Jeff Smith 4 p.m., Dec. 20
Cheapest meal in Oceanside – if you like shukkin’ peanuts
Pierview Pub or Pier View Coffee Co.? Choice is peanuts you shuck (free), or BBQ chicken sammies (cheap)
It’s the first thing you notice.
When you come up from Oceanside’s pier at Pierview Way, you look to your left, and there’s Pier View Coffee Co (300 Pier View Way, Oceanside, 760-966-1150).
To your right, Pierview Pub (301 Pier View Way,760-757-2827).
Turns out the coffee place’s building has been up and running for 105 years. A century!
The pub, only 60 years.
Who knew Oceanside was so ancient?
Whatever, decision to make. Drugs (coffee) or booze?
Booze wins out, mainly because of their sign.
“GIT N ’ERE”
Except inside, a big fat neon sign above the bar says “Bub’s.”
“That’s ’cause it’s also Bub’s Whiskey Dive,” says a guy on a stool. “And, it’s an all-U-can-eat place as well.”
“Wow,” I say. “All you can eat?”
“Sure, if you like peanuts.”
Oh right. Now I see the floor’s strewn with peanut shells. There’s buckets of them free for the shucking, tempting you to start an afternoon of cracking, chewing, drinkin’.
I sit down, grab a fistful, and start crackin’. Don’t know why, but the real pleasure is tossing the shells on the floor.
But I tell myself these are health food too, right? Because peanuts ain’t nuts. They’re legumes, like beans and peas. They say they help fertility, keep sugar levels down, prevent gallstones, fight depression, improve your memory, lower cholesterol, help heart disease, help you drop weight… this ain’t free food, it’s free medicine!
One thing nobody mentions is they have to be addictive. Crack, shake, chew, crack, shake, chew, crack…
’Course I’m longing to get into this Oceanside beer they’ve got. Heard good things about Oceanside Ale Works’ American Strong Ale. Hoppy, 9.2 percent.
But when Eric the barman comes up, and asks what I want, I have to say, uh, “Sprite.” ($1.50). Gotta work tonight.
Plus I’m really looking for food.
“If peanuts don’t do it for you,” says the guy on the stool, “go across the road. They have really good sandwiches there. Ask for the BBQ chicken breast.”
So two minutes later, I’m across in the Bay View Coffee Co., checking out the big Victorian room...
...with the pier view windows –except bushes have now blocked the view of the pier.
Bottom line, Marysol...
...the busy gal at the counter (lot of Camp Pendleton military come here for some quiet laptop time), has made me that BBQ chicken breast sandwich ($6.95) and a cup of coffee ($1.75).
Ooh. Mmm. BBQ sauce is nice and sweet, the red onions point up the sauce, and the thick slice of chicken breast really fills you up.
Plus, the ciabatta bread is nice and crisp. Maybe it’s the peanuts I had across the road, but I’m way full before I get to the end of this.
Going to have to come back and do Pierview Pub justice. ’Cause I suspect, come nighttime, O’Side’s fun crowd’s gonna be packing it, downing the local Strong Ale, telling tall tales, and, natch, shuckin’ peanuts all over the place.
More in upcoming Tin Fork.
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