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Crack Shack Opening in Pacific Beach

The popular fried chicken spot will be located on Mission Blvd. and will feature a bocce ball area, picnic tables, and a large video wall
Crack Shack

If you were to ask me, a married person, where to take a first date, the Crack Shack would be at the top of my list. Don’t waste your time pretending to take dainty sips of a photo-worthy cocktail and adorable little nibbles of shareable plates. I want to see how fast you take down a Double Clucker with fries and hold the napkins for the end. (This is what 13 years of marriage does to you.)

Come late summer, aspiring romantics with gluttony on the mind can get their fix at the Crack Shack’s fifth location coming to Mission Boulevard, the former home of Ramiro’s Mexican Food and Surfside Sushi. 

“Being that close to the beach, being outside, having bocce, and having everything else there, I think it’s a perfect fit,” says Dan Pena, Crack Shack’s director of operations. Having a parking lot in such a saturated stretch is key for the popular chain. Being able to take over two different buildings and build the signature outdoor-centric dining area made it a no-brainer as well when looking for their next spot. 

The Pacific Beach location will share the same aesthetic design as the other locations, including a large-format video wall, communal bocce, a turf area for families, plenty of picnic tables, and a dedicated pick up area for to-go orders. Pena says the menu will also feature culinary director Jon Sloan’s signature favorites like the spicy Firebird sandwich, half and whole bird fried chicken, bowls, fries, and seasonal shakes. Plus, he says each location always has a special dish created specifically for each individual location for opening. 

Pena says they plan to continue expansion plans across Southern California, but strategically. “Our brand isn’t like a Starbucks. You can’t just put it on each corner and it’s going to do well,” he explains. “We just have to make sure that we have the right fit in order for us to be successful.” 

San Diego Restaurant News & Food Events

Oddish Wine at The Gärten Turns One 

It’s a weird wine party! The best kind of party, if you ask me. On Saturday, May 11, celebrate the wacky, esoteric, is-this-really-wine quirkiness at Oddish Wine to mark one year in the outdoor haven shared with Deft Brewing, Pizza Cassette, and Lost Cause Meadery. They’ll be debuting new wines, cocktails, and two new ciders made with local apples and native yeast. Expect a whole bunch of other strange and salivatory surprises and tunes provided by Winyl Club. No tickets or RSVPs necessary, and well-behaved dogs children are welcome in the outside space.  

Beer and Wine Meet For Dinner

On Wednesday, May 15 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., wine will invade a temple of beer for one-night only. Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens in Escondido is hosting Mia Marie Vineyards for a four-course wine pairing dinner in honor of Wine Week. Tickets to the 21+ event are $125, but if you can’t make it to the dinner, Stone will have Mia Marie wines available all week (from Monday, May 13 through Sunday, May 19).

Beth’s Bites

  • I don’t know why Sky Deck at Del Mar Highlands Town Center declared May to be Space Odyssey month, but I’m here for all astronomy-centric experiences (especially ones with food). From May 1 through May 31, all 11 of the Sky Deck businesses will offer space-themed food and drink specials, like Glass Box’s Milky Way Martini, Boochcraft’s Galactic Flight, and Urbana’s Martian Margarita.
  • Looks like a new Korean fried chicken spot called Season Ave is coming to Clairemont Mesa. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again—there’s no such thing as too much Korean fried chicken.
  • More Peruvian food is coming to San Diego! Pepino by chef Sebastian Becerra (Eleven Madison Park, Herb & Wood) will start hosting pop-ups later this summer to tease his forthcoming brick & mortar coming to 7556 Fay Avenue in La Jolla next year.

By Beth Demmon

Beth Demmon is an award-winning writer and podcaster whose work regularly appears in national outlets and San Diego Magazine. Her first book, The Beer Lover's Guide to Cider, is now available. Find out more on

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