The Scene

January 23, 2016

Encontro North Park

Encontro North Park has opened up at 3001 University, in the old Heaven Sent Desserts location, and what a transformation to the space! The interiors are stunning, exuding an industrial warmth, with lots of windows that open to both University and 30th Streets. Food is casual with steaks, chicken, sausages, burgers, and milkshakes made with North Park's Hammond's Gourmet Ice Cream (which just opened its second location down in Pacific Beach, and a third location slated for Point Loma this summer)... Replay Toys,.which offers quality pre-owned toys, books, and crafts has opened at 2920 North Park Way... and speaking of books, Verbatim Books has opened their beautiful shop at 3793 30th Street, across from Waypoint Public. Lots of new and used books to check out... Pop Pie Co. is readying their sweet and savory pie shop at Park Blvd and Meade Ave. We got a chance to taste some of their sweet pies and they were quite good... The Fresh Yard Clothing is relocating across 30th Street next to 9-Five Eyewear... Tribute Pizza is busy readying their location in the old North Park post office, located at 3077 North Park Way... Major construction has begun (finally) on Dunedin, the new spot from Queenstown Public alum at 3501 30th Street. They hope to open this Spring... SANDAG is preparing the new dedicated bicycle lanes for Pershing Avenue (called the Pershing Bikeway), which will create a much safer passage for riders between North Park and downtown SD. A part of the project includes a proposed roundabout at Redwood and Pershing... Streetcar Merchants of Fried Chicken and Donuts has opened up their Milk Bar next door, featuring infused milk products and freshly baked cookies... The Smoking Goat is getting closer to opening their new concept restaurant One Door North. They're shooting for a Spring opening as well...


November 7, 2015

Pete's Seafood and Sandwich

Pete's Seafood and Sandwich opened up at 3382 30th Street, around the corner from Zensei Sushi. We got a chance to try the clam chowder (delicious!) and fish and chips (superb!!!) on a rainy evening and it was very good. Though we haven't tried it, we've also heard that the lobster rolls are the best on the west coast... Al Reef Mediterranean has opened up at 2835 University Avenue and what a huge improvement from the short-lived hookah lounge that was previously there. The food was very good, moderately priced, with attentive service. Stop by and check it out... NĂ©gociant Urban Winery has opened at 2419 El Cajon Boulevard... North Park won "Best Neighborhood" in CityBeat's annual Best of San Diego contest. Lots of North Park establishes won their categories as well, including Caffee Calabria, Hammond's Gourmet Ice Cream, Lucha Libre, The Mission Cafe, Underbelly, the Lafayette Hotel & Swim Club, Thumbprint Gallery, George's Camera, Kaleidoscope, Pigment, Overload, Mimi & Red, Bottlecraft, Seven Grand, and Observatory North Park. Congratulations to all the winners... Progress is moving quickly on Encontro, the new eatery slated for the corner of 30th and University, where Heaven Sent used to be located. Fingers crossed that they make the late November opening target... Historyville: Lady of the Lake bookstore is closing up shop, as is Fresh & Easy and Haagen grocery stores (there's a brutal grocery store war going on), while Exotic Gardens has relocated far east (Alpine is the rumor)...


September 19, 2015

Milli Metre

Milli Metre, a new retail shop, has opened in the old post office building at 3077 North Park Way... new details are emerging about the old Heaven Sent Desserts spot at 30th & University. Encantro is the name of the new space, and according to NorthPark.me, it'll offer "delicatessen services; salads, french fries, hot dogs and sausages made on premises"... Speaking of Heaven Sent, their new location has opened, 2 doors down from their original location... Pete's Seafood and Sandwich is readying their new space, at the old Bazinga Mac & Cheese spot at 3382 30th Street... The portion of University Avenue west of Utah continues to get cool new tenants, with The General Store opening at 2002 University Avenue, and Lucky Dutch Juice opening at 2581 University Avenue... Full Contact Rock N Roll, a music retail shop, has opened at 2834 North Park Way.


August 2, 2015

Lucha Libre

Lucha Libre's new North Park location at 3016 University Avenue has opened. They've done quite a lot on the interior to change out the old Marie's Cafe vibe, and we hear that they plan on adding railing and outdoor seating soon... ChuckAlek Independent Brewers are opening a tasting room and beer garden next to Tostadas at 3139 University Avenue. Official name is ChuckAlek Brewery Tasting Room & Biergarten. The beer garden will be in the back, which is a pretty fantastic space curated by Lynn Susholtz (owner of Art Produce Gallery). Between that and Tostadas, the east end of University Avenue is starting to look pretty good... A new and used bookstore named Verbatim Books is readying their location at 3793 30th Street at North Park Way... Hammond's Gourmet Ice Cream, which just celebrated their one year anniversary in North Park, has announced that they're opening a second location, this time in Pacific Beach... The San Diego City Council approved the University Avenue Mobility Plan, which calls for streamlining vehicular traffic, dedicated bus lanes to be shared with bikes, planted medians, and sidewalk bulb-outs to create a more efficient and friendly multi-modal transportation corridor... Speaking of the city council, they're scheduled to vote on two major North Park initiatives in the next few months, including releasing the Woolworth's building so that developer Al Karendian can begin transforming the high-profile (but current eyesore) in to market rate apartments on the 2nd level and retail on the ground level. They'll also be voting on freeing up the space behind the Observatory North Park Theater so that it can become the community park that's been in planning for 5 years. Bazinga Eatery has shuttered to make room for Pete's Seafood and Sandwich, at 3382 30th Street near Upas... Moncai Vegan moved their location from University up to Adams Ave.


June 27, 2015

Breakfast Republic

Breakfast Republic has soft-opened at 2730 University Avenue, the prior location of Western Steakburger. Owned by Johan Engma, who also fathered the Fig Tree Cafe chain, the new space is beautifully decorated and is serving customers from 7am - 3pm daily... Crazee Burger has opened their new location at 3993 30th Street, at Lincoln Ave. They've spiffed up the space that used to be a pawn shop with urban gritty decor and a lovely outside patio that faces Lincoln. Nice to have that corner activated with this and Streetcar Doughnuts across the street... Wang's restaurant abruptly shuttered their doors last month. A victim of their closing was Und1sputed gym, which had sub-let the basement from Wang's. The gym has announced that they're scouting a new location in North Park... Rumor Alert: we're hearing that someone has purchased the BBQ Pit at 2888 University Avenue. Their storefront has been closed to the public for years, and it's been an eyesore along an area that otherwise has had much improvement. Fingers crossed this rumor pans out as it would be nice to see this block activated again... Al Reef, which had been a bizarre mixture of hookah lounge, deli, ice cream, smoothies, and gawd knows what else, has closed their doors and plans on reopening as a Mediterranean restaurant. Hope they can raise a successful business as they put a great deal of money transforming the former location of Glenn's Market... Heaven Sent Desserts is moving a bit east to 3011 University Avenue. The new space is much smaller than their current location, and will serve as a place for purchasing their desserts only; their kitchen is moving to a new location to support their expanding catering business... City Taco's founder Gerald has announced his newest North Park venture. It's called Tostadas, and it'll serve up, yep, tostadas and ceviches. Based on how frickin' good City Tacos is, we expect this new place to rock our taste buds as well... Hammond's Gourmet Ice Cream, located at 3077 University Avenue, celebrated their one year anniversary a few weeks back. Great to see them doing so well, with a loyal following, and 4 1/2 stars on Yelp.


May 16, 2015

Barn Brewery

Barn Brewery, North Park's newest brew pub, has opened at 2850 El Cajon Boulevard, next door to San Diego Soup Shoppe. Currently only serving libations, plans are afoot to open their accompanying kitchen in the near future... Holsem Coffee has opened at 2911 University Avenue, in a redesigned space that is airy and elegant. Featuring fair trade sourcing and 3rd wave brewing, they offer a wide selection of coffees, teas, house-made sodas, and carry baked goods sourced from Bake Sale downtown... Western Steakburger has served its last meal. The space, at 2730 University Avenue, has been purchased by the owners of the Fig Tree Cafe. They'll be remodeling and reopening as Breakfast Republic in the near future... Miss Vintage Clothing has announced they're relocating out of North Park... Heaven Sent is also relocating, but they're staying in North Park. We're not yet allowed to disclose where... The Smoking Goat, which continues to do gangbuster business, has announced that they'll be taking over the old Mosaic Wine Bar location and opening a new concept restaurant in the near future... Hello Birdie nail and lash salon is opening next door to The Lab, at 3032 University Avenue... Good Life Eatery lasted all of two months before shuttering. Hopefully the right niche business will find success in this troubled space, at 3620 30th Street... The Studio Door, North Park's newest art gallery, has opened at 3750 30th Street, turning what was once a sad corner into a vibrant, visually stimulating addition to the neighborhood... A cool new mural adorns the northeast corner of Illinois Street and University... Plans are afoot to greatly improve bicycle access via from North Park to downtown, via Pershing Avenue in Balboa Park... San Diego Eater is reporting that Blackmarket Bakery is readying a new location at 4688 30th Street...


March 11, 2015

9 Five Eyewear

9 Five Eyewear has opened their new flagship location at 3778 30th Street. Along with their Los Angeles location on Melrose Avenue, they carry eyewear, apparel, and offer prescriptions... Dark Horse Coffee Roasters has opened at 3794 30th Street, next to Waypoint Public. They've done a beautiful job on the intimate space, and reviews for the coffee are very positive... Down the street, Amorcito Corazon has opened their new Mexican bistro to rave reviews at 3442 30th Street... Mimi & Red have opened their new location at 3041 University Avenue, next to Aloha Sunday. New space looks fantastic inside and out... Red Brontosaurus has opened up at 3044 North Park Way (next to Classic Rock Sandwich Shoppe), specializing in buying and selling of DVDs and video games... The custom clothing design studio Gwen Couture has opened at 4003 Wabash Avenue. They offer sewing courses... The Makers Arcade Spring Fair is scheduled for March 21 from 11am - 5pm at the old North Park Post Office at 3077 North Park Way. The event will feature over 50 artists and makers, live entertainment, locally sourced food, drink, and more. Tickets are $2... Heart & Trotter Butchery has opened at 2855 El Cajon Boulevard. They feature locally sourced beef, lamb, pork, and chicken... Mosaic Wine Bar has closed for a bit. While initially planning on selling the business off, the latest rumor we've heard is that they'll be keeping the place and are reimagining what it'll be when it reopens... Rumors that Heaven Sent Desserts will be relocating down the street to where Claire de Lune is located are still unconfirmed. We hear they need additional space because their catering business is going gang busters... Mailboxes outside of You Got Mail were recently removed. Owner Mike Burnett emailed NorthParkScene stating that You Got Mail owners had nothing to do with the removal of the boxes...


February 6, 2015

Sublime

A new low-income senior housing complex has been approved by the city, and plans have been submitted to begin work at on the Iowa Street Housing 3937 Iowa Street (where the old Thrift Trader was; it will be demolished). The complex will consist of 120 residential units and 3 business spaces... Other housing news: Foundation for Form's next project is called The Earnest, is located at 4201 30th Street (the old Crazee Burger location) and will include 39 apartments above 2 commercials spaces. Nearby Habitat on 31st between University Avenue (behind Urbn Pizza) and North Park Way will include 35 apartments ... Rip Current Brewery/Sublime have officially opened at 4101 30th Street... Unico Juice Shop has opened at the newly-hip southeast corner of El Cajon Blvd. and Utah, next to where The Heart & Trotter is going in... Across the street, South Park favorite Cafe Madeline is opening up a second location on the northwest corner of El Cajon and Utah... A few blocks east, The San Diego Soup Shoppe is readying The Barn, a burgers and brewery joint... Mimi & Red's new location next to Aloha Sunday is beginning to look sweet... DecoBikes have begun popping up in North Park as well as downtown and Little Italy... Grand Ole BBQ Y Asado at 3302 32nd Street opened and then temporary closed so that they could expand their operations. Early word was positive on the food... San Diego Arts Institute is closing up shop on Ray Street... Cardamom @ Night has sprung up, serving up delicious desserts at Cardamom Cafe on Friday and Saturday evenings... North Park Beer Co. has announced that they're taking over the old Und1sputed space at 3038 University and will be opening a brewery later this year... The Irving Gill Chapel at 30th and Gunn Streets is up for sale because St. Lukes Episcopal Church can't afford to maintain it. A Facebook page has been set up to save it.


January 9, 2015

Good Life Eatery

The Good Life Eatery is ready to open their doors. Located at 3620 30th Street (cross street is Dwight), the new establishment takes the place of the old 30th Street Cafe. Hours are 12-8pm Thursday through Saturday, and 10am-3pm on Sundays... Dark Horse Coffee Roasters, next to Waypoint Public, have installed their exterior signage... Saiko Sushi, at 2884 University Avenue has opened its doors... A new Mexican Bistro called Amorcito Corazon is going in to the old Veg-N-Out location on 30th Street, next to Lefty's Chicago Pizza... Glimpse Gifts, on Ray Street, is closing up shop... Thrift Trader off of University is also closing up shop to make way for a large senior living complex... The North Park Theatre, along with West Coast Tavern, has been sold to The Observatory from Orange County... Albertson's supermarket on University Avenue, will be getting some much needed attention as it transitions over to Haggen grocers...

Project Tracker

The Earnest
4201 30th Street
Foundation for Form's new development includes 39 apartments above 2 commercial spaces
Permits submitted

Habitat on 31st
31st Street between University and North Park Way
35 apartment complex
Permits submitted

Iowa Street Housing
3937 Iowa Street
120 residential units for low income senior housing and 3 business spaces
Permits submitted

Woolworth's Building
3067 University Avenue
SLOWLY making it's way through city departments

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