clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Chef Antonio Friscia to Helm Gaslamp Mexican Hot Spot

Due downtown this May is Don Chido, a new upscale Mexican restaurant that replaces Fred's Mexican Cafe.

The partnership behind the project includes RMD Group (FLUXX, Side Bar), Ken Lovi (Knotty Barrel Gastropub) and chef Antonio Friscia, whose welcome return to the kitchen comes after last year's shutter of Gaijin.

Don Chido's menu intends to focus on "regionally influenced, handcrafted Mexican cooking"; Friscia will preside over a wood-fired Santa Maria grill, where he'll cook up the ancho chile-garlic butter-basted ribeye steaks for his Don Chido Especiale, which will also include chipotle-lime wild Mexican shrimp, charred house-made chorizo, frijoles refrittos, avocado, chile rejeno, house-made corn tortillas, charred globe onions and and red guajillo sauce.

Other dishes destined for the menu: smoked shrimp cockteles, tacos al pastor, queso fundido and hongos al horno with smoked spicy mushrooms, salsa negra, epazote, local corn and añejo cheese.

A taqueria stand housed in a center bar will make the restaurant's fresh tortillas and be open late night for the bar crowd. Drinks will include a wine list focused on local wines, plus varietals from Mexico and Spain, and cocktails that hinge on infused tequilas and mezcals.

Davis Ink Ltd., who is also involved in the Red Circle redo, will transform the 4,000-square-foot space with "reclaimed wood, exposed steel and stone, combined with eye-catching features such as custom maraca wall sconces, star chandeliers and an art wall made entirely from Mexican blankets."

The RMD Group and Lovi also plan to redesign the adjacent Marble Room space and reopen it this summer. Eater's hearing that it'll be an American gastropub-ish concept.

Update: We just got word that Don Chido is holding job fair on Monday, March 10 from noon to 3 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. at The Marble Room (535 5th Ave.); open positions include cooks, servers, and bartenders.
· Don Chido [Facebook]
· All Coming Attractions on Eater [~ESD~]

Volcano Rabbit

527 Fifth Avenue, , CA 92101 (619) 232-8226 Visit Website

Don Chido

527 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater San Diego newsletter

The freshest news from the local food world