Coast of Pacific Beach Restaurant Walk returns on May 17
Foodies and epicures rejoice! The self-guided Coast of Pacific Beach Restaurant Walk is returning this month.
As many as 20 restaurants along Mission Boulevard, from Pacific Beach Drive to Emerald Street and along Garnet Avenue up through Dawes Street, will be participating in a ticketed event that offers samples of food and drink for guests between 4 and 9 p.m. on Wednesday, May 17.
More than just an exposé of the local fare, the event also helps raise funds for the local business district. DiscoverPB, the nonprofit organization that promotes improvements in the business district, is organizing the event in an effort to garnish proceeds for upkeep and maintenance.
Sunny Lee, DiscoverPB’s executive director, said the event is a celebration of local businesses, but also presents a special opportunity for guests to branch out.
Want to go?
Coast of Pacific Beach Restaurant Walk
When: 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, May 17
Where: restaurants west of Dawes Street in Pacific Beach.
Tickets: In advance, $35 (food only) and $45 (food and cocktail samples). Event day is $40 (food only) and $50 (food and cocktail samples).
Buy at: In advance at PacificBeach.org and the PB Tuesday Farmer’s Market. During the event at PB Shore Club, 4343 Ocean Blvd.
“People get to know maybe some of the dishes they haven’t tried yet, and to bring people in so they can see what restaurants we have so that maybe they want to come back for a second visit and put a lot of attention on our restaurants,” Lee said.
In previous years, the event had as many as 15 restaurants participate in the walk. As of late April, 17 restaurants were confirmed and Lee said she anticipated more to join as the event approaches. So far those participating are Crushed, Handel’s Ice Cream, Pacific Beach Ice Cream Company, The Local PB, Duck Dive, 710 Beach Club, The Hideout Bar & Grill, Amplified Kitchen + Beer Garden, Bare Back Grill, Mavericks Beach Club, Spitfire Tacos at Mission + Garnet, PB Shore Club, Board & Brew, Baja Beach Café, Seaside Pizza Co., Society PB and Filippi’s Pizza Grotto.
The large number of restaurants offers a variety of experiences for guests to sample dishes across the culinary spectrum.
“Everybody does it differently,” Lee said. “You never know what you’re going to get.”
This year’s event is the first iteration in which cocktail samples will be offered for guests who purchase upgraded tickets. The event’s organizers have partnered with Herradura tequila and Tito’s vodka as sponsors, whose liquor will be featured in a handful of restaurants.
“Some restaurants will be featuring cocktail specials from our sponsors throughout the month of May, and then they’re going to offer a unique cocktail for this event,” Lee said.
In addition to sampling food and beverages from staple restaurants that have come to be recognized institutions in the Pacific Beach culinary scene, a few newcomers will be present at this year’s event. One such newcomer is the Mission + Garnet Food Hall.
The reimagined food hall, which sits on the lot previously occupied by Denny’s at the namesake intersection, opened its doors in February and features six restaurants that operate from one kitchen. Scott Slater, restaurateur and founder of Apex Brand Collection, said the community has taken to the concept splendidly so far.
“The (response) has been great,” Slater said. “Really high marks and everyone has been very pleased. The food is perfect for a beach community.”
For the restaurant walk, Mission + Garnet will feature a Korean pork belly taco from its Spitfire Tacos shop.
“We have a spit of Korean pork belly that we’ll have out there, kind of like an al pastor trompo,” Slater said. “We focus on unusual spits, we have one that is jerk chicken, Korean pork belly, we’ve done pastrami.”
In addition to the chance for an introduction to some in the community, Slater said he sees the event as a chance to be a good neighbor.
“We see the opportunity more of contributing and being a part of the community as possible,” Slater said.
Another participating shop is Pacific Beach Ice Cream Company, recognized this year by the California State Assembly as a “Best New Business.” Owner Dave Wright said that since opening in October 2021, the community response has been phenomenal.
“I’m all about being in PB and serving the community,” Wright said. “There’s no other location like this. People shop local and have welcomed us into the community. I’m hoping to do more community outreach and give back to the community that has been so good to us.”
Wright said Pacific Beach Ice Cream Company will offer one of two flavor choices at Restaurant Walk, one dairy and the other dairy-free. At the previous Restaurant Walk, the shop served 2-ounce samples of mint chocolate chip and lemon Italian ice. This year’s flavors have yet to be chosen.
Pre-sale tickets are priced at $35 for food only and $45 for food and cocktail samples. Day-of tickets will go for $40 and $50, respectively.
Tickets are available for in-person purchase at the DiscoverPB information booth during every Tuesday Farmer’s Market, and purchase of a ticket there also comes with an insulated tote bag. The market is held from 2 to 7 p.m. each Tuesday on Bayard Street between Garnet and Grand avenues.
Tickets are also available in advance at PacificBeach.org, and during the event at PB Shore Club, 4343 Ocean Blvd.