Copa Vida Coffee in San Diego

Copa Vida Coffee in San Diego

If you’re a coffee lover, you’ll definitely want to stick around for this episode of Off The 56! Join me as I meet with co-owner, Steve Chang, of local coffee shop, Copa Vida.

Steve Chang was kind enough to sit down with us today and talk about his beautiful new space in the Carmel Mountain area of North County. Copa Vida was started seven years ago in Pasadena, California and quickly gained its popularity. Since the opening of the first shop, Copa Vida has expanded to seven locations and a roasting facility all located in Southern California.

After leaving his family business, Passport Food Group, Chang began his journey in the coffee industry. He says he “used coffee as an excuse to travel the world.” And I could not be more jealous of his learning adventure! After traveling to every coffee capital in the U.S. and to countries like Italy, Spain, France, and Costa Rica, Chang knew what he wanted for his very own coffee shop. Click here to learn more about the history of Copa Vida.

Steve Chang took his vast knowledge of coffee and incorporated his prior experience of the food industry into his new endeavor. Copa Vida has a delicious menu that is a step above what most coffee shops have to offer. Whether you’re in the mood for avocado toast, chilaquiles, or a hearty breakfast burrito, stop by Copa Vida and enjoy a delicious breakfast or lunch with your cup of joe.

Want to check out more coffee spots Off the 56? Click here to check out a past tour I did of five coffee shops located along the 56 freeway.

Have an idea for a local business we should feature on Off the 56? Suggest your idea here!

Living in Del Mar in San Diego

Living in Del Mar in San Diego

Next up on our tour of San Diego is the beautiful neighborhood of Del Mar! Del Mar is a rather small area, totaling 2.1 sq. miles and has a population of only 3,347 people. You’ll quickly see that although it might be a small neighborhood, Del Mar makes up for it with beautiful beaches and lots to do!

Our first stop today is Del Mar Beach. It can get busy in this area during the summer because it is such a great beach to walk, run, surf, and hang out at! You can also grab a bite to eat and still enjoy the view at some of our favorites, Poseidon Restaurant or Jake’s Del Mar. Del Mar Dog Beach is another awesome spot in Del Mar. It’s just about a mile north of the main Del Mar Beach and is a great spot to take your dog for some sun and sand all year round. Check out more information about Dog Beach here.

The next stop on our tour is Seagrove Park in Del Mar. This beautiful park is tucked away between palm trees and ocean views, making it the perfect location for private events. In fact, you can rent the space for your own special event! For more information about Seagrove Park, click here. The park also sits right in front of the Pacific Surfliner train tracks. The Surfliner transports passengers all the way from downtown San Diego up to San Luis Obispo in Central California. It is a great public transportation system that many San Diegans use to commute to and from the Los Angeles area.

Next on our list is the beautiful Del Mar Village. One of the great things about Del Mar Village is its central location. The neighborhood of Del Mar is located on the central coast of San Diego County and is only about 20 minutes North from downtown and 20 minutes south of Carlsbad as well. This area is very walkable and full of great shops, restaurants, and bars to enjoy! You’ll also want to check out the view from the brand new Del Mar Civic Center!

Of course, it wouldn’t be a day with Courtney without a stop for a sweet snack! Next on our tour of Del Mar is Stratford Court Café for coffee and a cinnamon roll. (Got to keep Courtney happy!)

Perhaps, one of the most famous attractions in Del Mar is the Del Mar Race Track. There are now two racing seasons, one in the summer that starts after the County Fair and the other in late November. After Hollywood Park closed in Los Angeles they moved its race season down to San Diego and added a fall meet. Click here to get the complete 2020 Race Season schedule. The Del Mar Race Track also hosts major events such as The San Diego County Fair, KAABOO Del Mar, and many more special events year round.

We finished up our tour of Del Mar in true San Diego fashion, at Roberto’s Del Mar to grab a California burrito!

We hope you enjoyed our tour of Del Mar! Did we convince you to make the move here? If you are curious about moving to Del Mar or another neighborhood in San Diego County, give me a call anytime! (858) 737-5255

Harland Brewing Opens in Carmel Valley at One Paseo

Harland Brewing Opens in Carmel Valley at One Paseo

Today on Off The 56, I visited Harland Brewing at One Paseo in Carmel Valley. I met with co-founder Josh Landan, who was also the former owner and CEO of the popular brewing company, Saint Archer Brewing. Landan showed me around Harland Brewing and gave me the inside scoop on how business is booming at their newest Carmel Valley tasting room.

With his obvious knowledge and passion for the craft beer business, Landan co-founded Harland Brewing just a year ago. The original location is in Scripps Ranch San Diego. This spot in One Paseo is their second location. Opening a tasting room in a different neighborhood of San Diego left them unsure of what to expect, but they are loving their new neighborhood!

Their most popular beer right now is Harland Brewing’s Hazy IPA (no surprise there!) But what is surprising, even to Josh Landan himself, is the growing popularity of their special edition Blackberry Cobbler Beer. The unique beer has become so popular, it is now available for sale in a 4-pack of 12 oz. cans. You can pick yours up at either Harland Brewing location. But make sure you hurry – it’s only available for a limited time!

Although Harland Brewing only sells its craft beer, don’t worry about what you’ll do when the hunger strikes! One Paseo is full of tasty local restaurants with great eats you can enjoy with your delicious Harland brews. New neighbors, URBN Coal Fire Pizza, will deliver your order straight to Harland Brewing so you don’t even have to leave! There is also the popular barbeque restaurant International Smoke, Shake Shack, North Italia, and much more to choose from.

If you’re a craft beer fan, a visit to Harland Brewing is a must! Click here to check out more about what this up-and-coming establishment has to offer. And if you’re interested in learning more about the Carmel Valley community, check out my blog, Living in Carmel Valley San Diego, on Off The 56. We tour some of the best parks and schools, before making another stop at One Paseo.

And as always, if you’re looking to buy or sell your home in North County San Diego, give me a call! I would be happy to help. (858) 900-1797

The Florence in Sabre Springs

The Florence in Sabre Springs

Today on Off The 56, I met with Nick Sanderson who is one of the owners of The Florence in Sabre Springs. Not only did I tour the beautiful new restaurant, I learned about the distinctive history behind the property as well.

This unique restaurant takes its inspiration from a remarkable woman, Florence Chadwick. Chadwick was born in San Diego and actually owned the land that The Florence sits on today. In 1950, she became the first women to swim the English Channel both ways. And in 1952, she swam from the California Coast to Catalina Island. She was an inspiration then and continues to inspire today as her legacy lives on through her namesake restaurant. You’ll find her photographs, trophies, and even the swimsuit she swam the English Channel in throughout the restaurant!

The menu also takes inspiration from Florence Chadwick. Sanderson told me that the restaurant serves a nostalgic 1950’s inspired menu alongside a few dishes that draw culinary inspiration from her global travels during her lifetime. Chadwick spent time in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, England, and the California Coast. Sanderson said that one of the most popular dishes on the brunch menu is the Moroccan Baked Eggs! The Florence also has classic weeknight specials, including Beef Pot Pie, Gumbo, and Fried Chicken with all the fixins! Click here to browse all of their menu items.

The Florence also hosts weddings and other events! There is a regulation-size Bocce Ball court, boathouse seating, a lounge area with fire pits, and the dining area, which can accommodate up to 500 guests. Interested in hosting your next event at The Florence? Contact them here.

On the last Sunday of every month, The Florence hosts themed events that include special dishes, live music, games, and more! During our visit today, their Ohana Fest was in full swing! Nick tells us that Ohana, meaning family, is the basis of their mission at The Florence. I could sure feel the family vibe through the beautiful live music, delicious food, drinks, and all the special touches The Florence has to offer!

I hope you get the chance to check out The Florence soon! They are open for diner Monday through Saturday and brunch all week long. They also have a special happy hour menu!

And as always, if you or someone you know is looking to move to this area, give me a call. I would be happy to find you the perfect home in North County San Diego. (858) 900-1797

Living in Carmel Valley San Diego

Living in Carmel Valley San Diego

Today on Off the 56 Courtney Solis and I are taking you on a tour of the awesome Carmel Valley, San Diego neighborhood. Carmel Valley is full of family-friendly parks, awesome restaurants and shopping, and award-winning schools – and it’s just five miles to the coast! Does it get any better than that?!

We began our tour at the Western end of the Peñasquitos Preserve. There’s a trail that runs along the 56 freeway which you can follow all the way to the ocean. It starts at the 15 freeway and you can bike, walk, horseback ride, and hike down to Torrey Pines Preserve. This is a great trail that many locals love to take advantage of and you’ll often see people enjoying the trail at all hours of the day!

From there, Courtney and I headed to Pacific Highlands Ranch, the newer section of Carmel Valley. Many of the homes were built in the last five to seven years (2012 and later) with some still being built today! The median home price in Carmel Valley is about $1,300,000 for a single family home. Townhomes and condos are more affordable, with townhomes starting at around $650,000. If you’re in the market for a new home, reach out to me – I’d love to talk to you about your options.

The local schools are one of the main reasons people choose to move to Carmel Valley. This community is home to some of the best schools in the state! In fact, Canyon Crest Academy located right here in Pacific Highlands Ranch, Torrey Pines High School, Pacific Trails Middle School and Carmel Valley Middle School are all ranked in the Top 30 on the Niche.com list of the Best Public Schools in California. Many of the local schools in Carmel Valley are known for the strength of their S.T.E.M. Education. S.T.E.M. stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.

Next, we visited the Pacific Highlands Ranch Community Park in Pacific Highlands Ranch. This park is fairly new and has brought some much needed recreation space to the community. The park features playgrounds for kids, a bike track, a large open field, basketball courts, and a skateboard park with a halfpipe! This park truly has something for everyone.

Our tour of Carmel Valley made us work up an appetite so we stopped at local favorite doughnut shop, Sidecar Doughnuts and Coffee, in the Del Mar Highlands shopping center. If you’ve never been, be sure to put it on your list – trust me, they have some of the best doughnuts you’ve ever tasted! Click here to get the address and see all of the Sidecar Doughnuts locations in Southern California.

After fueling up, Courtney and I stopped at the newly opened One Paseo. One Paseo has a host of new restaurants and shops worth checking out like International Smoke (opened by basketball player Stephen Curry’s wife, Ayesha!) Salt & Straw, Pigment, Urban Beach House, Blue Bottle Coffee, and so much more! There’s even a Susie Cakes at One Paseo – that’s where I got my wedding cake from! Although there aren’t any specific kid-designated areas, there’s plenty of open space to sit and relax throughout the shopping center. Click here to see a full list of the shopping and dining options at One Paseo.

We conclude our tour with – of course – a trip to the beach! We stopped by Torrey Pines Beach, which we’ve visited before on Off the 56. One of Carmel Valley’s best features is definitely its location. Centrally located, it’s only about five minutes from Torrey Pines State Beach and just about twenty-five minutes from anywhere in San Diego County. Whether you head to Downtown San Diego often, fly frequently, or work out of Carlsbad, Carmel Valley is the perfect place to call home!

I hope you enjoyed our tour of Carmel Valley! I know we did! If you want to pick up the California Explorer Pass Courtney mentioned in the video, click here.

And again, if you’re thinking of making a move to Carmel Valley, don’t hesitate to reach out – I would love to help you find the perfect home!

Living in Rancho Penasquitos

Living in Rancho Penasquitos

As many of you know I live Off the 56 in the Rancho Peñasquitos neighborhood of San Diego. I thought we’d do something a little bit different today and go on a neighborhood tour to show you what life is like in this great community. With me is my neighbor and friend, Courtney Solis. Join us as we take you through our neck of the woods and show you all the best that Rancho Peñasquitos has to offer!

We begin our day at the Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve. This is a beautiful, 4,000 acre preserve that is open to the public to enjoy hiking, biking, and even horseback riding on the trails! A lot of the trails in Peñasquitos Canyon are fairly flat, which makes it a great place for all skill levels to get some exercise. If you’ve been a regular viewer of Off the 56, you’ll remember this is the same canyon where I hung out with Canicross San Diego! So whether you’re looking for an easy family hike or something more challenging, you’ll want to check out Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve which is right in our own backyard.

Next we stopped by Peñasquitos Park, which is right across the street from Park Village Elementary School. As Courtney tells us, this is one of the many elementary schools in the area ranked in the fifty best schools in California! Schools in Rancho Peñasquitos are part of the award-winning Poway Unified School District. If you’re looking to enroll your kids in a great public school district, Rancho Peñasquitos might be a great fit for your family!

After enjoying our hike and visit to Peñasquitos Park, Courtney and I headed to a popular spot in the area, Andell’s Bakery. Andell’s is just around the corner from Bad Ass Coffee, which I visited on my Off the 56 coffee shop tour. Andell’s is an Asian-Pacific Bakery and Kitchen. As Courtney told us on the video, one of the most popular desserts on the menu is the Ube Londres Cake. Unfortunately, as we found out, Andell’s is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays so we weren’t able to try the purple cake for ourselves. We’ll be back another time for sure!

Next on our tour, we visited the neighborhood where the first Paranormal Activity movie was shot on Bavarian Drive. As a Realtor, it’s pretty cool to have a famous house in the neighborhood!

But the Paranormal Activity house isn’t the only famous house in Rancho Peñasquitos. We also checked out Christmas Card Lane, which isn’t as impressive in the summer, but turns into a magical place during the holidays! Courtney and I both highly recommend visiting Christmas Card Lane during December. All the homes on the street light up and the community of Rancho Peñasquitos truly comes together to celebrate Christmas.

After exploring Christmas Card Lane, Courtney and I headed to Hilltop Community Park. Rancho Peñasquitos has lots of great parks throughout the area. Besides Hilltop Park, there’s also Torrey Meadows Park and Black Mountain Open Space Park. But at Hilltop Park, you’ll enjoy amazing views of the ocean, great playground equipment, and plenty of open space for the kids to run around in. If you have young kids, you will love living in Rancho Peñasquitos.

For the last stop of the tour, we headed to one of my favorite local restaurants, Knotty Barrel. Home to great food, locally brewed beers, and an awesome outdoor dining space. If you haven’t checked out my latest visit to Knotty Barrel on Off the 56, click here to watch my interview with the owner.

I hope you enjoyed our day out and about in Rancho Peñasquitos! What was your favorite part of our tour? Let us know in the comments below.

And if you are thinking of making a move to Rancho Peñasquitos, don’t hesitate to reach out – I’d be happy to help you find the perfect home.

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