Barrel Republic in Oceanside California, boasts a modern yet rustic barn atmosphere complete with wood barrels filled with 60 tap handles for beer aficionados to freely pour and enjoy. “The food menu is uniquely created for the Barrel; scratch, fresh and original craft food for craft beer,” says Executive Chef Michael Brown of Barrel Republic’s Oceanside location. “We use seasonal organic and local produce when it’s available, and all of our ingredients are sustainable.”
Brown attended Baltimore Culinary Arts Institute and has been in the kitchen for over thirty years since. He especially enjoyed his time working and learning from chef Michel Richard at Citronelle. “I am still learning the skills of the craft,” he says. “My knife skills are really strong, but my best skill is over-all kitchen leadership.”
Training young people to succeed in the kitchen and the ability to bring creativity to life is what drives Brown. He says the least favorable part of being a chef is cooking for people who want to dip everything they eat in ranch dressing.
Brown’s current focus is on zero waste. “Our kitchen, together with other restaurants in Oceanside, is on a pilot program to become totally zero waste, returning melon skins, lettuce cores, etc., back to the farm for composting.” He explains. “Recycling every possible product is the goal. This is in conjunction with the City of Oceanside.”
Brown says he feels lucky to have had the chance to open Barrel Republic’s Oceanside location, which allowed him the freedom to have fun with food again. He looks forward to another Barrel republic outpost opening in Carlsbad in early October.
When he’s not in the kitchen, Brown is an an avid builder of classic sand castles, holding the record for a six foot tall castle so far.
©Written by Maria Desiderata Montana