Callie is the Newest San Diego Restaurant Stunner From Studio UNLTDAuthor:Michelle Konstantinovsky
When the Travis Swikard needed a creative studio to help him design a space that paid homage to his San Diego childhood, he called on Los Angeles-based Studio UNLTD. The result: the newly opened Callie, Swikard’s first solo venture. The 6,500-square-foot restaurant marries a Mediterranean vibe with distinctly California touches and tells the story of Skiward’s travels abroad and his passion for the art of cuisine and hospitality.
Upon entering the expansive restaurant, guests enter the unique bar lounge anchored by a dramatic “breaking wave” constructed of massive, raw Glulam beams, suspended over the Corten steel and stone clad cocktail bar. The warm color palette is meant to evoke whispers of “Golden Hour” magic and while sitting at the bar, guests can observe the overhead wave’s sunny yellow glow.
The relaxed, coastal tone of the dining room is set by plenty of plant life, marine blue chairs, and rust-colored booths. The vast, scooped two-way banquette, which acts as a buffer to the bar area, is upholstered in a concrete gray and features a yellow “rail” backrest to pay homage to the SoCal skate park scene. A blend of a denim-blue textured and decorative tiles adorn the columns, the floors are a honey-toned European oak and the tabletops are a blend of deep rich wood tones and a light-colored, veined stone.
Surrounding the dining room is a floor-to-ceiling wine room, a private dining room, and the chef’s show kitchen. Hanging above the kitchen’s stone clad pass counter, its exhaust hood is clad in a v-shape of corten steel, and the private dining room features steel and glass partitions, wood flooring, and a contemporary take on a Persian rug adorning the wall.
Of course, the menu isn’t to be missed at Callie. Appetizers include avocado labneh (pistachio, nigella seeds, summer vegetable crudité) and uni toast (5J iberico ham, tomato bread, garlic aioli), pastas include summer agnolotti (stracciatella, cherry tomatoes, basil), and entrees include spot prawns al ajillo, chargrilled hanger steak, and harissa grilled lamb chops. The cocktail list features tempting options like the Just Peach (blanco tequila, crème de pêche, beet eau de vie, mint, lemon) and the Espresso Self (vodka, espresso, nola coffee liqueur, vanilla bean, pistachio, cardamom).
Callie is located 1195 Island Avenue, San Diego, CA. For more information, visit calliesd.com.