On the heels of celebrating eleven successful years, Old Vine Café embarks on a second chapter with a new location and updated name to reflect the expanded offerings. The beloved and award-winning restaurant Old Vine Café will re-open as Old Vine Kitchen & Bar in the former Ecco Pizzeria & Bar at The Camp in February 2019. The new space will maintain Old Vine’s intimate dining setting; however, new offerings include a full bar, a cozy ‘Living Room’ lounge area, and a larger enclosed outdoor patio perfect for enjoying brunch or hosting private parties and events. Additionally, Old Vine Kitchen & Bar will introduce new programming around cocktails, bar bites, and aperitivo.
For almost 12 years proprietor and chef Mark McDonald has led the helm at Old Vine Café, building a loyal customer community around food, wine, and travel through his commitment to quality ingredients, hosting frequent Community Wine Dinners and guest chef events, and leading clients on twice yearly trips to Italy. Now, with new co-owner and longtime sommelier Kate Perry, he looks forward to what’s next.
“The core of what defines Old Vine will never change,” said Proprietor and Chef Mark McDonald. “We’re a small business committed to regional cuisine, quality products, and developing authentic connections with our customers. Old Vine Kitchen & Bar is a natural next step and allows us to integrate a bar program into this philosophy.”
With Old Vine Kitchen & Bar, Kate Perry begins a new role as the restaurant’s co-owner and managing partner. For the past six years she has led the wine program at Old Vine Café, working to curate a thoughtful and eclectic wine list, and engaging customers at all levels of wine knowledge in wine pairing education. With more than 15 years of experience in the industry she is an ideal partner for growing the Old Vine concept.
“Old Vine has always felt like home to me,” said Perry. “I approached Mark about becoming a partner because this is so much more than a restaurant – I believe in the concept, the staff, and the community we’re building here. Old Vine Kitchen & Bar gives us a chance to take Old Vine to the next level.”
Perry and McDonald took active roles in designing the new location, which includes an art installation by Orange County designer Mark Gerardi that was custom-commissioned to separate the bar and dining room spaces. The Living Room lounge is set up for enjoying cocktails on cozy love seats, and the dining room showcases abstract paintings by artist Paul Kole.
Old Vine Kitchen & Bar will continue to serve their award-winning breakfast and lunch seven days a week with unique brunch offerings such as the Rabbit Mole with braised rabbit, eggs, pasilla and cashew mole, queso fresco, and fresh-baked cornbread; Torta de Lengua with tender, slow-cooked beef tongue, tomatillo salsa, pickled serrano chile, and pepperjack cheese; and the Porcini Mushroom Mac & Cheese with a blend of four cheeses. For dinner, served Tuesday to Saturday evenings, the restaurant will offer a la carte menu items along with their hallmark tasting menus with wine pairings. A la carte items include choices like the Indonesian Curry Shrimp with large prawns, lemongrass curry sauce, and flash-fried glass noodles; and the Seared Octopus with sourdough sand, celery, Meyer lemon emulsion, and garlic-infused extra virgin olive oil.