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New Owner Has Big Plans for BeachFire Bar & Grill

By Norb Garrett

Like a bee to honey, restaurateur Edgar Carbajal lives for the thrill of entertaining his customers.

“Hospitality is my passion,” said Carbajal, who has been in the restaurant business ever since moving to the United States from Mexico as an 18-year-old in 1997. “Live music, great food and entertainment—that’s what I live for.”

After coming to the U.S., Carbajal landed his first job washing dishes at Hennessey’s in Dana Point. He spent 15 years there, eventually becoming a bartender. He later had a brief three-year stint in Seattle.

BeachFire’s new owner and operator, Edgar Carbajal. Photo: Norb Garrett

Fast-forward to 2021, and after a successful, hard-earned career in the area restaurant scene, Carbajal is embarking on his second area restaurant launch in the past 10 years—this time acquiring the BeachFire Bar & Grill in Downtown San Clemente, along with partner Dustin Ramsay.

He has big plans to reignite the iconic dining spot on Avenida Del Mar.

“Through live music, great food and entertainment, we’re going to bring back the ‘Fire’ to BeachFire,” he said.

He plans to leverage some of his learnings from his first restaurant launch in 2012, when Carbajal and a few partners bought the Renaissance in Dana Point and renamed it StillWater Spirits & Sounds. He completely revamped the menu and bar list while adding live music, instantly transforming StillWater into one of the area’s hottest spots for dining and entertainment.

“We are going to take BeachFire’s San Clemente style and give it a fresh, reinspired take on coastal cuisine,” said Carbajal, who lives in San Juan Capistrano with his wife, Nina Scarnici, and their dog and cat. “We’re going to ‘bring out the Fire’ when it comes to delicious food that will mirror a new, vibrant drink menu.”

Aside from improvements to the menu and bar list, Carbajal will be expanding the live music offerings, as well as moving the stage area further back into the restaurant to allow for more space and dancing around the bands and a less-cluttered (and loud) bar experience.

“I want this to be the neighborhood hangout,” said Carbajal, who along with partner Ramsay plan on keeping the existing staff. “My goal is to make (BeachFire) the go-to place again. I see the opportunity, and I’m so excited. I know it’ll be a home run.”

BeachFire Bar & Grill

204 Avenida Del Mar, San Clemente


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