If you’ve ever spent the day on a San Diego beach, chances are you’ve wished the bars and restaurants would come to you, instead of having to pack up your car, change clothes, and go to them. Your fairy godmother has heard your wishes and delivered Shore Rider Bar & Grill to you. They’ve made the calculations and claim to be a mere 250 steps from the sand at La Jolla Shores Beach. After a day of swimming, kayaking, surfing, or scuba diving, this restaurant is a welcome pit stop for great food and a cold beverage before packing it in for the day. Here’s one San Diego restaurant that embraces the essence of “No shirt, no shoes, no problem!”
Shore Rider Bar & Grill Ambiance
No need to worry about a La Jolla restaurant hesitating to serve you in your sandy flip-flops and wet board shorts or tee-shirt. Just make your way across the beach to Shore Rider Bar & Grill. Their come-as-you-are dress code is perfect for casual dining at what seems more like an extension of the beach than a separate restaurant. You’ll find a true San Diego beach vibe here.
An indoor/outdoor game room features a TV and board games, a room-length banquette with wood bistro tables and director-style chairs, and an outdoor-facing drink counter with a few bar stools. The outdoor patio is partially covered by a vaulted roof. Roof trusses that support real surfboards and hanging Edison lights add to the surf motif.
Several picnic benches sit on the concrete patio, and the long bar with two TVs accommodates 15 barstools. Four round succulent gardens hang on the white paneled wall opposite the bar. The uncovered end of the bar sports yellow and white umbrellas shading high top tables with wood bar stools.
Shore Rider has a comfortable, beachy, surfer vibe that is welcoming to the whole family.
Shore Rider Bar & Grill Food
Diners can expect SoCal beach fare with a gastropub twist at Shore Rider. It’s difficult to narrow the starters down to favorites here. It seems everyone has one. The most talked about starters are the street tacos. They’re super affordable à la carte offerings in a variety of flavor choices – crispy carnitas, chicken tinga, beef machaca, blackened shrimp, Baja-style fish (fried), grilled fish, and al pastor portabello mushroom. They may be small, but they pack a big flavor punch. The California French Fries are also a big hit with beef machaca, jack cheese, grilled poblanos and onions, guacamole, fries, sour cream, and pico de gallo.
For entrées, the seafood ceviche with shrimp, local fish, pico de gallo, avocado, lime, and house chips is popular. The One Pound Burrito with chicken tinga, blackened shrimp, grilled poblanos and onions, pico de gallo, jack cheese, guacamole, and chile verde cream on a flour tortilla with a side of chips and guacamole gets high marks for the hungry appetite. The crusted ahi sandwich – seared ahi steak, Firecracker Slaw, guacamole, melted smoked provolone cheese, and Dynamite Sauce on a brioche bun is also a favorite.
Shore Rider also serves burgers, salads, and wraps, plus a few delectable desserts.
There are some great local craft brews on tap, including Belching Beaver peanut butter stout brewed in Oceanside, along with other familiar drafts like Modelo Especial and Stella. There’s a great selection of bottled beers too, and wines by the glass or bottle.
Shore Rider Bar & Grill Details
Shore Rider has a handful of TVs tuned in to the sports of the day, plus complimentary Wi-Fi, and wheelchair accessibility. Several board games from Operation to Scrabble, and an oversized Connect Four game offer a pleasant way to entertain yourself over beers or before/after a meal.
Shore Rider specializes in lunch and brunch, but is open for a laid-back evening dinner too. The restaurant doesn’t take reservations, but open seating where diners seat themselves is assisted by staff if it gets too busy to comfortably find your spot. They offer take-out and catering, and you can rent the entire space for a casual event.
Parking in this neighborhood can be challenging, especially on good beach days in the summer. With patience and luck, there is lots of street parking. Or, there is parking at nearby Kellogg Park.
This restaurant has a children’s menu with impressive quality.
Shore Rider Bar & Grill Neighborhood
La Jolla Shores is a popular beach destination for tourists, and a great surf spot for locals looking for an easy ride. The mile-long beach is one of San Diego’s prettiest. There is an expansive grassy park adjacent to the beach with a children’s playground that makes this a great spot for families with kids too. Besides strolling the beach or enhancing your tan, you can stop by Bike and Kayak Tours for something more active. Birch Aquarium is up the hill behind La Jolla Shores and offers a fun and educational good time for the whole family.
Across the street from UCSD at the top of the hill, you’ll find Torrey Pines Gliderport. This is a relaxing place to watch the paragliders and hang gliders launch from the top of the bluff over Black’s Beach. Also nearby are two entirely different entertainment experiences, the upscale Torrey Pines public golf course, which is home to the Farmers Insurance Open, and the La Jolla Playhouse on the UCSD campus that has produced dozens of productions that have gone on to win over 35 Tony awards on Broadway.