By Steven Payne and Melody HallTraveling here from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, on work assignment in healthcare, we are newbies in Carlsbad. A question we are asked frequently is, “have you eaten at Yellow Brix yet?” Curious, we were anxious to give them a try. Thus far we’ve had the luxury of dining at Yellow Brix twice and can’t wait to dine again!Our first experience at this fine locale was made possible with a sponsored lunch by Boston Scientific. The Cardiac Cath Lab at Carlsbad Medical Center was treated to lunch on an impromptu in service. The wide, arched entry on the corner of North Canal and Stevens street, complete with a whimsical wrought-iron gate gives allusion to an enclosed, enchanted garden. As we entered, we noted the abundance of trees, decorative plants, and potted herbs on the vast and welcoming outdoor dining terrace. Separating the space from the bustling street is a decorative but functional wall, enclosing the garden patio for a cozy environment that offers a way to escape into a wistful getaway for lunch!The waitstaff was more than accommodating to our party, seating us safely according to COVID protocol. Persuing the menu, we found an impressive array of wines and dishes to choose from. For starters we opted for a cheese board and house-brewed iced tea. The cheese board was spectacular, offering cheeses fancied with blueberry, hatch chili, sharp cheddar, and Parmesan, arrayed with honey, nuts and crisps. Our main dish consisted of filet mignon with sides of baked penne and sautéed vegetables. The filet was cooked perfectly as ordered, with blackened char on the outside and hot pink in the middle. The taste was absolutely amazing and the cut of beef was tender with quality marbling. The baked penne was prepared with an in-house cheese, with a hint of pepper and hatch chili. The generous Cobb salad complemented the rich flavors, adding flair from the garden scene. Completing the fine meal, we ordered dessert to-go, choosing the cheesecake with raspberry sauce on the side. The atmosphere was perfect with light conversation, clinking of glasses and service ware, and the addition of nature all around.Our second visit to Yellow Brix was for an evening dinner. We chose to sit outside under the the sparkly lit trees and amongst the multiple warm fire-enhanced patio heaters. Again, we were immediately welcomed and assisted by the friendly waitstaff. Paul, the shift manager, kindly seated us outside near one of the many gas heaters to keep the chill of the night away. Our server, Christian, was top notch in service and care! We perused the menu and decided to start with Soup de Jour and a Warm Brussel Sprout salad. Soup de Jour, the chefs choice of Pozole Verde, was full of tender pork and hominy, and seasoned perfectly with a savory, fragrant heat of flavor. The Soupde Jour changes daily and is offered on the menu alongside Yellow Brix famous constant, Chicken Tortilla Soup. The salad consisted of roasted Brussel Sprouts with a charred finished, a vinegarette dressing, parmesans cheese, and sprinkled with craisens.Taking in the scenery as we ate, thoughts of a Mediterranean country vineyard came to mind, with the vivacious green trees and plants. Lights floated through the trees, providing a dreamy ambience while slow jazz drifted in the cool evening breeze. As we enjoyed the music and scenery, Paul arrived with the anticipated bottle of Malbec from Chile. The wine menu at Yellow Brix is exceptional and is continuously updated to bring Carlsbad an excellent selection of fine wines.As we dined, we received a special welcome from Barbary Rempel, the owner of Yellow Brix. A lovely conversation ensued and we learned about the history of how Yellow Brix came to be. From the original build in 1928, as a home for then Clothier, Jennie James Hendricks, to the current spectacular restaurant Yellow Brix is today, the property is alive with stories. The brick home was built for Albert and Jennie Hendricks at the corner of 201 N. Canal street in 1928, an engineering accomplishment for the times. Barbara and Dan Rempel acquired the house in 2009, after it had been slated to be demolished.The Rempel’s original design for Yellow Brix was a coffee house that opened in 2011. Barbara reminisced of the coffee days, full of vibrant customers who encouraged the Rempels to consider a full-service restaurant. With a faithful following, Barbara and Dan followed their heart and the desires of the locals and opened Yellow Brix Restaurant at the end of their first year!
Now that preservation and renovation is complete, future plans for a remodel are in place! That’s right, Yellow Brix is again reinventing itself to bring back the coffee bar model to be incorporated into the restaurant! As coffee and wine enthusiasts, Barbara and Dan strive to bring the best offerings through its epicurean restaurant! As Barbara explained the history and imagined the future of Yellow Brix, one could see that she is truly dedicated to her customers and staff.Our fantastic conversation came to an end as we received our main course! For our main selection, we opted for the Chicken Cordon Bleu, prepped in-house, with sautéed vegetables and truffle fries. The Cordon Bleu sat as an island in a white creamy gravy and prevailed with a crisp outer crust encasing a velvety moist mix of Swiss cheese, salty ham, and tender chicken! The sautéed vegetables are always a hit at Yellow Brix while the truffle brought a subtle tasty twist to the usual French fry. Every aspect of the dinner was expertly crafted from the fine Yellow Brix chefs that hail from Dallas and New York.As our dining came to an end, we opted for two desserts to go. Tiramisu and Crème Brûlée were carefully boxed and did not disappoint. Both of these fine desserts are prepared in-house and are made from top quality ingredients. The silky tiramisu and buttery Crème Brûlée with a candied crown topped the night off perfectly. If you’ve never been to Yellow Brix, stop in, you won’t regret your decision. If you’re a regular, we know why!Continue this fantastic adventure with us as we explore the expansiveselection of Carlsbad’s tasty dining selections. The action won’t stop as we deliver the goods on whats good in the realm of foodies!For more reviews and delicious food ideas, or if you have a restaurant or food truck you’d like us to review, check usout on Instagram @stevenSMOKED