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San Diego’s Best Restaurants 2022

It’s here. SDM’s annual list of the city’s top restaurants, and Flying Pig is on the list!
May 27, 2022

Category — Southern
Critic’s Pick: Flying Pig

Thank you, San Diego Magazine!


Flip-Flop Fine Dining

Our Oceanside Gastropub Woos Guests with Great Food and Service.

Crackling pork belly, tender and caramelized from a brief char on the grill, arrives at the table first. A delicate slice of smoked cheddar cheese begins to melt, sliding down the pork, topped precariously with julienned Granny Smith apples and sage. It is a single bite, presented on a porcelain spoon, a veritable explosion of flavor.

This is not something you can order at Flying Pig Pub and Kitchen, Oceanside California’s favorite gastropub. This is the gift we give you for walking through the door.

Owners Roddy and Aaron Browning are veterans of the restaurant industry. Having worked in fine dining since their teens, they understand the nuances of attentive, anticipatory service and the techniques of traditional French cooking. But they also appreciate that sometimes, at the end of the day, all you need is a pint of beer and something simple, homemade, and wholesome… without all the fanfare.

“We created a place inspired from our own kitchen,” Aaron Browning said. “We used to cook for family and friends at home. Now we do it here.”

“I’ve never met a stranger,” her husband, Roddy Browning, affirmed. “It’s the way of Southern hospitality. We Southerners are known for being friendly and polite. I want our guests to really feel at home here.”

Their relaxed hospitality embodies the perspective that the act of eating with one’s friends in cozy, familiar atmosphere is restorative to the soul. And Chef Mario Moser complements their philosophy, serving up immensely satisfying comfort food. Menu items like chicken and dumplings, or house-made pasta with ricotta and pea tendrils, are fresh and simple. It is food meant to satisfy, not to boast about.

Aaron describes the restaurant’s ambience as “industrial farmhouse.” “We took the hard edge of industrial design, with the soft edge of a country farmhouse, as our inspiration,” she said.

Whenever possible, the Brownings focused their energies on finding creative uses for vintage products. Supplies were foraged from Craigslist, antique stores, flea markets, and salvage yards. Several tabletops are crafted from electrical spools. The bar’s backdrop is a colorful mosaic of scrap wood panels. The effect is a funky, lively dining room, with bright splashes of color on the walls and thoughtful decorative touches at every turn.

In the end, Flying Pig Pub and Kitchen pulls off a distinctive charm. It’s the kind of place you’ll find yourself returning to again and again!

Flying Pig in the News

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