Callie Restaurant Owner Reveals More Details On Upcoming La Jolla French Restaurant

January 12, 2024

Chef Travis Swikard, proprietor of the Michelin-recognized Callie restaurant in San Diego's East Village, has unveiled additional information about his upcoming French bistro. The establishment, a collaboration with the Cohn Restaurant Group, is set to open next year within an office park in La Jolla.

In 2018, Chef Travis Swikard returned to his hometown of San Diego after a decade-long stint in New York City, where he rose the ranks of French Master Chef Daniel Boulud's culinary empire to become the company's second in command. In a media frenzy of a homecoming, Swikard teamed up with his former employer, San Diego's Cohn Restaurant Group, and immediately announced the impending opening of a Mediterranean-inspired, California-driven restaurant in the East Village.

Three years and a pandemic later, Callie Meditteranean-fusion restaurant unveiled in the 6,500 square-foot space that previously housed Bottega Americano in a rather rough section of San Diego's East Village. The 125-seat restaurant almost immediately became a popular dining destination and received highly-coveted Michelin Bib Gourmand recognition within its first few months of operation. Last year, Swikard scooped talented local chef Mike Reidy from The Fishery in Pacific Beach, which paved the way for him to look toward expanding. 

Last fall, Swikard, along with "silent partners" David & Lesley Cohn, signed a lease to take over a 6,000 square-foot, free-standing space in La Jolla Commons office park in La Jolla. Like Callie, his yet-to-be named "Provençal brasserie" will be designed by Los Angeles-based Studio UNLTD. Expect 24 foot-tall windows, an onsite garden with citrus trees and fresh herbs, and a menu of classic-meets-modern Southern French cuisine. The approximately 140-seat restaurant will also boast a French-style kitchen with an authentic French island stove, a 1,500-square-foot patio, a bar with space for about a dozen customers, a private dining room, and its own parking lot with valet service. 
Chefs Travis Swikard and Mike Reidy.
Swikard's incoming French restaurant is inspired by a recent family vacation to Cassis, which sits on the French Riviera. The cuisine, describes as "cuisine soleil," or cuisine of the sun, will be lighter than the typical dishes known from Northern France. Expect items like Dover sole meunière, roasted sweetbreads and quail, dry-aged duck, and poulet roti - chicken roasted over chicken-fat-cooked baby potatoes, as well as several French-style pasta dishes. The new restaurant will also offer price-fixed options, including a "45-minute" two-course lunch to cater to the office park employees, and have a full bar with cocktails, beer and wine.  

Chef Travis Swikard's unnamed French restaurant & bar is anticipated to open in summer 2025 at 4747 Executive Drive in San Diego's University City area of La Jolla.