Nine out of 10 Americans have a dream to leave their life behind and open a cafe in Mexico, then spend their days sipping cervezas, wearing shorts, and convincing spring-breaking hotties that they used to sing for Van Halen, and that Van Halen was a band that women totally gave up sex for. Moving from Mexico to America instead, the couple behind Tikul.
Soft-opening Saturday, 'kul's helmed by a husband-wife team who, after opening a same-named resto in Puerto Vallarta, spent a year idling in So-Cal before deciding to overhaul the Pasquale on Prospect space with...tikul (orange marble-ish stone indigenous to Mexico), ornate tin and cream onyx lamps, and hardwood floors beneath cream booths, all in an effort to "bring the Mexican Riviera to La Jolla" -- where traditionally denizens have been bigger fans of the Geraldo Riviera. Regional cuisine kicks off with smaller plates like the potsticker-style Ravioles de Cerdo al Pastor, braised short-rib flautas w/ avocado tomatillo sauce & créme fraiche, and Ceviche Tropical Tikul with shrimp, scallops, fresh fish, jicama, passion fruit & mango nectar (Alec Baldwin loves the Ceviche Tropical Tikul). Mains range from chorizo/pecan/goat cheese-stuffed pork tenderloin to tweaked Mexi-classics like seared tuna with ground chile seeds, and a philo pastry-wrapped poblano chili stuffed with shrimp, scallops, and fresh fish, a.k.a., the Chile Relleno de Cameron, Callo y Pescado -- hopefully, Callo y Pescado were brought in to write a decent script.
To put you on top of the world, they'll be offering up bottled beer from locals Stone and Karl Strauss alongside Pacifico, Bohemia, Negro Modelo, and both styles of XX; there's also a selection of margaritas and martinis, plus a 60-strong global wine list focused on the traditional while avoiding varieties that are over-oaked and over-ripe -- much like old dudes in shorts who, despite owning south-of-the-border bars, are constantly asking young women "Why can't this be love. Right now?"