Longtime Cantina Mayahuel Manager To Open Metl Dive Bar & Music Venue In San Diego's Gaslamp

October 23, 2019

Downtown San Diego's nearly decade-old The Hopping Pig will shutter next month to be rebranded into Metl, an agave-fueled bar, live music destination and casual restaurant that will be managed by the former face of Cantina Mayahuel.

Opened in 2010 by experienced San Diego restaurateur Djani Ivanov - who also operates Farmers Bottega in Mission Hills, Two Blu Ducks in North Park and previously owned Olivetto Cafe & Wine Bar and Aqua Blue - The Hopping Pig will close in early November to undergo a short refresher aiming to reopen shortly thereafter as Metl. The new concept will be in partnership with longstanding Hopping Pig GM Jenna Elskamp, whose husband Randy "Randyman" Elskamp has been the face of North Park's Cantina Mayahuel for more than 8 years. Jenna & Randy will be managing the new Metl, named after the Nahuatl (Aztec) word for the agave plant, revamping the bar menu to focus on tequila and mezcal. The space will also house a new stage for frequent live music nights and offer a tavern-style menu to feature items like a Flamin' Hot Cheetos burger and a homemade peanut butter pie with mezcal peanut butter cup ice cream.

"We bought a portion of the Pig a few years ago and have made a deal with our business partner to buy out the business," explained Metl co-owner Jenna Elskamp. "This idea has been out 'baby' for a few years and after considerations, we finally decided that revamping the Pig into our own bar Metl was the smartest and most feasible way of realizing our dream. Being in this industry for most of our lives, we want to create a bar that has all the things we look for in a bar - comfortable, dark, with a non-pretentious vibe, friendly and inviting staff with great music, killer food, delicious cocktails and quality spirits."

Metl aims to open by mid-to-late November at 748 Fifth Avenue in San Diego's Gaslamp. For more information, visit metlsd.com.