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10 Hot Plates: San Diego's Top Food News in May

Restaurant rumors, openings, and coming-soons



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Queenstown Bistro | Photo: Paul Body

1

North County pro athletes—from surfer Rob Machado and snowboarder Kimmy Fasani to skateboarder Alphonzo Rawls—have joined forces to launch Marea Coffee, a fair-trade, small-batch bean brand based in Vista.

 

2

Twin Oaks Valley Winery has opened a tasting room adjacent to their San Marcos vineyard.

 

3

Brian Malarkey has stepped down from his role with Herringbone and Searsucker to focus on his Puffer Malarkey Restaurants, including Herb & Wood and Farmer & the Seahorse.

 

4

With Executive Chef David Warner (Bottega Americano) back to lead the kitchen, JRDN at Pacific Beach’s Tower23 Hotel has debuted new decor and a menu revamp with poke bowls, sushi rolls, and more.

 

5

Lionfish restaurant at downtown’s Pendry hotel now hosts rooftop dinners Monday through Saturday, with a weeknight happy hour option that includes $1 oysters and $7 wines.

 

6

Little Italy’s New Zealand–influenced Queenstown Public House has debuted a second location. The Westfield UTC outpost, Queenstown Bistro, focuses on small plates, salads, and burgers, including their cult favorite lamb burger.

 

7

Crème & Sugar, the popular Anaheim dessert shop, is now serving rainbow-colored cakes, cookie crumble milkshakes, and sprinkle-topped pink lattes in Del Mar Heights.

 

8

PrepKitchen, which recently hired chef Joseph Elevado (Wynn and Nobu in Las Vegas) to its corporate culinary staff, has opened a San Marcos location in the Block C mixed-use development.

 

9

Formerly a farmers’ market vendor, Empanada Kitchen is turning out the traditional Argentine snack in meat, vegetarian, and dessert varieties downtown.

 

10

Formed by veterans of True Food Kitchen, Half Door Brewing, and Tecture (the design firm behind Kettner Exchange), Nolita Hall is open in Little Italy, serving wood-fired pizza, craft beer, and cocktails.

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