Incognito seems to be the theme for Iberico Spanish Bistro and Gin Club, a Spanish cuisine themed restaurant and gin bar in La Jolla that took over the former Vigilucci’s location on Prospect Street. A mysterious website message from “The Owners” state “Passion is people. People who love what they do and take your enjoyment personally. Passion is what to expect from the people who take your order and the people who craft your meal.”
The owners are actually none other than Juan Carlos Gomez, the owner of the Mexican restaurant El Agave located in a few neighborhoods south in Old Town. It seems that the marketing strategy for launching an upscale brand to test the waters before reaching out to the press is a wise decision in a fickle neighborhood like La Jolla. With little formal fanfare outside a launch party, the consumers have mostly been tourists coming in for the summer season in San Diego.
The menus are being adjusted based on valuable customer feedback while there are still few reviews on Yelp.com. Tapas, flat breads, seafood, paellas, and meats are the mainstays with several gluten-free options available. The food preparations have infused some Mexican flavor instead of adopting a fully authentic Spanish one as seen with the Mexican styled creme brulee and churros for dessert.
A unique aspect being touted by Iberico Spanish Bistro and Gin Club is that it is the only space in California dedicated to the excellence of gin tonic. The 3,500-square-foot venue has private dining, bar seating, and an open patio perfect for the San Diego weather. The interior has ocean blue, warm tones and hits of sunset colors displayed cleverly through glass chandeliers, slender bottles, and wine glasses.
The no press is better than bad press seems to be a smart move for the moment for Iberico Spanish Bistro and Gin Club. The owner has waited ten years in the making to launch his Spanish themed restaurant in San Diego and a few more weeks of fine tuning doesn’t hurt.