After serving as a beer garden for the past three years, the casual dining concept at Jamul Casino is getting a refresh. Loft 94 will relaunch in October with a new-look menu of Asian-inspired cuisine designed by executive chef Keoni Simmons, alongside a brand new bar and cocktail program.
Chef Keoni, whose team includes sous chef Anthony Mejia and demi chef Abel Gutierrez, shared that in addition to new menu items such as ramen, poke, and pho there will also be a live-action yakitori grill. Many of the dishes will feature locally sourced produce, including Mexican blue shrimp and bigeye tuna from Tommy Gomes at Catalina Offshore and beef short rib, pork belly, and skirt steaks from Central Meat & Provision in Barrio Logan.
Alongside a rotating line of San Diego craft beer handles (and one Japanese addition), plus sake served in glowing glass decanters, Loft 94’s revamped cocktail menu might just be the new star of the show. Designed by resident mixologist Nick Hirsch, many of the drinks will incorporate a strong visual component, including a deconstructed Old Fashioned topped with torched meringue and a clarified sake Cosmopolitan with a cranberry bitters lollipop stir stick that changes its color.
Additional highlights from the list include the Colada Mon’ – a refreshing visit to the Caribbean made with coconut rum, dark chocolate liqueur, and Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur among other components – which also serves as a ‘sneak peek’ into Loft 94’s Sunday Special menu. And the Iced Emerald, a gin and Lillet Blanc split-base served inside a large format ice sphere that will be cracked tableside and garnished with micro lemon mint and a matcha cream covered vanilla wafer.
While its sweeping hillside views remain outside, Loft 94’s interior will receive a mini-design refresh too with a new, warmer industrial feel contrasted by pops of red, natural wood elements, and communal tables with fresh herb centerpieces.
A VIP event is planned for the week of October 10 to coincide with Loft 94’s third-anniversary celebration, and the official opening is slated for Wednesday, October 16.