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Meet Tony Aversa of West Coast Tavern & The Observatory in North Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tony Aversa.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I grew up in Philadelphia. I got into the service industry at a young age, working for a catering company. I worked my way up from almost every position, from bussing tables, to serving, working the line in the kitchen, and finally tending bar and managing. I moved to San Diego about 9 years ago. My San Diego bar career began at The Wood in Pacific Beach. I worked at several bars around Pacific Beach before finally making my way out to North Park and West Coast Tavern a year and a half ago.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
As I think anyone in the service industry would agree with, there is no such thing as a smooth road here. Especially working at the beach for years, when business is very seasonal, there are always struggles to be had with maintaining business in the off season. I’ve worked for bars here that are brand new and trying to figure out a way to promote themselves, I’ve working for newly renovated bars that have had to find ways to convince old customers to come back and try us again, and I’ve worked for bars that have been around for years that have finally hit a slump and had to do whatever it takes to keep them from shutting down. While there is always struggle, I think that is part of the appeal of the industry. Every day is different. You never know what you are going to encounter, and in my opinion that really keeps things exciting!

Please tell us about West Coast Tavern & The Observatory.
West Coast Tavern is a modern American bar and restaurant, with an awesome music venue, The Observatory, attached to it. We feature a hefty cocktail menu of bright, flavorful, and approachable cocktails. Introducing people to craft cocktails can always be difficult, and we have catered our menu to appeal to every level of drinker, from a first timer to an experienced bar-goer that wants something unique and new. We are very well known for our great happy hour, both day and night, as well as our amazing food. We pride ourselves in taking our dining a few steps above standard bar food, and really giving customers something they will remember, and hopefully come back for! I am most proud about our unique partnership with having the Observatory attached to us. There are not many places where you can come sit down for an intimate 3 course dinner with creating 5-7 ingredient cocktails, stroll on through a set of doors to see your favorite rock band jamming out with 1000 other people, and then wake up the next morning and come back for bottomless mimosas and football on a giant screen. I truly think we cater to any crowd and that really sets us apart from bars that just specialize in one thing.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
About 6 years ago I took a break from the industry and worked in Search Engine Optimization and Online Marketing. It only lasted for about a year or two, but a lot changed in that time in the service industry and I had to play a lot of catch up when I got back in. If I had to start over, I would not have taken then time off.


  • Happy Hour EVERY DAY 4-7pm. $4 Wells, Draft Beers and House Wine, $7 Specialty Cocktails
  • Late Night Happy Hour Sun-Thurs 11pm-close, $4 Wells, Draft Beers and House Wine, $7 Specialty Cocktails
  • Pasta Specials and Wine Flights on Mondays
  • Chef’s Mexican Special and Tequila Flights on Tuesdays
  • BBQ Special and Bourbon Flights on Wednesdays
  • Pizza Special and $20 craft beer pitchers on Thursdays

Contact Info:

  • Address: 2895 university ave, San Diego, CA 92104
  • Website:
  • Phone: 619-295-1688
  • Instagram: @WestCoastTavern

Image Credit:
Lindsey Marie Photography, Jarnard Sutton – Nardcast Media

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