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Our Story

About Us

From the East to the West
Culinary Fusion

The culinary offerings at bar Ella encapsulate a fusion of East Coast nostalgia and the vibrant essence of the West Coast, symbolizing a tale of culinary harmony. A social dining experience awaits patrons, highlighted by tapas-style American appetizers and an enticing selection of seafood-inspired dishes. Try our Whole Branzino served with a side of squash caponata for fresh, tasty seafood fare, and our Flat Iron Steak for something more hearty. Complementing these culinary delights, the eclectic cocktail menu at bar Ella reflects a legacy steeped in bartending expertise, promising a lively and engaging bar-centric experience. Discover classic libations with modern twists and innovative creations, such as the vibrant Garibaldi cocktail, a testament to the establishment’s dedication to elevating Pacific Beach’s cocktail culture. Bar Ella transcends the notion of a mere dining spot; it’s a vibrant space where diverse backgrounds converge, crafting memorable moments over exceptional cuisine and libations. The essence of bar Ella lies in fostering connections, creating a welcoming haven for locals and visitors alike—a testament to its commitment to crafting an inclusive and delightful dining experience.

Humble Beginnings
Our Story

Bar Ella, nestled in the vibrant Pacific Beach neighborhood just a stone’s throw away from the sandy shores, represents the culmination of owner Krista Barrella’s passion for culinary excellence and hospitality. After a remarkable 20-year journey in the restaurant industry, Krista envisioned an establishment that seamlessly merges her classic East Coast culinary heritage with the vibrant West Coast ambiance.

Chef's Dishes
Сoffee Сups
Happy Guests
Worked Hours
our restaurant
Hours: Mon-Thurs 4pm–12am
Fri 4pm-2am
Sat 11am-2am
Sun 2pm-12am
Contact Us
Phone: 858-808-2286
1030 Garnet Avenue
San Diego, CA 92109

Our Neighborhood

Situated on Garnet Ave, bar Ella embodies a refreshing transformation from its predecessor, infusing sophistication into the locale. Shedding the former sports bar persona, the new space radiates an inviting, airy atmosphere with light, clean aesthetics, featuring diverse seating options and a welcoming bar area. Pacific Beach boasts a lively and eclectic atmosphere, drawing locals and visitors alike with its laid-back beach vibes and entertainment options. Historically recognized for its vibrant nightlife and plethora of sports bars, the neighborhood has undergone a gradual transformation. Recognizing this evolving trend within the community, a shift towards a more sophisticated and diverse demographic was the focus for bar Ella. While the neighborhood traditionally catered to a younger crowd seeking bustling sports bars and lively clubs, there emerged a growing demand for an elevated and refined social experience.

The evolving preferences of the community was the inspiration behind bar Ella, a cocktail bar that offers an elevated yet welcoming ambiance, catering to a more diverse and discerning audience seeking a place to unwind, connect, and savor exceptional drinks in an atmosphere conducive to meaningful conversations. In a landscape predominantly adorned by sports-centric establishments, bar Ella stands out as a beacon of sophistication and contemporary allure. It seeks to strike a balance between the neighborhood’s established energy and a newfound desire for a more elevated social setting. Bar Ella aligns with this changing narrative, aiming to create a space where patrons can revel in a refined atmosphere without sacrificing the neighborhood’s inherent charm. The bar aspires to become a social hub, fostering an environment where patrons can enjoy craft cocktails, engage in genuine conversations, and forge lasting connections.

Why choose
our restaurant
100% fresh

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Dive Into Our Cuisine
our restaurant

Chef Introduction

Allow us to introduce Brendan Nugent, our culinary maestro whose journey is as vibrant and diverse as the flavors he artfully crafts. Born in Long Island, New York, Brendan spent his formative years in the quaint town of Binghamton. During his childhood, he frequently visited his grandmother, an excellent master gardener, where he was exposed to gardening—a pivotal experience that eventually ignited his passion for fresh, quality ingredients.

From a young age, Brendan harbored a deep-rooted passion for art. As a young adult, he made the decision to attend the University of Buffalo, studying Studio Art with a concentration in drawing and painting. While a student, he worked in an art museum but eventually took on a job as a line cook in a small Greek diner. Here, Brendan’s culinary canvas became his expression of art, allowing him to showcase his creativity through culinary creation. His pursuit of culinary excellence led him to learn from various talented chefs over the years, shaping his unique culinary philosophy.

Notably, Brendan left his mark at well-established eateries, including the renowned “Cúrate” in Asheville, NC, and the prestigious La Jolla Country Club. Drawing inspiration from using seasonal ingredients, Brendan’s menus are a symphony of flavors and textures. He brings a unique touch to the table, passionately embracing the tapas-style concept, creating a dining experience that reflects his artistic roots and culinary finesse. Join us on a gastronomic journey curated by Brendan Nugent, where every dish is a masterpiece, and every bite tells a story of passion and creativity.