So last night the newly opened Wild Goose Tavern in Costa Mesa had a media preview, and since someone out there considers me media I was invited to check out their sausage. Er wait that didn’t sound right. I was cordially invited to attend their media night to see their meat. Darn it, I did it again. The Wild Goose Tavern is the newest bar in Costa Mesa that not only serves up strong cocktails but they also serve up a consortium of delectable sausage treats that will please just about anyone. What’s that you say, you aren’t in a sausage mood, well they have burgers and salads that will equally knock your socks off.
My usual wife sidekick stayed home while my friend Sean and I made it a guys night out. First thoughts as we entered the bar were that it was a pretty laid back looking place, with a hunting lodge sort of feel with some animal heads on the walls (including a jackalope of course), a tattered USA Flag, and even a vintage Schlitz Beer Lamp in the corner (the same type that once hung in the tavern of the same name, that the owners parents used to have in Anaheim as he was growing up). This is a place that not only hipsters will enjoy but the average Joe like me will as well.
Bring that is was guys night out we decided to start our night off right with a couple stiff beverages.
Sean went started with the Blueberry Mojito which he exclaimed was one of the best mojitos he’s had, it headlines with Flor de Cana year 4 and blueberry ginger syrup.
If you have been following me for long here on the internet you know I don’t order many alcoholic drinks, but I felt I had to do my due diligence tonight FOR MY READERS, so I started the night off with a Bison Mule (which I assume is moscow mule), which is made with Bison Grass Vodka, ginger beer, and hand squeezed lime. It was one forgiving drink with it’s smooth lemonade taste that hid the alcohol within.
With our drinks ordered we ventured on into ordering our meal. We tried to get their Cabanossi Slim Jims ($2) but unfortunately the package they had of them didn’t pass quality control so we got the Landjager Sausage Links instead ($2). Landjager sausage are a smoked and dried sausage that is popular in German and Austria. Definitely not something I would expect to see in a bar in the US, but totally worth the 2 bucks.
Then it was on to the main course. Sean felt like traveling to Louisiana and ordered the Cajun Swamp ($8), which was andouille sausage topped with butter rock shrimp gumbo, which he really liked. (apologies for the poor picture of this one!)
I went traditional sausage with the German Bratwurst ($7) a Guinness brat top with braised red cabbage and onions, garlic ailoli, and whole grain mustard. The toppings totally hit this sausage out of the park. Even with all their other options I’d probably order this one again and again.
All their sausages are served on a toasted roll they source from OC Baking Company (one of the stars of the night) and their sausage is sourced locally from a couple different local places including Mattern Sausage in Orange. I spent some time talking to one of the managers Dan and he said they try to locally source most of their items. Both he and their marketing guy Rob suggested that we try the Arugula and Roasted Beet Salad. Although it wouldn’t have been something I would have normally ordered we decided to see what was so great about the salad. The Arugula and Roasted Beet Salad ($8) is served with honey, miso, soy vinaigrette, crumbled goat cheese, and toasted sesame seeds. What really stood out was the roasted beet and goat cheese, both of them had flavors that we weren’t expecting, which brought the whole salad together and impressed us. The goat cheese had an almost sweet flavor to it, while the beets they used were yellow and were just lightly toasted to soften them up and then cooled back down to meld with the Arugula.
Lastly we had to try their Sweet Potato and Goat Cheese Tots ($4) which were topped with some type of pesto and sour cream. They had a creaminess to them from the mixing of sweet potato and cheese instead but the right amount of crunch outside. A very solid side to go along with our meal.
I almost forgot about my second drink of the night, the Apple Fashion, which again since I don’t normally order cocktails, I’m assuming is their take on an Old Fashion. The Apple Fashion is Knob Creek Rye, apple bitters, and sugar, garnished with a slice of dried apple. This was a great drink to the end the night with and I’m interested in attempting to make a refreshing beverage like this for myself at home now…
Overall everything was really well executed and tasted as though they had been serving these meals up for months, I was very impressed with the fit and finish at the Wild Goose considering that they hadn’t actually been open for public business yet. I’m looking forward to coming back again soon and having myself another brat, or maybe I will try my hand at something else, or maybe everything else… Expect to see a rating review some time in the future.
Here are the rest of the pictures from the night!
I’d like to thank the staff at the Wild Goose Tavern as well as Rob from 714media for the invitation to check out all the fabulous food and drinks that they have to offer. And on a final note, being that this was a media event all food was free. No promise of a review favorable or negative was made.