Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Waterfront Bar and Grill

Drink up these fun facts about Little Italy's historic watering hole.


Published:

The Waterfront Bar & GrillThe Waterfront Bar & Grill | photo by Paul Body

Turning 80
Opened by Chaffee Grant and Clair Blakley shortly after the repeal of Prohibition, the bar changed ownership several times over the past 80 years, until Nancy Nichols became the sole owner in the 1980s. Nichols still co-owns the bar with grandsons Chad Cline and
Jason Nichols

Beer and More Beer
Customers drive the Waterfront’s beer selection—to the tune of roughly 4,000 pints served per week.

One for the Books
Established on December 5, 1933, “San Diego’s Oldest Tavern” holds the oldest full liquor license in the city.

Menu Favorites
The Waterfront is famous for its juicy burgers, but the popcorn is also a hit, with about a case a day popped.

Naming the Bar
The establishment got its name because at the time it was the closest bar/restaurant to the water.

Wall of photosWall of photos at the Waterfront | photo by Paul Body

Design by Customer
When Nichols took over the bar, the walls were bare. One fisherman friend brought his photo in and asked her to hang it—then another, and another. And so the collection started. There’s also a photo of Nichols and her parents sipping a drink from back in the day: Scotch and milk

Got Ghosts?
There may be a few, at least according to the bar’s night cleaning crew.

Breakfast and a Beer
Night owls and early birds alike can get their fill of both food and drink, thanks to opening hours from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Howard Bass's ashesHoward Bass Memoriam | photo by Paul Body

In Memoriam
Regular customer Howard Bass so revered the bar where he drank his daily Merlot that he asked to have his ashes placed there when he died. His wish was granted: Look on the north side wall, behind the bar, next to a bottle of wine.

Who's Who
From judges and lawyers to fishermen and oil workers, an eclectic crowd has always frequented the Waterfront. Few fights occur today, but back in the ’40s, one Navy sailor lost his—ahem— family jewels in a fight over a fisherman’s wife.

Famous Faces
Among the celebrity clients that have bellied up to the bar is actor Bill Murray

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Happy Half Hour Podcast: Episode 4

A downtown bakery serves beer and donuts, Chef Tim Kolanko talks Liberty Public Market, The Best Thing I Ate This Week, and more

Meet the Bartender: Meghan Balser

You can find her at Seven Grand, Trust, and the upcoming Craft at the Cove. Just don’t order a Long Island Iced Tea

Crowning San Diego’s Best Tiki Cocktails

The Tiki Oasis cocktail challenge asks bartenders to honor the genre, but also get creative
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. San Diego's Best Restaurants 2016
    From barbecue to vegan options, there’s a bit of manna for everyone in this year’s list of the city’s best
  2. What's It Like to Be the CEO of the Smartest Company in the World?
    We went to Illumina’s headquarters to find out
  3. The 12 Most Important People in Design Right Now
    See what they’re up to and working on in San Diego
  4. 54 Summer Travel Ideas
    Get out of town!
  5. Making a MasterChef
    MasterChef winner Claudia Sandoval on the life-changing ups and downs
  6. FIRST LOOK: Carnitas' Snack Shack
    San Diego's kings of pork, Carnitas Snack Shack, crack open their third location at Embarcadero Marina
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.

More Than 1,300 Prizes are Ready to be Given Away

What are you waiting for? Buy your raffle ticket now

Not Your Grandma's Orthotics

New year, new – shoe? Staying on your feet for long hours at a time just got a whole lot more comfortable with Wiivv’s BASE custom insoles
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sponsored

Win 1,000 Cash Back on Your Solar Install and 500 Cash

Brought to you by Sullivan Solar Power

Win 2 tickets to Kenny Chesney at Sleep Train Ampitheatre!

Brought to you by Corona Light and Kenny Chesney

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags