Savor Southeast Asian Cuisine at Monkey King

Monkey King Honey Lemongrass Chicken (courtesy photo)

Monkey King is now the sixth concept to join GBOD Hospitality Group’s portfolio of restaurants and bars, expanding the dynamic hospitality group’s footprint in San Diego. Cocktails, created by GBOD Hospitality Group beverage director Ryan Andrews, are inspired by the South Pacific and include selections like Monkey King Mai Tai, made with Ron Zacapa rum, toasted cashew orgeat, lime juice, dry Curaçao and R&D house bitters; Balboa #2, a combination of Henebery whiskey, fresh lime, cashew orgeat and R&D sarsaparilla bitters; and more.

Monkey King Mai Tai (courtesy photo)

Monkey King’s menu takes inspiration from Southeast Asian cuisine, combining authentic dishes with contemporary preparations and local seasonal produce. A sampling of new dishes includes honey-lemongrass chicken, with red onion, bok choy, cilantro and chilis; chili-lime sea bass, with watercress, lime and peanuts; shaking beef, served with papaya, tomato, red onion, scallions and lime; and papaya salad, made with green papaya, mint, Thai basil, cilantro, tomato, peanuts, prawns and nuoc dressing.

Monkey King Chili Lime Sea Bass (courtesy photo)

The 3,600-square-foot restaurant honors its original name and draws inspiration from its beginnings in the late 1800s and Prohibition-era past. Located in what was San Diego’s Chinatown, the original Monkey King opened in 1877 as an illegal lottery house where politicians and local elite could go to dine, drink and gamble. Accommodating up to 175 guests, the venue features an open-air lounge, with exposed bricks and wooden beams; a garden-inspired bar and walls surrounded by modern gold elements and neon lighting effects; an outdoor patio; and an authentic dim sum table imported from China.

New menu offerings will be introduced at a trio of ‘grand awakening’ weekend events from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 21 through Saturday, June 23. Tray-passed appetizers and a sampling of cocktails will be available. Tickets may be reserved online at

About Monkey King

Monkey King draws inspiration from its Prohibition-era past and humble beginnings as an illegal lottery house in the 1800s, bringing its history to life through Southeast Asian cuisine and handcrafted cocktails. Located at 467 5th Ave. just south of Island Ave. in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter, Monkey King is open for dinner daily from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Happy hour is from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday-Friday, serving specially-priced appetizers and drinks. More information about Monkey King is available on the website at, by calling 619.359.8897, and on Facebook and Instagram at @MonkeyKingSanDiego and Twitter @MonkeyKingSD.

About GBOD Hospitality Group

GBOD Hospitality Group was founded in 2012 by brothers Raymond and Patrick Davoudi in San Diego with the opening of Mezé Greek Fusion in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter. Two new partners, Joe Santos and Aleko Achtipes, joined GBOD in 2014 with the aim to build a portfolio of dynamic hospitality brands. Building on the success of Mezé, GBOD took over operations of Prohibition, an underground speakeasy at 548 5th Ave. in February 2017; followed by the opening El Chingon Bad Ass Mexican in May 2017; Mezé at Liberty Station in June 2017; and Havana 1920, located at 548 5th Ave. in October 2017. GBOD added Monkey King, located at 467 5th Ave., to its portfolio in June 2018. With six restaurants now under its umbrella, GBOD is now working to develop sister companies in related industries.