San Diego

Weekend roundup

April 8-11


San Diego Restaurant Week

April 11-18. Celebrating springtime and the return of onsite dining, the California Restaurant Association presents its first-ever April installment of San Diego Restaurant Week. More than 100 restaurants are offering affordable meals across an eight-day extravaganza. Choose from three-course, prix-fixe dinner menus for $20 to $60 per person; and two-course, prix-fixe lunch menus for $10 to $25 per person. And choose your comfort level—from indoor dining to expanded outdoor space to takeout and delivery options. (Pictured: the patio at Giardino). See website for all restaurants and reservations.

Carlsbad Strawberry Company Adventures

Ongoing. The berries are ripe for the picking at this popular family-owned farm—home to 25 acres of “U-pick” strawberry fields. (Fun fact: Each acre produces an average of 21 tons of strawberries per year!) Visitors can also test out the “apple cannons,” aka air compressors that hurl apples up to 100 miles per hour; play at the property’s Bounceland (limited to kids ages 14 and under); and wander through the sunflower maze. Open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m. $5 admission per person; $10 per single U-pick strawberry bucket. 1050 Cannon Road, Carlsbad, 760.603.9608.

Food + Drink

National Grilled Cheese Month Festivities at Grater Grilled Cheese

April 9-12. Did you know that April is National Grilled Cheese Month, highlighted by National Grilled Cheese Day on April 12? Grater Grilled Cheese is taking this very seriously, offering fun deals and prizes. Our pick: the Cheese Wheel of Fortune, which will be set up at the eatery April 9-11 for guests to spin. Or stop by on Monday—when the first 50 customers will receive a “grate” coupon, and one lucky winner will score one free grilled cheese per month for a year. Open daily 8 a.m.-8 p.m. 5618 Mission Center Road, Mission Valley, 619.458.9611.

Spring Tea at Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa

April 11. Dress up in your high-tea finest and be transported to a whimsical wonderland—where you’ll enjoy gourmet tea, libations, savory bites and sweet treats. Estancia welcomes you to its lush secret garden for “Boozy Garden Tea Time.” Indulge in specialty cocktails, such as the Y&Y Gin & Tonic, Aviation, French 75 and Etoile; petite pastries and finger sandwiches; and gourmet Smith Tea selections. (Additional tea parties are scheduled for April 18 and 25, and May 2 and 23.) Reservations required. Noon-3 p.m. $60 per person. 9700 N. Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, 855.430.7503. Reservations

Eggies North Park

Now Open. We’re pretty sure the egg came before the chicken at Rise & Shine Hospitality Group’s fourth egg-centric outpost, located adjacent to Breakfast Republic. Order sandwiches with a twist from the walkup window—such as the Eggies Classic with maple-sage sausage, applewood-smoked bacon and sharp cheddar on a brioche bun; with a side of hash browns. Or satisfy your morning sweet tooth with the French toast jar—brioche, strawberries, mascarpone and brown-sugar crumble—and wash it down with a nitro cold brew. Open daily 7 a.m.-3 p.m. 2726 University Ave., North Park, 619.270.2299.

HottMess Woodfired Pizza

Now Open. The latest addition to Barrio Logan’s 40,000-square-foot “Acre of Awesome” joins its outdoor counterpart Sideyard BBQ and neighbor Thorn Brewing Co. Featuring recycled furnishings and an airy, woodsy-urban vibe, the eatery serves creative pizzas (with the crust made from Thorn’s spent grain) dreamt up by executive chef Kenzo Inai. We suggest the smoked brisket pizza with mozzarella, cotija cheese, red and green onions, serrano chiles and a chipotle lacquer; and the vegetarian-pesto pizza with toppings that change weekly. Th-Su noon-10 p.m. 1735 National Ave., Barrio Logan, 619.650.2251.

Indoor Dining at ARLO

Reopened. Feast on coastal Baja cuisine inside a mid-century-modern dining room; or on the expansive patio beneath towering palms. Chef Josh Mouzakes focuses on regional flavors with a menu of grilled and smoked proteins, locally sourced seafood, and vegetarian and vegan dishes. Choose from savory starters such as lamb meatballs and baked Boursin ravioli; plus salads, woodfired flatbreads, and entrees such as Pacific striped bass and Berkshire pork chops. To drink: craft cocktails and Baja wines. W-Sa 5-10 p.m. 500 Hotel Circle North, Mission Valley, 619.908.5058.

New Cocktail Menu at The Smoking Gun

Now Available. The signature concoction is the star of the new menu: The Smoking Gun—made with Suntory Toki Japanese whisky, Laphroaig Select single-malt scotch, Amaro Averna liqueur, lemon and mint. Other new cocktails include the Revolver, Smith and Wesson, and A Salt with a Deadly Weapon. (Sensing a theme here?) Soak it all up with comfort fare such as the Smoking Dipper sandwich with shaved sirloin, caramelized onions and pepper jack cheese on a house-made bagel hoagie. M-F 3-10 p.m.; Sa-Su noon-10 p.m. 555 Market St., Gaslamp Quarter, 619.233.3836.

Arts + Culture

Dixie’s Happy Hour

Through April 18. It starts with “Sit down, lemme tell you a story …” The creators of the off-Broadway smash Dixie’s Tupperware Party—writer Kris Andersson and director Patrick Richwood—have created a brand-new streaming play: Dixie’s Happy Hour. Presented by Cygnet Theatre, the show centers on Alabama bar hopper Dixie Longate—who shares inspiring stories about life and current unpredictable times as she mixes up cocktails comprised of her four favorite food groups: vodka, gin, tequila and rum. Be ready to laugh and cry. (Mature content; recommended for adults.) $35 per household.

Design Zone at Fleet Science Center

Now Open. The Fleet’s new interactive exhibition uncovers the secrets of creative professionals—from video game developers to roller coaster designers to music producers—and the math, science, architecture and ingenuity they use to design. The exhibit is divided into three themed areas: Art: See It, where you can learn about the relationship between weight and distance; Music: Hear It, which spotlights visual representations of sound; and Engineering: Build It, centered on the math and physics behind roller coasters and skate parks. F-M 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Museum admission: $19-22. 1875 El Prado, Balboa Park, 619.238.1233.

Photo credits: All images are courtesy of the businesses and venues featured.

Let's Stay In Touch

with weekly roundups

Sign up for FREE to receive our exclusive Weekend Roundup!

Get the best things to do in our favorite SoCal spots delivered to your inbox every week

Los Angeles

Orange County

San Diego