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Open Now: Birdseye at The Cormorant

The rooftop at La Jolla’s new boutique hotel opens today with craft cocktails and bites

By Madeline Yang | Photos by Kimberly Motos

First Look - Birdseye - main

First Look – Birdseye – main

The newest roof with a view of the “big wet” has arrived. Accessed through a secret alleyway and arriving at a panoramic view of La Jolla Cove and Shores is Birdseye—a combo bar, restaurant, and lounge atop the newly remodeled, 26-room boutique hotel, The Cormorant. Named after the striking black seabirds that were among the earliest species in the area, it’s a project from San Diego-based Oceanic Enterprises, which operates a few other local spots (1906 Lodge in Coronado, Mikami Rotating Sushi Lounge, legendary dive Star Bar, etc.) 

Cormorant and Birdseye are perched on the downsloping corner spot where Prospect Street spills into the park above the cove (next to La Valencia), it was home to the La Jolla Inn since the 1940s. On the ground floor is still Prospect Market, which was the only market in the village in the 40s and is now the spot to get wine, gourmet to-go, quality picnic needs. The $3 million renovation of the entire property took three years to complete. 

“We initially hadn’t planned an extensive renovation,” says owner-developer Manoj Chawla. “We changed the plan once we started construction and knew this was our only opportunity to do it the right way.” The goal was to keep the nostalgia of the space that had been there for the last 80 years but modernize the design elements with art deco, bold lighting fixtures, geometric wall art and wallpaper, and a couple pop-art murals from local artist, Vango. 

Birdseye seats up to 50 people for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Chef Luciano Scagliarini was most recently the executive chef at Edgewater in Seaport Village. “The dishes are inspired by my mother, who was a chef in Argentina,” Scagliarini explains. “Plus, everywhere I’ve traveled and worked throughout my life, including Baja.” A few standouts he points to are the shrimp fra diavolo with garlic, red chile and white wine sauce, and a Milanesa sandwich with breaded chicken breast, provolone, aioli, and chimichurri. 

Classic cocktails at the bar will get a twist, like the “Spa Day” (mint-cucumber vodka, lime juice, cucumber, and mint) and the “Diving Bird” (coconut cream, pandam, rum, and tropical juices.

1110 Prospect St., La Jolla 

First Look - Birdseye - bar angle

First Look – Birdseye – bar angle

First Look - Birdseye - bar angle 2

First Look – Birdseye – bar angle 2

First Look - Birdseye - tall

First Look – Birdseye – tall

First Look - Birdseye - bar front

First Look – Birdseye – bar front


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