Marea, the name chosen for the new Mission Beach eatery at 3819 Mission Blvd. by owner Nick Lee, actually means ocean breeze in Spanish.
Since moving from Korea to San Diego in 2004, Lee has been in the San Diego restaurant industry. He worked for four years at a Japanese eatery and currently operates a dessert cafe as well on Convoy Street in Kearny Mesa.
Having had a soft opening recently, Lee noted he’s having his grand opening for Cafe Marea Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 16-17. Everything on his menu will be discounted 50 percent from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Noting beef is a staple of Korean cuisine, Lee described his restaurant as a “sandwich” place. Which seems appropriate since his new retail space was once a Rubicon Deli.
Lee had been searching for a second spot to expand into until “this space became available.”
“I know Rubicon was doing really well,” he said. “I thought this location would be really good.”
Open for breakfast and lunch from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily, Cafe Marea’s menu offers tasty items in the morning like eggs Benedict, smoked salmon and breakfast bagels.
The cafe’s signature sandwich lunch menu includes chipotle chicken, barbecue beef, habanero tuna, turkey pesto and Italian choices. Paninis feature choices such as grilled cheese, chicken pesto, tuna melt, Cali veggie and chipotle garlic chicken.
There is a soup of the day as well as Cobb and chicken Caesar salad choices.
Also on Cafe Marea’s menu are Belgium Liege waffles that come in plain, cinnamon caramel, Nutella lover and banana/berries choices. “Our customers love our waffles,” noted Lee who wanted something sweet on the menu.
Twenty-ounce smoothies of every description contain mangos, bananas, oranges, guava, pineapple, passion fruit, peanut butter and almond butter, among other selections.
“We bake our own bread every morning,” confided Lee. “We want you to taste the fresh bread.” He added he buys only the highest-quality meats and cheese from the Boar’s Head label.
“We use local produce so all our vegetables are fresh,” Lee said, adding most of his customers thus far have been locals.
There are historic Mission Beach photos on the walls passed along by the previous tenant.
3819 Mission Blvd.
Grand opening: Feb. 16-17, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., menu half off.