In advance of an impressive wave of notable names from the local food scene that will begin landing at the San Diego International Airport (SAN) starting in 2025, another San Diego-based brand has touched down at Terminal 1 East. Dark Horse Coffee Roasters, which already operates six cafes in the area, has opened its seventh location near the Southwest Airlines concourses. Open daily from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m., the outpost is operated in partnership with airport concessionaire Mission Yogurt, Inc., which also runs the adjacent Einstein Bagels.
Joining a roster that includes current airport tenants like Bankers Hill Bar & Restaurant, Phil’s BBQ, and Stone Brewing Company as well as incoming restaurants and bars from the likes of Kettner Exchange, Puesto, and Cutwater Spirits, Dark Horse is serving a menu of coffee and espresso drinks fueled by small-batch roasted, direct-trade beans, including its popular specialty beverages like the Champ, which is made with espresso, milk, honey, and cinnamon. The airport kiosk also features breakfast items, sandwiches, and pastries, including vegan doughnuts from its own Skinny Donuts line, which will be offered along with beer, wine, and canned cocktails.
Co-founder Bryan Charlson tells Eater that the 10-year-old company is about to embark on even more expansion. Later this fall, Dark Horse will be moving its headquarters and roastery into a much larger space in the Mission Gorge/Grantville area that will also house a full bakery, cupping lab, and new cafe, with the aim of opening by early 2024.