Queenstown Public House, an enduringly-popular brunch spot in Little Italy, will be making its way to the heart of downtown La Jolla. Debuting back in 2013 in a renovated historic house at the corner Columbia and Cedar, the New Zealand-inspired spot also has an all-outdoor offshoot, Queenstown Bistro, that opened in 2018 at Westfield UTC. Named for a resort town in New Zealand, Queenstown is part of a group of local restaurants that includes Dunedin in North Park, Ocean Beach’s Raglan Public House, and Bare Back Grill on Mission Boulevard.
The all-day restaurant will be moving into the La Jolla space last held by Karl Strauss Brewing Company, which shuttered its Wall Street brewpub in early 2021 after 25 years in that location. Queenstown co-owner PJ Lamont tells Eater that the group is currently projecting a March 2022 opening.
Lamont says they’ve been working on refining the Queenstown brand, which serves a variety of salads and snacks as well as grass fed beef and New Zealand lamb burgers, fish and chips, and New Zealand meat pies. Longtime design partner Michael Soriano, who imagined Queenstown’s whimsical worlds in Little Italy and UTC, is returning for this project and promises that the restaurant’s iconic sheep will pop up in the design. Soriano, who is heading to Las Vegas on a design scouting trip with collaborator James Denton, tells Eater they plan to open up the La Jolla space to greater emphasize its patio seating and utilize the dining room’s high ceilings to install playful elements like glass greenhouses suspended above booths.
- All Coming Attractions [ESD]