By Frank Sabatini Jr.
San Diego Markets has added to its portfolio the Waterfront Sunday Market, held weekly from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., along the front side of the San Diego County Administration Building at 1600 Pacific Highway. Launched on July 31 in conjunction with New City Public Spaces, the market debuted with 40 vendors, but has the potential to grow to 90, said director Catt Fields White, who oversees the Little Italy Mercato on Saturdays, the Pacific Beach Tuesday Farmers’ Market, and the North Park Thursday Market.
Among the food and craft vendors seen at the opening were The Meat Men, Smit Farms, Pacific Time, Izi’s Glass Art, Junon Jewelry and more. The aisles also featured several booths selling prepared foods such as wood-fired pizza, crepes, gumbo and cookies. sandiegomarkets.com.
Restaurateur Johan Engman has partnered with publicist William Lopez of Alternative Strategies to open Como Ceviche, a fast-casual seafood eatery that will move into the space previously occupied by Carnivore Sandwich (now at 670 West B St.).
In addition to ceviches made with various seafoods — and a vegan version using cauliflower as a main ingredient — customers choose from a selection of fish and other ingredients that go into a salad, bowl, burrito or taco. The projected opening date is Oct. 1.
Engman operates several restaurants throughout San Diego, including Breakfast Republic in North Park and Liberty Station (and coming soon to Encinitas and Carmel Valley), plus Fig Tree Café in Pacific Beach, Hillcrest and Liberty Station. 317 10th Ave., riseandshinerg.com.
The Scottsdale-based mini chain, Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers, will open an outlet in the Gaslamp Quarter in late August to the tune of unique half-pound burgers, hearty sandwiches and an extensive selection of beers sold in bottles and cans. It is the company’s fifth location and the first outside of Arizona. Signature burgers include the bacon PB&J, the steakhouse truffle, and the Denver crowned with egg, ham, cheddar, peppers and onions. 322 Fifth Ave., coldbeers.com.
Busalacchi Restaurants is stirring appetites in Little Italy with its reinvention of Po Pazzo, which was remodeled and renamed Barbusa. The modern-Sicilian concept features a crudo bar, hand-made pasta dishes and an assortment of Southern Italian entrees rare to San Diego, such as frittura (whole smelt, calamari and shrimp with seared lemon), cavolfiore (roasted cauliflower, currants and pine nuts in balsamic reduction), and tripe puttanesca. 1917 India St., 619-238-1917, barbusa.com.
Another San Diego chef enters the arena of reality TV as Kevin Templeton of Barleymash in the Gaslamp Quarter competes on the Food Network series, “Beat Bobby Flay.” Templeton will prepare plates he dished up on the show at a screening party to be held at 7 p.m., Aug. 25 at Barleymash. The food samples are free and there is no cover charge.
In the past year or so, a number of chefs from Downtown-area restaurants have appeared as contestants or judges on national competition cooking shows, including Chad White of the former Comun Kitchen & Tavern, Giselle Wellman of the new Pacific Standard, Richard Blais of Juniper & Ivy and The Crack Shack, and Javier Plascencia of Bracero. 600 Fifth Ave., 619-255-7373, barleymash.com.
If the urge for grilled cheese strikes, Bice San Diego appeases with various gourmet versions, served from 5 p.m. until closing every Tuesday. The cheeses used on the sandwiches vary weekly and they sometimes feature a blend of two different curds imported from Italy and other European countries. They’re priced at $10, or $16 when paired with a glass of wine or beer. 425 Island Ave., 619-239-2423, bicesandiego.com
—Frank Sabatini Jr. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.