Izakaya Maíze Brings Chef-Driven Japanese-Mexican Fusion To San Diego's La Mesa

November 30, 2022

Now open in San Diego's East County city of La Mesa is Izakaya Maíze, an upscale, wagyu-focused Japanese-Mexican fusion restaurant. 

Izakaya Maíze is the product of Chef Nathan Horton, a San Francisco native who previously worked at popular San Diego restaurants like Chef Brian Malarkey's Animae and Chef Steve Brown's Swagyu Chop House. Sited in the space that last housed Tsuki Sushi Bar & Gril, the 35-seat restaurant serves dinner exclusively with a frequently-changing, seasonal, menu inspired by Mexico and Japan. The menu includes shareable small plates, a few entrees, and desserts, as well as beer, wine, sake and cocktails. 

Highlights from Izakaya Maíze's launch menu include blue corn maza dumplings filled with Oaxaca queso, roasted salsa verde and smoked almonds ($16); Albondigyus wagyu meatballs with spicy tomato sauce, burrata, cilantro chimichurri and bone marrow toast ($28); and takoyaki tater tots tossed in Wagyu fat with Kabayaki sauce, nori, scallions, and bonito flakes ($12). From the entrees, initial dishes include black cod with black garlic, kale, pickled shitake and lemongrass dashi ($28); American wagyu filet mignon with peppercorn($65); and Australian wagyu New York strip steak ($78). 

Izakaya Maíze is now open at 6062 Lake Murray Boulevard, Suite 201, in San Diego's East County city of La Mesa.