Just past CSUSM on Twin Oaks Valley Rd, The Bellows is a new neighborhood restaurant you will definitely want to visit. They’ve only been open for a few weeks and already they are creating quite the buzz.
The Bellows delivers a dining experience that is hard to find in North County. It offers more of a North Park kind of vibe and is a very welcome addition for residents that live nearby. Of course, it won’t be long until the word gets out and this becomes one of the more popular restaurants in San Diego County.
The owner, Ivan Derezin, also owns Churchill’s Pub and Grille in San Marcos, which is now known as one of the top beer bars in the country. To take an old farmhouse with only 16 parking spots and transform it into one of the most popular beer bars is not an easy feat and one that happened very organically. What a lot of people don’t realize, is that Churchill’s is more than beer. Their menu has evolved in recent years with an all fresh kitchen – Try the Bacon and Blue Burger or the Classic Fish & Chips. (You’ll even find Vegan & Gluten-Free options on the menu).
On any given night, you’ll see families dining, girls having a night out, business meetings or just the casual stop in for a cold drink after a long-hard day at work. If you haven’t been in there lately – might be time to visit. The hardest part is deciding which beer to enjoy!
The Bellows is a whole new experience for Ivan. Starting from the ground up, he’s building out a concept from scratch – combining old world charm with upscale dining. The Bellows features farm-fresh dishes, with a commitment to putting the simple back into old-world cooking.
The Executive Chef, Schuyler Schultz, came to San Diego from Las Vegas about four years ago. He just so happens to be a beer lover himself. In fact, he wrote the book on Beer and Food Pairings (Literally – look it up on Amazon: Beer, Food, and Flavor: A Guide to Tasting, Pairing, and the Culture of Craft Beer). Schuyler is excited he was able to develop both the food and beverage program for The Bellows, which creates a very cohesive experience for their guests. Featuring a traditional Mediterranean influence, Schuyler enjoys working with artisanal producers from our area and when you chat with him – you’ll notice the words authentic, real, honest, classic and original…are part of not only his vocabulary, but his values (and his menu).
You’ll find the same experience at the bar where the focus is on wine and spirits. Premium whiskeys are served straight up or choose from a selection of classic pre-Prohibition-era and whiskey cocktails. They have many rotating craft beers available as well, but you’ll want to explore the wine list, too, where you’ll discover lesser known international winemakers.
When you stop in for dinner at The Bellows, don’t miss out on the opportunity to get to know Ivan, if you haven’t met him already. You’ll see him at the front of the house most nights. (Need a great question to strike up a conversation? Ask him, “What do accounting, opera, and veganism have in common?” The answer may surprise you.