditionally be included on a sandwich like this. I have to say the best part about it was the hearty bread that it was served on, toasted a la Panini style. I am a die-hard sandwich lover and in my book the bread is what makes or breaks a sandwich. Like Subway is not gonna cut it for me. This dish was also served with a small mixed green salad, and house cut potato chips. The salad was fresh and I loved the light vinaigrette style house dressing. The potato chips could have used a bit of salt- but then again from a salt-a-holic’s point of view, couldn’t everything? The presentation of this dish was simple, yet elegant. The chef lets the ingredients speak for themselves.
Bacon Wrapped Dates
By the time 3 o’clock rolled around we were excited to try some of their tapas. Bacon wrapped dates…I mean, how can you go wrong?! These were decadent to say the least. The sweet and meaty dates were gigantic, stuffed with warm blue cheese and wrapped in thick cut, crispy bacon. They were beautiful. Next up was the house marinated olives. Now these reminded me of my trip to Italy. They were so fragrant. Not only was there an amazing mixture of different olives I have never tried before, but they were marinated in fennel spiced olive oil – very Italian. The fennel gave the olives a really unique flavor, and can we talk about how big this dish of olives was! For $3.75 they don’t mess around with portion size. No joke, this amount of olives would set you back a good $10 bucks at your local Whole Foods olive bar. At the end, when we couldn’t finish them all, our waitress kindly packaged them up, oil and all, and I was able to make pasta with them the next day. The house made salami concludes our meal. Being Italian, and growing up with salami and cheese as a normal snack I thought I had tried them all, but these salami varieties all tasted so different. One was a bit gamey, which I don’t particularly care for anything gamey, but the other two were a little spicy and really thin- which I believe to be very authentic Italian – makes it melt in your mouth!
If you are like me and just crave that amazingly fresh, farm to table food that’s prepared with local love, be sure to hit up Prepkitchen. They now have 3 locations – La Jolla, Del Mar, and Little Italy. The ambiance is so cozy, and the staff is really friendly. This is my favorite type of food, so there’s sure to be more reviews like this one…but for the quality of what you get for the price, and the great service, Prepkitchen is hard to beat.7556 Fay Ave
La Jolla, CA 92037
Neighborhood: La Jolla