Mermaids & Cowboys Closes In La Jolla To Make Way For New Seafood Restaurant Aldea

December 27, 2023

Mermaids & Cowboys restaurant has closed in the heart of San Diego's La Jolla and will soon be replaced by a new coastal seafood concept named Aldea.

In 2020, the Prospect Street space previously occupied by Alfonso's La Jolla for forty-plus years was taken over by Michael "All-Nite Mike" Bonislawski for the opening of Mermaids & Cowboys. Mermaids & Cowboys aimed at embracing La Jolla's continuing love story of land and sea, influenced by La Jolla's roots in the cattle ranch days when cowboys drove herds up the beach. 

Mermaids & Cowboys closed before the Christmas holiday and a restructured ownership team will rebrand the concept to become Aldea. Founded by Steve Horowitz, a La Jolla native with a passion for his hometown, Aldea emerged from a vision to create a community-driven experience. The 3,200 square-foot space will be redesigned and the restaurant will offer a Baja-inspired, indigenous coastal menu with seasonal dishes inspired by regions from Mexico City to Carlsbad.

Led by Executive Chef John Villalba, who previously worked at the famed Tavern on the Green in New York City's Central Park, Aldea's menu will draw inspiration from the flavors of Mexico while embracing a broader, global influence with a wide range of seafood-centric and other culinary delights. Meaning "village" in Spanish, Aldea is built with a foundational commitment to becoming a neighborhood-driven destination in the heart of La Jolla. 

Aldea is expected to open mid-to-late January at 1251 Prospect Street in San Diego's La Jolla. For more information, follow Aldea on Instagram