Local Argentine eatery Empanada Kitchen, which got its start in 2016 as a vendor at the North Park Farmer’s Market, is returning to the neighborhood to launch its second storefront. Debuting this Monday, September 23, the casual restaurant will be part of same El Cajon Boulevard corner complex as The Heart & Trotter Butchery; Empanada Kitchen’s first shop opened in February 2018 in downtown San Diego.
Co-founded by Matias Rigali and Dan Housenga, and based Rigali’s family recipes, the eatery centers around handmade, baked empanadas. The menu features core flavors as well as seasonal ones, ranging from traditional beef served with chimichurri sauce to ham and cheese, braised lamb, and vegan ratatouille. Other bites include salad and alfajores, delicate Argentine cookies filled with dulce de leche. Empanada Kitchen also has a wholesale arm, which provides its empanadas to local cafes including Bump Coffee Roasters in Cardiff and Miramar’s Jaunt Coffee Roasters. Rigali says the partners will continue to focus on their wholesale business while exploring more shop locations.
Open from 10 am. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, Friday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the North Park eatery will start serving beer and wine later this fall; a grand opening party is scheduled for Friday, October 4.