San Diego

Weekend roundup

October 8-11


Oktoberfest at Ballast Point

Begins Oct. 9. Bottoms up, beer lovers! Ballast Point Brewing Company is celebrating Oktoberfest by pouring six traditional, German-style beers—Dead Ringer, Schlenkerlish, Helles Bock, Uber-to-Helles, Dortmunder Export and Fest Beer. Find this diverse assortment at Ballast Point’s Miramar brewery and tasting room, Home Brew Mart and its Little Italy brewery and pub—the latter of which is our top pick to visit. The beer garden-style outpost features an expansive patio, cabanas and sweet San Diego Bay breezes. Beers available while supplies last. Open daily 11 a.m.-10 p.m. 2215 India St., Little Italy, 619.255.7213.

“Spooktacular” at SeaWorld

Begins Oct. 9. Have no fear; the kiddos can still trick-or-treat this year—and safely. Offered every Friday and Sunday this month, SeaWorld’s limited-capacity “Spooktacular” experience includes candy and other sweet treats, character appearances, and a chance to explore the park’s animal exhibits sans the mass crowds. Tickets must be purchased in advance, and single-day admission for kids (ages 3-9) is free throughout October with the purchase of an adult ticket. Costumes are encouraged! See website for hours and to purchase tickets. 500 Sea World Drive, Mission Bay, 619.222.4732.

Mr. Jack O’Lanterns Pumpkin Patch

Through Oct. 31. Pick your preferred pumpkin patch experience this year with a variety of new offerings. Visit in-person to pick out your own pumpkin and partake in family-friendly activities and games; as well as shop for Halloween costumes and decorations such as hay bales and corn stalks. (Face coverings and other safety protocols enforced.) Or order items online either for delivery or contactless curbside pickup—including pumpkin carving kits and decorating kits to-go. Open daily (see website for hours). 6710 La Jolla Blvd., La Jolla, 844.452.2567.

Food + Drink

Herringbone’s Anniversary Menu

Through Oct. 31. The popular La Jolla restaurant honors its eighth anniversary with celebratory daily specials offered seven days a week, all month long. For instance, come in on Thursdays to sample the famous cioppino; Fridays for lobster rolls with brioche; and Saturdays for whole grilled branzino. Our favorite: Oyster Hour on Wednesdays, when oysters are $1 each all night. Dine on Herringbone’s expanded outdoor patio, punctuated with pergolas and strung lights twinkling from above. D nightly; Br Sa-Su (see website for hours). 7837 Herschel Ave., La Jolla, 858.459.0221.

Tajima Mercury’s Halloween Menu

Through Oct. 31. The Halloween spirit is alive and well via the cocktail menu at Tajima Mercury. Enjoy seasonal sips such as the Drunken Pumpkin (pictured) made with Sailor Jerry’s spiced rum, RumChata liqueur, Amaretto, pumpkin spice, lemon juice and walnut bitters; the Osaka Pirate with Malahat black tea rum; and Beetlejuice, a blend of Jameson, Yuzu liqueur, honeydew syrup, Dr. Pepper and lemon juice. (Warning: Don’t order it three times fast!) Add sustenance with Frankenstein’s Creation—a ramen bowl with spinach noodles and green coconut-curry broth. Open daily 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. 4411 Mercury St., Kearny Mesa, 858.278.5367.

Harbor & Sky

Now Open. A new restaurant and rooftop lounge sits just steps away from the USS Midway Museum and San Diego Bay. Welcome to Harbor & Sky—an all-outdoor oasis nestled on the fifth floor of the Residence Inn & Springhill Suites. Take in expansive waterfront views while sipping craft libations and bites by executive chef Mark Fong. We suggest the signature Harbor cocktail made with vodka by local distiller San Diego Cutwater; and the arugula flatbread with goat cheese. Th-F 5-10 p.m.; Sa-Su 11 a.m.-10 p.m. 900 Bayfront Court, downtown, 619.831.0224.

The Moonlight Deck at Herb & Sea

Now Open. Parking lot pivots are the new patio pivots, and The Moonlight Deck at Herb & Sea is officially our new favorite. The Puffer Malarkey Collective’s Encinitas eatery has transformed its former parking lot into an 1,800-square-foot, bilevel terrace seating nearly 100 guests—complete with ramshackle sand fencing and stylish striped umbrellas. The result is a quaint, SoCal-meets-Cape Cod ambiance—perfect for enjoying chef Sara Harris’ sea fare and woodfired dishes. (Think: oysters on the half shell and peaches-and-prosciutto pizza.) W-Su 5-9 p.m. 131 W. D St., Encinitas, 760.704.8300.

Nick’s Del Mar

Now Open. You can’t miss the A-frame building standing tall at the north end of One Paseo—home to the new location of Nick’s (originally established in Laguna in 2008). The striking space boasts an island-style, indoor/outdoor bar, ample dining patio and exhibition kitchen. On the menu: bacon deviled eggs, market-style salads, burgers, sandwiches, and entrees such as pan-seared Chilean seabass and buttermilk-fried chicken. Wash it all down with the jalapeño-watermelon margarita. Open daily 4-10 p.m. 3377 Del Mar Heights Road, Suite 300, Del Mar, 858.345.2127.

Arts + Culture

USS Midway Museum

Reopened. Welcome back aboard! The historical naval aircraft carrier and floating museum has reopened to visitors—home to more than 30 restored airplanes and helicopters, family-friendly exhibits and a massive flight deck overlooking San Diego Bay. In celebration of its 75th anniversary (it was christened “Midway” in 1945) the museum is offering free admission for up to two kids ages 6-12—with the purchase of one full-paid adult ticket—through Dec. 15. Face coverings required at all times. Open daily 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 910 N. Harbor Drive, downtown, 619.544.9600.

One Paseo Art Walk

Ongoing. One of our favorite (and little known) aspects of One Paseo is its Art Walk. Visitors can peruse nearly two-dozen large-scale murals, sculptures and installations throughout the campus—featuring artists such as London Kaye, Andy Davis (his mural “Birdy Bird” is pictured) and more. We love the “Wolves” mural by Natalie Bessell; as well as the new “Rainbow Road” crosswalk by local painter Stephanie Bales. (See website for a self-guided-tour map.) Afterward, relax around the fire pit or koi pond. Open daily 10 a.m.-8 p.m. 3725 Paseo Place, Del Mar.

Photo credits: Herringbone by Marie Buck. Herb & Sea by Jim Sullivan. All other images are courtesy of the venues and businesses featured.

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