Au revoir. Sayonara. Say it how you will; parting is such sweet sorrow.
Brian Johnston is no longer executive chef of The Red Door and The Wellington. Owner Trish Watlington said the locales are in capable hands with Daniel Manrique, the restaurants' former sous chef and now interim executive chef. In fact, he might remain in the head position. The departure was amicable. According to a statement from the restaurants' publicist, the classically trained Johnston's “traditional French influenced cooking philosophy” did not align with the restaurant's farm-to-table ethos.
And after nearly five years as executive chef of Kensington Grill, Hanis Cavin will leave his post on July 17 for his own restaurant, Carnitas' Snack Shack, slated to debut at 2632 University Ave. toward the end of the month. The place is named for his pig, Carnitas. JC Colon, sous chef of Cucina Urbana—also part of Tracy Borkum's Urban Kitchen Group—will take over as chef de cuisine. meetcarnitas.com
Guess who's got a farmers market? Pacific Beach, that's who—from 2 to 6:30 p.m. every Tuesday on Bayard Street, between Garnet Avenue and hornblend Street.
I had the good fortune of being in San Francisco during its Pride Parade this year, though, sadly, I missed it by about three hours. Thanks be to San Diego, whose Pride Festival falls on July 16 and 17. And the tasty kicker? Thirty-five food vendors, both days, at Marston Point in Balboa Park. Among them: the new Super Q food truck, featuring slow-roasted meats and other barbecue fare. Also on the roster: Jack in the Box's Jack's Munchie Mobile (yes, two tacos for 99 cents) and Sweiners, a pop-up vendor serving Swiss-style hotdogs with melty (not in the dictionary, but due to Taco Bell's overzealous use of the faux word, it was subsequently published in several reputable newspapers and magazines) Raclette cheese surrounded by a baguette. And, speaking of condiments, spices and the like, Salt-n-Pepa (as in the '90s rap group) will serenade you Sunday, July 17, from 6 to 7 p.m. on the AT&T Main Stage.
Eddie V's Prime Seafood is expected to open in early August in La Jolla's long abandoned Chart House location, 1270 Prospect St. Because it's part of a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based restaurant group, I feared the place would be cookie-cutter and uninventive. So, I grilled President and CEO Jim VanDercook, who, many moons ago, tended bar at several nearby restos before moving out of state. The place will serve California coastal cuisine with many ingredients sourced from local purveyors like Suzie's Organic Farm, he said. For those who like history: The site was home to the famed Green Dragon Colony in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
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