Stories for March 2014

Monday, March 31

Fish and chips with dogs and ducks

Anthony's La Mesa Grotto proves a pleasant lunch spot.

The nicest pond-side seafood dining in La Mesa is this sister restaurant to the better-known harbor location. A comparable menu and pricing avails its customers of fresh seafood at fresh seafood prices. While it doesn't break the bank, you do pay more for atmosphere than quality of preparation. That said, "pleasant" doesn't begin to describe its patio dining.

Siem Reap: my gift in the jungle

Once-in-a-life experience off the tourist track.

I've always found travel to be its own reward, but on rare occasions it also gifts some of us with a life-altering experience. While visiting friends in Siem Reap, Cambodia, I hired a tuk-tuk driver ...

Opera board still looking for donors

Meets for four and a half hours today

The board of the San Diego Opera held a four-and-a-half-hour emergency meeting today (March 31). Ian Campbell, head of the opera, brought three lawyers with him. Marc Scorca of Opera America also attended. The plans ...

Andrew Rubin on his journey with Ride with Larry

Locally produced doc screens April 13

Local filmmakers Andrew Rubin and Ricardo Villarreal's Ride with Larry, the enrichingly uplifting documentary profile of Larry Smith, a retired cop with Parkinson's who rode his bicycle across South Dakota to inspire others living with ...

Ballast Point successfully tweaks Little Italy menu

Local brewing titan gives us a menu the kitchen can actually deliver on.

Selective and careful tinkering of the menu at this massive tasting room has made the food offerings from the local brewer a better match for the atmosphere and style of the cavernous beer hall. Prices run on the steep side considering the small portions, but the food has been dialed in to the point where (instead of making a poorly thought-out bid for sophistication) it makes the best out of being honest bar snacks, burgers, and sandwiches.

Will county extravaganza avoid Balboa Park mistakes?

Parks and Rec issues request for proposals for waterfront grand opening May 10.

The Balboa Park 2015 centennial celebration may be dead, at least on the grandiose scale once envisioned by ex-mayor Jerry Sanders, but his fellow Republicans on the county board of supervisors are planning to stage ...

This week in the San Diego jazz clubs: April 1–5

Tuesday 1 The good folks at SD Center for the Arts will be present a special evening of solo percussion with Tatsuya Nakatani and special guests Mudhead. The organization has a new venue in North ...

Smugglers try the horse trick at Smugglers Gulch

Worth risking the animals

Border Patrol agents in Imperial Beach are seeing an upsurge in bicycles and horses being used to smuggle humans across, Border Patrol spokesman Tim Hamill confirmed Friday. In the past few weeks, Border Patrol agents ...

Ki defied Cardiff’s jinx

Was it the smoking sage?

Cardiff by the Sea’s restaurant matriarch has passed away. Ki Holcomb, 88, founded the popular oceanfront Ki’s Restaurant along Cardiff by the Sea’s Restaurant Row, on Coast Highway 101. In 1980, at the age of ...

Ed talks out of school

Sweetwater High teachers complain of class size, move one step closer to strike

The imminent strike action of teachers, librarians, and nurses in the Sweetwater Union High School district has gone one step forward and two steps back. On March 27 Superintendent Ed Brand called a press conference ...

Top 50 U.S. Craft Breweries

Three San Diego breweries make 2013’s list of largest craft operations.

Today, the Brewers Association, the industry group representing American brewing companies, announced the top 50 craft breweries in America as ranked by beer production for calendar year 2013. Of them, three operate in San Diego ...

Sunday, March 30

Padres bean brawl with Atlanta in 1984

“It's bad to have kids watch something like this."

In 1984, the feisty San Diego Padres made it all the way to the World Series, with a bump or two in Atlanta en route. Deep into the pennant-winning '84 season, on August 12 at ...

Quilters at Lamb’s Players

Uniting pioneering women

Sarah McKendree Bonham, who came west in a covered wagon, hasn’t long to live. Aware that, as the bible says, most of a woman’s work “perishes in the using,” she decides to make a “legacy ...

Cat ladies

Feline frenzy in San Diego

I’m not a cat person — mostly due to a silvery scar on my arm that I got as a child from the claws of my neighbor’s grumpy tabby cat. Also, cats make me sneeze ...

Runners wrecking the trail in Torrey Pines

Volunteer guards the southernmost entrance

While hiking in the Torrey Pines state reserve a few days ago, I saw a volunteer "guarding" the entrance to the southernmost trail (which was taped off). She said she was there to physically prevent ...

Saturday, March 29

Bookstore to close — but not why you think

Mall owner needs parking space

All over the country, brick-and-mortar bookstores are closing because the industry is increasingly getting its sales online. But this July, a very successful Barnes & Noble store will close in the Del Mar Highlands Town ...

The wild scene of the Gaslamp's new Werewolf

The mythical movie monster wearing sunglasses is an admonition against taking anything here too seriously.

I hate to pigeonhole a place, but when you stake out a central-Gaslamp location, write the word "Shots" in giant letters along the back wall and name it Werewolf, you've pretty much decided to cater ...

He works for McDonald's — he is our spy

Watch out for tow trucks in P.B.

On March 7, 6:00 pm, as she left the dining room of McDonald's in Pacific Beach, a middle-aged woman named Irma caught a man spying into her empty car with a flashlight. As she reported ...

Beer of the Week: Belching Beaver Peanut Butter Milk Stout

Deconstructing the king of the growing PB brew niche

As I set out to figure out which San Diego County-brewed beer I would feature this week, I looked back on the past several months’ worth of ales and lagers I’ve spotlighted, and realized there ...

Security workers latest group to push for higher wages

Gloria, Alvarez, Lightner, Cole join SEIU for announcement in City Heights

Local union-backed wage protests expanded from food service workers to the private security industry on Friday (March 28), as SEIU United Service Workers West, a union representing janitors, security guards, and other property service workers ...

Friday, March 28

Letter sent by San Diego Opera board members today (March 28)

I have removed the names of the signers.

March 28, 2014 Dear Ian and Karen, We as Board members believe the following information is essential to understanding the current situation of the San Diego Opera and to knowledgeably participate in Board meetings that ...

Eleven opera board members demand information

Held meeting Wednesday; letter goes out today

Eleven irate members of the San Diego Opera board held a private meeting Wednesday. They will be sending out a letter to the other 47 board members this afternoon. "We have to have the information ...

Seaport Deli: Is there happy hour after happy hour?

Here, the sun tells you when happy hour is.

It's about the sunset. The water. The squawking gulls. The magician disappearing balloons down his throat. Say what? Oh, and the food ain't bad either. I'd just missed happy hour at the Cheesecake Factory, across ...

An operatic death

The sky is falling and opera is dying.

Opera is dying, opera is dying, opera is dying! Ticket sales are down across the country from San Francisco to The Met. In a recent interview I had with Ferruccio Furlanetto, he mentioned that things ...

What is the name of this funk-bound train? Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings!

Soul revue did indeed Give the People What They Want at House of Blues

A soul revue of eight airtight musicians travels through groovy songs showcasing two strutting backup singers. If the crowd is already gyrating with joy and anticipation when the lead singer arrives, her hands held high ...

Zapf eludes O.B. Town Council

Had commitment with Taste of Mira Mesa

It's not uncommon for a roster of participants in a debate for elected office to include a representative for one of the candidates. Last October, when a previous engagement prevented Nathan Fletcher from attending a ...

Serving soul food since the beginning

Grant Hill eatery dished it up way before it was a "concept"

"Ain't nothing fancy about this place except me!" says Barbara Harris, the ebullient and charismatic lady behind Sister Pee Wee's Soul Food. And she's right. If anything's changed about the modest lunch- and dinner-counter over ...

Gloria and Goldsmith vindicated so far

Appellate court rules that private emails from city officials are off limits to public

Open government advocates' hopes for transparent government were partially shut on Thursday when California's appellate court overturned a Santa Clara County judge's ruling that deemed private email messages and text messages pertaining to government business ...

Hacker attacking Israeli group gets 15 months

Had crashed his Mercedes into Pacific Beach duplex.

On Thursday (March 27), a computer hacker who had lived — and was briefly jailed — in San Diego was sentenced to 15 months in prison by a St. Louis federal judge. Jonathan Cowden had ...

Twenty-three percent at UCSD experienced "exclusionary" conduct, survey says

Those defined as "genderqueer" reported highest harassment rates.

The results are in and UCSD has received a generally passing grade in the University of California's recently released "Campus Climate Assessment Project" survey, though there are some downsides. "The purpose of the survey was ...

Atlas by Real Estate

The instant “Had to Hear” begins, you welcome back the awaited jangle of Real Estate. The indie-pop band of the moment knows exactly what you expect of them and their third LP delivers. So much ...

La Mesa resident exposed to e-cigarette smoke at restaurant

Madrid retreats from total ban but still loses,

The La Mesa City Council on March 25 rejected Mayor Art Madrid's request to modify the city's smoking ordinance to ban electronic cigarettes in parks and other locations where smoking is prohibited. Madrid joined in ...

Dos Desperados comes out with guns blazing

San Marcos’ newest brewery opens with Wild West panache

These desperados have been tough to track down. Rather than drum up pre-open hype, Steve and Dora Munson have channeled their husband-and-wife energies into quietly establishing their plot a block north of San Marcos’ Restaurant ...

Kraftwerk performs The Man-Machine in 3D

Although it was tempting, I decided that it was not worth the time, hassle, and money to see Kraftwerk play Coachella in 2008, since, frankly, they were the only band in the lineup that I ...

Thursday, March 27

Pro-Faulconer money goes to Zapf

She collects more than double her nearest opponent.

After raising a cool million to help get Kevin Faulconer into the mayor's office, the political action committee spearheaded by San Diego's Chamber of Commerce and the Associated General Contractors of America is shifting its ...

Will San Onofre settlement help ratepayers?

Aguirre skeptical

The Office of Ratepayer Advocates, a group within the California Public Utilities Commission that represents ratepayers, has reached an agreement with Southern California Edison and SDG&E, co-owners of the shuttered San Onofre nuclear operation. The ...

Mmm, great tentacles

Octopus is king at Davanti Enoteca

Davanti Enoteca is not a good place to go if you’re looking for a quick meal. I’m sure if you told the waiter you were in a hurry, they’d accommodate you, but the charms of ...

Discover San Diego's native heritage

The Pala and Kumeyaay: a pre-Spanish history.

Few people know that San Diego County has more American Indian reservations than any other county in the nation. Native American tribes have lived in the area for over 12,000 years. Today, a majority of ...

Your invite to a birthday bash at the Digital Gym

A few days after the red carpet was put in mothballs comes a reminder that the San Diego Latino Film Festival doesn’t end following its annual two week run. Lisa Franek, program director at the ...

San Diego Opera reforms as San Diego Popera

"Popular opera! What a concept!"

The San Diego Opera, long considered one of the best in the country, recently announced that financial difficulties necessitated its closure at the end of its 2014 season. But in his farewell speech before fleeing, ...

Campus Style: Cuyamaca College edition

It's difficult to find people on college campuses that aren’t wearing yoga or sweat pants with their hair swept up in unkempt, sloppy buns. Like most schools, comfort reins supreme on the campus of Cuyamaca ...

Thirty samplers later, I was ready to pass out

Baja Beer Fest

I woke up in a mansion in Ensenada on Sunday morning not sure how I got there. My new next door neighbor, Freddy, had invited me to the Baja Beer Fest and told me not ...

Still Crazee after all these years

But still far from being the best burger in town

We're a hamburger town in a hamburger country, and whether it's fast food or fine dining, most of the American-style restaurants in the city include a burger on the menu. Hell, some of the Asian ...

Distressed real estate kingpin goes big for Brewer

Dumanis foe won't disclose nature of relationship with candidate.

The election isn't until June, but the Deputy Sheriffs’ Association of San Diego County political action committee hasn't wasted any time getting signs lined up for its candidate of choice, attorney Robert Brewer, running to ...

Instabucks

San Diegans make money on the photo-sharing site

Instagram, the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app popular with selfie-taking teenagers, has become something unexpected — a shopping site. Now, instead of merely following your favorite celebrities, friends, and family members, you can follow hip boutiques that ...

Meet Quantum Brewing Company

Small, scientific nanobrewery in the works in Kearny Mesa

Fifteen years saturated with constant travel provided Dylan Wallace many worldly experiences — he’s climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, traversed the Inca Trail, and eaten and drunk his way through many cities in Europe and Asia. But ...

Traded my suit for Levis

Jeff Sanchez of Solana Beach was an investment banker for 12 years until the economy tanked and he lost his job. To ease the stress he began fixing items in his house such as repairing ...

Big hearts wanted

Eric Wray, human resources and operations manager at Noah Homes, might have a job for you. First, please tell me about Noah Homes. Noah Homes is a Catholic organization serving all faiths, whose mission is ...

Wednesday, March 26

Atheists, Evangelists, and Prophets take over Balboa Park

Walk in the park of shame.

Billy Stewart wants to know if I am ready to accept Jesus Christ into my heart. He stands under a cluster of palm trees along the Prado in Balboa Park. A navy-blue ball cap with ...

Record-release roundup

This week’s new releases include First Flask from barroom rockers Ass Pocket Whiskey Fellas, as well as a four-song EP from boogie masters Shakedown Daddies called Shake’n. Reunited bluegrass stars Nickel Creek will drop A ...

Reaching out

We All Shop There Re: City Lights: “Scripps Ranch to Walmart: Put it in Mira Mesa,” March 20 Oh, Jenny. So funny you are. Silly girl, don’t you know that every single neighborhood in America ...

One chicken per 1000 square feet okayed in La Mesa

Art Madrid and the rooster on Maryland Avenue notwithstanding

The La Mesa City Council voted 4-1 on March 25 to amend the municipal code and allow people to keep domestic fowl such as chickens in single-family residential zones. Roosters are prohibited, and councilmembers called ...

Opera president denies ugliest rumors

City wouldn't cut Civic Center rent.

Karen Cohn, chairwoman of San Diego Opera, says if some moneybags comes forward with a fat gift, the opera would love to start business again. I interviewed her because Ian Campbell, general director, said he ...

Maintenance deferred

It’s an open and shut case, according San Diego’s city auditor. The operator of Old Town’s Presidio Golf Course, owned by the city, was using it as an illegal parking lot over last year’s Cinco ...

Calypso on a Baja beach

Only the Belly Up has a greater tradition of bringing live music to North County than Gilles Knafo. He opened the Calypso Cafe in 1995 as a Mediterranean-style restaurant and dinner club. His seven-night-a-week blues, ...

The San Diego bikeist (cue trumpet fanfare)

First: what is a “bikeist,” anyway? I’ll begin by telling you what a bikeist is not. Importantly, a bikeist is not a “bikelist.” From The Urban Dictionary: Bikelist (pronounced: bike-a-list) — Someone who rides a ...

Jimmy Ruelas & the Resonator Guitar

Jimmy Ruelas, from Linda Vista, plays a resonator guitar made by National Steel. Those kinds of guitars always sound vaguely out of tune to me, but then, it is old technology that dates back to ...

Waterfalls, boulders, and beaches in Cougar Canyon

Hike into a lush desert riparian setting with waterfalls, pools, and shady trees.

Cougar Canyon is one of the delights of Coyote Canyon. It has willows, sycamores, and cottonwood trees in a lush riparian oasis where waterfalls cascade into deep pools surrounded by huge boulders and sandy beaches. ...

Stomp holes in the floor

Spring Awakening's lovely/evil

This idea for a musical sounds doomed from the start: base the story on a 100-plus-year-old play so controversial several countries banned it, which closed after one night on Broadway; talk and sing openly about ...

Bees on the Brain

Honey, the Environmental Protection Agency is failing you.

Hilary Kearney reminds me of a modern Joni Mitchell. She wears her stick-straight, shoulder-length, blond hair in a side-swept part. When I first met Hilary, she was barefoot and standing in her kitchen. Minutes earlier, ...

Salty Frog

Like most sterling life decisions, the Salty Frog was born out of little more than camaraderie and a sturdy dollop of beer-addled whimsy. Jason Hasty, his wife Alisha, and Kanai (pronounced “Can-I”) — a buddy ...

True band love

For fans of ’90s indie-rock, Speedy Ortiz sounds like more than a throwback. They come across as an authentic representative of that musical era. The tangled guitar lines, which always seem to find their way ...

In the San Diego music clubs Thursday–Saturday, March 27–29

Thursday 27Grease-punk preacher Reverend Horton Heat will wrap up his short week at Casbah Thursday night. Heat’s touring in support of his latest rockabilly record, Rev, and will headline sets by death-o-billy Danes Nekromantix (they’ve ...

Edison stockholders buoyed by $3 billion San Onofre deal

Nuclear waste to sizzle until 2022

Shares in Edison International, the parent company of San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station operator Southern California Edison, have hit new year-long highs daily since last Friday (March 21), and stock analysts are predicting that Edison ...

Tic tact

Barb narrowly avoids being suspected of crack-smoking.

“I wasn’t doing cocaine in the greenroom, I promise,” I said with a somewhat crazed nervous giggle. She smiled, nodded slowly, and then excused herself to go get changed.

David Bowie at the Thrift Trader?

Whether or not drivers are visually disturbed by the strobe light punctuating Hirsch the Machine Hirsch’s performance, few of those passing the El Cajon Boulevard/30th Street intersection are likely to pin it to Thrift Trader’s ...

The “Grand Chateau at Rancho Santa Fe” is no misnomer

Current Owner: John Isaac Listing Price: $15,800,000 Beds: 8 Baths: 10 The “Grand Chateau at Rancho Santa Fe” is a 20,000-square-foot estate in a well-known enclave for the ultra-wealthy, home to many of San Diego’s ...

San Diego water: You will pay

Even if the drought miraculously ends, water will be taking money from your pocketbook.

March was supposed to come in with a deluge. But populated areas got disappointingly little rain. And the rest of the month has been desert-dry. An El Niño may help later, but that’s iffy. Maybe ...

The Brothers Gow, true bros who are going somewhere

Drop out, rock out.

“Move to San Diego as soon as possible, and don’t waste your time anywhere else.”

High-pressure sales job

How to get students to attend UCSD? Get the professors to work the phones. That’s according to a memo last month by executive vice chancellor Suresh Subramani. “Research indicates that faculty interaction is a key ...

No sewer sleeping

San Diego is looking for a few good watchdogs to monitor its sewers. “The City needs enhanced security guard services at its various water and wastewater critical infrastructure sites located throughout San Diego County on ...

Song of Myself: from Section 24

A passage from Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman, a kosmos, of Manhattan the son, Turbulent, fleshy, sensual, eating, drinking and breeding, No sentimentalist, no stander above men and women or apart from them, No more modest than immodest. Unscrew the locks ...

Top events and things to do in San Diego this week, March 27–April 2

A drop-in group for writers at the La Jolla Library. All you have to do is show up and write. Writing prompts are provided, and no preregistration is necessary. Held at The Abbey, one of ...

In the San Diego music clubs Sunday–Wednesday, March 30–April 2

Sunday 30I’m just going to go ahead and call Saintseneca my surprise find of the week. These ANTI- folkies from Columbus, Ohio, are all kinds of weird Amerikana, in the vein of Violent Femmes and, ...

“A Fourefould Meditation on the Foure Last Things”

Lo! here the look which Angels do admire! Lo! here the spring from whom all goodness flows! Lo! here the sight that men and saints desire! Lo! here the stalks on which our comfort grows! ...

March 20 Sudoku Contenders

Evil Joe Arbusto, Rancho Penasquitos, 12. Bliss Beedle, Encinitas, 12. Clyde Christie, Coronado, 12. Joseph Ciprian, Little Italy, 12. Patrick Driscoll, Santee, 12. Martin Guillen, Oceanside, 12. Vincent Lee, San Diego, 12. Ralph Levy, La ...

March 20 Crossword Contenders

Martha Awdziewicz, Clairemont, 12. Evelyn Bowser, Hillcrest, 12. Bob Carlson, Serra Mesa, 12. Leslie Chase, Campo, 12. Joseph Ciprian, Little Italy, 12. Maria Coda, Oceanside, 12. * Allan Dorfman, Del Mar, 12. Jacque Glick, El ...

Tuesday, March 25

Lucky Liu's comes to the Gaslamp

New Chinese restaurant plays with old favorites without trying to make them more than what they are

After a few months of operation, Lucky Liu’s still hasn’t gotten a license to sell alcohol. Either the ABC is trying for restaurant infanticide, or owner Alex Thao and his associates were overly optimistic about ...

Impeachment bragging may bite Goldsmith

Either they had control over Filner or they didn’t

City Attorney Jan Goldsmith took pride, and much credit, for ousting Bob Filner from the mayor's office. After Filner's departure, Goldsmith turned to media outlets and social media sites such as Twitter boasting about the ...

Court to San Diego: hands off Travelocity

Chinese tourists will outnumber nerds

The City of San Diego lost an appeal in the state second appellate district March 5. San Diego and other cities like Anaheim and Santa Monica wanted to slap a transient occupancy tax (hotel tax) ...

Work for the Port or the City? You’re exempt from lobby laws

Ex-San Diego redevelopment chief Jeff Graham strikes gold as influence peddler.

Jeff Graham — who used to run the post-redevelopment Civic San Diego and before that worked for the now-defunct Centre City Development Corporation, both city agencies — has just made a lucrative move to the ...

San Diego Zoo readies pugnacious pachyderms for War Elephant exhibit

"The San Diego Zoo is a city institution," said Zoo Director of Mammalian Armory Walter Tusk. "SeaWorld, on the other hand, is a relative Johnny Come Lately, owned by an out-of-town corporation. So why does ...

Triton drones finish 60,000-feet flights in Palmdale

Cost six times more than Reapers

The initial phase of testing for the billion-dollar Triton unmanned aerial vehicle has concluded, defense contractor Northrop Grumman announced today. While General Atomics and its Predator and Reaper drones receive much of the local spotlight ...

Sampler Flight: March 25 – 31

Bands and women banding together among week’s beery highlights

March 29 | Two-Year Anniversary: Latitude 33 Brewing Company is throwing itself a “birthday party” with food from dueling gastrotrucks, music from a quartet of bands and five specialty beers including a strawberry-tinged version of ...

Stay away from PB

CicloSDias event next Sunday already dreaded by some

San Diego’s City Council approved a blockade of 2.5 miles of Garnet Avenue and two miles of Cass Street to take place next Sunday (March 30). A group which calls themselves CicloSDias was granted permission ...

Bamberg, Germany: the "beer city"

Nine breweries and a UNESCO designation make it a Bavarian must-stop.

The nearly four-hour train journey north from Munich whipped us past a landscape of farmland, old Bavarian villages and rolling hills. Our destination: the historic city of Bamberg. We booked a small room at the ...

Monday, March 24

Latino Film Festival Q&A with crew of Levantamuertos

Friday was a grand night for moviegoing at this year’s San Diego Latino Film Festival, where I had the pleasure of introducing a couple of pictures on behalf of the San Diego Film Critics Society. ...

Strike called off at UCSD hospitals

Four percent raise, limits on contract workers.

An eleventh-hour settlement has averted yet another strike on the University of California's medical campuses, including hospitals in Hillcrest and La Jolla. The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees union local 3299, which ...

Documentary at La Paloma: Surfers travel to Aleutian island

Hunting season over, winter storms pending.

Playing to two shows at the La Paloma Theatre on March 22, Surfer magazine presented the San Diego County premier of its new film, The Cradle of Storms. The 25-minute documentary follows three West Coast ...

North Park memorial for 1978 PSA crash that killed 144

Relatives want more than small plaques

Aside from the 22 newer homes and buildings in North Park, a newcomer to San Diego would never know that on September 25, 1978 a total of 144 people died as the result of a ...

Dumanis set to open TV ad war

Embattled District Attorney lays out big cash for pre-primary television spots.

San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, beset by a well-funded opponent and a high profile federal case against a wealthy political backer, is laying out big bucks for television spots prior to June's primary election. ...

The unimaginable depth of Japanese cuisine

Finding it exotic all over again

I love Japanese food, and I have eaten a lot of Japanese food. But if a recent visit to Izakaya Sakura proved anything, it's that I've developed a sort of Japanese comfort zone, and it's ...

Pacific Brewing Company set to open

This weekend marks grand opening for new Miramar brewery

I’ve made it a focus to meet brewing entrepreneurs in the earlier stages of their brewery start-ups. Such was the case with Andrew Heino and Chris Chalmers, former Stone Brewing Co. brewers staking out together ...

Sunday, March 23

Just a Sunday afternoon trash fire on National Ave.

What the landlord’s water device did.

Around 3:45 on Sunday afternoon, March 23, 2014, a bright clear windy afternoon, firefighters responded to a fire in the 2900 block of National Avenue. A neighbor around the corner had smelled smoke and called ...

Savoie Eatery hits Otay Ranch

An unexpected bid for fine dining supremacy from a Mexican seafood dynasty

Coming from the group behind the Karina’s Mexican Seafood restaurants, Eastlake’s new Savoie Eatery is...interesting, to say the least. Savoie has prime real estate in the Otay Ranch Town Center mall, which puts it in ...

Tijuana culture through screen printing

Mexican Fashion: Puro Tijuas

Mexican-American but Tijuana born and raised, Arturo Vázquez (29 years old) has been in the business of screen-printing since 2007. His store is one of the first to open in Pasaje Rodriguez (off Second Street, ...

Robert May: Out on a limb

Budding playwrights used to ask Robert May why their scripts weren’t being produced. Some had a staged reading, but nothing beyond that. May kept his “flip answer” to himself: “Write a better play.” “Now I ...

This week in the San Diego jazz clubs: March 26-30

Violinist Jamie Shadowlight leads an all-star band on Friday

Wednesday 26 Trumpet master Gilbert Castellanos hosts the Young Lions Series at Croce’s Park West (2760 5th Avenue). This week’s featured artist is saxophonist Chaz Cabrera. Castellanos will play the first set (7:00 p.m., $5 ...

The inside story of San Diego Opera's demise

Who is at fault?

On the evening of March 20, San Francisco Opera held its annual meeting. David Gockley, general director, said the announced folding of San Diego Opera is "a tragedy." San Diego was"one of the best-run companies ...

Saturday, March 22

NYC's 9/11 Memorial

Visiting Manhattan, I had always relegated my trips to uptown, never to the Battery Park area, Wall Street area or... the World Trade Center. Of course, coming into the city from the south, I’d seen ...

Council to rescind permit for University Town Center neon sign

Judge Timothy Taylor nails staff for double standard.

On Tuesday, city councilmembers will rescind a permit granted to shopping mall conglomerate Westfield Group to hang a 672-square-foot neon sign at Westfield's UTC Shopping Mall. City staff as well as city councilmembers granted the ...

Scandia Motel sits nearly vacant

Carlsbad owner rents for $55 but is selective

What if you had a fairly well maintained, 23-unit motel, two blocks from the beach, and during the first week of spring break, nobody checked in? Such is the case of the Scandia Motel at ...

Little Saigon's alternative to burger-and-fries

Bánh mì and egg rolls, and more egg rolls

As of last summer, the stretch of El Cajon Blvd. between Highland Avenue and Euclid is officially known as Little Saigon. Unofficially, it's long been known as the best place to go in search of ...

Beer of the Week: La Jolla Brewing Big Time Stout

First seasonal from new, improved brewpub in The Jewel is a hit

In some ways it felt like nothing had changed. There I was on the patio of the brewpub on Fay Avenue, drinking beer with my dog. But that was the extent of any real similarity. ...

Friday, March 21

La Bonne Table open in Hillcrest

French bistro replaces Voyou, delivers disappointment and high prices

Hillcrest’s Voyou Wine Bar is no more. Following a quickie remodel, the restaurant has re-opened as La Bonne Table. Where Voyou aimed at a modern look, the new place looks to evince a kind of ...

Major concrete pour planned 7th and J, downtown

Enough for L.A.-San Diego sidewalk

Downtown residents are being warned to expect a major disturbance on Saturday morning, as work crews will be pouring concrete for the slab of a new headquarters building for Sempra Energy. Partial street closures will ...

Brownie Girl's bicycle recovered after being stolen

An act of kindness in Tijuana

Marifer Treviño, also known as La Brownie Girl, goes to music and food events in Tijuana selling her homemade brownies (including vegan, oreo, peanut butter, original, etc). When there's no festival or events, she goes ...

Dom Kennedy brings L.A. to Soma's main stage

Los Angeles–based hip-hop artist Dom Kennedy rocked the mic from the SOMA main stage during a sold-out show on his “Get Home Safely Tour.” Kennedy kicked the show off with “Lets Be Friends,” a jazzy ...

Hipsters or nerds?

Judging youthful style on grown men

My friend Natalie recently broke up with her boyfriend. In an effort to get her to move on, I attempted to set her up with a good guy friend of mine. They have a lot ...

Quinones, Ricasa, Cartmill, Cabello weigh pleas vs. fighting

Annie Malcolm loans a crucial $5000

No one can estimate the cost to taxpayers for the South Bay scandal that involved pay-to-play charges and millions in Southwestern College and Sweetwater Union High School District bond money. But the costs continue to ...

Broadway bayside blighted, Manchester lawyers say

U-T San Diego publisher wants judge to throw out state's case against project.

The way lawyers for Douglas Manchester see it, the Republican developer and U-T San Diego publisher is doing San Diegans a big favor with his controversial, mega-million dollar Navy Broadway bayside development deal. "The Navy ...

Jon Pardi's Write You a Song

It’s refreshing to see a young country artist write his own songs and wear a Stetson straw cowboy hat. With modern country singers opting for trucker hats and V-necks, sometimes a tight pair of Wranglers ...

The Mission Hills Greek District?

Pick your pita time: fast or slow

At the nexus of Hillcrest and Mission Hills, on Washington Street, in the generically named Mediterranean Café, a sign reads "Good food takes time." A block over, the fast food franchise Daphne's California Greek doesn't ...

Ted Leitner's On-Air Suitcase Meltdown Explained

Methinks the Leitner did protest too much.

Officially, Ted Leitner has made no public statement since his on-air meltdown in the final seconds of the San Diego State-New Mexico Mountain West Conference title game, during which he castigated the venue's security personnel ...

Meet Jamul Brewing Company

Not to be confused with the town’s other eponymous upstart

I’m not perfect. I accepted that long ago. So, two weeks ago, when I was notified that I’d used an incorrect Twitter handle to call out an article about a brewpub setting up shop in ...

Thursday, March 20

All Things BBQ, the final results: San Diego's best barbecue

The need-to-know essentials

Well, this is it. All Things BBQ is (for now) at an end, and the results painstakingly analyzed. It was never meant purely as a contest, more as an extended lecture on one of the ...

Audrey Hepburn: junk food merchant

What would you do for a Klondike Bar? Preferably choke on one before ever again biting into a Dovebar. M&M/Mars, the company that acquired the Dove line in 1986, has decided the best way to ...

Mayor Faulconer makes dramatic plea to save San Diego Opera

"Cincinnati has an opera, people. Cincinnati."

Just one day after San Diego Opera announced that it would be ceasing operations at the close of its season, a visibly shaken Mayor Faulconer called a special public session of the City Council to ...

Last Call

Two shows must close this weekend, and that’s a crying shame

The North Coast Rep’s The School for Lies had that rare, mega-hit show feel from the start. David Ives set his take on Moliere’s The Misanthrope in 1666, and the dialogue’s rhymed couplets. So, like, ...

Obese woman sought for questioning in San Diego Opera closure case

"Apparently, she sang."

"Operas don't just disappear," says San Diego Opera Director Ian Campbell, speaking of his company's imminent closure at season's end. "Especially not 50-year institutions operating near the top of the field. Somebody has to get ...

San Diego Navy privatization costly, audit says

Taxpayers fork over increased housing allowance to bail out Pacific Beacon

As newly elected GOP mayor Kevin Faulconer begins his behind-the-scenes ramp-up of what is expected to be a sweeping privatization at San Diego's city hall, a federal audit cautions that rampant outsourcing is not necessarily ...

Mexican sports agent swings at MLB

Claims a "conspiracy" funnels players' paychecks to Mexican league clubs

Major League Baseball isn't playing fair with pro-caliber Mexicans, claims David Gonzalez Camacho, a trainer with roots in both Tijuana and San Diego and the father of former Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez describes ...

Got the Bugg?

Teens Bugg out at Brit pop star's M-Theory instore

Jake Bugg has now joined the long list of greats to come from Nottingham — Robin Hood, Alvin Lee, and me. ;-D Bugg performed a short in-store acoustic performance at M theory in Mission Hills, ...

San Diegans shocked by news of San Diego Opera's closure

"We have opera?"

Yesterday, U-T San Diego reported that the San Diego Opera will cease operations at the close of its current season. SD on the QT hit the streets to get the public's reaction to the stunning ...

Breakfast at Humphreys

Stellar view, hit-or-miss food, and oh — the napkins!

On a recent Wednesday morning, my husband and I visited Humphreys Restaurant on Shelter Island. Only two or three tables were occupied. We were seated at a table next to the floor-length window and enjoyed ...

Frat Spat

Newly formed UCSD Muslim fraternity Alpha Lambda Mu came under administrative scrutiny this week after reports surfaced that the organization was incorporating controversial practices sometimes associated with Islam into its pledge initiations. First, pledges were ...

AleSmith movin’ on up

Acclaimed brewing company locked-in for expansion to large-scale Miramar facility

It was an evening nearly half-a-year ago. I was sharing time, beer, and conversation with Peter Zien, owner and brewmaster at AleSmith Brewing Company (9368 Cabot Drive, Miramar). Over the years, this kindly San Diego ...

Interview with Divergent stars Ben Lloyd-Hughes and Christian Madsen

In Divergent (opening this week), Shailene Woodley plays Tris, a young woman living in a post-war dystopian city that has been divided into five factions: Erudite, Dauntless, Abnegation, Amity, and Candor. At 16, all children ...

Wednesday, March 19

Nobody listens at open mics

“Check, check...reality check”

It’s an addiction — no, more like a hobby.

San Diego Opera calls it quits

Out with the old

Last night at the conclusion of San Diego Opera’s orchestral rehearsal for Verdi’s Requiem, Gerry Whitney was honored. Gerry has been with San Diego Opera for 43 years and has been in a ridiculous number ...

Suspected bike thieves rough up schoolboy

Two 18-year-olds busted — one divulges location of bicycle

A 16-year-old said he was riding his bike home from San Marcos High School on a Tuesday afternoon when he was confronted by two persons he had never seen before. “I just felt this punch,” ...

Jim’s got Jimbo’s number

When Jim Heath adopted the name “Reverend Horton Heat” in the ’80s, he didn’t have high hopes for his particular brand of “rock and roll influenced by mid-century American music, especially rockabilly.” “When you’re in ...

Fanfarlo has larger concerns

Fanfarlo is coming back to the States, and I think for this tour they’ve shape-shifted away from their past as a feel-good dance band with synths. The last CD sounded like it desperately wanted to ...

Letters to the Reader

At What Cost? Dyslexic error in the Jack Tempchin piece, aptly titled “Peaceful Boozy Feeling,” by Patrick Henderson (Blurt, March 13). Mr. Tempchin’s red wine has been out for 11 months and retails for $19.99 ...

Rumbling Tins Construction’s Old Rye Sage

The fellows from Rumbling Tins Construction brought their pleasant clamor to the Westgate Hotel to offer patrons a trifecta of cocktails as part of a recent tasting soirée. A five-member collaboration of jiggering journeymen, Rumbling ...

Shocker: San Diego Opera to fold

Board votes 33-1 to close down

According to the U-T, the San Diego Opera will close down at the end of this season after 49 years. The board voted 33 to 1 for the shuttering today (March 19). Ian Campbell, general ...

City attorney's office accused of blocking campaign application

Wannabe District 2 candidate Bryan Pease files complaint in federal court

Bryan Pease, an animal-rights activist and attorney best known for his defense of La Jolla seals, is fighting to be included on the list of potential appointees to fill newly elected mayor Kevin Faulconer's council ...

Newspapers, no...The Colbert Report, yes

Age: 28 Occupation: Digital Marketer Neighborhood: Ocean Beach Where Interviewed: Barnes & Noble, Hazard Center What are you reading? “On my phone, I’m reading The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. It’s just a way ...

The Hat in the Sky

After the war, after I was born, my father’s hobby (perhaps his obsession) was photography. New fathers often become photographers, it seems. But he took pictures of many things besides me, as if he suddenly ...

Music’s mad scientists

“The San Diego Experimental Guitar Show started out as an event that included all of my noise-artist friends,” says host Sam Lopez in anticipation of the event’s fifth annual incarnation at the Soda Bar on ...

Tacos bulge with generosity at Mariscos Germán

Taco and beer, $2.69

Oh, man. Trolley’s crowded tonight. ’Course, Friday night, Blue Line, heading south, what else would you expect? Especially this front car. Everybody’s packed in here so they can get out closest to the line in ...

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints — San Diego Ward

We continue to progress once we die.

Elder: Gary Sabin Seventy Membership: 50,000 Age: 59 Born: Provo, Utah Formation: Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah; Stanford University, Stanford; “and a lot of on-the-job training.” Years Ordained: one year San Diego Reader: What is ...

Relieve itchy skin with olive oil and/or vinegar

Skin care for mummy.

“It depends on where the itch is and the age of the person.”

The Queen and her subjects

I haven’t owned a camera for 30 years and don’t yet have a smartphone. I’ve been writing about photography for 30 years, and when I was very young it shaped my sensibility in ways I’m ...

Price of jazz

“We have a diverse audience.” Mark DeBoskey is the general manager of KSDS Jazz 88.3 FM at City College. “We have the traditional jazz listeners who are 55-plus and remember the golden age of jazz.” ...

The Falconer: Part 1

This vulture will crack you up.

We’re going to spend some time with Kate Marden, master falconer. Marden, 55, owns West Coast Falconry in Marysville, California, and is a partner in West Coast Falconry–San Diego, which can be found in Alpine. ...

War is a junket

San Diego Unified Port District commissioner Garry Bonelli is looking to go on a spring junket to Israel and Jordan, but before making his reservations the retired two-star admiral checked in with the state’s Fair ...

What to do in San Diego this week, March 20–March 26

Explore animal eggs, discover changes in the sea by designing your own plankton, create a shark-egg craft, and participate in an underwater egg hunt. Entry fee included with admission. Also on Friday. San Diego’s longest ...

Ticket fix

Over at San Diego–based utility giant Sempra Energy, the lobbyists’ handouts were more sizable than those at Barona. Miguel Martinez, field deputy for Democratic assemblyman John Perez, got two admissions to a December 28 event ...

Scripps Ranch to Walmart: Put it in Mira Mesa

This would substantially alter the character of Scripps Ranch,” fumes Jenny Marshall, whose 15-member Save Our Scripps (“SOS”) Ranch group is determined to stop a big-box project from crashing the gates of the “Ranch.” In ...

Schist and intrusions in Cool Canyon

Colorful walls of metamorphic schist and intrusions of granite and quartz make this an interesting canyon hike.

A lifestyle coach is someone who attracts money

Post Title: Who is a Lifestyle Coach? Post Date: May 1, 2013 Who is a Lifestyle coach? Someone who is living the life of their dreams. Someone who is comfortable in their own skin. Someone ...

Culinary institute for Democrats

Democratic governor Jerry Brown, on an apparent easy course to reelection this year, last week bagged a $10,000 campaign contribution from San Diego’s Qualcomm, founded by billionaire Barack Obama–backer Irwin Jacobs. Not much more surprising ...

Dazzling musical feats

“For me, this concert began about four years ago, when I was wondering to myself if it might be possible to gain access and play artistically with the Giant Dome Theater at Reuben H. Fleet ...

In the San Diego music clubs Sunday–Wednesday, March 23–26

Sunday 23From right up the road in Long Beach, garage-pop trio Tijuana Panthers will play Soda Bar behind last year’s well-received release Semi-Sweet. A record, according to the band, that captures their “nice-guy angst.” I ...

March 13 Sudoku Contenders

Evil * Bliss Beedle, Encinitas, 11. Joseph Ciprian, Little Italy, 11. Patrick Driscoll, Santee, 11. Martin Guillen, Oceanside, 11. Richard Hutchings, Santee, 11. Ralph Levy, La Jolla, 11. Hiroshi Miyazaki, Normal Heights, 11. Randy Paddock, ...

In the San Diego music clubs Thursday–Saturday, March 20–22

Thursday 20Texas alt-rock vets the Toadies hop into Belly Up on the 20-year anniversary tour of their commercial breakthrough, the platinum-selling Interscope set Rubberneck. This summer the band’s re-releasing the collection with five more songs ...

March 13 Crossword Contenders

Martha Awdziewicz, Clairemont, 11. L. Barling, El Cajon, 11. Evelyn Bowser, Hillcrest, 11. * Marvin A. Brown, Clairemont, 11. Charlotte Brown , Clairemont, 11. Bob Carlson, Serra Mesa, 11. Leslie Chase, Campo, 11. Joseph Ciprian, ...

Tuesday, March 18

Scheme to steal $20 million from Navy detailed

Second confession in Glenn Defense Marine Asia scandal

Alex Wisidagama, a former executive of Singapore-based Glenn Defense Marine Asia, pleaded guilty today (March 18) to participating in a scheme to get the United States to overpay $20 million for supplies and services. The ...

Fast-food workers protest wage theft

McDonald's was sued last week, other suits coming, say advocates

A group of advocates for fast-food workers gathered outside a McDonald's restaurant on Main Street in Barrio Logan Tuesday morning, March 18, to protest widespread allegations of wage theft at the company and elsewhere. Workers ...

At the house of frog tacos

This food truck delivers top food and bottom prices

You notice it as you come in on the Blue Line: The pool of light. The clump of customers. The mariscos (seafood) food truck. Everybody's standing around, heads forward, chowing down. Lotta customers: good sign. ...

Todd Gloria ordered to round up e-messages

Lawsuit challenged councilman’s use of electronics during hearings

Council president Todd Gloria may have to turn over city-related text messages and emails from his private email account after all. In a March 14 tentative ruling, superior-court judge Joel Wohlfeil ordered Gloria to begin ...

Former SDPD detective pleads guilty

Encinas admits falsifying records to impede crime investigation

Former San Diego police detective Ernesto Encinas pleaded guilty today (March 18) to conspiring to commit campaign finance crimes at the local and federal levels. He admitted that he and his co-conspirators agreed to make ...

California Public Utilities Commission attacked!

Regulator wouldn't allow intervenor fees to be paid to attorney Aguirre

San Diego attorney Mike Aguirre today (March 18) held a press conference to denounce the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for denying him intervenor fees in his recent battle against San Diego Gas & Electric's ...

Fifteen stellar minutes with Stellan Skarsgård

Lars von Trier's Nymphomaniac: Part 1 opens Friday at Landmark Hillcrest

Lars von Trier’s latest, most outrageous releases, Nymphomaniac: Part 1 and Nymphomaniac: Part 2 are tough sells. That more than likely accounts for why so many of the film’s big name stars, give or take ...

Rankled by Sweetwater district meeting cancellation

Teachers, public, and a trustee espouse importance of dialogue before strike

A Sweetwater Union High School District board meeting was scheduled for March 17. The trustees were to consider several contentious issues: the annual evaluation of superintendent Ed Brand (which is months overdue); negotiations with the ...

The Trip’s Macbeth

I don’t like reviewing a show after it closed. If I enjoyed it, people ask why didn’t I review it sooner; if not, why hurl barbs after the fact? I’m also wary of promos that ...

Developer Stuck in the Rough gets warning letter

No fine levied against silent backer of Lincoln Club’s Fletcher hit pieces

The state’s Fair Political Practices Commission has handed a warning letter — but no fine — to a five-figure financial backer of the GOP Lincoln Club’s war of hit pieces against Nathan Fletcher last year. ...

Mayor Faulconer kills proposal to purge emails

Says open government necessary

Mayor Kevin Faulconer today (March 18) rescinded a proposal to eliminate city emails after one year. People were shocked to find that officials who rely on information trails — such as auditor Eduardo Luna and ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (3 of 3)

The conclusion of the Reader interview with Stephanie Blythe

Part one began our interview, it continued with part two, and concludes here. SB: Last night, for the first time in my life, I watched How Green Was My Valley. Oh my God, it’s a ...

Shaded deck seating apparently worth the wait at Krakatoa

Slow service hasn't turned people away

I keep waiting for Golden Hill to finally give up on Krakatoa. The converted craftsman coffeehouse is plenty inviting, with a shaded wraparound deck and ample parking in the back. But it's slow. The frustrating ...

Sampler Flight: March 18 – 24

A small but formidable handful of local beer events

March 22 | Bands & Beers: Music and beer aren’t all that different. A creative drive is behind both of these artistic ventures, after all. Both mediums will be celebrated together when bands, The Mice, ...

Monday, March 17

Escondido man denies stalking charge

Ex-convict accuses mother of his children of infidelity

Marco Antonio Carapia, 34, pleaded not guilty today, March 17, to felony stalking of the mother of his two children. “In his mind, I was screwing everybody,” a woman identified as Ashley told a judge. ...

Whiskey notebook: 2 Gingers rolls into San Diego

Just in time for St. Pat's

It's an odd thing to hear an it-is-ya-know Irish accent filtered through Minnesota real-good-then. Almost as odd, perhaps, as encountering an Irish whiskey named after a couple of redheaded women, dreamed up in a Minneapolis ...

Lindbergh Field drug smugglers busted

Hand-offs made by baggage handlers in adjoining bathroom stalls

Four baggage handlers at San Diego International Airport (aka Lindbergh Field) were indicted Friday (March 14) on charges of conspiring to smuggle cocaine and methamphetamine onto aircraft by exploiting their ability to pass unchecked through ...

City sued for racial discrimination

Woman says she was passed over for a promotion due to skin color

A city employee of nearly 24 years filed a racial discrimination suit against the city on March 4, claiming higher-ups in the Purchasing & Contracting Department denied her a promotion because she is African American. ...

Los Peñasquitos Lagoon mouth full again

Recent storm, high tides create sand bar that inhibits tidal flow

The entrance of the Los Peñasquitos Lagoon has silted shut again. The recent high winter surf along with high spring tides moved in a large sand bar and the lagoon is no longer emptying into ...

Dancin’ in the Street at Ira Aldridge Repertory Players

Artistic Director Calvin Manson fills the Educational Cultural Complex, almost literally, with a tribute to Soul Music. Seven singers, finalists in a contest, dig deep into 20 songs, from Otis’s “Respect,” to Al Green’s “Let’s ...

As new fee imposed, university exec gets a raise

UCSD to California State University transfer pays off for administrator

While SDSU prepares to levy its new $200-per-semester "student success fee," yet another highly paid university administrator from San Diego is going on to even bigger money at the California State University system's headquarters in ...

Maldonado family farm closes in Cardiff

Land owner sells parcel (zoned for 7 homes) to developer instead

Maldonado Farms, active in Cardiff by the Sea for over 40 years, is shutting down — at least at the location they’ve held. The large greenhouse at 1412 MacKinnon Road was torn down last week. ...

Spring in Afghanistan

Living in the combat zone.

When I think of what spring means in San Diego, baseball games and announcements of new animals from the zoo come to mind. Traffic and tourists who don't understand common-knowledge speed limit. It means more ...

Sailors help snuff fire at PB Denny’s dumpster

We’ve been trained for things like this.

The flames were shooting above the roof of the restaurant as crews from San Diego Fire-Rescue responded to a reported fire in the Denny’s parking lot at 10:32 p.m. on the evening of Saturday, March ...

El Cajon robbery suspect captured in North Carolina

Man accused of 2010 armed robbery

A fugitive wanted in connection with an armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon in El Cajon was apprehended in North Carolina last week (March 13) by U.S. Marshals. Twenty-six-year-old Conner Douglas Burns is ...

From Rock Bottom to Mike Hess

Head brewer from closed downtown brewpub finds new life in North Park

Last October, I received an email from a colleague of a professional brewer Jason Stockberger asking if I knew of any open brewing positions. Stockberger’s job as head brewer was eliminated when national chain Rock ...

Sunday, March 16

Sweetwater trustees to vote on property sale

But the land is already listed for sale?

On March 17, Sweetwater trustees will vote on whether or not to sell district property deemed "surplus." The property, located at 435 Third Avenue in Chula Vista, was originally purchased for new district headquarters; proceeds ...

Ted Leitner has on-air meltdown at SDSU game

Calls Las Vegas security personnel "morons"

San Diego State basketball announcer Ted Leitner blew his stack yesterday afternoon as the Aztecs lost a squeaker to New Mexico at the Mountain West Conference title game held in Las Vegas. The meltdown came ...

This week in the San Diego Jazz Clubs: March 17–23

Check out the "Legends of Jazz" on Saturday night

Monday 17 Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at Dizzy’s (4275 Mission Bay Drive) with Celtic Groove featuring Wanda Law on Irish fiddle, Beth Ross-Buckley on flute, Fred Benedetti on guitar, Jon Szanto on percussion and Jeff ...

State police departments using cell-phone trackers

San Diego among users, according to study

Sacramento's News10 has come out with a major study of police-department uses of so-called "stingray" devices to monitor cell-phone conversations. San Diego is among many California law-enforcement agencies using the devices. When a stingray is ...

Saturday, March 15

Pedestrian rage leads to stabbing in Imperial Beach

Driver came too close, crosswalker with kids punched the car

A road-rage incident involving a pedestrian in front of the Imperial Beach farmers’ market on Friday, March 14, resulted in one man in the hospital with stab wounds, another man in custody, and a large ...

Bee Sting coffee: where is thy sting?

Missing the cayenne?

Crista's sister was down from Montana. She too had been a barista here, at Café Madrid, and now she had something to teach her kid sibling. "Bee Sting," she says to her. "You've got to ...

Thief admits taking Reuben H. Fleet memorabilia

Plea deal made with felon

Edward Charles Peek admitted grand theft and was immediately sentenced to 16 months’ custody on Wednesday, March 12. He could have received as much as three years in prison for stealing what investigators described as ...

Second wave of Dreamers seeks asylum in Otay Mesa

Immigration policies Inconsistent, says National Immigrant Youth Alliance

Ramon Dorado adjusted the tassel on his graduation cap as he stood stiffly in front of a group of about 35 people he would soon lead 200 yards north to the U.S.-Mexico border. Flanked by ...

Beer of the Week: The Lost Abbey Cuvee de Tomme

If it’s on tap, it’s not to be missed

There are some beers that rarely make it on draft outside of their native tasting rooms. Produced in small quantities, they’re the types of brews that, regardless of what I’m in the mood for, I ...

Friday, March 14

Report notes DeMaio's "green" hypocrisy

He touts renewable energy but takes money from Koch brothers

It appears that Carl DeMaio, who wants to run for Congress, likes both green energy and green money collected from climate-change deniers. The publication thinkprogress.org notes that on his campaign website, DeMaio, who calls himself ...

University Heights school building followup

San Diego Unified provides notes from closed-session meeting

A recent Reader article dealt with a long-stalled-plan to renovate the historic Teachers Training Annex #1 at 4100 Normal Street, turning it into a public library. The empty and deteriorating building is owned by the ...

100 Wines making its mark in Hillcrest

Cohn restaurant proves itself worth of a full-time chef and a committed menu

100 Wines looks like it’s going to be OK. The Cohn Restaurant Group has never been afraid to shutter an ailing property — just look at what happened to Kemo Sabe after 15 years — ...

Leucadia resident can’t replace stairway to sand

Coastal commission says nay to Beacons Beach homeowner

A long fight by a Leucadia homeowner to try to replace a private stairway to Beacons Beach ended sharply at the California Coastal Commission Thursday, March 13, with the commission rejecting the owner's appeal. "It ...

Abbe Wolfsheimer-Stutz dies

"She had integrity; didn't deal in nonsense."

Abbe Wolfsheimer-Stutz, who served for eight years on the San Diego City Council, died of lung cancer yesterday afternoon (March 13). She had been diagnosed last July. She wanted no memorial services, but it is ...

Military contracting giants gird for barrio battle

Multinationals chip in big to defeat community plan at polls

With San Diego's mayor in its pocket and a bundle of cash already laid out, the world’s military contracting lobby appears to be leaving nothing to chance in its bid to kill the Barrio Logan ...

This is not your independent food truck

Cohn restaurants piles onto the mobile street food craze

It looks like food truck design must be the next commercial art boom. A lot of these guys are clearly paying special attention to how their business gets represented in mural form on the side ...

William Shatner's Ponder the Mystery

Let’s assume he’s serious. Simplifies matters. And unlike his previous, Seeking Major Tom, this one has no well-known originals to brain-sprain yourself over. He’s by turns polemic, stumbling, provocative, gravely. You need his grit, too, ...

Try this one weird trick to enjoy The Grand Budapest Hotel

I liked The Grand Budapest Hotel better than my co-critic Mr. Marks. Even so, it takes only the merest whit of imagination and effort to set the film’s alpine chase sequence to the melodic strains ...

Macaulay Culkin's Pizza Underground underwhelms Tijuana hipster dive

Macaulay Culkin’s Pizza Underground turned out be exactly what everyone had expected — an over-hyped, under-talented group of friends who got stoned and took an inside joke (which should have worn off with the weed) ...

New rules could hurt for-profit schools

Bridgepoint stock has plunged this week

The Obama administration is moving forward with a regulatory proposal that should, if it goes into effect, curb the abuses of for-profit colleges. Students at these schools represent 13% of higher-education enrollment but account for ...

Adams Avenue music festival only free to you and me

Business district's annual money-loser, "Unplugged," turns to online fundraiser Kickstarter for relief

Adams Avenue Unplugged, the free music festival set for April 26 and 27 has launched a fundraiser on Kickstarter to help pay for the costs of the street fair, which takes over two miles of ...

Thursday, March 13

Dear Mayor Faulconer: repeal the email retention policy

"We disagree that it would be legal, either on its face or as applied."

Kevin Faulconer's decision to suspend a city policy to delete all city emails one year or older was good news for open-government advocates. But since that announcement, the mayor and city staff have been silent; ...

A taste of Southern Italy: Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast

Sorrento is well positioned as the gateway to several locations of interest in southern Italy, including Pompeii, Capri, and the spectacular, meandering Amalfi Coast. But the town of 17,000 is also worth exploring in its ...

Bonsall’s length of Highway 76 to become four lanes

Widening to I-15 (promised decades ago) to take three years

Motorists along Highway 76 between Bonsall and I-15 are happy to see that the final six-mile phase of the Highway 76 widening project has begun. Last week, crews started clearing out heavy brush and trees ...

Tribal print and bunny rabbit purses at City College

Inspired

Tracy Yang wanted to give me a gift for taking her photograph at City College. The 18-year-old music major shuffled around in her bunny rabbit purse, a bag she purchased while visiting China, searching for ...

West Side Spielberg?

When you’re a hack, you’re a hack all the way!

“I always wanted to make another picture about sharks,” Steve Spielberg joked during last night’s fever dream, “and given the success of The Terminal, I wouldn’t mind throwing in a couple of jets to spark ...

How Cashae got the gig

Lynn Nottage’s Crumbs from the Table of Joy, recently in a highly praised production at Moxie Theatre, has two roles for teenage women. Ernestine, the oldest, tells how she, her father and younger sister moved ...

SD County Indian gambling board lacks disclosure

State audit implicates Sheriff Gore, Supervisor Jacobs, and more

The county of San Diego has been playing fast and loose with transparency and the distribution of Indian gambling cash awarded to it by the state, ostensibly to cover the adverse impacts of tribal casinos ...

Manchester rumored to drop Austin hotel

Experts say market saturated, move would be wise

The rumor is hot that Doug Manchester is not going ahead with his 1035-room, $350-million hotel in Austin, Texas. I could not get confirmation from Manchester or the owner of the property. The groundbreaking has ...

¡Bienvenidos al Festival de Cine Latino de San Diego!

My piñata runneth over as the most wonderful time of the year for los amantes del cine locales — the 21st Annual San Diego Latino Film Festival — rolls into town for the next 11 ...

All Things BBQ: Best of the rest

With the series coming to a close, here are a few, final entries that merit mention

All Things BBQ is just about at an end. Here’s a few spots that didn’t get a solo treatment, but bear mentioning as the “best of the rest.” Bull’s Smokin’ BBQ: Good, solid, Texas-style ‘cue. ...

Camp Lots-a-jobs

The YMCA is taking applications for summer camp jobs

Frank Kasunic explains how you can get work as a YMCA camp counselor. First, please tell me what you do. I’m the recruiter for the YMCA of San Diego County, which serves 390,000 members and ...

Life imitates art, cheesecake edition

On the left, a promo photo from 2012’s Spring Breakers. On the right, the cover of the 2014 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. Good artists borrow; great artists get the girls to go topless.

Follow your dreams... but not over a cliff

So you want to be a rock star? Or maybe you have your sights set on becoming a professional golfer or your dreams are to become an actress, eventually becoming a movie star. Maybe your ...

Sweetwater district teachers vote on strike

Healthcare cost, salary, class size, classroom safety at issue

Sweetwater Union High School District teachers will be taking a strike vote March 13–14. The vote, according to Roberto Rodriguez, president of Sweetwater Education Association, is to authorize the association’s board of directors to go ...

SeaWorld announces shift from orcas to sharks

On March 7, California State Assemblyman Richard Bloom introduced the Orca Safety and Welfare Act. If passed, the bill would outlaw the use of orcas for "entertainment" or "performance purposes." Bloom told the press that ...

Food truckin ain’t easy

On any given night in San Diego you can find a food truck gathering; whether it is in the parking lot of a local high school, on a military base, outside your favorite bar, or ...

Rally for paid sick leave, higher minimum wage

Councilmembers say voter referendum is coming

Raise Up San Diego, with backing from labor groups and their supporters, organized a rally outside city hall Wednesday afternoon, March 12, promoting a minimum-wage increase and access for workers to paid sick leave — ...

A tale of two brewpubs

Urge nixes bowling, Amplified owner movin’ on up

This is a tale of two brewpubs…neither of which exist. This is nothing new for me, writing about businesses that aren’t yet tangible. In fact, reporting on the not-yet-realized dreams of hopeful brewers is pretty ...

Wednesday, March 12

It's all free

An education. 100 percent off.

A couple of years ago, my friend Tina Frantz began taking a San Diego Continuing Education course to help develop her handbag business. All I knew for sure was that Tina was suddenly unavailable by ...

Tanager

If only I had not listened to the piece on the morning radio about the former asylum whose inmates were kept busy at wooden benches in a workshop making leather collars and wristbands that would ...

The cold wind of Lost in the Trees

When is fronting a band cheaper than hiring a therapist? Lost in the Trees invented their American-orchestral folk-pop music in North Carolina. Not to diminish Ari Picker in any way (he is the band’s primary ...

Ramona’s only home team?

The Ramona Music Center is a storefront music store with a recording studio/rehearsal space in the back. It’s the only business of its kind serving this small, rural town in San Diego’s backcountry. Seven years ...

Auction on for Pacific View Elementary School

Board fails to postpone sale of historical property

Seen as the community’s last chance to postpone the auction of the old Pacific View Elementary School site, almost 100 people showed up at a meeting of the Encinitas Union School District on March 11. ...

Peaceful boozy feeling

The man who wrote “Peaceful Easy Feeling” for the Eagles hopes people who love the song also love wine. Encinitas-based songwriter Jack Tempchin has introduced a “Peaceful Easy Feeling” cabernet sauvignon made by the Temecula-based ...

Handshake and a drink at renovated Jsix

Last month, Jsix completed a renovation that included walling off the dining room with exposed brick and concealing the open kitchen to place added emphasis on the bar, which has been extended to seat 19 ...

Steve from National City can smell loyalty

Confidence man seeks students.

Post Title: First Words Post Date: April 11, 2013 From all over the world, I get requests for more information about the novels I write about your life. Now, I am taking it a step ...

Mojo Workin’

San Diego’s multimedia, spaz-rappin’ hillbilly

While he has released some ten albums, appeared in a handful of movies, had years of MTV exposure and tons of radio airplay for his novelty hits (“Debbie Gibson Is Pregnant with My Two-Headed Love ...

Presentation is all

It’s possible to accuse Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel of verging into self-parody. But I think Anderson is too self-conscious for that. And if you squint just so, you may be able to see ...

Gender-blending Sisters

“Most of the songs on this album were written while I was recovering from a major injury,” says singer/songwriter Sherri-Anne of Sister Speak’s upcoming debut full-length Rise Up for Love. “I broke my pelvis and ...

The Jamuel fire

“There is a hilariously large population of former San Diegans in New York City.”

For the past ten months, producer/engineer/DJ Keith Milgaten (aka Jamuel Saxon) has been living in Brooklyn and, under the alias Keith Sweaty, dropping the occasional dance mix on Soundcloud, including his own spin on brother ...

Bow Willow to Mountain Palm Springs

Camp where the Kumeyaay lived in the Anza-Borrego.

Hike from a Kumeyaay seasonal village site to an elephant tree “forest” and palm groves.

What’s this meatball deal at Rustic?

Follow the bear.

“I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy,” I say to no-one in particular. Sigh. Actually, no chance of a bottle in front of me. Not tonight. Gotta work. Came ...

Water and the mother’s milk of politics

As drought ravages California and other parts of the West, the political giving habits of the state’s private water merchants and brokers are coming under increasing scrutiny. One is La Jolla–based Pico Holdings on Ivanhoe ...

Ever after

What? No parmesan? I want a divorce!

When a friend of mine, who is a few years younger than I am (on the earlier side of her 30s), announced that she was getting a divorce, I was dumbfounded. So soon? I thought ...

North Park Beer Co. preview?

Pro-brewer to-be’s collaboration beer tapping around town

The name Kelsey McNair is well known among San Diego beer enthusiasts. To many, he’s looked upon as the next big hope for North Park. An accomplished homebrewer who’s brought home many awards and tantalized ...

Folk for sale

If things go the way Lou Curtiss hopes, by the end of summer, he will have handed the keys to his Folk Arts Rare Records shop over to its new owner, whoever that may be. ...

Fixie freaks do the alleycat thing

It’s Saturday night on El Cajon Boulevard. A mob of cyclists banters on the sidewalk, cheering and slapping high-fives as friends wheel across the finish line with endorphin-tinged grins. The race — organized by Lucas ...

Cowboy Doug

2013 was a very good year, politically speaking, for La Jolla developer and U-T San Diego publisher Douglas Manchester, who saw his top nemesis, Democratic ex-mayor Bob Filner, vanquished in a sexual harassment scandal. Then, ...

Who told the feds about Azano? Bob Brewer, that’s who.

Bob Brewer gleefully shouts how Bonnie Dumanis is cozy with Mexican moneybags Azano. But it was Brewer who initially put the Feds on Azano's tail.

Letter Potpourri

HH in OB Just giving you a heads-up about your Happy Hour Guide (March 6). The Joint in O.B. has $2.50 Sculpins every Tuesday. Pizza Port has a $3 select pint or two every Monday ...

From “The 94 Psalm”

Come let us rejoice unto the Lord. Let us make joy to God our Saviour. Let us approach to his presence in confession, and in psalms let us make joy unto him. Hail Mary full ...

March 6 Crossword Contenders

Martha Awdziewicz, Clairemont, 10. L. Barling, El Cajon, 10. Evelyn Bowser, Hillcrest, 10. Marvin A. Brown, Clairemont, 10. Charlotte Brown , Clairemont, 10. Bob Carlson, Serra Mesa, 10. Leslie Chase, Campo, 10. Joseph Ciprian, Little ...

March 6 Sudoku Contenders

Evil Bliss Beedle, Encinitas, 10. Joseph Ciprian, Little Italy, 10. Patrick Driscoll, Santee, 10. Martin Guillen, Oceanside, 10. Richard Hutchings, Santee, 10. Ralph Levy, La Jolla, 10. Hiroshi Miyazaki, Normal Heights, 10. Randy Paddock, San ...

Tuesday, March 11

Embezzling, forging one's way into Rancho Santa Fe

Bean-counter admits to stealing $2.5 million

Alfonso Fierro Jr. wanted to live the high life. He did. He was controller of WSA Distributing from 2008 through 2012. In 2012, he was named chief financial officer. On the last day of February, ...

Cardiff seal pup rests up (mostly uninterrupted)

“Who are these parents that are letting their children do this?

Early on Sunday morning, March 2, after a storm had passed, I ran past a little seal sleeping on the beach in Cardiff by the Sea. He looked really tired and even though he was ...

Inn of the Sixth Happiness

Hidden hotspot for Thai hot pot

So I was just leaving this kinda cute patio where I'd been having a late brekky with my friend Ernesto (La Mesa Bistro, more on this in upcoming Tin Fork), and, well, we talked a ...

No new trial for Brent Wilkes

"Self-serving declarations by a...criminal are unlikely to persuade a jury.”

Disgraced defense contractor Brent Wilkes, currently serving a 12-year sentence for his role in the Randy "Duke" Cunningham scandal, will not get the new trial he seeks, a federal appeals court ruled March 10. Wilkes, ...

Judge to rule on privacy of Gloria’s e-correspondence

Lawsuit says council president’s text messages should be made public

Should the text messages that council president Todd Gloria sends during council hearings be made available to the public? And, if so, should Gloria have to appear in court or under oath to discuss those ...

Plan presented for more Balboa Park cottages

"It is incomprehensible that there is no House of Mexico now."

A plan that would add five permanent cottages for ten countries to Balboa Park's House of Pacific Relations was sent back for revision Thursday, March 6, after a packed meeting that pitted a room full ...

Discovering San Francisco's City Hall

One of SF's less-touristed treasures.

There are the usual San Francisco tourism sites: the Golden Gate, Lombard Street, Chinatown, etc. There are my favorites: the Palace of the Legion of Honor, Museum of Modern Art and de Young Museum. And ...

Shamu pays off big for San Diego pols

Execs for controversial aquatic park spreading fishy political wealth

With their bread and butter, and anchovies and chum, under attack by animal-rights activists, executives at Sea World, the profitable San Diego aquatic park, have been turning to a traditional American means of persuasion: campaign ...

Fit to be Thai'd in La Mesa

Bamboo is Thai comfort food done right

It was my birthday a few weeks ago and my family gave me the choice where to eat. There wasn’t much thought. I picked Bamboo Thai Cuisine on University Avenue, near La Mesa Blvd. It’s ...

Post–San Onofre, activists demand green energy

Protest at headquarters of Southern California Edison

Southern California Edison, the operator and majority owner of San Diego's now-defunct San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, is facing similar pressure to that felt locally by San Diego Gas & Electric from activists demanding replacement ...

Community garden springs up in Chula Vista

“It's about people…. The kids don’t even know where their food comes from.”

Scrawny saplings are in the ground in rows — apple, peach, avocado, tangerine — and a gardener says you may be able to pick fruit from these trees two years from now. Landscaping tools are ...

Monday, March 10

Auditor, ethics director back plan to purge emails

Luna, Fulhorst a surprise…Goldsmith not

The administrative regulation that city emails will be saved for only one year is an abomination that — supposedly — Mayor Faulconer will cock an eyebrow at. (There is some skepticism about whether he will ...

Chula Vista candidates declare intent to run June 3

“Here’s hoping someone of substance steps up [for mayoral seat.]”

Chula Vista candidates were slow to step up for the June 3 municipal election. Many waited until the last day, March 7, to turn in their nomination papers. Cheryl Cox will be termed out as ...

Shotgun murder at Alpine campground

Sheriff's helicopter orders suspect to the ground

A 73-year-old resident of the Ma-Tar-Awa campground, which sits on reservation land just east of Viejas Casino, is in custody and facing murder charges following an altercation with a neighbor on Sunday afternoon, March 9. ...

Far Away at Ion Theatre

Ion Theatre’s double bill — Sam Holcroft’s Edgar & Annabel and Caryl Churchill’s Far Away — combines one-acts that have so much in common they feel like deliberate companion pieces. In Edgar & Annabel rebels ...

Edgar & Annabel at Ion Theatre

Edgar and Annabel are “the perfect couple.” They’re economically viable, eat healthy foods, and never utter a discouraging word about the government, which also makes them perfect citizens in a hard-core totalitarian state. Trouble is: ...

San Diego legislators hit the road for free

Head of controversial nonprofit says, "These are not golf trips to Maui."

Who was the top junketeer among local legislators in 2013? That would be Democratic assemblywoman Shirley Weber, according to just-filed state personal financial disclosure reports. The California Foundation of the Environment and Economy picked up ...

Venezuelan demonstrators gather downtown

“Lack of understanding within the international community”

On Wednesday, March 5, a group of Venezuelan citizens and sympathizers gathered for a peaceful protest at Ruocco Park in downtown San Diego. The demonstration — to express discontent with the current crisis in Venezuela ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (2 of 3)

"I think art is born of two things: love and risk, that’s all it is."

Un Ballo in Maschera has opened at San Diego Opera and the reviews are lauding its merits. And indeed they should. Ballo can be great or it can be an ordeal. This Ballo is top-to-bottom ...

First Drafts: URBN St. Brewery

Former Stone brewer homebrewing eventual brewpub offerings

Just four guys sitting around the brewery drinking beer…and, yes, we all have beards. This was the Facebook post describing the first media tasting session for the beers of URBN St. Brewery (110 North Magnolia ...

Billy Connolly on playing a zombie dog, mohawks, and Billy over William

Actor/comedian performs at the Balboa Theatre Tuesday night.

Scottish funnyman Billy Connolly, The Big Yin himself, is coming to town. The actor, singer, cartoon voice artist, and comedian will perform live at the Balboa Theatre on March 11. With a guy like Billy ...

This week in the San Diego jazz clubs: March 10–16

Jazz is happening every night this week

Monday 10 Pianist Danny Green’s trio with bassist Justin Grinnell and drummer Julien Cantelm play a free noontime concert at the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library (1008 Wall Street, La Jolla). The Robin Henkel Band ...

Sunday, March 9

Urban hiking in Maple Canyon

A hidden canyon trail in the heart of the city.

Like much of California’s coast, San Diego’s topography is unique. Mountains in the east give way to plateaus, which in turn give way to labyrinths of canyons that eventually find their way into the ocean. ...

All Things BBQ: Cali Comfort

The second-best barbecue on the Bancroft Road exit off the 94

What’s a Kamenitza beer, from far-off Bulgaria, doing in Cali Comfort? Long story short, the owner is Bulgarian. The place has been in his family for some time. Used to be a breakfast place, but ...

Coffee vs. cupcakes on restaurant row

Popular dessert stop yields a surprising winner

I'm not often a dessert guy, and will often walk right past Heaven Sent without a second thought about what kind of cakes might be on display within. However, I am a coffee guy, and ...

Tecate vet takes care of pet

Unaffordable dog surgery estimate prompts owner to go south

Tansy, my miniature pinscher mix, needed surgery last month. My tawny seven-pound female puppy had started bleeding abnormally and showing signs of pain and discomfort. Seeking the opinions of vets in my area, I was ...

Saturday, March 8

Boys and Girls at Diversionary Theatre

Tom Donaghy’s comedy-drama asks: can people change? And will that change be for the better? Boys and Girls (2002) puts a relatively new social phenomenon on stage: same-sex couples having children. In the process differences ...

Surfers learn wooden board building in Cardiff

Four-day workshop to teach near-lost art costs $1700

Trying to revive the art of 1930s hollow wooden surfboards and expand the “sustainable surfing” movement, seven surfers recently took a four-day board-building class. On March 7 — day two of the class — the ...

Beer of the Week: Ballast Point Victory At Sea

Beer or cookies? Ballast Point and The Cravory say, “why choose?”

Good beer can be very inspiring. Tangible, edible proof is provided in confectionary form via The Cravory, a company popular for plump, delectable cookies encapsulating flavor profiles of popular desserts into compact, two-to-three bite servings. ...

Bagels in RB

Rancho Bernardo has some of the best bagels around

A small-but-vocal contingent of bagel fanciers like to raise their common battle cry: that San Diego has no delicious bagels, and that, if only they were back in NY/DC/Kalamazoo/Boston/Walla Walla/Philly, or wherever their favorite bagel ...

Friday, March 7

A cure for the common hungry drunk

Finishing the night with ramen at izakaya #1

If you lived in Japan, any local place you can think of with the words "Public House" in its name would be called an izakaya instead. The relatively casual type of Japanese restaurant may basically ...

La Mesa Planning Commission favors 18-unit complex

Adjacent residents fret about privacy

On February 4, the disapproval of a proposed City of La Mesa condominium development was demonstrated by a local family’s door-to-door collection of signatures on a petition against the project. The family, residents of Wheaton ...

Tijuana police get the wrong man…repeatedly

Reporter detained, frisked, and questioned many times over two years

I have always been afraid of the cops, even when I had no reason to be. But I have never been so afraid of the police until I moved to Tijuana. In the two years ...

City attorney Goldsmith fights to keep his emails private

Mayor Faulconer's regime says "all communications related to public business" subject to California Public Records Act

San Diego's city attorney Jan Goldsmith is above the law — California's public records law, that is, says a February 27 legal briefing filed in San Diego Superior Court. According to attorneys for Goldsmith, public ...

County unemployment rate jumps in January

SD loses 16,400 jobs

The San Diego County unemployment rate leapt to 7% in January from 6.5% in December, as nonfarm jobs declined by 16,400. However, much of that was seasonal. Retail jobs dropped 8700. Educational and health services ...

Bishop delivers rock 'n' soul goods to Belly Up

A career retrospective of sorts, Elvin Bishop’s show at Belly Up Tavern was a reminder that Duane Allman and Dickey Betts had another Southern boy hot on their heels. Bishop’s intricate dual guitar harmonies (co-guitarist ...

Try this one weird trick to enjoy 300: Rise of an Empire

Concentrate only on the fantastic, menacing set design. Or, you know, Eva Green's bosom.

Mogwai's Rave Tapes

What happens when a notable ’90s post-rock band gets in a head-on collision with a pile of synthesizers, you ask? The album Rave Tapes, by Scottish mainstays Mogwai. The first release by the group since ...

Plastic surgeon Sean Darcy and medical group sued

Patient goes blind from prolonged anesthesia, lawsuit alleges

A San Diego woman claims in court that a November 2012 plastic surgery operation scheduled to last six hours was so poorly performed that she remained under anesthesia for over nine hours, which resulted in ...

Encore Champagne Bar open downtown

With its late-night happy hour, Encore fills the niche between club and restauarant

What a cool idea is Encore Champagne Bar. Decked out in white leather and crystal chandeliers, it has a vaguely Russian sensibility; the kind of cheesy opulence that’s earnest, retro, fun, and attractive all at ...

Meet Jamul Town Brewery & Tap

Former Filippi’s being flipped into Jamul’s first brewpub

Being a native San Diegan, I have a soft spot for the Filippi’s Pizza Grotto chain. Just before writing this piece, I actually chowed down on a marinara-soaked meatball sub from that institution’s Scripps Ranch ...

Florida surfer at Swami's unwelcome

Allegedly assaulted someone with a fin, deputies called

After two weeks of harassment by a man who was described as a bipolar transient from Florida, sheriff’s deputies were called to Swami’s beach parking lot on March 6 at around 9:30 a.m. Danny Knoblaugh ...

Thursday, March 6

Handwriting on the wall for city’s anti-graffiti bid

Audit blasts weakened enforcement, watered-down vendor contract

To outsource or not to outsource seems to be the question for new GOP mayor Kevin Faulconer, generally a privatization proponent, in the wake of a report by the city auditor's office on failures in ...

CPUC shows its inbred corruption

It guards company profits, fleeces consumers

Over a period of several years, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) cozied up to its buddies at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), which cares about utility profits, but not about ratepayer fairness. SDG&E ...

Macau: more than just the Asian Vegas

Beyond the glitz is a 400-year-old melting pot of East and West.

Macau has gained a reputation in recent years as a gambling mecca – “the Asian Las Vegas.” However, beneath the glitz and neon is a vibrant Portuguese-Chinese fusion culture and a former trading post with ...

Major projects at Mission Beach's Plunge

Tile repairs, new filtration system, Wyland mural to become glasswork

If you went swimming early last month at Belmont Park’s historic pool, the Plunge, you likely noticed that the Wyland sea-life mural on the south wall was split from pool deck to high ceiling, exposing ...

SD’s Tourism Marketing District’s odd strategy

Boardmembers expected to approve expenditure to file brief in case in Ontario and Rancho Cucamonga

What better way to promote San Diego than for the Tourism Marketing District to pay attorneys to file legal briefs in other cities’ fights to keep their hotel tax up and running? On March 7, ...

Not your dad's date night at Bertrand at Mister A's

A modern look at a mainstay

As a young adult in San Diego, Bertrand at Mister A’s was one of those fine-dining establishments in the sky (or 12th floor, to be precise) that I never felt “fancy enough” to enter. I ...

Ghazal Mansury denies killing 79-year-old mother

Daughter ordered to trial for mom's murder

Late yesterday, March 5, a judge ordered Ghazal Jessica Mansury, 42, to stand trial for the murder of her mother, Mehria Mansury, 79. Testimony during a three-day hearing suggested that Mehria might have been killed ...

Leaked: SDPD "Touch Guide"

USHERING IN A NEW ERA OF GENDER JUSTICE, DOWNTOWN — New San Diego Chief of Police Shelley Zimmerman says that her first order of business is "obviously, the restoration of trust between the Department and ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (1 of 3)

A conversation about weather, travel and art

We started our conversation with some small talk about the weather and Girl Scout cookies. Stephanie Blythe: I spent a week in Rancho Mirage before we came here. Oh my god, I couldn't believe it. ...

Almost 40% of households can't afford San Diego

Cost of living too high, incomes too low

A new study released this morning (March 6), reveals that 38% of San Diego County's working-age households can't afford a no-frills lifestyle without public or private assistance. Even in households with someone working full-time, 23.5% ...

More clients drop San Diego's Sacramento lobbyist

Sloat fined for illegal gifting — will GOP influence-peddler be kept by Faulconer?

Sacramento’s Sloat Higgins Jensen & Associates, the lobbying firm fired by San Diego ex-mayor Bob Filner and rehired last year by interim mayor Todd Gloria, continues to face controversy and deserting clients after its agreement ...

Ripe North Park embraces unheralded sandwich toppings

Vegetables no longer an afterthought at neighborhood produce shop

You look for a couple of things when you visit a sandwich shop. Occasionally, a place will stand out by making its own meat, or offering exotic cheeses. A lot of places impress thanks to ...

Local biotech seeks solution for water shortage

Drink like a fish.

NERVOUSLY LOOKING AWAY, BIOTECH VALLEY — "As usual, big, loud, and dumb gets all the headlines," says Dr. Pisco Scales at the Sorrento Valley biotech Nucelis, LLC. "They're spending a billion dollars on that Carlsbad ...

Border X expands from the border to the Barrio

Otay brewery shares new Barrio Logan space with local taco company

It’s OK if the words “Border X” conjure little more than question marks for you. Nano-sized Border X Brewing Company opened only a few short months ago. Adding to its relative anonymity is its extreme ...

Wednesday, March 5

Happy Hour Guide 2014

Clock out and belly up, San Diego!

Reader writers chase cheap chomps and chugs in SD: Nobody knows Happy Hour in San Diego like Ed Bedford — The man has been chasing cheap chomps and chugs around San Diego (and telling you ...

My Niece

Born on the first day of spring the first year of the millennium. Imitator of waitresses and magicians; unpredictable thrower of tantrums; connoisseur of Gummy Bears, vanilla yogurt, and orange juice with calcium; disliker of ...

Showers closed at Robb Field Fitness Club

Crime precipitates action, homeless advocates lament it

If you break a sweat during a workout at Robb Field Fitness Club — or if you're homeless and looking for a place to clean up — you'll have to find someplace else to take ...

SENTRI pass border-crossers frustrated

Route change and lack of signage creates clusterfunk

Drivers coming north from Tijuana through the San Ysidro Port of Entry this week have been struggling to figure out the new route to the SENTRI lanes — a route that hasn't worked well for ...

Rancho Shampoo

Amid playing with Mexicali hardcore outfit Los Nuevos Maevans (actually just some dudes Milli Vanilli-ing a pre-recorded ’80s punk play-list — seriously), Guillermo Estrada went on a spirit quest and re-invented himself as flute-tooting techno-shaman ...

Profound effects of social media overstated?

May be “more marketing than mobilization,” says UCSD professor

While social media may have been the catalyst for launching such events as the "Arab Spring" uprisings, most rumblings of civic activism birthed on the web tend to birth much less tangible end results, a ...

Elephants in the room

“After splitting ways with our old label,” says Hills Like Elephants frontman Sean Davenport, “we were told, even though it was them saying they didn’t want to work with us, that we were ‘in breech ...

Detroit Red Wings deal a cautionary tale

How billionaire Ilitch clan fleeced bankrupt city

The sports publication deadspin.com this week excerpted a story on the Detroit Red Wings scam from Next City, a magazine for urban leaders. The story unearths some new, horripilating facts. A week after Detroit declared ...

Sex Pistols salute

The Super Bowl halftime show got close to punk with the once-revolutionary Red Hot Chili Peppers. The founder of local Sex Pistols salute Rotten Johnnies maintains that all threatening rock eventually becomes safe. “If enough ...

Nobody knows Happy Hour in San Diego like Ed Bedford

The man has been chasing cheap chomps and chugs around San Diego (and telling you all about it) for over 20 years. Ed, we raise our discounted-drink glasses to you.

Aural gravy

“We’re re-releasing digital formats of defunct San Diego bands, to bring their music back to life,” says Stephanie Rose, production manager at Aural Gravy Records. “We’ll be releasing one album per week, beginning in March, ...

Ian Pike's Beachtastic Happy Hour Spectacular 2014

Sea 180 The view from this bar is so good, it makes IB worth driving to. Happy Hour, which fills the gap between lunch and dinner service, runs 2:30-5:00pm every day. There are half-price cocktails ...

Crock pot to dog bowl

Whole Foods doggie

“Would you feed your baby the same processed food day in and day out every day all day for the rest of his or her life? Probably not. So why are you feeding that to ...

City distances itself from Filner harassment case

Ex-mayor's alleged deeds "completely outside the scope of his employment"

Court documents filed in the case of military veteran Katherine Ragazzino and her nurse Michelle Tyler — who allege that former mayor Bob Filner sexually harassed them during a meeting last year — shows the ...

Visitors is Paranormal Activity for eggheads

Staring Contest

Godfrey Reggio uses precisely 74 shots to tell his story. With only four behind me and 70 left to go, the film’s thesis was already stated and its conclusion long foregone. Do I grab a ...

San Diego Rep visits Detroit...or is it Kansas City, maybe Denver?

Truth fall

They have trod the proscribed path: college, marriage, no beer-drinking in the front yard.

Where the Diva Gets Happy

Counterpoint Counterpoint is a perfect destination for that right-after-work stop-by for a quick few drinks on the cheap, with the welcoming option of staying and lingering while sharing scrumptious plates from the starters section of ...

Elephant Tree Trail, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Hike to a rare plant once thought to be the only one in the county.

The elephant tree (Bursera microphylla) is rarely found in the United States. It is found in the Gila Range of Arizona and, more commonly, in Baja California and Sonora, Mexico. For many years it was ...

Chad Deal deals details...

...on 10 of his favorite San Diego (and Tijuana) Happy Hours.

The Brigantine Landlocked pirates, beware! The Brigantine — a microchain that touts more seafood specials than one’s sextant can fathom — finds true north during Happy Hours from 4pm to close on Sundays and Mondays, ...

Montana judge won't dismiss SDG&E wind-farm case

Utility rebuffed in dispute in which it is doing the right thing

A Montana judge yesterday (March 4) kept a temporary injunction in place against San Diego Gas & Electric. The local utility wanted the judge to dismiss a case and permit it to withdraw its planned ...

Sports scandal aftermath

The Box applauds rebounders

Great scandals. The world is agog. The world moves on. The world forgets. How many of the following scandals do you remember? Where is Tim Donaghy, the corrupt NBA referee? August 2007, Donaghy pleaded guilty ...

In the San Diego music clubs Sunday–Wednesday, March 9–12

Sunday 9From Chicago, heady-metal trio Russian Circles spin into Casbah Sunday night. The post-rock instrumentalists are touring in support of last year’s critical hit Memorial, a record that out-explodes Explosions in the Sky, pummels the ...

In the San Diego music clubs Thursday–Saturday, March 6–8

Thursday 6From Oakland, producer-musician Matthew Melton (ex–Bare Wires) and his latest “lo-fi-glam-garage-pop” project Warm Soda pour their sticky goodness on the Hideout stage Thursday night. Warm Soda’s 2013 set, Someone for You, arcs from the ...

Best value per square foot in San Diego

But a price tag to chase off most bargain-chasers

Current Owner: David Rosenaur Listing Price: $4,995,000 – $5,395,000 Beds: 7 Baths: 9 “It’s the best value per square foot for a house with this build quality and view, anywhere in San Diego,” says Berkshire ...

Get your dog supplies delivered

Way beyond animal rights.

“We have seven office dogs that eat the treats and play with toys all day.”

Before he was @sdbeernews, he was @offdutyfoodie

The Hake Sequestered below street level on Prospect, this seafood enclave has a broad assortment of mezcal, some of which find its way into tasty signature cocktails like the Oaxacan Old Fashioned — smoky mezcal, ...

The roommate who wanted the music turned down is dead

Goat noises and howling

“He attempted to punch me in the face as he ran towards me,” said Carlsbad police detective Scott Stallman. The murder suspect had become increasingly “agitated” and “animated” after detectives confronted him with evidence that ...

Happy Hour picks from Reader new guy Patrick Henderson

Refused to be left out of the Happy Hour fun

Casa de Pico The bar is loud and hopping, even on seemingly off nights. Beers are $1 off normal prices but each $4.50 margarita (served blended or on the rocks), gets you a small paper ...

Christ the King Lutheran Church

Computer science, meteorology, or God?

Membership: 1200 Pastor: Mark Johnson Age: 46 Born: Minneapolis, MI Formation: Lutheran Bible Institute, Anaheim; Concordia University, Irvine; Lutheran Seminary, St. Paul Years Ordained: 17 San Diego Reader: What is your favorite subject on which ...

Mr. Perch weighs in

My name is Red C. Perch, and I am writing in response to Old Mackerel Breath ("Straight from the Sea Lion’s Mouth," Letters, February 6). I take offense to your comments. My family and the ...

Ticket to Park

I just had to respond to “Ticket to Ride” (Letters, February 20) and the comment, “There are No Smoking signs posted everywhere in El Cajon, and a person smoking under each one of them.” I ...

What to do in San Diego this week, March 6–March 12

A fashion event to provide free prom dresses and accessories to San Diego high school girls who cannot afford them. With live entertainment, music by DJ JoeMama, local craft beer and wine, a gourmet food ...

February 27 Crossword Contenders

* Mary Arana, Encinitas, 9. * Martha Awdziewicz, Clairemont, 9. * L. Barling, El Cajon, 9. * Evelyn Bowser, Hillcrest, 9. Marvin A. Brown, Clairemont, 9. Charlotte Brown , Clairemont, 9. Bob Carlson, Serra Mesa, ...

February 27 Sudoku Contenders

Evil * Bliss Beedle, Encinitas, 9. * Joseph Ciprian, Little Italy, 9. * Patrick Driscoll, Santee, 9. Martin Guillen, Oceanside, 9. Richard Hutchings, Santee, 9. Ralph Levy, La Jolla, 9. Hiroshi Miyazaki, Normal Heights, 9. ...

Tuesday, March 4

Road failure in Sunset Cliffs Natural Park

For lack of curbing, runoff eroded its way to the ocean

The February 28–March 1 storm caused the failure of runoff-control curbing on the Loop Road at Point Loma Nazarene University. Uncontained, the rainwater scoured away the road bed under the west side of the road. ...

Photo-friendly D.C.: springtime and cherry blossoms

Spring's the best time to see the nation's capitol.

“Spring is nature's way of saying, 'Let's party!'” ~ Robin Williams Spring is the best time to be in the nation’s capitol. It's perhaps the only time where everybody uniformly agrees on one thing – ...

Shino Sushi + Kappo is a true sleeper

Fine dining hidden in Little Italy without glitz or glamor

Rumors of Shino Sushi + Kappo have percolated up through the usual channels. People say that chef Robert Nakamura —brother of Hane Sushi’s Roger Nakamura — produces elegant and indulgent sushi, having learned a trick ...

Hotel downsizes for financial reasons

Reduced by nine stories, but still 183 feet tall

A developer has scaled down a hotel project at 401 W. Ash Street, previously approved last September by Civic San Diego. The reason for the downsizing was due to the developer's difficulty in obtaining financing ...

Port wants to offer industrial property for rent

Warehouse near airport will need some upgrades first

The Port of San Diego is looking to generate some revenue from an industrial property owned by the agency on a one-acre lot east of Lindbergh Field, about a block south of its headquarters. This ...

Art for art's sake on Adams Avenue

Transmedia experiences coming to four blocks in Normal Heights

“We, as many artists, divorce ourselves in a sense, whether it’s conscious or not, from the notion that we’re making something to be displayed for sale so that someone can collect it,” says Robyko Sanchez. ...

This week in the San Diego jazz clubs, March 4–8

Nicole Mitchell makes a rare San Diego appearance.

Tuesday 4 Bassist Ben Wanicur hosts the Jam Session at 3rd Space (4610 Park Boulevard) with John Opferkuch on piano and Tim McMahon on drums. Pianist Mikan Zlatkovich is joined by Katie Thiroux on bass ...

Playboy praises pervy pol

The Last Hurrah

In what is perhaps a first for the storied men's magazine, a man has graced the cover of Playboy: former Mayor of San Diego Bob Filner. "Even more than President Clinton," explained an unsigned editorial, ...

The original Ataris

“I got a call from the band’s manager,” guitarist John Collura tells the Reader. “I’d been out of the band for, what, six years? He said, ‘What do you think about getting the band back ...

Stephanie Blythe is a romantic

Superstar mezzo-soprano coming to San Diego

Stephanie Blythe is in San Diego to sing. It’s what she does, and she does it as well — if not better — than anyone you’ll ever hear. I was able to sit down and ...

Off limits to media, mayor's bash draws crowd of lobbyists

Billboard hustler and trash maven among insiders at Faulconer downtown inaugural party

It may not have been the Oscars exactly, but some of San Diego's most well-heeled developers and best connected lobbyists and influence peddlers didn't seem to mind as they made their way past a blaring ...

City thanks Peggy Shannon for not suing

"Sometimes, justice is its own reward," said Turbo Attorney Gloria Allred at the City Ceremony honoring Peggy Shannon last week. "Other times, you get paid." The ceremony was held to honor Ms. Shannon's decision to ...

No drinking water at desert campground

Tamarisk Grove in the Anza-Borrego needs filtration plant

Picnic tables — check. Fire pits — check. Hot showers — check. Flush toilets — check. Wash basins — check. Drinking water — check. Wait — go back to that last one. Turns out the ...

Two SD County lawyers disbarred

One stole client money, other charged with felonies

Two San Diego County lawyers have been disbarred, according to the Calbar Journal. John Edward Engel of Carlsbad was disbarred for misappropriating $57,808.70 of a client's money. James Wade Stephens of San Diego was disbarred ...

Monday, March 3

U-T pressroom employees get raises

All under $16 an hour to get boost

Cory Fish, director of human resources for U-T San Diego, today (March 3) notified the Graphic Communications Conference of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters that the company has decided to give merit-based increases to certain ...

Winter homeless shelters to stay open until June 30

Activists want them open permanently

The San Diego City Council voted today (March 3) to keep temporary winter homeless shelters open until June 30 at a cost of $1 million. They were scheduled to close March 31, evicting 350 homeless, ...

Dayum delicious

When I say “dayum,” I’m referring to this viral video, of a man whose contagious enthusiasm for a sandwich turned him into a meme, but we'll get to that in a moment. In terms of ...

Local cities sue state over union-friendly legislation

Carlsbad, El Cajon, Oceanside, and Vista stand up for “direct democracy”

Four local cities — Carlsbad, El Cajon, Oceanside, and Vista — joined Fresno and El Centro last week in challenging the constitutionality of several laws regarding labor rates paid on public works projects. All six ...

School board's Beiser draws opponent

Democrat backed by Irwin Jacobs and Scott Peters challenged by tech advocate

San Diego Unified School District board member Kevin Beiser, whose holiday fundraising bash late last year at the estate of once-imprisoned super lawyer Bill Lerach drew a bevy of Democratic political stars and donors, including ...

Earl Stiff's Oscar recap

From the opening strains of Hooray for Hollywood, viewers knew they were in for something wonderfully original when Alan Degenerate took to the stage of the Raymond & Dottie Chandler Pavilion to host last night’s ...

A salad from the most unlikely source

Enjoying beets and greens with a side of cholesterol in North Park

The "other white meat" has been enjoying quite the golden age in American cuisine. Bacon, which has always been popular, has been elevated to iconic status, praised daily on Twitter and prevalent on bumper stickers ...

More caution against city plan to purge emails

After Calaware, San Diegans for Open Government threatens lawsuit

Much of the money that the city plans to save by purging all year-old emails may be spent fighting lawsuits. The policy change was announced in a February 27 memo to city employees. The reason, ...

Pipe project to prevent sinkholes in Allied Gardens

Replacement of steel-lined storm drains to last 11 months

The City of San Diego started work February 19 on a $1.9 million project to remove deteriorated corrugated metal storm-drain pipes and replace them with reinforced concrete pipes. In a February 27 interview, public works ...

Lost hiker rescued in Lakeside

Woman was "sliding on her backside" toward a cliff when located

San Diego sheriff's deputies from the Santee station and San Diego Fire were called in to rescue a lost hiker from the El Capitan Open Space Preserve in Lakeside early Sunday evening, March 2. According ...

Bolt Back in Biz

Opened in 1989, Karl Strauss Brewing Company is the oldest, continually operating brewery in San Diego. But two years before Uncle Karl and his crew started serving amber lager downtown, an eclectic, low-frills yet high-energy ...

Sunday, March 2

Wienermobile takes San Diego for a ride

Driving around in giant frankfurter-shaped car as cool as it sounds

When the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile stops at your house, you have to get in it. You just have to. Or at least I did, when the Wienermobile visited San Diego in mid-February. There are actually ...

Scott Barnett bows out of school-board race

Incumbent posts message saying he's done at SD Unified district

Scott Barnett, longtime political consultant, journalist, and onetime head of the GOP Lincoln Club, has decided not to seek reelection to the board of San Diego Unified School District. He posted the announcement on Facebook ...

Helsinki, Finland

Finnish flavors, friendly folk.

Helsinki, Finland, is considered by many to be the “gateway to the East,” dividing Scandinavia from Eastern Europe. Indeed, it spent time as both as part of the Kingdom of Sweden and as part of ...

Al fresco brunch at Queenstown Public House

New Zealand-themed restaurant brings variety to Little Italy

On lazy, warm weekend mornings, my man and I skip our usual breakfast at home (Greek honey yogurt, almonds, bananas and blueberries), and venture outside to find a relaxing patio and an energizing crowd of ...

Chula Vista receives EPA award

For climate mitigation and adaptation strategies throughout the city

This week the City of Chula Vista received the Environmental Protection Agency's Organizational Leadership Award for reducing greenhouse emissions. Only two other organizations nationwide — the University of California, Irvine, and the Sprint telecommunications company ...

San Diego considered floating stadium 50 years ago

But Mission Bay structure was too expensive

"The Strike Zone," a feature of Sports Illustrated, pointed out on February 28 that half a century ago, San Diego considered a floating sports stadium. It would float on Mission Bay, attached to Fiesta Island. ...

Saturday, March 1

Recent lawsuit raises questions about libelous Yelping

Yelpers could be liable for defamatory statements, but what does that include?

Eater did a good job of summarizing the recent case against a Yelp user found guilty of defamation for posting fraudulently negative reviews. The case amounted to “nothing done,” as the plaintiff in the case ...

The Donald trumped in federal court here

His Trump University claims attacked by ex-students

Federal Court judge Gonzalo Curiel has issued rulings in two cases against Donald Trump and his so-called Trump University, which are real-estate seminars of varying degrees of complexity. Former students of the alleged school, who ...

Beer of the Week: Green Flash Black IPA

Mira Mesa brewery opts for dark side in reembarking on Hop Odyssey

Hoppy beers are not new territory for Green Flash Brewing Company. The Mira Mesa-based operation has been dealing in lupulin-rich ales ever since brewmaster Chuck Silva came aboard, and have never looked back. Quite the ...

State reprimands SD schools for financial missteps

SD Unified and Sweetwater prohibitively dipped into nutrition accounts

Two San Diego area school districts have received a reprimand from California state auditors for charging their federally funded cafeteria accounts interest and unallowed operations costs. Five [districts] charged more than $171,000 in interest to ...

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