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San Diego CLOSED Restaurants: Thread Four (2014 edition)

The other Closed Restaurant discussion was getting too long. Let's start a new (and hopefully short) one

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  1. So, rode by Nicky Rottens last night, doors were shut and butcher paper covered the windows. Apparently they are remodeling. Hope they are truly remodeling, not "closed for remodeling."

    6 Replies
    1. re: Dagney

      I'm pretty sure I read an article about that somewhere, but I'm drawing a blank. In the interview, they stated that they were definitely remodeling, vamping things up a bit.

      1. re: Dagney

        Yes, they are remodeling and changing the menu up a bit. I have also heard that they have bought Anthology and it will be reopening in June.

        1. re: Dagney

          It's been what, 6 months now? Last time I was in the gaslamp (late July) JR was still not back open. Any new word on this?

          1. re: mig0sd

            None here...our team has been wondering the same thing. I kind of suspect they "closed for remodeling" as a way to exit gracefully.

            1. re: Dagney

              Ahh. Suspect, you say.

              In that case, maybe when you guys are having a quiet evening sometime you could raid the place?! ;)

              1. re: DoctorChow

                ha! well, I'll peek at the window tomorrow night.

        2. Not that I've gone, but Juan Chou in South Park has closed. http://sandiego.eater.com/archives/20...

          A good Chinese restaurant would be a fantastic addition to the area, but that seems unlikely. Still, one can hope.

          6 Replies
          1. re: jmtreg

            I'm surprised it lasted as long as it did. That location seems to struggle. I'd like to see a ramen/noodle shop go in. Not sure how South Park would receive that but it'd be a nice addition.

            1. re: globocity

              A parking lot would be a welcome addition to the area as well.

              1. re: MrKrispy

                Really ? We never have problems to find parking in this area, e.g. Juniper west of 30th

                1. re: honkman

                  Yes, either there or a couple blocks north on Laurel and environs.

                  But as MrK says, more parking would be welcome, and I'm sure the people who live close by would appreciate the reduced street parking.

                  1. re: globocity

                    Agree. If an underground/aboveground lot were to be built somewhere in that area, further south, say somewhere along Fern, would definitely work better. I think there's an existing lot around Fern and Hawthorn.

            2. Kasi in Hillcrest is done. No more Indian delivery for me.

              1. The Blarney Stone at 5th Avenue and Island Avenue? huh? Please someone tell me it's just for remodeling.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Dagney

                  Do you know if this is/was owned by the same people who have the Blarney Stone in Clairemont?

                  Seems like it doesn't/didn't have the draw that other restaurants on 5th do. At least when I've walked by at night (which is not on weekends these days), the place looks pretty dead. Just a very casual observation.

                  1. re: DoctorChow

                    I don't know if it's the same chain....

                2. Not a restaurant, but Jonathan's Grocery Store in La Jolla is closing on June 1st. It was my go to place for Brandt Beef.

                  Rumblings of a new single screen movie theater going in as the tenant.


                  7 Replies
                  1. re: foodiechick

                    Harvest Ranch Markets, same owner, same inventory, slightly better prices (this past Wednesday, the El Cajon location had 20% off all meat and seafood; I didn't receive the same sale notice from the other locations).


                    1. re: Cathy

                      Live right around the corner from the Encinitas location, I got the email about the sale from them. Its too bad because they are local, and the managers will do special orders for me. I don't know if Whole Foods is cutting into their business. I guess with the RSF crowd, the Encinitas location will do ok.

                    2. re: foodiechick

                      Wow. .
                      That is a huge loss.
                      Love love love Jonathan's and have been shopping there for many many years.

                      Movie theater business has been in decline for a decade..
                      I think a bowling alley would be a riot and bring some blue collar fun into a white collar world.

                        1. re: foodiechick

                          Was just there and talked with them. You know they actually own that building, so they aren't being forced out. They are leasing it long term to a movie theater outfit. They told me it just made more economic sense for them to dump the location. They are moving all their key employees who want it to their other stores.

                          1. re: Wino

                            I am aware of the reasoning, which makes economic sense for the family. It still sucks for the local clients that love it. My favorite memory of the place: In December of 1990, the day before I got married (to my first, and only husband), a lame bridal shower was held at our condo by the person we now refer to as the "maid of dishonor". My betrothed, his best friend from childhood, my brother, Stepfather, Father and his best friend descended on Jonathan's - gathering pantyhose, cigars, beer and a single knife (to cut the pantyhose into robber type masks). I still have the video they shot of themselves shopping at the market and then quietly letting themselves in our condo wearing hosiery masks to scare all the ladies at the shower.

                            As much as I would support a movie theater in the community, I highly doubt there is enough local traffic to sustain it. Even though there will be a better parking situation than the old Cove Theater had (none), it would need to have a sufficient amount of traffic from outside of La Jolla (and we all know what a pain-in-the-ass that in and out trip is). Color me doubtful.

                            1. re: foodiechick

                              Two words for that space: Cheesecake Factory.

                              Seriously, though - that might have made more sense for Richard Walker's. Or maybe the Cottage could have changed their name to the "old Grocery" and moved there.

                        2. I don't know if anyone's heard of this place because it was a hole in the wall, but AJ's subs in sorrento valley has closed down. Their sandwiches were alright, nothing too special and the restaurant was just an old submarina that had been converted since the owner was trying to make it an independently owned sandwich shop.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Superstorm

                            hehe I think it has been at least a year since that place closed

                          2. Randy Jones Sports Grill in Hazard Center is closing down on 5/31/2014. Hazard Center can't seem to get a win.

                            8 Replies
                            1. re: MrKrispy

                              Not really shocked. We used to stay at that Red Lion 20+ years ago, before we moved down here, and it was so dead at night save for the movie theaters that were there. I think now it might even be worse with Fashion Valley being so much more the destination place than it was back then. They probably got a decent lunch crowd, but after that... Also I wonder if the sports grill/bar thing is now on its way out.

                              1. re: littlestevie

                                "Also I wonder if the sports grill/bar thing is now on its way out."

                                Sort of - Tilted Kilt is scraping up all the remains.

                                1. re: RB Hound

                                  Yeah there aren't too many sports bars in SD. Seau's seemed to be popular. No idea how the chicken wing restaurant in its place is doing.

                              2. re: MrKrispy

                                There's a big sports bar that just opened there in the space that used to be a (pretty good) Italian restaurant at Hazard Center some years back. The Ut says this was the Waterloo for Randy Jones. I don't think there's a shortage of people looking for a sports bar in that area.

                                1. re: DoctorChow

                                  BJ's opened in the space that was originally Prego's and then became Carlos Santana's Maria Maria.

                                  BJ's is easily visible from Friars Rd. and Hazard Center Dr. The space that Randy Jones is in was tucked back into a far corner of the complex and unless you know there is a restaurant there, you won't see it very well or know it's there.

                                  1. re: DiningDiva

                                    Thanks for filling in the blanks, DD.

                                    Ahh yes, Pregos. I liked the food there and the service was terrific.

                                    Never went into Maria Maria, and was not thrilled to see it become BJ's either.

                                    1. re: DoctorChow

                                      To be specific, BJs razed what was the Prego's/Maria Maria building and put up something new. BJs isn't really a sports bar as much as a "sports restaurant". Though they do have some bar seating, for the most part it is dining tables.

                                      I fondly remember Prego's of 13 years ago, but near its end it got very average quickly, with the service slipping as well.

                                      1. re: RB Hound

                                        Yes, you are quite correct, BJs pretty much tore down the old structure and started over.

                              3. The Cohn Group's La Jolla Strip Club (sister restaurant of the Gaslamp Strip Club) - grill your own steak places (not burlesque entertainment), will be closed. Apparently the concept wasn't working too well in the UTC, which shocks me little. A casual place with a "craft beer focus" will likely replace it. Sounds sort of like...Eureka Burger...


                                6 Replies
                                1. re: RB Hound

                                  RB, were you being facetious about the craft beer and burger joint or is that what is really going in?

                                  1. re: DiningDiva

                                    From the article:

                                    "While the company is still working on the specifics of what will replace the space, Cohn did reveal that it would have a casual vibe, a craft beer focus and a new menu, but no 'grilling your own steaks.'"

                                    Probably a little more upscale than a Eureka, but having a varied draft/craft selection is par for the course these days.

                                    1. re: RB Hound

                                      And here is their new menu:


                                      - Some kind of fries
                                      - Some kind of poutine
                                      - Some kind of sliders
                                      - Some kind of beet and goat salad
                                      - Some kind of "Caesars Salad"
                                      - Some kind of steak salad
                                      - Some kind of wings
                                      - Some kind of shrimps
                                      - Some kind of mussels
                                      - 1-2 soups (including chowder)
                                      - Some kind of flatbread


                                      - Multiple variations on burgers (including vegan burger)
                                      - Some variation on ahi sandwich
                                      - Some variation on sesame crusted ahi
                                      - Some variation on tacos
                                      - Fish and Chips
                                      - Some variation on meatloaf
                                      - Some variation on braised short ribs
                                      - Some variation on grilled cheese
                                      - Some variation on hot dog
                                      - Some variation on steak and frites

                                      And multiple, multiple variations of beers from our local breweries

                                      Time to take a rope and look for the next tree

                                      1. re: honkman

                                        I cannot imagine you are that disappointed; for some odd reason, I don't see the Costa Verde plaza being your type of place. Even so, not to worry - you can always go to Roy's, 5 Guys, Sammy's, Chipotle Express, the Greek place, or the Bristol Farms cafeteria.

                                        1. re: RB Hound

                                          My disappointment is more that it seems that this menu seems to be the starting point for >90% of all restaurants in SD

                                        2. re: honkman

                                          Sadly, that does seem to be the menu template for nearly every restaurant in town :-(

                                  2. Wet Willies. Closed. Tragic.

                                      1. re: Dagney

                                        That's too bad, but I can see how they might not have been the best fit for the Gaslamp as it is. In many ways, I'm surprised they held on as long as they did.

                                        I am completely drawing a blank - where were they before moving to the Gaslamp?

                                        1. re: RB Hound

                                          Before the Gaslamp? Not sure....their most recent space was on 6th Avenue, just south of F Street.

                                          I know rent had something to do with it's demise, which is heartbreaking. Chopahn was one of the few restaurants in the Gaslamp that was truly a small business. The owner was the host EVERY night, and sometimes he was your waiter to, depending on the day of the week. He kept a high standard of a classy, polite dining experience with excellent food.

                                          Ah well....I'm sure there is a "small plates" room lurking in the waters....bring on the craft cocktails for the babies who can't handle a scotch neat.

                                          1. re: Dagney

                                            Of course, the Eater answers the question for me. It was in the UTC area (which was why I was probably so familiar with it), in the Renaissance Towne Center. I think they were in the spot now occupied by Villa Capri (which I believe was occupied by Barola Ristorante many years before that).

                                            1. re: RB Hound

                                              A friend told me the owner is in Italy with family right now, so hopefully he will start a new venture when he returns. I vote for something in East County. sigh.....like THAT's gonna happen.

                                      2. The Steakhouse Azul in La Jolla is no more:


                                        Bought out by Donovan's, giving them a relatively short distance to move when they lose their UTC lease.

                                        14 Replies
                                          1. re: foodiechick

                                            I'm thinking of David Byrne telling us "same as it ever was..."

                                          2. re: RB Hound

                                            Is somebody going blow out that UTC space?

                                            1. re: littlestevie

                                              Maybe Rusty Pelican will return. [Yeah, right.] It's where I met my companion -- in 1988.

                                              1. re: DoctorChow

                                                WOW. Rusty Pelican. An epic blast from the past. So 80's. So...Golden Triangle.

                                                1. re: Dagney

                                                  Maybe they can bring back the laser beams, too.

                                                  1. re: Dagney

                                                    There was a Rusty Pelican in PB in the 90s as well. When I had family come out from the midwest they saw it thinking it screamed "fresh seafood!"....instead it was a Red Lobster in TGIF clothing.

                                                    1. re: MrKrispy

                                                      Wow, you lit up another memory. Next to Crystal Pier, right? I remember going there for a holiday brunch with out of town visitors and thinking that it was a waste of a view, but strangely apropos there.

                                                      1. re: beantowntitletown

                                                        Yup, that was it. I took them to the original PB Alehouse (where Skechers is now) and that salvaged the night.

                                                  2. re: DoctorChow

                                                    Rusty Pelican...wow, haven't thought of them in years!

                                                    1. re: DiningDiva

                                                      Is that a chain? I seem to remember a Rusty Pelican in Phoenix when I lived there in the 90's.

                                                      1. re: Saabiar

                                                        Yes, I think it was. I seem to recall on in Marina del Rey

                                                        1. re: DiningDiva

                                                          Yes, it was. There was one in Mission Valley where Lazy Dog Cafe is now. I remember going there in the late 90's.

                                                    2. re: DoctorChow

                                                      Thanks for the memory jog, DoctorChow. I worked across the way in the Emerald City for 5 yrs in the 90s and have been racking my puny brain lately trying to remember what wss in that space before Donovan's.

                                                2. Ciro's in Pacific Beach closed this past weekend. The soon-to-open Iron Pig Alehouse has the same owner, so perhaps the closure is related to that.

                                                  Ciro's had a new ownership posting on the door for a while with a the business name "Crushed". I found this website:


                                                  No idea on the status, or whether it is even still happening, though.

                                                  3 Replies
                                                    1. re: Fake Name

                                                      Ciro's was sort of a craft beer place, so this is a zero sum gain. They're just trading in pizza for BBQ in the long run.

                                                    2. re: menuinprogress

                                                      Looking at the website, they really out to just call it "Crashed" since the concept is essentially early 2000s.

                                                      Besides, "Crushed" gives every impression of wine.