Taste of Temecula was invited to the VIP soft-opening of the newest Tilted Kilt, Sports Pub, located at the Promenade Mall in Temecula, at the former location of the Iron Wok.
Our party was greeted warmly at the door by some of the most outgoing and friendly door staff I have ever met, so the evening started on a very positive note. The entire staff of 85 must have been working this night, and it seemed that there were as many employees at guests. I think it was one server per table, so everyone had phenomenal service throughout the evening.
A word about attire
Not yours, theirs. A way too cool black kilt and black shirt for the men and a something much more revealing for the ladies. A rather less is more approach involving tight skirts and high heels, along with an interesting use of plaid. Functional restaurant attire, debatable, but the eye-candy factor is off the charts.
Personally, I want to know if I can order one of the kilts…they are wicked!
If you were formally a patron of the Iron Wok, you will barely recognize the building. The structure is largely intact, but has been totally turned around. Two huge high-definition projection TV’s adorn the interior with a third outside on the patio. There are numerous smaller TV’s scattered all around the restaurant and bar, no chance on missing your team here as there are also separate sound areas so more than one game can be on and listened to at one time.
Sit outside while enjoying a libation at the interesting indoor/outdoor bar. With 24 beers on tap, a full bar, and wine, there is no shortage to choose from. The patio should be usable for most of the year as it has abundant built-in heaters with sun shades and high walls.
Our meal began with a few rounds of cocktails and Druken Clams, steamer clams prepared in Guinness. The kitchen went heavy with the Siracha, pretty much off-the-chart spicy but good none the less. One of the cool things is you can order
your clams cooked in your choice of beer. Unfortunately about one third of the clams in our dish were dead before they were cooked, this is unfortunate, and not expected on an opening night.
Next up was our main course. A particularly good pastrami sandwich with a nice spicy mustard. A Beef dip, sadly without the dip. A Philly Cheesesteak sandwich with all of its gooey goodness. Finally a BBQ chicken pizza, the sauce of which I found on the cloyingly-sweet side.
The Tilted Kilt makes the best fries that I have tasted in ages. I mean perfect.
Finished up with another glass of white wine then it was time to hit the road. Wished goodnight by no less than four people, and again by the door staff.
To summarize, there were some near-misses on the food, but to be fair, this was a dry run of the restaurant, and likely the first time many of the cooks have worked live on the menu. The staff and level of service was extraordinarily high. The Tilted Kilt has hired a lot of smart young people, who went out of their way to make the evening a great success.
The Tilted Kilt is located just off Ynez Road at the Promenade Mall.