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Mezcal Bar & Modern Mexican Restaurant, Tahona, Opens In San Diego's Old Town Next Week

October 25, 2018

Tahona, a modern Mexican restaurant & bar specializing in the agave spirit of mezcal, will soft open in San Diego's Old Town next week, with a grand opening scheduled for mid-November.

Old Town’s future mezcal bar and tasting room Tahona will soft open its doors at the end of October, with limited reservations available until it fully opens to the public on Tuesday, November 13. Located next door to the historic Cemetery of El Campo Santo, Tahona’s opening will make San Diego home to one of the country’s few proper mezcal tasting rooms, with more than 120 varieties of the agave-based spirit and events including mezcal meditations, spoken word nights and mezcal-centric group trips to Baja and Oaxaca.

On November 13, from 5pm to midnight, Tahona will welcome all to explore its south-of-the-border fare and drink specials via the first Tahona Taco Tuesday, an event designed to give back to the very community from which mezcal and tequila originate. During this opening evening, Tahona will donate $1 for every taco sold to Corazon de Vida, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit designed to support ten orphanages throughout Baja California, which San Diego chapter was founded by Tahona’s owner, Amar Harrag.

Tahona’s menu of modern Mexican cuisine with Oaxacan influence will be available beginning November 13 and including gourmet tacos like Pork Belly Quemado (seared pork belly, mole negro, habanero pickled, onions, smoked apple puree, and cilantro crema) and a Chicken Tinga (chicken, chipotle, green onions, queso fresco, and cilantro crema), a Tres Moles tasting flight, Baja favorites like Scallops Aguachile and Pulpo Negro and indulgent house-made desserts including Churro S’mores served with a side of chocolate ganache and a lightly charred marshmallow fluff. Inspired by Mexican culture and traditions, Tahona’s drink menu will equally take the stage with creative cocktails including the Whaley House Punch (mezcal, lime, pineapple, salted watermelon, Campari, Absinthe), Campo Santo (mezcal, lime, passion fruit, Cointreau, agave syrup, coconut water) and more concoctions with names like Bien Picado and Jimador’s Dream.

Tahona’s rustic yet refined 2,000 square foot is designed by JG Color Studios and will feature authentic Oaxacan elements, oversized Spanish archways leading into its mezcal tasting room, hand painted tiles, Mexican rope seats and large rattan lights overhead. Vintage furniture curated by Tahona’s founders and hand troweled clay walls will round out a wanderlust-worthy aesthetic.


Tahona is spearheaded by mezcal enthusiast Amar Harrag, a native of France and graduate of the University of San Diego who co-owns four locations of Matisse Bistro in San Diego and Irvine and runs real estate brokerage Allied Green Realty. In addition to founding the San Diego chapter of Corazon de Vida, Harrag sits on the board of directors for Create Purpose; both non-profits aid orphaned and abandoned children in Mexico. Additional partners include beverage directors Carlo Bracci Devoti and Blair Marano - the latter Vice President of the United States Bartenders Guild - whose experiences span from London to San Francisco and will result in a sophisticated cocktail program with international flair. Leading Tahona’s mezcal tastings and events is Steven Sadri, a mezcal aficionado who has visited countless villages in Oaxaca during the past decade while researching mezcal. Emily Thompson of San Francisco will oversee the front of house, having previously managed Bay Area hotspots Nopalito and Cala.

Tahona will be located at 2414 San Diego Avenue and open daily from 5pm-12am. For more information, visit tahonabar.com.