Japanese Omakase-Style Restaurant Opens Next Week in Bankers Hill
Azuki Sushi in Bankers Hill has become one of the top go-tos in the city for sushi, largely thanks to the good-food ethos of owner Shihomi Borillo and chef Nao Ichimura. Now they’re doubling down a few hundred feet with an omakase-only concept called Kinme. With an official open date of March 15 (friends and family test-runs started last week), Kinme offers 10 seasonal, chef-selected courses of Kaiseki- and Edomae-style cuisine to 10 diners at a time.
Borillo and Ichimura source their seafood from the famous Toyosu Fish Market in Tokyo and local fish shops no more than 90 miles from SD, and you can watch that ultra-fresh catch get sliced, sauced, and rolled a scant few feet from your chair. Expect sushi and sashimi, naturally, but their inaugural spring menu also incorporates traditional cooking techniques and hot dishes, like simmered and grilled bites and soup, and closes with dessert and matcha. Sally Albright would hate it (no modifications allowed); adventurous seafood lovers will be obsessed.
Hommage Bakehouse Expands to Sorrento Valley and, Soon, to Mission Valley
The persistence of pandemic-born local businesses in the face of frightening odds proves the power of many things: community, human spirit, and, in the case of Justin Gaspar’s Hommage Bakehouse, San Diego’s hunger for great croissants. Founded in 2020, the pastry-and-bread business has outgrown its nearly 600-square-foot kitchen in Pacific Beach at La Clochette Du Coin thanks to its dedicated, kouign-amann-loving following (Gaspar even won the Hulu baking competition show, Baker’s Dozen, in 2021).
Now Hommage is moving into a 2,000-square-foot space in Sorrento Valley, shared with farm-forward restaurant Lucky Bolt. Grab a baguette at the new spot or try a scone at one of their partners’ spaces (MRKT in La Jolla and Encinitas, or Barefoot Coffee in Solana Beach, to name a few). The team will also open a new flagship store in the Civita development in Mission Valley this August.
Classic Santa Barbara Ice Cream Shop Coming to Carlsbad
Ice cream invented by a health food store owner may conjure up visions of liquified bananas and stevia-sweetened scoops. But for a Santa Barbara couple witnessing America’s Jell-O salad craze in the late 1940s, making ice cream worthy of their wellness-conscious values meant keeping it real—milk from local grass-fed cows, seasonal fruit, no fillers in sight. Central coasters went crazy for their vanilla bean flavor, kicking off McConnell’s 70-year frozen treat dynasty.
San Diegans have long been able to pick up pints of Eureka Lemon and Marionberries at their nearest Albertsons, but fresh scoops have remained exclusive to our neighbors to the north (the brand runs shops in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and San Luis Obispo)—until now. McConnell’s arrives at Carlsbad’s Forum this summer. They plan to open ahead of National Ice Cream Month in July with a selection of sunny seasonal flavors.
Chef JoJo Ruiz of the Hotel del Coronado’s Serēa is bringing back seaside brunch on Saturday, March 25. The crowd-favorite cinnamon and sugar cruffin retains its place on the menu alongside a crab-cake-and-caviar benedict and shrimp with smoked polenta.
Omni La Costa Resort & Spa’s Vue restaurant welcomed their new executive chef John Beriker. Formerly in charge of the kitchen at The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, Beriker counts Wolfgang Puck among his culinary mentors.
In honor of women’s history month, Second Chance Beer Company collaborated with Pink Boots Society to brew a huckleberry-flavored take on Second Chance’s popular fruited sour. Fistful of Gummies Berry Edition (which also carries hints of blackberry and acai) is available on draft at the brewery or to-go in cans. A portion of sales will go to Pinks Boots Society, an organization dedicated to uplifting and educating women and non-binary folks in brewing.
Under new ownership (the same folks who run North Park’s Seven Grand and Bar Three Piece), El Dorado Cocktail Lounge in the East Village reopened on March 2 after an interior refresh.
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