University Heights Stories

¡Ay chapulines!

University Heights tapas bar joins the thin ranks serving up bugs

Would you look at that. Insects are popping up just everywhere! The Reader’s other Ian gagged on some crickets at Tacos Perla over the summer. Recently, little fried bugs crawled onto the specials board at ...

Cursed with the whip

Diversionary stages the toughest act of Capote’s life, Tru

“I’m a writer, and I use everything. Did all those people think I was just there to entertain them?”

Circa tries to fill some big shoes

Neighborhood bistro faces memories of Farm House Cafe, and holds its own in the process.

Tempting as it is to mourn the Farm House Cafe’s departure from Adams Avenue until the prophesied reappearance of Olivier and Rochelle Bioteau’s restaurant in larger quarters somewhere far from University Heights, uptown diners ought ...

North Park vibe spreads north

Is the University Heights “dead zone” along El Cajon Boulevard resurrecting?

While the renovated Lafayette Hotel on El Cajon Boulevard in University Heights has raised the bar, commercial properties nearby haven’t been so successful. Going west on El Cajon Boulevard from Louisiana Street to Florida Street, ...

Life after Beer Week

Sampler Flight of local beer events for November 18 through 24

November 18 | Fish Taco TKO: San Diego is well-known for fine craft beer and fish tacos. Both will share the spotlight at Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Liberty Station when ten chefs ...

The parking problem again

Audit Committee to look into better management of program

There's a shortage of parking in some San Diego communities and the city's community parking district program isn't much help addressing that shortage. In a recent audit, the city auditor's office found holes in the ...

Partial Monty

Uneven but heartfelt Calendar Girls debut at the Sullivan Players

Somehow D.J. Sullivan wrangled Tim Firth’s script for Calendar Girls from Samuel French — dispensers (and often hoarders) of the rights — and has staged the local premiere. For a “small” theater to land the ...

First Look: S&M Sausage and Meat

Sausage, bacon, and lots of wild ideas.

Carnivores don't exactly have a tough time finding good places to eat in this town. Still, you name a place Sausage & Meat, and you'd better be prepared to nourish those craving the flesh of ...

Last Call: Black Sunday

Some fine productions, including one of the city's all-time best, must close November 2.

These shows must close this Sunday, November 2 — aka “Black Sunday,” given their high quality. The Royale, Old Globe Theatre One of the year’s best directed shows is so well done you’d think Marco ...

Ways to beat the late-September doldrums

Top events and things to do in San Diego this week, September 25-October 1

This autumn event offers tractor hayrides, a straw maze, petting corral, pony rides, kettle corn, food trucks, and live entertainment from noon to 3 p.m. Grab a wheelbarrow and pick from a variety of pumpkins: ...

Theatrical until the pain hits

Bold choices aim to strike a balance in Regrets Only at Diversionary

You’d think Tibby has it all. Husband Jack’s a mover/shaker attorney. They have a posh-plus, Upper East Side apartment (which, in Matt Scott’s fine set for Diversionary, looks down on Manhattan). Daughter Spencer’s an up ...

Wasabi burritos get my attention

La Mesa is not known for its food, but it’s a great place to raise a family and there are plenty of good places for tasty, reasonably priced food for my perfect food day. For ...

Europe would be impressed

The Whisknladle charcuterie plate might not transport easily, but it’s too good not to take on a picnic. House-cured chorizo, house-made pâté, several types of house-pickled olives.

Because cyborgs

Chad's account of his time as a soldier in the battle against chair loss.

Cyborg party at the Xoo brings in a few lawn chairs.

Hanna's Gourmet: Neat meat loaf

BeHe brunch spot excels at dinner too

As if Adams Avenue didn’t already have enough good dinner spots. Now Hanna’s Gourmet, long a popular weekend brunch spot, is serving dinner — and it's good. Hanna’s has been expanded from its original use ...

Trying to live up to the fish tacos of lore

Local family-owned restaurant brings just enough Baja to work

I'm not sure what's more disturbing, that I hold every fish taco I eat up to the standards set by a greasy street cart selling them for 85 centavos apiece on some desolate stretch of ...

Tropical wave strikes 30th at Chris' Ono Grinds

Island-style cuisine just like mom used to make it

Over the past few years, the food and drink corridor of 30th Street has grown beyond its University Avenue origins to extend past El Cajon Boulevard and clear through BeHe up to Adams. Locales such ...

From innocence to evil

Thrill Me at Diversionary a solid effort with a tricky piece

Leopold and Loeb: the dark-eyed, slick-haired, “thrill killers” of 1924 could have posed for Arrow shirt ads. Nathan Leopold, 19, and Richard Loeb, 18, were intelligent lawyers-to-be. Leopold had a 210 IQ and claimed to ...

This is not my zereshk polo

The pains of getting an off meal at a favorite restaurant

Some of the most enjoyable salads I've eaten have come from the kitchen of Soltan Banoo, a Persian restaurant maintaining a low key presence on Park Blvd in University Heights. The place never seems to ...

Wings were not meant to be seen by daylight

Accidentally wandering into a fast food chain and regretting it.

It looks like a fast food restaurant, and operates like a fast food chain, but it focuses almost exclusively on wings, by all rights a bar food. Yes they serve beer and have a TV on, but the place would never work as a sports bar, and doesn't actually serve food quickly enough to qualify as convenient. It is extremely cheap though.

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 ...

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. ...

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 ...

Historic building to become University Heights library?

Shared–use space for the community and school district envisioned

For several years, the University Heights Community Development Corporation has been pushing to acquire the old Teachers Training Annex 1, owned by the San Diego Unified School District. The development corporation’s plan would renovate the ...

Dog-Friendly Dining: made in the shade at Mama's

Dogs made to feel welcome, but not environmentalists

Most of the time, even dedicated dog-friendly dining establishments don't allow a pooch inside. I'm sure this is due to some issue of sanitation or municipal regulation, etc. So, as pup and I walked up ...

Group fights for University Heights boundary rights

Is the dividing line west of Texas Street?

While it may not matter to those who don't live there, one group is fighting another over the boundaries of University Heights. The University Heights Community Development Corporation (UHCDC) is battling with the University Heights ...

Record-release roundup

The new year is kicking off with a herd of earworms, including the debut full-length from jazz-funk dancehall drifters Mafard, whose first single, “Finger Lickin’ Chicken Pickin’ Mexican,” has been stirring the controversy pot. An ...

Creative sandwiches with artisan toppings? BFD

Urban deli's ambitious menu not just a big front.

In this age of text and twitter shorthand, it's tough to say whether branding your storefront with the bright bold letters "BFD" should be taken as a bold declaration, or act of self-deprecation. Fortunately, the ...

Hang a flag for rock and roll

El Cajon Business District to honor San Diego musicians with its new banner project. Beryl Forman marketing manager for the district, says she’s had no trouble getting local musicians involved.

Cafe Massilia open in University Heights

French coffee shop takes over the former site of Eclipse Chocolat after a long downtime in the ECB space

For whatever reason, 2121A El Cajon Boulevard went tentantless for an eternity after the departure of Eclipse Chocolat. Downtime for empty restaurant buildings is usually minimal. Landlords want rent paid, and there’s no shortage of ...

She-Rantulas from Outer Space in 3D! at Diversionary

It’s a “fartire.” That’s what Phil Johnson and Ruff Yeager call their “unique combination of farce and satire.” It’s based on the B-movies of the Fifties, where monsters from who knows where threaten to obliterate ...

First look at American Voodoo

After many delays, University Heights' newest restau is (almost) fully operational

Getting the doors open at American Voodoo (4655 Park Boulevard) in University Heights incurred many delays, chiefly because the owner wanted a full liquor license. Considering the amount of full bars on the block, however, ...

North Park water tower makes National Register

Historically significant “Tin Man” turns 90 next year

North Park’s big green water tower — officially designated as the University Heights Water Storage and Pumping Station, even though it's located south of El Cajon Boulevard (on Idaho Street, north of Howard Avenue) — ...

Trunk Tunes

They tell writers never talk about an idea or what you’re working on. The superstition, a favorite of Hemingway’s: some writing only happens once. And not even at a computer or in a notebook. Voice ...

Hill Young paints life and death

University Heights artist loves collaboration, but her solo work focuses on the relationship between life's beginnings and ends.

Paintings from Hill Young’s new series depict animal skulls surrounded by organic life. Flowers and vines spring from the wood of the panel, enclosing the bleached bones in a web of living matter. As a ...

Marry Me a Little at Diversionary: a P(review)

A composer hands a chorus line dancer a box full of musical scores – most of them rejects – and says, “do what you can.” The songs have something to do with love: longing for, ...

El Cajon Boulevard Coco's to become a 7-Eleven

Local business improvement association is not pleased

The former Coco's Bakery Restaurant location at 2644 El Cajon Boulevard will become a 7-Eleven store. According to Margaret Chabris, director of corporate communications with 7-Eleven, Inc., in Dallas, they will construct a new 3010-square-foot ...

Zia Rodelo: Old-school cameraphile

University Heights photographer wants to explore the potential of outdated cameras and film to "find something that shoots well."

“I’m really shy about my photography,” says Zia Rodelo. “I don’t show it to just anyone.” 25-year-old Rodelo, who lives in University Heights, declined the offer of a gallery show in her hometown of El ...

Freedom of Speech at Diversionary

Eliza Jane Schneider always had a fascination with dialects and has an impressive list of vocal credits, including many of the female characters on the TV show "South Park" and some of the fish in ...

Vermont Street bridge gets a paint job

Work to be completed by end of July

A makeover is under way for the Vermont Street bridge, which crosses Washington Street from University Heights to reach the Uptown shopping center in Hillcrest. The City of San Diego is overseeing the work, being ...

Of nostalgia for a city

A realization on the Coronado bridge.

A former North Park resident returns to San Diego and realizes the choices he made five years ago are what forced him to leave.

Tom yum and pizza on Park

Ed visits Bahn Thai and Red House Pizza in University Heights…eats tom yum and pizza for lunch.

North Park/University Heights residents host “Cookies with the Cops”

Area sees 17 percent drop in crime

A group of North Park/University Heights residents gathered at the intersection of Texas and Polk streets on May 15 at 6 p.m. for an informal meeting with three San Diego Police Department officers. The “Cookies ...

The Lafayette Hotel's Friday night Dive In Movies series

First of four poolside screenings of classic 80's movies start March 15

The Lafayette Hotel & Swim Club (2223 El Cajon Boulevard) has taken their recent $8 million renovation and run with it, cranking out new events left and right. One of their tried-and-true events, the Dive ...

Mock animal at Plumeria

Ed has hot-hot-hot soup at Plumeria, which is a Thai restaurant that bills itself first as “vegetarian.”

Routinely Running

It is simply labeled "Blues" — a jazzy three-note riff played four times before landing on the tonic. And then again, with a minor crescendo. This is the iPhone tune that wakes me up at ...

San Diego Restaurants to Try at Least Once

Even if it weren’t my job to go out and look for new places to eat, I still wouldn’t be able to eat the same thing over and over again. I rarely visit any place ...

The Spirit of Family Dinnertime

Restaurants that feel like home.

Places where food is created with care, where the service is warm and welcoming, and where you can relax and reconnect with family and friends.

The Lei Lounge's Tokyo Plum

As an Asian-fusion restaurant that seeks to bring the best of Eastern and Western cuisine under one pagoda, the Lei Lounge is offering an intriguing twist to the cocktail concept. Take, for instance, one of ...

Pride, billiards, and change back at Lancers

There’s a “we don’t want you” vibe at Lancers, but it’s just pride.

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