Beast and Bounty

Well, they’ve done it again. The LowBrau team, who also brought us swanky Block Butcher Bar and who soon will be making all of our mornings sweeter with Milk Money donuts, opened up a California wood-fire restaurant this summer. Beast and Bounty was much anticipated and they more than delivered.

If LowBrau (one of our favorite casual brunch spot) is the effortlessly cool kid with great music taste and Block is the even cooler older brother who wears a bow tie and suspenders then Beast and Bounty is the popular, sophisticated, health-conscious sister with a perfect sense of style. The new hot-spot sits right across from Philz Coffee at Ice Blocks on R street and almost always has a line out the door before opening.

The line is completely warranted, even if they are just trying to take a peek inside. The interior is overwhelmingly stunning. Designed by owner Michael Hargis, also of LowBrau and Block, every detail was not just considered but agonized over and it’s clear in the results. Additionally, Hargis collaborated almost entirely with Sacramento-based designers. From the leatherwork by Steve Tiller and the table bases and chairs by Mike Whisten to the menus by Jake Castro and details from Scout Living, every corner of Beast and Bounty breathes intentionality and locality. Walking in is a bit like walking into a designer’s wonderland, filled with leather work, hanging plants, and beautiful light fixtures.

Of course, Beast and Bounty isn’t all looks. Hargis really wanted to create something special for Sacramento, something completely new with a foundation in creating culture and community but also keep that down-to-earth feel that Sacramento takes so much pride in. “It still has some of that LowBrau DNA where there are communal tables, you’re close to each other, it’s fun, and there’s great music, but just elevated a little bit. I think it’s what we need as our city evolves and our city progresses, we need things that are pushing the envelope for the city.”

In addition to creating a hybrid of elevated and down-to-earth, Beast and Bounty brings together vegetarians and meat-eaters in a way that isn’t seen too often. Vegetarians, and even vegans, can order straight off the menu without alterations and their meat-eating dates don’t have to choke down veggies and vegan cheese (although, trust us, you want to try the cashew cheese, meat-eater or not!). Finally, a haven for friends and couples with different preferences where no one is left to feel like the burden. 

When Hargis first approached chef Brock MacDonald about opening a vegan-friendly restaurant, he initially balked at the idea. Having been the chef at LowBrau and Block, both with very meat-centered menus, vegan was so far outside of MacDonald’s view that it seemed laughable. But then, Hargis shared, “when he and his team really wrapped their head and heart around it, it was the most exciting thing for them because it takes so much more technique to develop [vegan] dishes.”

MacDonald’s initial hesitancy is nowhere to be seen on the plates that come out of the Beast and Bounty kitchen. Both meat (Beast) and vegetables (Bounty) pop off the plates with color and texture that looks beautiful and feels authentic. The plates and bowls made by Alexandria Cummings are pieces of art on their own but also serve as a perfect canvas. And the food is simply delicious. Hargis and MacDonald decided on favorites for the menu. Instead of a packed full menu, you’ll find all the favorite items ordered at a variety of restaurants. You can get a salad and a burger or you can also get pizza, and ramen, and octopus, and a donut. Liken it to your watchlist on Netflix or your saved memes folder on Instagram. All your favorites, all in one place.

Their vision was simple, Hargis and MacDonald wanted to create a special place for Sacramento where people can enjoy good food in community. Beast and Bounty hits all the marks for us. Stop by for lunch or dinner and let us know what you think in the comments!