San Diego

Weekend roundup

June 29-July 2


San Diego International Beer Festival

July 1. Rarely does a summer weekend in San Diego go by without a beer festival! The San Diego International Beer Festival is a favorite, showcasing 1,064 beers from breweries across the globe—from local craft brewers to hard-to-find international labels. 1-4 p.m. $70 general admission; $135 VIP experience (includes early admission at noon, unlimited beer samplings, food pairings, access to a VIP lounge with small plate tastings, and a souvenir glass); $70 designated drivers (includes VIP experience sans souvenir glass and tastings). Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar, 858.755.1161.

“Summer Spectacular” at SeaWorld

Through Aug. 20. SeaWorld San Diego’s themed family-friendly experience makes summertime visits here extra magical. The park comes alive with special shows, concerts by national headliners, the FantaSEA of Dreams fireworks spectacular and more. Entertainment includes the Summer Splashtacular Parade, The Battle for Mermaid Cove water-stunt show, and a summer-themed foodie fest. And check out the park’s newest ride: Arctic Rescue, a thrilling straddle coaster that reaches speeds of up to 40 mph. See website for hours and admission info. 500 Sea World Drive, Mission Bay, 619.222.4732.

Food + Drink

La Pastaia

Now Open. Translating to “The Pasta Lady,” La Pastaia—owned/operated by Sicilian natives Priscilla Scardina and Maria Lo Cascio—is now open in Bay Park. The Venetian-style trattoria offers a menu centered on house-made pastas. Think: spinach pappardelle with short-rib ragu; gnocchi ripieni with asiago cheese and walnuts; spaghetti with manila clams; and spinach ravioli with artichoke hearts, mascarpone and Parmesan sauce; plus entrees, pizzas, salads, antipasti, Italian cocktails, wine, desserts and a full brunch menu. See website for hours. 3055 Clairemont Drive, Bay Park, 619.272.0157.

The Trap Shack

Now Open. Calling all lobster lovers! Acclaimed chef Quinnton Austin (aka “Chef Q”)—the man behind New Orleans-inspired restaurant Louisiana Purchase in North Park—ventures north with a new eatery at Park 101: The Trap Shack. Choose from a handful of Maine lobster rolls with different flavors and ingredients, such the Buffalo Blue Roll, Truffle Roll and NoLa BBQ Roll; plus seafood tacos, a shrimp boil with sausage (pictured), tots, fried chicken wings, corn on the cob, fried rice and more. For dessert: flavored “Sno-Balls.” Open daily beginning at 11 a.m. 3040 Carlsbad Blvd., Carlsbad, 619.723.0438. More Info

Wild Hare Bar Garden

Now Open. Following a $22.5 million renovation, Hilton San Diego Gaslamp Quarter invites you to hop on over to its whimsical new restaurant. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, Wild Hare Bar Garden—helmed by executive chef Emiliano Sotelo—offers garden-inspired dishes with locally sourced proteins and produce; plus ingredients from the property’s garden. Menu highlights: a signature “rabbit dish” with roasted carrots and spiced goat cheese; pan-fried chicken paillard; themed cocktails like the vodka-based “I’m All Ears”; and carrot cake for dessert. See website for hours. 401 K St., Gaslamp Quarter, 619.231.4040. More Info

New Menus at Bivouac Ciderworks

Now Available. Known for its hard ciders and seasonal comfort fare, Bivouac Ciderworks has debuted new food and drink menus to celebrate summer. Try new shareable bites such as the buffalo-fried cauliflower, Mediterranean mezze platter and charred broccolini; and new mains like the chicken schnitzel, crispy chicken sandwich, Santorini Greek salad, and bistro steak with house-made chimichurri and herb-roasted potatoes. Wash it all down with new cocktails such as the Resting Peach Face (pictured) and Blueberry Basil Bramble. See website for hours. 3986 30th St., North Park, 619.725.0844.  

Arts + Culture

Weekend Concerts at The Shell

June 30-July 2. There’s nothing like a summer concert at The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park. The San Diego Symphony’s Summer 2023 Season kicks off on Friday with its Opening Night, featuring Rafael Payare conducting; and special guest, renowned trumpeter Pacho Flores (pictured). The Shell’s weekend lineup also includes a concert by The Beach Boys, with special guest John Stamos, on Saturday; and a tribute to Aretha Franklin, featuring Grammy-nominated vocalists and the San Diego Symphony orchestra, on Sunday. See website for times and tickets. 222 Marina Park Way, downtown, 619.235.0804.

Love All at La Jolla Playhouse

Closes July 2. La Jolla Playhouse presents the world-premiere play, Love All—centered on the triumphs and extraordinary life of iconic tennis star and social justice champion, Billie Jean King, who changed the course of history in myriad ways. Written by Anna Deavere Smith and directed by Marc Bruni, the play (supported by King herself), follows her journey on the court—where she won 39 major titles—and off, where she found herself amid tremendous social changes of ‘60s and ‘70s. It closes on Sunday. See website for showtimes and tickets. 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla, 858.550.1010.

Broadway’s SIX The Musical

Through July 9. The Tony Award-winning Broadway sensation arrives at the San Diego Civic Theatre. Presented in the form of a pop concert, the British musical comedy introduces us to the six wives of Henry VIII. In a modern retelling (spanning 500 years!), each wife tells her story to see who suffered the most at the hands of the notorious King of England. The “winner” of this makeshift competition of sorts gets to be the lead singer of the band. The outrageous plotline somehow works, further enhanced by an electric score. See website for showtime and tickets. 1100 Third Ave., downtown.

25 Million Stitches Exhibit at Mingei

On View. An exhibit aimed at raising awareness of the world’s displaced refugees is on view at Mingei International Museum: 25 Million Stitches: One Stitch, One Refugee. Guest-curated by Jennifer Kim Sohn—a Korean-American fiber artist based in Sacramento—the exhibition is a community project that acknowledges each displaced person with a hand-sewn stitch. The show comprises more than 2,000 embroidered muslin panels that combine to make 408 floor-to-ceiling flags. Sohn and volunteers crowd-sourced 2,300 stitchers from 37 countries and all 50 U.S. states. 1439 El Prado, Balboa Park, 619.331.3571.

Photo credits: Wild Hare Bar Garden by Cindy Wang. Pacho Flores / The Shell by Juan Martinez. Love All / La Jolla Playhouse by Rich Soublet. SIX The Musical by Joan Marcus. All other images are courtesy of the venues and businesses featured.

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