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Rising Stars: Meet Amy Ballester

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amy Ballester.

Hi Amy, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I have been in the hospitality industry for 20 years, gaining all types of knowledge from different venues. From mom and pop shops to being a food and beverage director at a Hilton hotel. All of this I knew would one day help me to start a place of my own. In 2014, my brother and I were ready to open up Crushed. It was very intense and scary, to say the least, but it was a dream I knew I had to live out. We struggled for the first couple of years getting our brand recognized. But now we are a highlight in San Diego for brunch!

We serve a scrumptious brunch menu and savory dinner menu every day of the week. Our cuisine has gotten rave reviews from Yelp, Trip Advisor, Open Table and numerous food blogs and other media sites. For being a rather small restaurant in size, our reputation for award-winning dishes is large!

The Pacific Beach area is the SoCal beach culture mecca of San Diego, where almost every food and culture are represented. With countless retail stores and businesses within a few miles radius, Crushed is a great place to unwind, meet up with friends and enjoy an incredible brunch or cozy dinner. Crushed is an extremely popular spot for brunch any day of the week, and we are known for our “bresserts” which is a dessert for breakfast! From “bressert pancakes,” savory chilaquiles, eggs benedict, omelettes, brunch bites like deviled eggs or ceviche, it’s no wonder locals love Crushed!

Our dinner menu is extensive as well and offers sliders, flatbreads, salads, and pastas. Also popular is our menu of craft beers and mimosa flights, where there is truly something for everyone. Although Crushed serves a delicious dinner menu daily from 4 pm, we are best known for our all-day brunch concept, unique in San Diego.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
There are always obstacles in the restaurant industry, basically on a daily basis. (hahaha) However, with a positive mindset, motivation and a great team, we can conquer through.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
We are most proud to be such a popular spot for brunch. Our mimosa flights are our claim to fame. Having such an amazing, fun, family-like team always makes the day not even feel like you are at work.

Any big plans?
I would love to open another Crushed in a different part of San Diego. Hopefully soon!


  • Mimosa flight $14
  • Margarita flight $14
  • Craft cocktails $12
  • Brunch Menu $12-$14
  • Dinner Menu $8-$15

Contact Info:

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