Dreaming of Ice Cream

Westroot Beer Float

Westroot Beer Float

Remember the days when you’d beg your mom and dad to buy you double scoops of your favorite ice cream? Well now you can relive those sweet moments and cool off at one of these hotspots and beat the heat with a tasty treat.

Shake it on over to Encontro in North Park for an unforgettable ice cream adventure with cups full of deliciousness. Sit near their large windows that look out onto University Ave and dig into one of their hand-crafted shakes made with ice cream from their neighbors, Hammond’s. Even the pickiest of sweet teeth will be satisfied with their wide-selection of flavors such as churro, salted caramel, banana brownie fudge, cheesecake chocolate, strawberry, vanilla and build-your-own.

Newly opened WESTroot, has a float of a different kind! Sugar, caramel and butter all combine to make one mouth-watering treat, the WESTroot Beer Float! Get your sweet tooth ready for a melody of root beer, caramelized popcorn and popcorn ice cream… yes, that’s a thing!

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Hip Italian Food at Pan Bon

Pan Bon

Photo by Maria Desiderata Montana

Pan Bon has made its grand entrance on the quaint streets of San Diego’s Little Italy with a décor that was studied to pair the modern trend of décor of all restaurants in San Diego with the traditional yet hip Italian food prepared by Executive Chef Riccardo Brentegani. 

Pan Bon

Photo by Maria Desiderata Montana

Pan Bon’s euro-contemporary setting boasts high ceilings, an open floor plan and an elegant, yet simple design that welcomes visitors to enjoy a meal or a variety of grab-and-go options. Upstairs, a scenic mezzanine is available to host guests for private parties and intimate dining experiences. The demonstration kitchen is the true focal point in the restaurant, allowing diners to watch the chef bring his culinary masterpieces to life.

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Keep On Shuckin’ For National Oyster Day

JRDN Oysters

JRDN Oysters

For those shuckers who enjoy the brinier things in life, rejoice – NATIONAL OYSTER DAY is quickly approaching on Friday, August 5th and these shelled delicacies are primed and ready for a slurp-a-lious celebration.

JRDN restaurant at Tower23 Hotel

Soak in breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and the stunning San Diego sunset while feasting on fresh oysters for the perfect summer evening this Thursday, August 5 in celebration of National Oyster Day. JRDN restaurant at Tower23 Hotel will be serving oysters for $1 to be enjoyed alongside a glass of rosé for $6. This delicious deal will start at 4 p.m. and run while supplies last.


Oysters are traditionally seen as classy fare to be daintily slurped with pinkies up, in between sips of martinis. Stake Chophouse & Bar keeps this sophistication alive thanks to Executive Chef Tim Kolanko, who serves up a cultivated selection of fresh oysters from both the West and East Coast. For the most shuck for your buck, devour $1 oysters during brunch and happy hour, or have your hors d’oeuvre and cocktail in one gulp with their happy hour Oyster Shooter, which blends citrus vodka, Bloody Mary mix, and horseradish.

1309 Orange Ave.

* Single Oyster | $1 at brunch and happy hour * 

* Brunch every Sunday from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m * 

* Happy hour Monday – Saturday 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. and all day Sunday *


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Bracero Cocina Snags Two Prestigious Awards

Bracero CocinaBracero Cocina de Raiz, a vibrant Mexican restaurant that combines tradition and forward-thinking culinary expression, located in one of San Diego’s prime downtown neighborhoods is the recipient of two prestigious awards that praise the restaurant’s popular wine program.

Bracero’s wine program includes an impressive selection of over 125 wines that represent the essences of California, Baja California and internationally. With a selection of over 60 wines from the flourishing Baja California region, wine lovers alike can indulge in the vivacious flavors of these these Mexican vineyards. Bracero Cocina de Raiz also offers patrons the widely-popular “Meet the Winemaker” dinners, happening once every month. Customers are able to enjoy an evening of mingling, small plates from Bracero’s authentic kitchen, and a specific wine variation from the selected vineyard, understanding the workings of the wine-making processes and aromas more in depth.

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Devour Donuts By The Sea

San Diego Food Finds

Now in its third generation of family ownership, the VG Donut & Bakery has called Cardiff home since 1969. This locally famous icon serves some of the best bakery items in all of San Diego, but it’s the wide range of classical donuts that keep long lines waiting nearly every morning any day of the week. Best of all, they are one block west of Highway 101 and the San Elijo State Beach, making access to the ocean just a simple walk. There’s no better experience in the morning than a freshly made donut hot from the oven and waiting to pair with your favorite coffee drink. Be sure to take your prize down the street and enjoy on a bench overlooking the spectacular views. Just remember to pack plenty of napkins! 106 Aberdeen Dr., Cardiff, 760-753-2400, vgbakery.com, Neighborhood: Cardiff by the Sea.

©100 Things To Do In San Diego Before You Die By Maria Desiderata Montana

VG Donut & Bakery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Try Out These Low Cal Summer Eats

Encontro Arugula Salad with Salmon

Encontro Arugula Salad with Salmon

These San Diego restaurants have made it easy for foodies alike to indulge in delicious low-cal eats without compromising flavor. Strap on your sandals and open up that appetite because these dishes will have you looking in tip-top shape without too much effort on your part.  

At Farmer’s Bottega, customers need not to worry about quality because everything offered at this dynamic eatery uses fresh and sustainable local ingredients. Their menu embraces a mix of traditional Italian and American-organic cuisine, reassuring clients that recipes and handcrafted creations will definitely please every taste bud. Best of all, staying healthy at this spot won’t be too difficult especially when they offer amazingly-nutritious options like the Stay Fit Omelet.  This flavorful omelet is prepared with egg whites, mushrooms, fresh spinach, roasted garlic, and herb goat cheese, folded into a fluffy blanket of scrumptiousness, and served hot for your munching pleasures. What better way to start the day than with juicy ingredients that are good and good for you!

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Eclectic Global Cuisine In Ocean Beach

OB WarehouseNestled in the heart of Ocean Beach on the second floor of the former Portugalia building at 4839 Newport Avenue, the 6,000 square-foot OB Warehouse brings a casual new eatery to the coastal town’s growing culinary scene. With an innovative global menu by acclaimed Chef Amiko Gubbins and exciting industrial design by Philippe Beltran, OB Warehouse’s creative interiors boasts communal seating, an expansive central bar and a chic outdoor patio.

Fresh California ingredients mingle with influences from Asia, the Mediterranean, Morocco and the Middle East. Serving a wide range of inventive starters, salads, flatbreads, entrees and desserts, many designed with sharing in mind, Gubbins presents several signature menu items, such as the Golden “SoCal” Crabcakes with honey red chili aioli, the Merguez Sausage Flatbread topped with oven roasted tomato, feta cheese and harissa, as well as the Royal Goan Shrimp Curry served with toasted basmati rice and crispy shallots. To perfectly complement an array of savory dishes, Gubbins has crafted several desserts such the Coconut Tapioca with crispy phyllo and lemongrass pink guava coulis, and Bittersweet Chocolate Cake finished with espresso sauce and a candied lemon twist.

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Pier South Ocean Front Concert Series

Ocean Front Concert SeriesLaunches Saturday, July 30th With Concerts Scheduled Through October

Amid a busy summer for the increasingly popular beachfront destination of Imperial Beach – with a very successful Sun & Sea Festival on July 15 and a stunning turnout of 4,000 people at the Imperial Beach Pier with 91 X San Diego’s SWITCHFOOT concert, on July 17, – Pier South is proud to announce its more intimate Ocean Concert Series, starting July 30, featuring Grammy winning jazz artists from across the border.

The series will kick-off on the resort’s rooftop patio with a Latin Jazz Fusion performance by NO PALS, featuring the musicians of Luis Miguel.  VIP tickets for this concert are $20 each and include complimentary valet parking and a welcome meet & greet with the musicians. The concert runs from 6:00 to 9:00 pm and doors open at 4:00 pm. Beer and wine from Tijuana and the Guadalupe Valley will be featured and pre-show menus will be offered at the hotel’s oceanfront Baja Med restaurant, Sea 180°.  VIP tickets will range from $20 to $50 and will include VIP section seating that will also include complimentary valet parking, a welcome meet & greet reception with the musicians.

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Experience the Flavors of Italy at CUCINA Enoteca

Photo by Maria Desiderata Montana

As a leader in San Diego’s culinary landscape for the last seventeen years, celebrated proprietor, restaurateur and interior designer Tracy Borkum’s CUCINA enoteca is a beautiful two-story, 7,000 sq ft restaurant and wine shop located in Del Mar’s Flower Hill Promenade.

(Photo by Maria Desiderata Montana)

Squash Blossoms (Photo by Maria Desiderata Montana)

The exceptional culinary team is led by Executive Chef Joe Magnanelli, who combines the flavors of Italy with the organic freshness of California. Keeping in line with the signature CUCINA experience, the modern Italian kitchen-meets-rustic-farmhouse concept presents guests with the same highly curated “restaurant to retail” environment found in their existing locations. Offering diners nearly everything for sale, including the customized furniture, lighting and décor, CUCINA enoteca Del Mar also features a dedicated wine shop where guests can purchase hand-selected wines at retail price, either to enjoy with their meal or take to go.

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Welcome Roscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles

Roscoe'sRoscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles a Long Beach, California-based soul food restaurant chain, is coming to the Barrio Logan neighborhood of San Diego by late 2016 and will span nearly 17,500 square feet. As the name states, Roscoe’s is best known for serving chicken and waffles, both together and separately, although they are also famous for their delicious greens, Mac and Cheese, hot water cornbread, and red beans and rice.

The Los Angeles Times refers to Roscoe’s as “such an L.A. institution that people don’t even question the strange combo anymore.” The New York Times refers to it as a “beloved soul food chain”. The original location in Hollywood remains popular with celebrities.

Encontro In North Park Is New Community Hub

Encontro North ParkAs humans we are innately curious creatures, and more than anything, we crave connection. Through valuable interactions we meet, we find and we discover, and that is the exact essence of the Spanish verb encontrar. Derived from this very word, and bringing this spirit to life, is the restaurant Encontro North Park. This new community hub is where discovery, connection and craft food get real. Here is where you will find fast, simple, authentic food complete with 21 rotating craft beers.

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Mingle With Vino Heads At Grape Smuggler

Greg_GrapeSmugglerOenology 101 is in session at Liberty Pubic Market’s in-house wine bar, Grape Smuggler! Prepare your palate for some serious swirling, sniffing, and sipping with wine pro Greg Majors at Grape Smuggler’s Wine School, where vino-heads can learn how to pair like a pro, decipher new notes and flavors, and expand their global vine knowledge, all while enjoying curated bites from Liberty Public Market’s artisans. So belly up to the bar and get ready to drink and discover a new appreciation for the finer sips in life.

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Classic New Zealand Eatery Welcomes Diners Home


Lamb Skewers with Roasted Veggies, Cucumber Slices, Hummus, and Pita Bread

Queenstown Public House serves all natural, organic American fare with a New Zealand twist in a cozy and comfortable house-like setting, including the parlor room where you can watch sheep grazing on the ceiling.

Queenstown Public House

Fried Green Tomatoes with Feta, Frisee, Poached Egg and Balsamic Reduction

Although executive chef Sergio Haro Sr. studied at the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (UABC) in Ensenada, Mexico, he says most of the important skills he learned were from his older brother, who is also his mentor.

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Bull & Grain Coming To Hillcrest

Bull and Grain

Courtesy Rendering

With an anticipated opening in early September 2016, Bull & Grain (previously occupied by Tabletop Commons) is slated to offer a new-American style menu complete with handcrafted fare paired with unique artisanal cocktails. Located in the community of Hillcrest at 1263 University Avenue in San Diego, guests can look forward to a modern industrialist atmosphere complete with a full-bar and an outdoor patio decorated with fire torches.

Look for updates on their Facebook page.

Multi-Sensory Wine Dinner Series At Loews

loew coronado

Loews Coronado Bay Resort has turned wine dinners on their head with its “Entwined” series. The third dinner is on Friday, August 19th at 7pm in conjunction with Antinori.

The evening will kick-off with a reception followed by a five-course multi-sensory wine dinner. With each course, the experience will change dramatically, from the music and choreographed lighting to the spectacular presentations and other unexpected surprises. Executive Chef Chris Aguirre and his culinary team will host live action stations and Eric Jenkins, Director of Food & Beverage, along with Alessia Botturi from Antinori will lead the dinner in a conversational atmosphere that will extend to the community style tables. As guests enjoy each delectable course, they will be taken through a carefully crafted experience designed to delight all of their senses and, of course, taste-buds.

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It’s A Barkyard Beach Pawtay

Backyard Beach PartySummer in San Diego is conducive to days spent at the beach, and there is no better sandy companion than your pup! Add some excitement to your typical routine by heading over to Backyard Kitchen & Tap for a beach pawtay celebrating the dogs of the dog days of summer. Their upcoming Barkyard Beach Party is a perfect summer activity for the whole family- canines included.

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New Summer Olympics Cocktail At Loews Coronado

Loews CoronadoLoews Coronado is Paying Homage to the Global Games by Offering A “Melon Caipirinha” for Guests to Enjoy While Cheering on Their Favorite Team

Loews Coronado Bay Resort is raising Olympic fervor by inviting guests and locals alike to celebrate the Rio 2016 Olympics by serving up a distinctly crafted Caipirinha-inspired cocktail. Expert mixologist, Michael Olczak, developed the Melon Caipirinha by combining the fresh flavors of sugar, cachaça and lime for sport enthusiasts to enjoy while watching the global games from August 5-21.

“In the spirit of competition and with all eyes on Brazil, Loews Hotels is celebrating the Rio games with a twist on the host country’s Caipirinha that reflect the distinctiveness of our destinations,” says Mark Weiss, Senior Vice President of Food & Beverage at Loews Hotels. “We’re excited to offer guests a chance to toast their favorite teams and competitors.”

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About Town With Cool Comic-Con Cocktails


Check out these cool Summer cocktails during Comic-Con on July 21st-24th.

Searsucker San Diego

Located in the epicenter of downtown San Diego’s historic Gaslamp Quarter, Searsucker downtown serves a playful menu of classic twists on New American cuisine and an array of moth-watering cocktails.  Just blocks from the San Diego Convention Center and offering a great patio on Fifth Avenue for superhero and zombie watching, Searsucker is transforming their entire cocktail menu from July 21 through 24 to pay tribute to some of Comic-Con’s greatest characters and blockbuster movies including DC Comic’s Suicide SquadGame of Thrones, The Simpsons, Iron Man and more.  The full Comic-Con cocktail menu can be found here

Name: Tai Me a River | Comic-Con Name: The

Rum Isn’t Always Gone

Name: Fizzy Lifter | Comic-Con Name: Jokes on Quinn

Name: Flower & Vince | Comic-Con Name: Ivy’s Sweet Relief

Name: Far South of the Border | Comic-Con Name: Fantastic Beasts + Where to Find Them

Name: Hearts on Fuego | Comic-Con Name: Mother of Dragons

Name: Buffalo Soldier | Comic-Con Name: Tony Stark

Name: Drunken Luchador | Comic-Con Name: Cloak and Cowl

Name: Fifth + Market | Comic-Con Name: I Said My Name Is Ajax

Name: French Squeezed | Comic-Con Name: Homer Sips On

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New Beer and Game Bar Opens In La Mesa

Coin HausSan Diego-based Cohn Restaurant Group, brings the region’s first self-serve beer and game bar to the downtown La Mesa neighborhood with the launch of COIN HAUS, a 2,400 square foot haven for the young-at-heart. Customers can enjoy more than 30 video game classics such as Super Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong, and Frogger, as well as new releases like Game of Thrones and Ghostbusters pinball, all accessible using the same wristband key fob that allows guests to enjoy beer, wine, as well as Boochcraft Kombucha and Cold Brew Coffee pouring from the 50 self-serve taps. 

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Breakfast Republic Hatches In Liberty Station

Breakfast Republic

Breakfast Republic has officially opened its doors to hungry morning birds landing in Liberty Station. Having just hatched on July 16th, this new location has added an impressive cocktail menu to its flock of chirp-worthy dishes. You’re familiar with their location in North Park, but you’re sure to find some surprises in décor and taste at Liberty Station. I would love to invite you to start your day on the right foot (or claw) and see why BR will make you want to put all your eggs in one basket.

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Buffalo Wings Recipe Is The Real Deal

Chicken WingsThere’s no arguing that the Buffalo Wing is the King of all of party foods. Why? Well, first of all they are easy to share. Second, their flavor is enhanced by swigs of beer. Lastly, they even have their own national holiday celebrating their sauciness!

With July 29th being National Chicken Wing Day, Pillbox Tavern’s Fuego Wing Recipe is sure to spice up the dog days of summer with a hot twist on the traditional wing flavor. This backyard BBQ favorite starts with Franks Buffalo Sauce and butter and then adds the must-have ingredients of cayenne, black pepper, Cajun seasoning, red pepper flakes and serrano peppers.

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Pacific Standard Coastal Kitchen Comes To Little Italy

Pacific Standard Coastal KitchenOffering Bay Views And A Coastal-Inspired Menu By Executive Chef Giselle Wellman 

Anchoring the northern end of San Diego’s flourishing Little Italy neighborhood, Pacific Standard – Coastal Kitchen is downtown’s newest harbor side eatery perched at the corner of Pacific Highway and Hawthorn Street. The restaurant comes to fruition though a collaboration between Southern California-based hotelier T2 and veteran restaurant developers, New School—who draw on Executive Chef Giselle Wellman’s expertise to curate a menu influenced by the surrounding Little Italy community. Located at 2137 Pacific Highway, the concept breathes new life into the site of one of the neighborhood’s most distinctive landmarks, an iconic art-deco restaurant complex, and offers picturesque bay views from its expansive 4,100 square-foot indoor/outdoor property.

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ArtWalk at Liberty Station

ArtWalk at Liberty StationArtWalk at Liberty Station Returns to San Diego, August 13-14

San Diego’s original fine art festival producers host 11th year at the Arts District at Liberty Station’s Ingram Plaza-

The 11th annual ArtWalk @ Liberty Station will be held Saturday, August 13 and Sunday, August 14 in San Diego. It will be a weekend full of art, food, live entertainment and fun for residents and visitors of all ages. This yearly art festival is produced by the same team that brings Mission Federal ArtWalk to San Diego’s Little Italy each year in April.

“ArtWalk @ Liberty Station is a free weekend long event that creates a platform for artists to showcase their work. The festival brings together families, art lovers, collectors, residents, visitors and more to one of San Diego’s most loved arts and culture districts,” said Sandi Cottrell, ArtWalk San Diego’s managing director. “The beautiful park-like setting and rose garden at Liberty Station’s Ingram Plaza, provides a scenic backdrop for artists to showcase their work. We are looking forward to putting on another successful ArtWalk @ Liberty Station this year for our 11th year anniversary.”

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SoCal Food And Wine Festival

SoCal Food And Wine FestivalThe SoCal Food and Wine Festival will be held on Tuesday, July 19, 2016 at 6:00 pm at Ramona Mainstage located at 626 Main Street, Ramona, CA  92065. The event features a variety of cuisine and wine pairings from ten top chefs and ten premium wineries in the Southern California area. The Ramona Mainstage indoor venue will also include live entertainment. The event will benefit Center for Community Solutions – a local San Diego organization whose mission is to end relationship and sexual violence by being a catalyst for caring communities and social justice.

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True Food Educational Dinner Series

True Food KitchenTrue Food Kitchen is kicking off its educational community dinner series with the first event taking place today at 6 p.m. Each dinner will take place in the restaurant’s beautiful private dining room and will provide diners an opportunity to interact with Executive Chef Nathan and experience a custom four-course menu reflecting a select theme using locally sourced ingredients.

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