Two San Diego entertainment and hospitality venues have pivoted to make their businesses work while still complying with COVID-19 health orders.
Mainstay Cucina Urbana, rather than serving fans out of their longtime home on Laurel Street and 5th Avenue, launched an outdoor off-shoot, Camp Cucina, in Middletown, according to Eater San Diego.
Cucina Urbana’s team focused on Julep to create the pop-up eatery. The Hancock Street event space opened last fall, just ahead of the pandemic that took hold in March.
“Our space on Laurel Street doesn’t allow us to provide service in the way that we wanted and we knew that we had to be innovative in finding new ways to start serving our local friends and regulars we missed so much,” wrote Tracy Borkum of Urban Kitchen Group, the collective that operates Cucina Urbana.
To that end, they established service on two Julep patios, with the kitchen set up in an adjacent parking lot. The pop-up menu includes pizzas, from pepperoni, sausage and ricotta to mushroom, goat cheese and caramelized onion.
The drinks menu, by Snake Oil Cocktail Co., Julep’s owner, features classics like bourbon, gin and vodka. But they mix in the unexpected, like watermelon, dragon fruit and lavender.
The cocktail company opened Julep in October 2019, and targeted the event market. It includes a cafe and spaces for meeting and co-working. “With social events on pause,” wrote Michael Esposito, of Snake Oil, “suddenly it just clicked that through Camp Cucina, we could both do what we love, create community and reunite with familiar faces.”
Camp Cocina, 1735 Hancock St., open 4-9 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Make reservations online or call 619-239-2222. Also, phone in orders for takeout and curbside pickup.
– Staff reports
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