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Hoffer's Cigar Bar

“It’s easy to miss,” Hoffer’s owner Craig Hoffman says. “My regulars love that about it.”
“It’s easy to miss,” Hoffer’s owner Craig Hoffman says. “My regulars love that about it.”
Place

Hoffer's Cigar Bar

8282 La Mesa Boulevard, La Mesa

Mark Twain was only sort of correct when he said, “Eating and sleeping are the only activities that should be allowed to interrupt a man’s enjoyment of his cigar.”

At least, that’s the philosophy at Hoffer’s, where a rotating cast of premium suds and live jazz supplement Twain’s trinity of smoke, snack, and slumber.

Stogie savant Phil Hoffman opened the bar almost five years ago, lending an air of elegance to a neighborhood dominated by dives, antique malls, and mediocre Mexican sit-downs.

Now, you can walk into Hoffer’s dual cedar-lined humidors and choose from a selection of cigars that would make Castro chortle, grab a pint from the bar’s 24 taps, and light up on the heated patio, where the Full House trio and guests jam every Saturday night from 7:30 to 10:00 ($5 cover).

“We go through about 80 beers in 60 days,” says general manager and oat-soda aficionado Michael Craig. “By 10 tonight we’ll have a different beer list.”

By 6:45, the board is being updated (check their website for current taps) while I enjoy, at Craig’s recommendation, a pint of Ballast Point’s spritzy bOOb Check rounded out with a splash of Lagunitas’ Wilco Tango Foxtrot strong ale.

Craig volunteered several tasters before I settled on my drink, offering insight into each brew as I tossed them back. Bottled beers are also available and can be purchased to go.

“It’s easy to miss,” Craig says of the location, which rubs elbows with Cosmos and Swami’s cafés. “My regulars love that about it.”

Both neighboring bistros will deliver from their menu to your bar stool at no extra charge, along with nearby eateries La Torta and Trattoria Tiramisu.

You can eat at the smoke-free bar while you chat with the locals or send off a forgotten email from the in-house laptop before stepping out front to browse a vintage-car show every Thursday evening (5–8 p.m., June through August).

Parking can be difficult on car-show nights and weekends, but meters are free after 6 and the trolley stops a block west. Hoffer’s closes at 11 most nights, and they will take your glass, empty or full, at 10:58. You can keep it going ’til midnight down the street at Pete’s Place or roll your smoky bones home for a Twain-approved interlude of sleep.
Chad Deal (@chaddeal)

Attire: Humidor haute
Price: ~$6/pint
Food: Free delivery from neighbors
Happy Hour: ‘til 7 p.m. daily, $4 pints and wine
Max Cap: 40 inside, 40 on patio
Hours: Mon–Sat, 11 A.M.–11 P.M.; Sun, 1–8 P.M.
Cards accepted

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“It’s easy to miss,” Hoffer’s owner Craig Hoffman says. “My regulars love that about it.”
“It’s easy to miss,” Hoffer’s owner Craig Hoffman says. “My regulars love that about it.”
Place

Hoffer's Cigar Bar

8282 La Mesa Boulevard, La Mesa

Mark Twain was only sort of correct when he said, “Eating and sleeping are the only activities that should be allowed to interrupt a man’s enjoyment of his cigar.”

At least, that’s the philosophy at Hoffer’s, where a rotating cast of premium suds and live jazz supplement Twain’s trinity of smoke, snack, and slumber.

Stogie savant Phil Hoffman opened the bar almost five years ago, lending an air of elegance to a neighborhood dominated by dives, antique malls, and mediocre Mexican sit-downs.

Now, you can walk into Hoffer’s dual cedar-lined humidors and choose from a selection of cigars that would make Castro chortle, grab a pint from the bar’s 24 taps, and light up on the heated patio, where the Full House trio and guests jam every Saturday night from 7:30 to 10:00 ($5 cover).

“We go through about 80 beers in 60 days,” says general manager and oat-soda aficionado Michael Craig. “By 10 tonight we’ll have a different beer list.”

By 6:45, the board is being updated (check their website for current taps) while I enjoy, at Craig’s recommendation, a pint of Ballast Point’s spritzy bOOb Check rounded out with a splash of Lagunitas’ Wilco Tango Foxtrot strong ale.

Craig volunteered several tasters before I settled on my drink, offering insight into each brew as I tossed them back. Bottled beers are also available and can be purchased to go.

“It’s easy to miss,” Craig says of the location, which rubs elbows with Cosmos and Swami’s cafés. “My regulars love that about it.”

Both neighboring bistros will deliver from their menu to your bar stool at no extra charge, along with nearby eateries La Torta and Trattoria Tiramisu.

You can eat at the smoke-free bar while you chat with the locals or send off a forgotten email from the in-house laptop before stepping out front to browse a vintage-car show every Thursday evening (5–8 p.m., June through August).

Parking can be difficult on car-show nights and weekends, but meters are free after 6 and the trolley stops a block west. Hoffer’s closes at 11 most nights, and they will take your glass, empty or full, at 10:58. You can keep it going ’til midnight down the street at Pete’s Place or roll your smoky bones home for a Twain-approved interlude of sleep.
Chad Deal (@chaddeal)

Attire: Humidor haute
Price: ~$6/pint
Food: Free delivery from neighbors
Happy Hour: ‘til 7 p.m. daily, $4 pints and wine
Max Cap: 40 inside, 40 on patio
Hours: Mon–Sat, 11 A.M.–11 P.M.; Sun, 1–8 P.M.
Cards accepted

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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