A prominent spot on Prospect Street is being reactivated as Covo La Jolla after laying dormant for three years. The 10,000-square-foot restaurant and lounge in the heart of downtown La Jolla began as Amaya, which served Southern-inspired food in an opulent Italianate setting, and spent the last year of its tenure as Bijou, a French bistro. Its new proprietors plan to infuse new life into the space starting in early March, although a preview is planned via a multi-course Valentine’s Day dinner that will be followed by live music and dancing.
Owner Michael Viscuso brings considerable hospitality experience to the project, with past projects including multiple nightlife venues as well as Entrada in Little Italy. He’s turning the front of the space, which features a sidewalk patio and seating for 50, into a casual cafe open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m that will offer a grab-and-go options and a light food menu as well as Italian coffee and espresso drinks fueled by Bird Rock Coffee Roasters.
The main dining space, which includes multiple private dining rooms, will be reserved for special events that can range from 25 to 400 guests, from weddings and corporate meetings to special wine and other pairing dinners that will be open to the public. On and off-site catering, run in partnership with Christina Frey, will offer customizable menus from New York City chef Jeremy Fleming and pastry chef Jeff Arcio.
A bar and lounge at the back of the space will be open from 8 p.m. to close every Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Featuring live musicians as well as recorded music, the lounge will serve a late-night dinner menu and craft cocktails from Mischa Wright and Aaron Hofer.