Old Monterey District Blog

The Old Monterey Business Association congratulates the 29 Old Monterey businesses and organizations that won Monterey County Weekly’s Best of Monterey County 2023. Click the links to read what the Weekly’s writers and editors had to say about each business.

Alta Bakery
Best Coffee Shop
Best Cappuccino / Latte
Best Place to Read the Weekly

Alvarado Street Brewery
Best Local Bar / Brewery
Best Bar for Gen Xers
Best Bar for Millennials

Ambrosia India Bistro
Best Indian

Bagel Bakery
Best Bagel

Bliss Boutique
Best Women's Clothing Boutique

Britannia Arms
Best Place for Karaoke

Cibo Ristorante Italiano
Best Club for Jazz

Compact Disco
Best Big Energy in a Small Place

Crown and Anchor
...Read More

More Info

Beginning October 8, 2023, let's make Sundays a brunching affair at Cella Restaurant and Bar, 10am-2pm. Chef Cal Stamenov is whipping up seasonal delights and Joshua Perry has your beverages covered.

Don't miss out! Book your spot via Resy and join us for a delightful brunch experience! Cella is located at 525 Polk Street in Downtown Old Monterey.

More Info

Halloween chocolates are now available at Parker-Lusseau Pastries and Cafe. They're fun AND delicious! You'll find pumpkins, ghosts, and more, all made on site. Our not-so-spooky ghosts (shown here) are made of semisweet Callebaut find Belgian chocolate and filled with even more chocolate. Visit us and get yours at 539 Hartnell Street in Downtown Old Monterey.

More Info

Venture Gallery presents the paintings of Nancy Olaeta, our featured artist for October. Her exhibit is inspired by scenery around the Monterey Peninsula and Big Sur Coast.

Towering, majestic redwoods, fields of valley lupines, and our dramatic rocky coastlines teeming with coastal flora are among the scenes that have received Nancy's distinctive artistic interpretations in oils. We invite you to meet her on Saturday, October 7, 3pm-6pm at the gallery.

Venture Gallery is now open 10am-6pm six days a week and 2pm-6pm on Tuesdays. Nancy Olaeta's artwork will be featured through October 2023. Venture Gallery is located at 260 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey. Visit our website to shop online for work by our local artists.

More Info

New at Nacho Bizness: the Enchorito!

Posted on September 18th, 2023 by Nacho Bizness

Nacho Bizness introduces the enchorito! It's the ultimate flavor fusion where burrito meets enchilada. Begin by choosing rice, beans, and/or pico de gallo, then select a cheese sauce, a protein, and toppings including enchilada sauce, lime cream, and queso fresco, plus any special add-ons like guacamole, mac and cheese, or extra meat.

Try it here at 470 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey! We're open Tue-Thu,11am-9pm; Fri-Sat 11am-10pm; and Sun, 11am-7pm.

More Info

Oktoberfest has begun! Fieldwork Brewing Company in Monterey invites you to celebrate with us through October 3, 2023. Stop by and order our annual Oktoberfest Lager in a fancy, limited edition, half-liter Fieldwork stein for only $15....while supplies last... Prost!

Fieldwork Brewing Company's cozy outdoor beer garden is located at 560 Munras Avenue in Downtown Old Monterey.

More Info

Autumn is on the horizon, and Johnny Wicks Candle Studio invites you to embrace the cozy fall vibe with the ultimate treat: the best pumpkin spice candle in town!

Handcrafted with love in Monterey, these candles are made of all-natural soy wax, 100% cotton wicks, and fragrance oils free of phthalates and other hazardous stuff. Available now at Johnny Wicks Candle Studio, located at 499 Calle Principal in Downtown Old Monterey.

More Info

The Rose Books and Obscurities is offering 15% off any in-store purchase to those who mention the Old Monterey website or newsletter now through Sunday, September 24, 2023.

The Rose, located at 136 Bonifacio Place in Downtown Old Monterey, offers a well-balanced selection of antiquarian collectible works and second hand books in all price ranges. The bookshop is charmingly small but carefully cultivated to satisfy serious collectors and general readers alike.

More Info

Those of you who've visited the non-profit Monterey County Youth Museum know that our Creation Station is a magical place where kids can choose from lots of different items to create their own art. It's hand-on fun for everyone!

But we need to replenish our supply of materials for the Creation Station and are currently seeking donations of the following:

Toilet and paper towel rolls
Construction paper
School and office supplies
Bottle caps (with no beverage residue)
Ribbon and yarn
Wine corks
Faux flowers

MY Museum is located at 425 Washington Street in Downtown Old Monterey. Questions about donating Creation Station materials? Call us at 831-649-6444.

More Info

New Tarot Reader at Luminata

Posted on September 4th, 2023 by Luminata Books & Gifts

Luminata Books and Gifts, located at 631 Cass Street in Downtown Old Monterey, welcomes our newest reader, Irina Mulvey. Irina is available on Thursdays, 10:30am-6:30pm, by appointment only - please call us at 831-333-1110.

Irina is an intuitive, compassionate Tarot reader and energy healer who creates a safe space for people facing changes and challenges in their personal, romantic, and business lives. Her extensive experience includes reading Tarot from a Jungian perspective, having completed the Jungian Certificate Program hosted by Jung Platform.

In addition, Irina is a Certified Healing Touch Instructor and Practitioner, a heart-centered energy healing modality which aligns with her heart-centered approach to Tarot readings.

Luminata Books and Gifts is open Tuesday - Friday, 10:30am-6:30pm; Saturday, 11am-6:30pm; and Sunday, 12pm-5pm.

More Info

The Coastal Roots Hospitality Group - including Montrio restaurant at 414 Calle Principal in Downtown Old Monterey - has designated the Monterey County Rape Crisis Center the nonprofit recipient of its Pick It Up - Pay It Forward Program for September and October 2023.

What does this mean? When you order takeout food from Montrio, 10% of your order will automatically be donated to this nonprofit agency. (Please note: this offer does not apply to delivery orders.)

The mission of the Monterey County Rape Crisis Center is to provide ongoing advocacy, support, and healing for all victims and survivors of sexual assault, human trafficking, and child abuse and to prevent sexual violence in our community through education.

More Info

After a long period of anticipation by the bread lovers of Monterey County, Ad Astra Bread Co. has opened at 479 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey serving fresh sourdough loaves, sweet and savory baked goods, and coffee drinks.

Owned and operated by pastry chef Ron Mendoza, Ad Astra uses all-organic flours to create old-world style sourdough loaves over a 2-day baking process. Sourdough is mixed, hand portioned and shaped, and allowed to slowly ferment overnight before being baked the following day.

More Info

When you want to grab a quick ice cream from Revival and lines might be too long at their flagship store on Alvarado Street, stop by East Village Cafe around the corner at 498 Washington Street. We carry Revival Ice Cream cups and sandwiches, and now we have even more of their dairy free varieties in our freezer! Taste the love and support local businesses in Monterey.

More Info

Esteban Restaurant, located at 700 Munras Avenue in Monterey, announces Ben Hillan has been appointed Executive Chef. Chef Ben's cooking style hinges on the belief that simplicity leads to complexity, allowing the best seasonal ingredients to speak for themselves.

Raised in Santa Cruz and a graduate of the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, Ben Hiller began his career of more than 10 years at Seascape Beach Resort in Aptos, was mentored by celebrated Chef Roy Yamaguchi during his time at Roy's Spanish Bay, and served as Executive Chef of Humble Sea Brewing Company in Felton.

At Estéban, Chef Ben has put his twist on farm-to-table freshness with additions to the tapas happy hour and dinner menus including Crispy Mushroom & Burrata featuring Lake Family oyster mushrooms, piparra peppers, paprika mix, and sherry vinegar as well as Vieiras con Jamon, featuring seared scallops, roasted pepper yogurt, Serrano ham, shelling peas, and corn cream batida.

Esteban Restaurant offers indoor and outdoor patio dining daily. Tapas Happy Hour is 4:30pm-6:30pm each day, dinner hours are 4:30pm-8:30pm Sunday - Thursday, and 4:30pm-9pm Friday and Saturday. Please call 831-375-0176 or visit our website for reservations.

More Info

Venture Gallery presents the paintings of Tamara Selyangina, our featured artist for September. Her exhibit, entitled Beautiful Monterey Peninsula, features iconic images of our area.

A serene harbor morning with deep mist, promising a lovely day ahead; a flight string of pelicans; magnificent sand dunes and windswept trees; these iconic images of the Monterey Peninsula inspire Tamara to pick up her brush, watercolors, and paper to create interpretations of the incredible beauty that surrounds us here in Monterey.

Venture Gallery is now open 10am-6pm six days a week and 2pm-6pm on Tuesdays. Tamara Selyangina's artwork will be featured through September 2023. Venture Gallery is located at 260 Alvarado Street in Downtown Old Monterey. Visit our website to shop online for work by our local artists.

More Info

Monterey Car Week 2023 got rolling on Friday, August 11 in Downtown Old Monterey with a remarkable collection of historic race cars. To give the public a chance to get up close and personal with auto-racing history, these classic racers and their owners stopped by Alvarado Street for a couple of hours on their way to participating in the Rolex Monteey Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca. View photos of the event and all the cars here.

Held at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, the annual Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion is a museum revving to life with hundreds of historic and period-correct race and sports cars from nearly every era. Yet they are not for show. Drivers race them in corresponding run groups to enjoy them at speed and for the entertainment of thousands of enthusiastic visitors.

Franklin Street Collaborative now carries broad spectrum CBD dog treats from Highway One Station, another business based in Downtown Old Monterey! Visit Franklin Street Collaborative at 201 West Franklin Street, and while you're there check out all the great locally-made products on their shelves.

The owners of Highway One Station, Karina and Tucker, started their business after months of searching for - and not finding - clear and honest information about calming wellness products for their high-strung dogs. All of Highway One Station's CBD infused dog treats use broad spectrum hemp oil extract made from organic hemp grown in America.

More Info