Quantcast
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

Croce's happy hour: so-so food, go-go beer

At the new "Park West" location: baby-backs is it!

Looking inside from outside
Looking inside from outside
Place

Croce's Park West

2760 Fifth Avenue, San Diego

It looks kinda like a sheikh's tent from across the street. Cabana-style brown and black drapes and awnings half conceal the big sidewalk terrazza.

We're at the "Fifth and Olive Building" up here at, well, 5th and Olive.

This is where Ingrid Croce moved to when she got levered out of her original location at 5th and F in the Gaslamp.

Gaslamp's loss. Here, 18 blocks north up 5th in an area called Cambridge Square (who knew?) there's less character but more room. And a much better patio. And you're surrounded by a strangely elegant part of town you never notice when you're zooming through to Hillcrest and Mission Valley. There's St. Paul's Cathedral across the road at Nutmeg Street, and The Abbey, kitty-corner from here, looking like an an ancient Greek temple, which you can hire out to party at with 500 of your best friends.

I've sat down at a granite table outside, well within Happy Hour (from four till six, as well as ten till close).

Inside they have bunch of rooms, all browns and creams, ending in the comfy-chair "Expatriates Room" at the back, where the live music happens. Dunno. Seems a pity it's that far away inside. Maybe the new neighbors objected to noise, even beautiful noise.

Whatever. Chris, the waiter, is at the table pronto and laying down a H. H. menu for me. So okay, not the most inspired selection this galaxy has ever known. Basically fries ($4.50), olives ($4.50), cashews and almonds ($4.50), spicy Crackerjacks ($4.50).

Wow. That bunch must have taken a degree in culinary arts to invent.

My ribs

The two real things they have going are glazed chicken drummets with a "harissa and creamy valdeón [Spanish] blue cheese dressing," (six pieces cost $7, twelve are $11); and maybe the only really interesting item in the section, the Jamaican jerk baby back (pork) ribs ($8) with "creamy polenta and mango/papaya mint salsa."

I ask Chris for this, and then head down-menu to their beer section. Have to say this is excellent. Mainly for the value. But also because all of the cervezas are craft and all go for $3 (Okay, the North Coast Brother Thelonius Abbey is $3.50.) I ask for the Alesmith Nautical Nut Brown, a kinda safe, non-hoppy choice. And dammit, just when it's too late I see they have The Lost Abbey's Lost and Found (also $3 pint).

But after being seriously underwhelmed at their H. H. food choice, have to say the ribs are great. Richly marinated pork ribs with the sweet touch coming from the chunks of mango and papaya, and a creamy thing going on with the polenta. Only three ribs, but they're big and tasty and filling.

Getting dark. I want to hang around 'til the musicians start turning up and tuning up, but that's not till seven. I also want to hang around because I'm the guy who's always complaining about cafés not having generous terrazzas on their stretch of sidewalk, and here at last is what I'm talkin' about. But us Happy Houristas know when our time is up.

I'll be back. If only to work my way through their 13 ales on tap. And also do what I love best (apart from yakking and chomping), watching da woild go by.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies, uncovered

Nudity does more to advance an actress’s career than it does the plot
Next Article

Pepper covers Sublime for The House That Bradley Built comp

Hirie, G. Love, the Expanders, Common Kings, the Skints, Long Beach Dub Allstars, and Trevor Young also contribute
Looking inside from outside
Looking inside from outside
Place

Croce's Park West

2760 Fifth Avenue, San Diego

It looks kinda like a sheikh's tent from across the street. Cabana-style brown and black drapes and awnings half conceal the big sidewalk terrazza.

We're at the "Fifth and Olive Building" up here at, well, 5th and Olive.

This is where Ingrid Croce moved to when she got levered out of her original location at 5th and F in the Gaslamp.

Gaslamp's loss. Here, 18 blocks north up 5th in an area called Cambridge Square (who knew?) there's less character but more room. And a much better patio. And you're surrounded by a strangely elegant part of town you never notice when you're zooming through to Hillcrest and Mission Valley. There's St. Paul's Cathedral across the road at Nutmeg Street, and The Abbey, kitty-corner from here, looking like an an ancient Greek temple, which you can hire out to party at with 500 of your best friends.

I've sat down at a granite table outside, well within Happy Hour (from four till six, as well as ten till close).

Inside they have bunch of rooms, all browns and creams, ending in the comfy-chair "Expatriates Room" at the back, where the live music happens. Dunno. Seems a pity it's that far away inside. Maybe the new neighbors objected to noise, even beautiful noise.

Whatever. Chris, the waiter, is at the table pronto and laying down a H. H. menu for me. So okay, not the most inspired selection this galaxy has ever known. Basically fries ($4.50), olives ($4.50), cashews and almonds ($4.50), spicy Crackerjacks ($4.50).

Wow. That bunch must have taken a degree in culinary arts to invent.

My ribs

The two real things they have going are glazed chicken drummets with a "harissa and creamy valdeón [Spanish] blue cheese dressing," (six pieces cost $7, twelve are $11); and maybe the only really interesting item in the section, the Jamaican jerk baby back (pork) ribs ($8) with "creamy polenta and mango/papaya mint salsa."

I ask Chris for this, and then head down-menu to their beer section. Have to say this is excellent. Mainly for the value. But also because all of the cervezas are craft and all go for $3 (Okay, the North Coast Brother Thelonius Abbey is $3.50.) I ask for the Alesmith Nautical Nut Brown, a kinda safe, non-hoppy choice. And dammit, just when it's too late I see they have The Lost Abbey's Lost and Found (also $3 pint).

But after being seriously underwhelmed at their H. H. food choice, have to say the ribs are great. Richly marinated pork ribs with the sweet touch coming from the chunks of mango and papaya, and a creamy thing going on with the polenta. Only three ribs, but they're big and tasty and filling.

Getting dark. I want to hang around 'til the musicians start turning up and tuning up, but that's not till seven. I also want to hang around because I'm the guy who's always complaining about cafés not having generous terrazzas on their stretch of sidewalk, and here at last is what I'm talkin' about. But us Happy Houristas know when our time is up.

I'll be back. If only to work my way through their 13 ales on tap. And also do what I love best (apart from yakking and chomping), watching da woild go by.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

North Park – the prime quartier

30th Street parking, Georgia Street bridge, PSA crash, water tower, North Park Main Street
Next Article

Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies, uncovered

Nudity does more to advance an actress’s career than it does the plot
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
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
Close