Bar Review: Wreckless, Fullerton, CA

Newly opened in early Dec 2017, Wreckless is a wonderful addition to the bustling downtown Fullerton restaurant scene.  It may quite simply be the best restaurant in the area.

As you walk in, your first overall impressions would be ‘Gastro-pub’.  You would be wrong.   It is far more that that.

The place is clean, casual, and spacious with copper lamps above the bar, chandeliers in the dining room, large stuffed arm chairs in the lounge area, exposed brick walls, and excellent art work on those walls.  It is very comfortable yet quietly elegant; absolutely not a shorts, flip-flop and t-shirt establishment.

Though the menu is somewhat limited, it is upscale, creative, imaginative, and by all accounts absolutely delicious.  The Owner / Chef has created something quite special here.   Dinner examples over the last few months have included; Charcuterie options, Escargot, Duck Breast, Foie Dumplings, Soft Shell Crab, Tri-tip (I can personally vouch that this is awesome), dry aged Rib Eye, Venison Rack, Lamb T-bone, and a Bison New York Steak.  The menu changes regularly so take my list as an example of the Chef’s capabilities and possibilities.  (Check their web site for the current menu.)

This is not a Gastropub by any stretch of the imagination.

 

 

But this is a Martini blog and as much as I may like the food (I do!), I’m here to review the Martinis.  The bar itself is impressively configured of dark wood and displays a very nice assortment of whiskeys, many tequilas, and quite a few vodkas. Of course there is also an assortment of Gins, as I describe at the bottom of this post.

There is a also a (to me) fascinating, and relatively rare, ice rail at the back edge of bar.  I’m not sure how effective that would be for a Martini, but certainly would help keep a beer or glass of water chilled.  Besides, it looks really cool.  There are only two TVs over the bar so it will not in any way be confused with a sports bar.  Which is just perfect for me.

 

 

 

The Martinis themselves, simply put, match the food: delicious.  They are ample, cold, and shaken vigorously then poured promptly into a refrigerated pre-chilled glass.  As there is an abundance of gins from which to choose you can freely and happily experiment with many different flavors.

The bartenders have all been excellent; professional, helpful, patient, and attentive without being overbearing.  And they have been endlessly tolerant of my as I ask about the various gins.

My only nit with the Martini is that it was served in Champagne goblet.  Those that are regular readers of this blog know that I’m a bit of a stem snob and prefer my Martinis in a Martini stem.   But that is a very minor observation.

 

Wreckless has also sporadically scheduled live music in the evenings.  On a recent Thursday it was a jazzy, folksy, a bit of bossa nova duo – a guitar and vocalist.  They claim to mix up their music on a weekly basis, so check their web-site for the schedule of entertainers, if any.

 

Overall Wreckless gets one stem.  
As I mentioned above, their Martinis are good!   Certainly not exceptional enough to my two stem award.  However, the food certainly makes it worth a visit or two.  Or three?

 

For selection Wreckless gets a A.
Their list of Gins on my latest visit includes Bombay, Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, Hendricks, Ford’s, Junipero, Botanist, Death’s Door, Bluecoat, Nolet’s, Ransom, Aviation, Uncle Val’s Peppered, Plymouth, Beefeater 24, and Bols Genever. These may change in time, of course.

 

For those inclined to visit their website:  https://www.wreckless.us/

 

 

 

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If you’re curious about what one vs. two stems means,
I refer you to the following:
*****   Rating Definitions   ****

 

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