Where to Go for Happy Hour in La Jolla

Where will you find the happiest Happy Hour La Jolla? There are definitely plenty of contenders around here! Several La Jolla restaurants have crafted unique menus that keep folks coming back. After a little recon, here are some of our top picks in the neighborhood.

We Olive & Wine Bar

This is the prime spot for wine lovers – with a view! Happy Hour is Monday-Friday from 3:30pm-6:30pm and features $3 off wines by the glass and $2 off draft beers. The wine bar is tucked away in back of the shop, and features a terrific patio with ocean views. You can try wines by the taste, glass, or bottle. If you’d rather try several different wines, we recommend the wine flight to give your taste buds some variety. They’ll bring out olive oil and balsamic pairings to try at the same time, too. If you prefer beer, don’t worry, they offer several craft varieties.

We Olive also offers perfectly paired appetizers, such as their Artisan Cheese and Charcuterie Plate and We Olive Duo Dip.

Herringbone La Jolla 

Herringbone is widely known for their take on Happy Hour in La Jolla, fondly referred to as “Oyster Hour.” It runs daily from 4pm-6pm (all evening on Mondays), and features $1 oysters, $8 cocktails, and $6 glasses of wine. The cozy spot, which opened in 2014, features a laid-back bar and lounge area with couches and comfortable seating. There is live music playing on Fridays and Saturdays, and is known for their yummy handcrafted cocktails and sangria.

Food-wise, enjoy $1 clams or choose something from the regular menu. Looking for something to share? We recommend the Local Ceviche, which is served up with a yummy combo of aquachile, jalapeño, avocado, red onion, and cilantro atop a bed of blue corn tortilla chips.

Catania

For the ultimate happy hour atmosphere and ambience, we recommend Catania. Happy Hour is 3pm-6pm daily on the rooftop patio overlooking Girard Avenue, which offers wide views of the city, sky and ocean. Soak up the friendly, happily out-of-the-office atmosphere of people meeting friends, happily chatting and clinking glasses.

There’s an extensive list of drinks offered, including the popular Aperol Spritz (a summer drink infused with orange), and the Fortunella (a yummy blend of vodka, kumquat pureé, orange blossom, and prosecco). If you’re hungry, their decadent pizzas like Merguez Sausage and Fungi are only $11 each. Good to share…or tackle your own for dinner.

9 Essential Drinks to Try for Happy Hour in La Jolla!

The Shores Restaurant

If you’re closer to the La Jolla Shores area of town, no need to trek to the downtown La Jolla Village – hit this hidden gem right on the beach! Happy Hour is Sunday-Friday from 3pm-6pm and features an “Eight for $8” menu, where you can mix and match your choice of small bites and appetizers. Select from a variety of wines by the glass, handcrafted cocktails, and well drinks while you hang out on their beachfront patio (we love the Shores Margarita!).

Duke’s La Jolla

Duke’s “Aloha Hour” goes from 3pm-close on Mondays, and 3pm-6pm Tuesday-Friday. Along with an expansive ocean view, their Barefoot Bar (where Happy Hour is located) features a yummy menu. Get $2 off all pupus (appetizers), $4 off Duke’s Favorites, $7 glasses of wine, and $5 draft beers. We love their Hawaiian spin on seafood; give the Korean Sticky Ribs or the Poke Tacos a try! Indoor seating is available if it’s a chilly day.

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Puesto La Jolla

If you’re in the mood for tacos and margaritas, this is your spot! Happy Hour at Puesto is Monday-Friday from 3pm-5pm, and features a yummy assortment of Mexican inspired favorites. All tacos are $4 during Happy Hour, and you can get a Puesto Perfect Margarita for $9 (featuring Blue Agave Reposado Tequila and agave). They are known for their tacos: local favorites include Chicken Al Pastor, Maine Lobster, and their vegetarian Zucchini & Cactus tacos! The indoor/outdoor bar and lounge area is a good place for families with kids or a small group, but it does get crowded on weekends and during Happy Hour – plan to arrive early to secure a spot.

If you aren’t feeling tacos, they also offer a variety of bowls, shared plates, and seafood dishes.

Onto Dinner Next?

If your Happy Hour La Jolla is simply leading up to dinner, you may wish to stay for one of these location’s dining menus or head to a new spot. Learn more about top dinner options on our Restaurant Guide!

6 La Jolla Restaurants to Celebrate Dad

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 17 – this year, treat Dad to a delicious brunch in La Jolla! Whether your dad prefers an ocean view brunch or he’s more of a tacos and beer guy, we’ve rounded up a few different La Jolla restaurants that will make Dad’s day super special. Make a whole outing of it and spend the rest of the afternoon at La Jolla Cove or down at La Jolla Shores for a beach day. Check out must-dos and what to see with our La Jolla Cove guide.

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Caroline’s Seaside Cafe

8610 Kennel Way, La Jolla, CA 92037

Looking to treat dad to brunch with an ocean view? Caroline’s Seaside Cafe, located at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography campus, is the perfect spot. Brunch is offered from 8am to 2pm.

What to get: Beef short ribs “hash” & eggs served with peppers, onions, potatoes and toast ($12).

Sadly, Caroline’s does not take reservations and you order at the counter before choosing a seat. Tip: Paid parking is available on the adjacent parking lots during weekends only. UCSD students receive 30% off with student ID.

 

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Puesto La Jolla

1026 Wall St, La Jolla, CA 92037

If your dad prefers lunch tacos over brunch fare, then Puesto La Jolla is the top choice! Puesto boasts some of the most authentic and delicious Mexican food in town, and is always a great family choice because of the casual atmosphere. They’re open on Saturday from 11am to 10pm, and on Sunday from 11am to 9pm. 

What to get: Try the Chicken Al Pastor tacos – it’s one of their specialties. Splurge on a Frozen Horchata For A Cause: $1 from the sale of every horchata will be donated to a local charity, which changes monthly (ask your server which one is up for June).

This is a popular spot so be sure to make reservations days in advance. Parking is also tricky so give yourself plenty of time.

The Marine Room

2000 Spindrift Dr., La Jolla, CA 92037

Treat Dad to a special brunch buffet that he will always remember! Enjoy an amazing selection of hearty main courses like Brandt Farm Prime Rib of Beef, Berkshire Pork Daube Au Vin, and Oregon Sea Trout. Father’s Day Brunch will be offered on Sunday, June 17th, from 10am to 2pm.  Á la carte dinner specials will be available starting at 5:30 pm.

Cost: $68 per person, $34 for children 6 to 12 years, $5 per year for children 5 and under.

Experience the Best of Dining in La Jolla With Our Complete Guide!

Pro-tip: If you’ve yet to experience a High Tide Dinner, be sure to put it on your summer bucket list!

Piatti La Jolla

2182 Avenida De La Playa., La Jolla, CA 92037

Nestled in the La Jolla Shores neighborhood, Piatti’s inviting atmosphere and delicious Italian food is a great option for a Father’s Day lunch!

What to get: Linguine with mussels, clams, shrimp, calamari, today’s fish, garlic, parsley, chili flakes and crushed tomato sugo OR the Orecchiette with grilled chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, asparagus, and gorgonzola cream. Weekend brunch is served from 10am to 2pm. 

Tip: Both lunch and brunch menus are available during this time.

Herringbone La Jolla

7837 Herschel Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037

If your dad loves fresh seafood and a great atmosphere, treat him to a delicious brunch at Herringbone La Jolla.  This year’s prix-fixe brunch will be on Sunday June 17th, from 10am–2pm. The Oyster Bar is a Herringbone specialty, and includes a choice of six different types of oysters as well as an oyster sampler plate. First choice courses include a Cocoa Cardona Cheese Plate and a Strawberry Salad, while second course options include Chilaquiles, Raspberry French Toast, Steak & Eggs, and more. Afterwards, indulge in a Chocolate Mousse Cake!

Tip: Herringbone La Jolla fills up fast, so make reservations online well in advance.

The Shores Restaurant

8110 Camino Del Oro, La Jolla, CA 92037

Show Dad how much you love him with an oceanfront brunch buffet. You’ll find a range of yummy options during this special Father’s Day Brunch – everything from Cinnamon Raisin Brioche French Toast to Slow Roasted Prime Rib of Beef. Enjoy plenty of tasty sides, a complete children’s station, and more. Brunch will be offered on Sunday June 17th from 10am to 2pm, and admission is $64 per adult.

How will you be celebrating Father’s Day? Looking for more food options? Check out our ultimate guide to La Jolla restaurants here.

Sugar & Scribe: Chef Maeve Dishes on What’s Next for La Jolla’s Favorite Bakery

Since its revamp and reopening in 2015, Sugar & Scribe has quickly become a La Jolla favorite: delicious baked goods, sandwiches the way your mom used to make them, and sweet treats, all infused with a touch of old-world Irish magic. Chef Maeve is a veritable force in the restaurant industry, and takes pride in having built her business from the ground up.

Chef Maeve

It was a sunny day when we stepped into Sugar & Scribe for lunch; the doors were wide open, and we were greeted with Chef Maeve’s characteristically contagious grin as she came from the kitchen. While we waited for some new menu samples, the restaurant was buzzing with activity, and we got the chance to chat with Maeve about this year’s exciting updates; her inspiration for the new menu; and where she sees the bakery in five years.

To this day, Chef Maeve creates everything on the menu completely from scratch, and takes much of her inspiration from her homeland in Ireland. Ingredients are locally-sourced when they can be, and the entire team at the restaurant (including Maeve’s husband, Andrew) have full input when it comes to crafting the next menu.

New Menu: Fresh Favorites & Classic Comfort Food

The La Jolla restaurant’s brand new menu has made its debut, and we are loving it. This particular menu iteration took a lot of teamwork and multiple test batches; it kept the staples of her old menu, but she felt ready to experiment and mix things up a little. Maeve’s goal here was to take food items that already exist, and do something totally different with them. She was inspired, in part, by one of her chefs – Chef Bernard – and the way he utilizes everyday items in unusual ways. She worked tirelessly with her entire team to fully flesh out the menu, and it shows.

For Maeve, the best part about cooking is  being able to “serve emotions;” to create food that people don’t just simply taste. We had the opportunity to sample some of Maeve’s favorite items, including:

The Loaded King Sandwich: An open-face sandwich packed with BBQ beef, Fontina cheese, grilled onions, and an egg cooked any way you like. The BBQ beef is cooked “low and slow,” in Maeve’s words: “the only way to go!” The meat takes six hours to slow-cook, and its flavors are a scrumptious combination of the best parts of both Kansas City and Texas barbecue.

sugar & scribe la jolla

Farmers Salad: Fresh, packed with fresh veggies, and decidedly not just another lunchtime salad! Tons of greens, radishes, sliced chicken, corn, goat cheese, avocado, and tomatoes are all topped with a tangy-sweet poblano honey dressing. The salad is a quirky blend of Maeve’s Irish heritage, with a little bit of a Baja twist; it’s still one of her favorite things on the menu.

Nutella Nuts French Toast: This was a serious treat. Cinnamon Brioche toast is topped with strawberry compote, Nutella, strawberries, vanilla bean whipped cream, and toasted almonds. It’s fluffy, light, and totally decadent – just the way French Toast should be!

Seasonal Mimosas: These are must-haves if you’re here for brunch. We tried the lemon lavender and the tangerine, which were delicious – crafted with house-made lemonade and fresh-squeezed juice, both flavors of the new mimosas are light, fresh, and just tangy enough. The best part? They’re bottomless!

Don’t worry; all the favorites and classics from their old menu are still available! The restaurant/bakery has an even larger selection of sandwiches, salads, house specialties (like Rochford Shepherd’s Pie and the Full Irish Breakfast), and baked goods, coffee, tea, and specialty drinks.

What’s Next for Chef Maeve and Sugar & Scribe

This has already proven to be an exciting year for Chef Maeve and the team at Sugar & Scribe La Jolla. Along with the new menu, they’ve revamped their outside patio and added waiter service. They’ve also seriously upped their coffee game, and are now brewing espresso and drip coffee from Dark Horse Roasters and nitro and cold brew from Bird Rock Coffee Roasters down the road. Pro-tip: their new Charcoal Latte with Micro-Fuchsia is a must-try!

The restaurant, this year alone, won not one but four Village News Readers’ Choice Awards: Best Desserts, Best Pastry, Best Pet-Friendly Restaurant, and Best Breakfast.

And that isn’t all! Maeve plans to launch her own cookware/bakeware line of Chef Maeve-branded products in HomeGoods stores and on Amazon.com in a few months. And toward the end of 2018, she’ll be collaborating with Chef’d (a meal kit service that delivers fully-prepared meals to your door) to develop tradition-based recipes for at-home cooks; another nod to her Irish heritage and influence. The meals will be seasonal and packed with fresh ingredients, and simple but full of flavor. Those who opt in will be able to pick and choose just one meal at a time, which will make it a great option for impromptu dinner parties!

Chef Maeve’s passion and enthusiasm for what she does is tangible, contagious, and altogether inspiring. A desire to support the local community and her deeply-rooted love of cooking has turned Sugar & Scribe into an iconic and beloved part of La Jolla; and with so many restaurants becoming less and less community-oriented, stepping into the warm, friendly atmosphere of Sugar & Scribe is truly a breath of fresh air.

Sugar & Scribe is located at 7660 Fay Avenue. They’re open Monday-Saturday from 7am-3:30pm, and Sunday from 7am-2:3-pm.

Take After-Work Drinks to the Next Level at Herringbone’s Oyster Hour

With its charming ambience, tempting craft cocktails, and inventive takes on classic American fare, happy hour in La Jolla at Herringbone is not your average after-work bar. Executive Chef Brian Malarkey, a Top Chef finalist and founder of several successful restaurants (including Searsucker restaurant in San Diego), has created a space that’s both trendy and communal – so even though it’s stylish, it’s still got an inviting feeling that makes it perfect for a night out with friends. Not to mention Malarkey’s menu of savory dishes, which will totally change your concept of bar food.

Take your evening drinks to the next level and check out happy hour (or Oyster Hour, as they call it) at Herringbone first.

Rosé All Day

*Pro Tip: On Saturday, June 9th, Herringbone will be celebrating National Rosé Day with endless rosé and an epic brunch! Find out more here.

Romantic Coastal Lounge

Herringbone is well known by locals for its lofty, modern-rustic atmosphere. With its high ceilings, wooden beams, and exposed brick give it a “repurposed vintage” vibe. The location is actually a renovated 1930s warehouse; it was transformed from a practically abandoned building, to a chic space. Throughout this romantic coastal lounge, 100-year-old olive trees and strung fairy lights bring the outside in and add a touch of whimsy.

The restaurant has two areas: the sky-lit dining room in the back, and a more casual area in the front where happy hour takes place. With plenty of seating both inside and out (where you can enjoy some of the year-round lovely weather in San Diego) it’s great for a social dining outing. It’s spacious enough to fit everyone in your party while still feeling cozy. There are tables for bigger groups, while the plush chairs and window-side sofa are great for more intimate conversation. The wood-burning fireplace will keep you warm, too, if you can snag a seat nearby during the chilly nights. The outdoor patio is pet friendly, so feel free to bring along your furry friend.

Chic But Chill

Downtown La Jolla is perfect for when you’re feeling festive, but want something more laid back than a trip to the Downtown San Diego area or Pacific Beach.

While Herringbone is an upscale place, it’s low-key enough to still enjoy Happy Hour on the casual side. It’s definitely on the fancier side compared to an Irish Pub like Hennessey’s Tavern, but not quite as formal as the Marine Room – so no need to worry about a dress code. This makes it perfect for drinks before a date, a fun work get-together, or ladies night out to catch up with friends.

Live Music

Did we mention the music? Every Thursday and Friday from 5:00-7:00 pm, you can enjoy free live music from local artists as you sip your cocktails and taste delicious small plates. If you’re stopping by during the weekend, they have a set at 12:00-2:00 pm and again from 4:00-6:00 pm.

A tip for beer lovers: On Saturdays from 12:00-4:00 pm, the restaurant also hosts “Acoustics and Ales,” where they feature draft beers from a visiting brewery along with chill acoustic tunes.

Well Pours, Poured Well

A good happy hour starts with one thing: a good drink. Luckily, Herringbone has you more than covered there. Its happy hour menu has got some of the best cocktails in La Jolla, with a variety of both original recipes and classics. They’ve got well drinks down (and for only $5), but if you want something different, you’ve got to try one of their specialty cocktails.

Snake In The Grass [pictured left]

This is for anyone looking to step up their usual Gin and Tonic. Cucumber gin, lime, mint, and soda come together in this refreshing mix.

Jaleberry [pictured right]

Sweet, spice, and everything nice. The kick of the strawberry jalapeño tequila is balanced out with a little bit of lime and agave.

La Jolla Aviation

This luscious combination of gin, maraschino, creme yvette, and lemon will have you soaring.

Ocean Breeze

Probably the fruitiest cocktail option, this drink is a delicious concoction of Effen black cherry vodka, pineapple, cranberry, and lemon.

Housemade Infusions

The bar at Herringbone offers its own house-made infused liquors, which are made by soaking fruits or spices in spirits to create a unique flavor from natural ingredients. The happy hour menu includes two of their most popular, the cucumber gin and the strawberry jalapeño tequila.

The Usuals

Not into the hard stuff? They carry local craft beer like St. Archer, as well as other popular names like Anchor. The wine list also covers pretty much all of your bases, whether you want a light chardonnay or an earthy Pinot Noir (hint: visit on “Tannin Tuesdays” for half-off all bottles of wine during lunch and dinner, or on Saturdays for endless $25 rosé wine).

Fish Meats Field

When Malarkey opened Herringbone La Jolla in 2012, he envisioned a fine dining experience of “Fish Meats Field:” coastal cuisine made with the best seafood that markets have to offer, as well as the freshest farm produce of the season. His approach to contemporary American cuisine brings in the best of both worlds, reflected in the carefully curated happy hour menu that’s the perfect balance of surf and turf.

Seafood Offerings

Even though it’s a favorite around town for evening drinks, Herringbone is known first and foremost for having some of the best seafood in La Jolla. Only two of the options of happy hour selection come from the usual coastal menu, but they’re seriously delicious, and and seriously good deals.

Oyster Hour

Of course one of the of the most popular features of Herringbone’s happy hour menu is the Oyster Hour. Order their famous shucked oysters on the half shell for just a $1 each. It’s a great deal, and they’re always incredibly fresh. The variety depends on the chef’s selection of what’s best on the market that day.

Curried Mussels

This one is more of a full plate, which makes it optimal for sharing. If you usually shy away from mussels because of a “fishy” taste, you’re going to be pleasantly surprised by the subtle flavor here. Served with indian-inspired yellow curry, there’s a bite from the Calabrian chilies that’s balanced by the coolness of a little mint. Plus, on the side is helping of warm naan bread.

Arancini Risotto Balls

Filled with the creamy goodness of a three-cheese risotto cooked to perfection, these crispy delights are petite but very satisfying. They’re served with an herb aioli on the side for dipping.

Before You Go

Oyster Hour is from 4:00-6:00 pm Tuesdays through Sundays, and from 4:00 pm until close on Mondays. Since it’s a pretty casual event, Herringbone doesn’t take reservations for this time. However, you should be fine on any weekday – things usually pick up after 6:00 pm, or a little earlier on Saturdays.

Herringbone is located on 7837 Herschel Ave. There’s a private free lot for parking, and valet on Fridays and Saturdays. There are also some paid lots or free street parking on Herschel and Silverado (the two-hour spots are only monitored until 6:00 pm in La Jolla, so if you arrive at 4:00 or later try to find one of those).

Best Spots for Mother’s Day Brunch in La Jolla

Treat your mother to an incredible meal for Mother’s Day brunch in La Jolla by taking her out to these fancy spots! Delicious food paired with spectacular ocean views will definitely make it a day to remember. From unlimited buffets to specialty prix-fixe and à la carte menus, there’s definitely something for everyone on the list. Shower the mom in your life with love on Sunday, May 13th! Please note that a reservation is required for most of the restaurants on this list, unless otherwise noted.

NINE-TEN Restaurant & Bar

When: Sunday May 13th, 7:30am – 2:30pm
Where: 910 Prospect St
Cost: å la carte
Treat Mom to a Mother’s Day she’ll never forget with our special å la carte brunch menu prepared by renowned Chef Jason Knibb. Also featured will be their acclaimed Pastry Bar, as well as bottomless mimosas for just $16 per person. This is a lovely spot within the Grande Colonial Hotel, and has a cozy and historic feel. The menu this year will feature items such as Brioche French Toast, gnocchi bolognese, chilaquiles, Salmon Benedict, Grilled Spanish Octopus, a Burrata board, and more. Top it off with a selection of specialty coffee drinks and pastries. Call (858) 964-5400 or make a reservation online.

The Marine Room

When: Sunday May 13th, 11am – 7pm
Address: 2000 Spindrift Drive
Cost: å la carte
The Marine Room boasts one of the best (if not the best) views in La Jolla. Situated right on the water, every seat in the house has incredible ocean vistas; the sound of waves crashing against the windows can be heard anywhere you sit! This year’s å la carte menu features items in their signature contemporary French/seafood style: Rooibos Tea Spiced Wild Prawns, Bacon Brioche Crusted Alaskan Halibut, Peri Peri Butter Basted Lobster Tail, and of course, their Signature Maine Lobster Bisque. Top it off with one of their incredible desserts: the Island Plantation Pie, Blackmaker Root Beer Crème Brûlée, or Lavender Lemon Cake. For reservations please call (855) 203-8511 or make an online reservation.

George’s At The Cove (California Modern)

When: Sunday May 13th, 10am-2pm for brunch
Address: 1250 Prospect St
Cost: three-course menu
Voted La Jolla’s best restaurant, George’s at the Cove is the perfect place to treat your mom to a special brunch. Mother’s Day is one of only two occasions throughout the year that they actually serve brunch, and this they are featuring a special 3-course menu. Enjoy dishes like Lobster Quiche with peas and green garlic; Eggs Benedict with Canadian bacon and Meyer lemon hollandaise; Baja Shrimp Omelette with rajas and jack cheese; and desserts featuring Toasted Oat Ice Cream with caramelized white chocolate cremeux, coffee-milk foam and caramel.

Because it’s so popular, make sure to get a reservation ASAP. Call (858) 455-1616 or book a reservation online.

The Shores Restaurant

When: Sunday May 13th, 9:30am – 2:30pm
Address: 8110 Camino Del Oro
Cost: $64 per adult, $38 children 10 to 6 years, $5 per year children 5 and under (buffet style)
This ocean-view feast in the heart of La Jolla Shores shopping and dining district is a brunch to be remembered! Featured buffet items this year are Nutella Banana French Toast, Vanilla Bean Ricotta Blintz, Maple Mustard Glazed Bone-In Ham, and Buchmann’s Ranch Cage Free Egg Station. There is a special Children’s Station for the little ones, which will feature kid-friendly dishes and sides. Finish off with a scrumptious dessert, like their Butterscotch Banana Cream Pie or S’mores Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce. Call (858) 456-0600 or make a reservation here.

Eddie V’s Prime Seafood

When: Sunday May 13th, 10am-2pm
Address: 1270 Prospect Street
Cost: $49 adults (three-course menu)
This year Eddie V’s is pulling out all the stops for Mother’s Day! The 2018 brunch menu includes a three-course meal where you have a few different options for each course (however, with each meal you receive a basket of warm cinnamon rolls topped with a citrus glaze!). Dishes this year include Norwegian Smoked Salmon, Deviled Egg Trio, Lobster Quiche Florentine, Alaskan King Crab Omelet with three-citrus Hollandaise sauce, and plenty more. Brunch cocktails are $9, and there will also be a children’s menu available. Call (858) 459-5500 or make reservations online.

The Med at La Valencia Hotel

When: Sunday May 13th, 10am – 2:30pm
Address: 1132 Prospect St
Cost: $89 per adult, $39 per child
Celebrate Mother’s Day at the “Pink Lady” and enjoy a Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet! This year’s menu will feature many La V favorites, as well as a few specialty items their culinary team has created in honor of every mom. Reservations include bottomless mimosas and sparkling wine. Enjoy a chef-attended crepe station along with items like Churro French Toast, 24-hour Braised Short Rib Benedict, a full Raw Bar, and assorted tea sandwiches for the lighter palate. Desserts feature a “Garnish Your Own Donut” wall and more! Online reservations are required.

Estancia La Jolla

When: Sunday May 13th, 11am-3pm
Address: 9700 N. Torrey Pines Road
Cost: $80 per adult; $35 for children 5-12
Mother’s Day is an all day celebration at Estancia La Jolla! This year’s brunch will feature a decadent chocolate fountain, a donut wall, a selfie booth for commemorative photo taking, and a complimentary sparkling glass of wine. Children will be entertained with special activities such as face-painting, an arts and crafts table to create the perfect card for mom, and lawn games for the whole family to enjoy. Guests can also celebrate later in the afternoon, enjoying live music and cocktails on the patio at Mustangs & Burros (3-6pm) or in the evening with a special Sunday dinner (3pm-11pm). Reservations are required.

Where To Have An Incredible Easter Brunch In La Jolla

Delicious food and quality time with loved ones is what Easter is all about – and Easter Brunch La Jolla comes with that, plus incredible ocean views! Celebrate Easter weekend at one of these world-class La Jolla restaurants. Some are offering a buffet this year, while others will be featuring a prix-fixe menu. Please note that a reservation is required for most of the restaurants on this list, unless otherwise noted.

Nine-Ten La Jolla

When: Sunday, April 1st; 7:30am to 2:30pm
Address: 910 Prospect St La Jolla, CA 92037
Cost: a la carte pricing
Nine-Ten’s Easter celebration is a world-class event! Chef Jason Knibb and Pastry Chef Jose Alonzo, III, will prepare a special Easter Sunday a la carte menu featuring everything from Salmon Rillette Toast and Brioche French Toast to a Salmon Benedict and Short Rib Hash. Also featured is their acclaimed Pastry Bar, and bottomless mimosas for just $16 per person. Reservations strongly recommended. Call 858.964.5400 or reserve online here.

The Marine Room

When: Sunday, April 1st; 10:00am to 4:00pm
Address: 2000 Spindrift Drive, La Jolla, California 92037
Cost: $78 for adults, $48 for children
Enjoy a fabulous brunch with one of the best views in La Jolla! The Marine Room is perched on the water and offers up incredible French/American cuisine. This year their Easter buffet will feature a seasonal menu that includes Mary’s Farm Chicken Forestiere, Spindrift Seafood Crêpes, Pomelo Kalbi Glazed Black Cod and more. For reservations please call (855) 203-8511 or make a reservation online.

La Jolla Shores Restaurant

When: Sunday, April 1st; 9:30am to 2:30pm
Address: 8110 Camino Del Oro, San Diego, CA 92037
Cost: $64 per adult; $32 for children 6 to 10 years, and $4 per year for children 5 and under
Enjoy Chef Percy’s brunch on the beach and you’ll find something to satisfy every taste with a buffet that features favorites like Cinnamon Brioche French Toast and Thyme Roaster Coastal Sea Bass, along with Buchmann’s Ranch Cage Free Egg and Cheese Ravioli Station, Chef Percy’s Jambalaya, and more. Call (858) 456-0600 or make a reservation online.

The MED Restaurant

When: Sunday, April 1st; 10:00am to 2:30pm
Address: 1132 Prospect St, La Jolla, CA 92037
Cost: $89 per adult, $39 per child
Enjoy a delicious brunch for Easter at THE MED (at La Valencia Hotel), and dine on a buffet of incredible items including a chef-attended omelette station and their signature Baja Chilaquiles. The kids will enjoy a special appearance from the Easter bunny and an exciting Easter egg hunt outside in the garden. Easter egg hunt times are 11am, 12:30pm, and 2pm. Make reservations online or give them a call at (855) 818-6887.

Herringbone La Jolla

When: Sunday, April 1st 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Address: 7837 Herschel Ave La Jolla, California
Cost: $40 per person for a 3-course prix-fixe brunch; $12 for children.
Herringbone La Jolla is treating guests to a prix fixe three-course Easter Sunday feast! Brunch offerings include Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict, Raspberry French Toast, a Farmer’s Market Scramble, and more. Children’s menu is available. Call (858) 459-0221 or make a reservation here.

The LOT La Jolla

When: Sunday, April 1st; 10:00am to 12:00 pm
Address: 7611 Fay Ave La Jolla, California
Cost: $50 per person; $25 for children.
Join The LOT La Jolla for their annual Easter Brunch celebration, where guests will get to enjoy an amazing buffet and a wide selection from their daily menu. Bring the kids too; Mr. Bunny will make an appearance, and there will crafts and activities for the children right before a traditional egg hunt. It’s a good idea to make reservations online ahead of time.

7 Must-Try Spots in La Jolla for Breakfast & Brunch

You know the saying: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Well, it’s true. Eating breakfast has not only been shown to promote weight loss by jump starting your metabolism, according Deborah Enos of Live Science, indulging in a morning meal has been linked to improved cognitive brain function, higher memory retention and lower risk of heart disease.

So if not for your taste buds’ happiness, try a local La Jolla breakfast cafe or restaurant for your health. Here are my top favorites for a(n):

On the Go Breakfast: Brick and Bell

Headed into work or dashing between appointments? Brick and Bell is a bustling spot full of people on the run who still want a good morning meal.

This bakery and cafe is famous for its baked goods. My mouth waters just thinking about the croissants, seasonal fruit scones and hearty banana walnut bread. Select any of these or one of their breakfast sandwiches (all at incredibly reasonable prices) and pair with a coffee or tea for a boost of energy.

Ocean View: The Brockton Villa

Coast Toast. This orange-hinting, award-winning souffleed french toast is reason enough to come. Offering a variety of breakfast items, from nutritious veggie burritos to decadent eggs benedict and pancakes, there’s something for everyone at this decadent, sit down venue.

The view of the ocean from Brockton Villa is fantastic and can be enjoyed from either indoor or outdoor seating. (Only warning? A slight aroma can sometimes arise from the nearby sea lions. However, with the breathtaking view, it’s nothing that should stop you from coming.)

Old School Diner: Harry’s Coffee Shop

Harry’s Coffee Shop is the oldest, family-owned diner in this neck of the woods. It’s been serving up classic breakfast food (and non-breakfast food like burgers and sandwiches) since its opening in 1960 and has a true locals vibe.

Learn more about the full Harry’s experience at our blog: Harry’s: Dining Retro.

Coffee with a Side of Food: Pannikin Coffee

Pannikin is not just a coffee shop; it’s a haven for locals and coffee lovers. If you’re like me, you love to jump start the day with caffeine. Come to Pannikin for your coffee fix (black, latte, white chocolate mocha…they do it all) and add on a breakfast pastry for the perfect pairing.

You can also order a full on breakfast, such as the Huevos Rancheros and Greek eggs. Two other perks? Pannikin is dog-friendly and provides wi-fi.

Pancake Lovers: Richard Walker’s Pancake House

Pancakes are an American breakfast staple. At Richard Walker’s Pancake House La Jolla, Choose from a wide variety of types, such as the famous Apple Pancake, German Pancake (which comes with whipped butter, lemon, heavenly maple syrup and lots of fluffy, powdered sugar) or “Pigs in a New Car” (Pancakes rolled with sausages in the middle. Mmmm.)

If you’re with a friend or group who isn’t a pancake fan; no worries. Their menu has plenty of other options like Corn Beef Hash and the Eggs Benedict English Muffin.

Hidden Gem in Heart of the Village: Coffee Cup

Next to Burger Lounge, near the heart of the downtown village, sits Coffee Cup, an assuming storefront with an incredible menu. Many of their dishes are a magical fusion of Asian and Mexican cuisine, utilizing unique ingredients for both their breakfast and lunch entrees.

My top breakfast recommends? The Pesto Scramble, Soy Chorizo Scramble, Breakfast Enchiladas and Coffee Cup French Toast. (No matter what, though, the crispy rosemary potatoes are a must try and are included with several of the meals.)

Inside Look at Nautilus Tavern: La Jolla’s New Neighborhood Bar & Grill

Tucked away on La Jolla Blvd., just past the La Jolla Community Center, Nautilus Tavern is unassuming yet welcoming. A spacious patio and large floor-to-ceiling doors that open up to reveal a cozy dining room create a comfortable vibe that stands out in its own way among the sea of ever-changing La Jolla restaurants.

While many eateries in the Village trend toward upscale/ fine dining, Nautilus Tavern picks up where places like ultra-casual La Jolla Brewing Company (RIP) left off: the cozy bar and grill next door. Combine that friendly atmosphere with some seriously flavorful comfort food, and you’ve got yourself La Jolla’s newest dining gem. We got the chance to visit the Tavern and sample some of their dishes while chatting with Executive Chef Shelly Velez to get the inside scoop on what makes this place tick.

Location, location, location!

The Tavern fits in well with La Jolla’s seaside vibes; just a block from the beach and up the road from Windansea Beach, its nautical theme is infused with a touch of modernity and exudes a ‘costal chic’ vibe.

The 2,500 square-foot space, though large, doesn’t feel overwhelming. The back patio is a great area for families with kids, and the front patio offers the best of both worlds.

[Veggie Sandwich]

Upscale Comfort Food – With a Twist

Executive Chef Shelly Velez is the woman behind the menu at Nautilus Tavern in La Jolla. Having known the owners since they opened up Pillbox Tavern in Solana Beach, she has expertly curated both restaurants’ menus and added her own flair to each – and that flair comes in the form of all things flavorful. From Southern-inspired comfort food to spicy, smoky maple-infused barbecue, Shelly has been crafting her art and love of cuisine for nearly 20 years.

Shelly was born in Panama, where she cultivated a deep love for flavorful, traditional dishes; she learned to cook gravy from scratch and developed a passion for making sauces. Today, she has her own line of barbecue sauces that you can purchase by the bottle at Pillbox Tavern: California Style, Habañero BBQ, and Maple Bourbon Bacon, a local favorite that can be spotted on the menu at Nautilus Tavern in the form of Maple Bacon Bourbon Wings.

Shelly makes all of the dressings and other sauces from scratch each day; oftentimes, she’ll team up with the head Mixologist, who makes his own syrups to add to the cocktails. Once, she turned a berry syrup that he didn’t use as a dressing for the Power Spinach Salad – a pretty excellent way to collaborate, we must say!

[Cubano Sandwich]

Shelly crafted the Tavern’s menu to combine traditional comfort food with a bit of a Southern twist; hints of her Panamanian heritage are sprinkled throughout the menu, as well, from the Grilled Mexican Caesar Salad to the side of Sweet Plantains.

Handcrafted Cocktails

No good restaurant is complete without a cocktail and beer menu! The Tavern’s hand-picked collection of cocktails emphasize fresh ingredients and house-made syrups. From the “It’s Noon Somewhere” (which is a combo of vodka, ruby red grapefruit juice, lime juice, and elderflower liqueur infused with house-made habañero syrup and a touch of rhubarb bitters vodka) to their take on a classic Margarita (casa noble reposado tequila, Cointreau, fresh lime juice, and tepa agave), you can’t go wrong with any of their selections. The Tavern has 30 beers on tap at any given time, and the selection includes several local breweries sprinkled with a few more exotic options (Boochcraft, anyone?).

[Mexican Caesar Salad]

House-Made Appetizers & Shareables

The Tavern offers up a wide range of dishes, from shareable appetizers to large plates and several options for hot wings; there’s even a “Grown-up Grilled Cheese” in the mix!

Our favorite appetizers included a well-rounded Hummus Plate that boasts three different flavors of hummus and a generous assortment of pita bread; and spicy chicken lettuce cups, which are just spicy enough to bring out all of the flavors in the meat and poke sauce.

Next up was the Grilled Mexican Caesar Salad, which is seriously not your typical Caesar salad: it packs a one-two punch with grilled-to-perfection Romaine wedges and a light, slightly spicy Avocado Caesar dressing (made from scratch in-house, of course). The wedges are topped with a generous portion of pepitas, shaved parmesan, diced tomatoes, blackened chicken breast, and fried shallots to create a yummy Ceasar with a Mexican twist.

[Hot Wings]

Traditional Plates Packed with Flavor

The hot wings were some of our favorite items on the menu. Bursting with flavor, there are seven different types and styles of wings you can choose from. We sampled the Maple Bacon Bourbon, smothered in that delicious Shelly-style BBQ sauce; the Marea Ancho Chile, which are rubbed with a dry ancho Chile powder infused with local coffee (not overly spicy); and the more traditional Buffalo Wings, which are packed with a punch of spice and flavored with the famous Frank’s Hot Sauce.

If you’re into grilled cheese, you’ll definitely want to sample the Grown Up Grilled Cheese. Serrano cream cheese, Gouda, Havarti, cheddar, swiss, sliced bacon, and tomato are packed between two thick slices of Parmesan-crusted Amish bread for a serious (and epic) twist on the good ol’ classic. If you want a little something extra, Shelly recommends adding chicken to round it out. The Muenster Veggie sandwich was a close runner-up (the black bean veggie patty was to die for), complete with a big portobello mushroom and basil hummus spread to finish it off. 

[Nautilus Plate]

For a more traditional dinner, go with the Nautilus Plate. Chunks of house-smoked Kahlua pork are served with sweet plantains, macaroni salad, and coco (coconut) rice. The pork is the sweet, flavorful, melt-in-your-mouth kind of good – after being marinated in sea salt for a full day, the pork gets slow-roasted for a solid four hours before it served to guests.

A New Spot for the Locals

What we liked most about the Tavern is its homey, neighborhood feel; the kind of place you can meet up with friends or family after work for a happy hour or watch the game, have a pint and dig into a no-frills comfort food that’s cooked exactly the way it should be.

Nautilus Tavern La Jolla is located at 6830 La Jolla Blvd. in La Jolla. They’re open for brunch, lunch, and dinner; Monday-Friday from 11am-12am, and Saturday/Sunday from 10am-12am.

Why Snooze La Jolla Is Your New Favorite Boozy Brunch Spot

An alcoholic Orange Julius (complete with vodka-infused whipped cream). Pineapple Upside Down Pancakes. If your mouth is already watering, just wait until you see the rest of the menu at Snooze La Jolla.

Tucked away in the Shops at La Jolla Village Center on Villa La Jolla Dr., Snooze, An A.M. Eatery is a casual, funky breakfast and brunch restaurant. While it is a chain (other locations in San Diego include Del Mar and Hillcrest) it’s absolutely not your local Denny’s or IHOP.

Snooze usually gets attention for its imaginative and indulgent food, but what makes a visit really worth your time is the seemingly endless list of craft breakfast cocktails. If you want a new kind of happy hour in La Jolla, look no further – here’s why you should enjoy your next brunch with booze at Snooze!

snooze la jolla

The fun, young atmosphere

Brunch is a full-on outing; you want an environment that gives you a great experience in addition to great food. A modern update on the 1950s-style diner, the atmosphere at Snooze La Jolla is both friendly and laid back. Every Snooze is required to have a full bar, so there’s no judgement for enjoying some good old-fashioned day drinking – that’s what a lot of people are there for!

With its proximity to UCSD and reasonably priced high-quality food, Snooze is perfect for students and young professionals; most other brunch spots require a trek to Downtown La Jolla or UTC Mall.

The cocktails

At Snooze, you can forget about basic. While you can still get your favorite traditional drink, the menu is full of innovative libations, from savory to sweet. Besides the year-round menu, they also have a rotating list of new concoctions for every season.

Here are a few that we love:

The Palomimosa. Feeling classy? This drink combines the sweet sparkle of a mimosa with the tangy goodness of a grapefruit Paloma. It’s refreshing, light, and perfect for sipping on during a Sunday with pals.

The Bangkok Bloody Mary. Attention, fans of the savory. It’s difficult to pick only one out of the 5 knockout bloody recipes on Snooze’s menu, but this is consistently the most popular. The fish sauce, sriracha, and basil give this drink an Asian-fusion flavor and will satisfy your salt craving. If you’re looking for something with more kick, you’ll want to go with the Spicy Bloody Mary.

The Orange Snoozius. An adult version of the infamous DQ classic, the Orange Snoozius will take you back a few years. With vodka-infused whipped cream to top off its sweet and citrus-y blend, this is for the big kid in you. It’s even topped with a giant maraschino cherry.

The Dirty Drunken Chai. Hey, we get it, mornings are for coffee! But that doesn’t mean you can’t shake things up. The Dirty Drunken Chai is a spiced blend of everything delicious, with an added shot of espresso and some rum for a little something extra.

The epic shareable plates

Even if you’re only coming for the drinks, every brunch cocktail needs some quality munchies. There’s no need to drink on an empty stomach when you can enjoy the huge variety of breakfast, brunch, and lunch options on Snooze’s menu!

If you’re looking at the menu and already getting FOMO about all the dishes you won’t get to try because you have to pick just one, don’t fret. Snooze lets you combine some of their most popular choices as half orders. So if you’re having a difficult time giving up your traditional Eggs Benedict for the chili verde style, you don’t have to.

Can’t decide which of the nine different types of pancakes and french toast you want? Go for the “pancake flight” that lets you try three different styles. We recommend the Nana’s Hot Cocoa or Pineapple Upside Down Pancakes.

This family-style approach to the menu also makes it ideal for groups. Everyone can try several dishes and there’ll still be plenty of food to go around.

A Few Tips for When You Go

  • While the other locations in San Diego are packed from the moment they open, it’s much easier at this Snooze eatery to grab a table. We were seated as soon as we walked in on a Thursday, and within minutes on a Saturday.
  • Take advantage of the patio outside if it’s sunny. There are heaters to keep you warm while you soak in the homey outdoor vibe.
  • Waiting on the rest of your group? Challenge your friends to a round of giant Jenga or corn hole to pass the time.
  • Fun fact: if you’re really set on having a certain dish, but are dying to try one of the pancakes, you can sub in one of them instead of having toast or hash browns as a side.

Snooze La Jolla is located at 8861 Villa La Jolla Dr #509, La Jolla 92037, and is open from 6:30am-2:30pm daily.

San Diego Restaurant Week: La Jolla Edition

San Diego Restaurant Week happens twice a year (January and then again in September or October) and is one of the most exciting culinary events of the season. Participating San Diego County and La Jolla restaurants offer designated fixed-cost menus throughout the week, each being two or three courses – an appetizer (sometimes two), a main dish, and a dessert. Most restaurants participate in either lunch or dinner, though some are doing both this year, and some choose to do a prix-fixe menu instead. Here are some of our picks for San Diego Restaurant Week in La Jolla!

For Lunch

Puesto

Where: 1026 Wall Street, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $15 per person
Cuisine/What to Get: Mexican, seafood. Puesto is a chic, casual spot that’s known for their epic tacos and incredible margaritas! Taco options include Chicken al pastor, zucchini and cactus, Maine lobster, and plenty more. There is a great selection of shared plates, bowls, and appetizers, as well as a few traditional Mexican desserts.

Spice & Rice Thai Kitchen

Where: 7734 Girard Ave #C, La Jolla 92037.
Cost: $10 per person for two courses
Cuisine/What to Get: Thai, Asian, fusion. From traditional noodle dishes like Pad Thai to main courses like yellow curry, cashew nut chicken, and Thai stir fry, there is plenty to choose from on this extensive menu! As one of the only Thai restaurants in La Jolla, this is a great spot to grab a casual lunch during the week – and it won’t break the bank.

Brockton Villa

Where: 1235 Coast Blvd, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $15 per person for two courses; two courses with wine pairing $20
Cuisine/What to Get: American, California, contemporary. Housed in a beautiful historic cottage right on the coast (with great ocean views), Brockton Villa is a great place for a more casual lunch. Main dishes include Beer Braised Corned Beef Sandwich, a Grilled Atlantic Salmon BLT, and a Cove Club. For dessert, we suggest their ‘world famous’ Coast Toast, which is a rich French Toast topped with vanilla ice cream.

Olive and Basil

Where: 8008 Girard Ave No 220, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $15 per person for two courses
Cuisine/What to Get: Greek, Mediterranean, Persian, seafood. Enjoy incredible Mediterranean food just steps away from La Jolla Cove! Olive and Basil is a great lunch deal for SDRW. The Hummus Platter is the way to go for the appetizer; main dishes include items like a chicken skewer plate, Gyro plate, and their signature Olive and Basil Pasta. You can add baklava or Persian ice cream to your meal for an extra $6.

Galaxy Taco

Where: 2259 Avenida De La Playa, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $20 for two courses
Cuisine/What to Get: Galaxy Taco is a chic casual spot for tacos down at La Jolla Shores, and a great lunch spot for during the week. Shareable appetizers include made-to-order guacamole, Mexican chicken and rice soup, and a Mexican Caesar Salad. For the main dish, diners can choose any two tacos from their selection of nine – including Baja fried fish, Barbacoa short rib, Quesa Carnitas, and grilled avocado; to name a few! It’s a kid-friendly spot (complete with a kids menu), so this is a great place for families.

For Dinner

Catania

Where: 7863 Girard Avenue #301, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $50 per person for three courses; entire menu is available
Cuisine/What to Get: Italian, contemporary. Catania is known for its authentic, handcrafted Italian dishes. We recommend starting with the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio or the Braised Beef Meatballs, both of which are hit appetizers. Main entrées on the Restaurant Week Menu include a variety of pizzas, pastas, and a few select fish (including Whole Branzino and Grilled Swordfish) and chicken dishes.

Mustangs & Burros

Where: 9700 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla 92037 (at Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa)
Cost: $30 per person for three courses
Cuisine/What to Get: Delight in a delicious three-course dinner on Mustangs & Burros’ hacienda patio this SDRW. This casual La Jolla restaurant serves up Baja-inspired cuisine for lunch and dinner; creative dishes are both locally inspired and locally sourced by the in-house culinary team, who also take a personalized approach to an innovative spirits program. Special new Baja-inspired entrée options for Restaurant Week include grilled Mahi Mahi, Bavette steak with lobster-corn risotto, and pan-seared duck with cherry balsamic.

The Grill at Torrey Pines

Where: 11480 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $40 per person for three courses
Cuisine: American, California contemporary. Complete with a beautiful backdrop, the Grill at Torrey Pines sits atop the cliffs next to Torrey Pines State Reserve and the golf course, inside the Lodge at Torrey Pines. The spot is known for its fresh take on California cuisine and dedication to farm-to-table fare. For appetizers, we recommend the Ahi Tuna Carpaccio or the Green Goddess Salad. Entrée items include Wood-grilled Tri-Tip and a yummy Hot Smoked Salmon.

NINE-TEN Restaurant

Where: 910 Prospect Street, La Jolla (inside the Grande Colonial Hotel)
Cost: $50 per person for three courses; $75 per person with wine pairings
Cuisine/What to Get: American, California. NINE-TEN is an award-winning restaurant in the heart of the Village, known for its fresh, farm-to-table California contemporary cuisine. Appetizers include items like Short Rib Ravioli and Grilled Octopus, entrée dishes include Prime Beef Short Rib, Steelhead Salmon, and Anson Mills Far Verde + Roasted Vegetables.

Duke’s La Jolla

Where: 1216 Prospect Street, La Jolla 92037
Cost: $40 per person for three courses, your choice of entrée from a prix-fixe menu
Cuisine/What to Get: Hawaiian, Seafood, Contemporary. Duke’s has a wide ranging menu with plenty of options, including seafood, steaks, and more. We suggest starting with the classic Maui Onion Soup, followed by either the BBQ Baby Back Ribs or the Sautéed Macnut & Herb Crusted, which is a parmesan and panko-dusted fresh fish topped with tomato lemon caper butter, jasmine rice, and bok choy macadamia nut slaw.

The Marine Room

Where: 2000 Spindrift Dr., La Jolla 92037
Cost: $50 per person for three courses
Cuisine/What to Get: French, Seafood. The Marine Room is a world-class restaurant that sits right on the water and treats diners to incredible views of the crashing waves as they eat. You can’t go wrong with any dish on the menu here! Our favorite appetizer is the Lobster Bisque, while some of the delicious dinner menu available specially for Restaurant Week include Red Walnut Zaatar Coated Maine Diver Scallops and Sea Salt Crispy Skin Branzino. Signature entrées (regular menu items) are available for $15 more per person.

George’s at the Cove: Ocean Terrace

Where: 1250 Prospect St., La Jolla 92037
Cost: $30 per person for three courses
Cuisine/What to Get:American, contemporary, California. George’s at the Cove is famous for its sweeping ocean views and incredible patio dining. You just can’t beat the atmosphere for a night out with great food! Appetizer menu items for Restaurant Week include an assortment of small seafood plates (grilled octopus, fresh fish tacos, and Ahi tostadas), and this year’s dinner options on the Restaurant Week menu include Spaghetti with Clams, Sesame Crusted Tombo, Grilled Faroe Island Salmon, and Pork Tacos; to name a few!

For more information on all of the La Jolla restaurants participating in SDRW, including those in downtown San Diego and the rest of San Diego county, visit sandiegorestaurantweek.com!