Black Rail Kitchen + Bar


My wife and I intended to have an early dinner here on Sunday evening so we planned our day accordingly with a light lunch at home. Also of interest was the fact they had just opened their well appointed new outdoor patio for business a few days ago. As is our model we arrived at 4pm so we could choose precisely where we wanted to sit without a reservation ( they are taking reservations now ). We walked in through the entrance to their beautiful outdoor patio and then on to the main bar.

I was looking for staff we knew until I spotted Kellen who is one of the servers ( and a very friendly guy ) we met last time. We planted ourselves in one of the comfy table booths opposite the main bar and the big screen TV showing the US Open Tennis final which we had been watching before we left home. A smiling server name Steven introduced himself to us and proceeded to take very good care of us the entire evening. It was very early and just a trickle of diners were here at this stage.

The place has a very organized feel about it with a bevy of servers and helpers ready to spring into action and everything you can see ( and not see ) is spotless. We kicked things off with glasses of ice cold water and a bottle of Belgian Farmhouse Ale for myself ( I love Belgian beers ). For our appetizers my wife chose a serve of Shrimp Scampi and I craved for some Calamari Frito Misto. A few more heads were rolling in the door and that’s when you start to feel a bit of atmosphere.In the meantime we were enthralled with the very close US Open Tennis final showing on the big screen TV right over the bar. Our appetizers came out one after the other and looked a treat.

My ice cold Belgian Ale tasted very clean and refreshing between helpings of Calamari. We hoped to stick around here long enough for the sun to set and the magical outdoor patio come to life. For our entree we decided to share a plate of House Made Casarecce after studying the compact but tantalizing Larger Plates menu. Within a very short time our large pasta dish arrived which we split up and got stuck into . . beautiful texture & flavor. We left our plates as clean as a whistle. A big pat on the back for Head Chef Moises and his talented crew in the kitchen ! Grant the co-owner walked in and sat at our table for a few minutes to have a friendly chat. Where do you get that sort of attention these days ?

We found out that the restaurant will be opening for lunch in the very near future. How exciting is that because we are always looking for good fun places to have a very nice lunch ! Of course we had earlier quizzed our server Steven about the most important part of our dinner . . DESSERT. I ordered another beer from Steven . . this time a Boat Shoes Hazy IPA. My wife is crazy about dessert particularly if chocolate is involved. Our charming server Steven suggested a sweet treat my wife couldn’t resist.

Within a few minutes a beautifully presented dessert dish arrived . . Nutella Black & Tan Sundae which was a very rich Dark Chocolate Brownie with a big scoop of Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, lots of Chopped Assorted Nuts, Butterscotch Sauce drizzle & a Blondie Wedge planted like a sail on top. My wife’s eyes nearly fell out of her head. I did managed to have a few small spoonfuls ( just kidding ) and it was a very decadent dessert. Such a fitting finale to our lovely dinner !

At some point I ran into Grant the co-owner again and asked him how the new outdoor patio was being received and how did it look at night ? Grant replied it’s like Disneyland after dark. So after our lovely dessert we wandered out to the magical outdoor patio. It still wasn’t dark enough to appreciate the multitude of hanging party lights and the spotlights shining on the huge trees but still looked very enchanting. Grant also mentioned there would be live music on the patio soon. We had a terrific evening !

Restaurant Details


6981 El Camino Real, Carslabad, CA 92009


(760) 931 0020

Link to Menu:


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About the Author

Picture of Michael Burke

Michael Burke

I'm an expat Aussie ( now a naturalized American citizen ) who moved to Southern California in 2006 with my American born wife Sherri. I like to write reviews about the most memorable restaurants, coffee shops, cafes, brew pubs and anything new that we find in our travels. I particularly look for excellent food & beverage consistency, good value for money plus friendly service.

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