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Changes in Carlsbad Amid COVID

Carlsbad Food Tours

During COVID 19 global pandemic, a new sense of normal has taken shape.  No matter who you are and where you come from, the pandemic has influenced lives in every community and Carlsbad is no different.  As a community we are all working together to figure out how to best navigate this new normal.

One thing for sure that has changed, is how and where we eat. Carlsbad is well known for it’s fine dining options. Jeune et Jolie, Vigilucci’s and Cicciotti’s just to name a few.  In the early stages of COVID most of the restaurants closed their doors due to strict regulation from our government.  But as time as gone by and cases have reduced, we started to open back up a little at a time.  First we did curbside pickup and delivery, then outdoor dining and now we are starting to have limited indoor sitting available.  Many of our restaurants struggled to remain open during this time.  Some sadly closed their doors forever.

Outdoor Dining

Outdoor dining

Dining Alfresco has allowed many of Carlsbad Eateries to quickly adapt to changes amid COVID restrictions.  Restaurants with outdoor patios were able to continue serving customers, using distanced seating, dedicated servers, face coverings, and social distancing.  While many of the restaurants in Carlsbad are slowly reopening, dining-in looks a bit different than it did before quarantine.

The City of Carlsbad is one of the few cities in Southern California that is officially allowing temporary use of public sidewalks and private parking for outdoor dining and expanded retail space. This means that restaurants can safely position tables and reduce the amount of indoor space being used for guests.  On September 1, the Carlsbad City Council approved a fee holiday for permit fees related to outdoor activation.  No Permit Fees for Outdoor Operations

Outdoor sitting is popular for both local residents and visitors to Carlsbad.  With the city’s blessing, many of our local eateries have been able to expand or create new outdoor garden areas to better serve the public.

Here is a list of restaurants that currently offer outdoor seating and or curbside pickup/delivery:


Froglanders Crepes & Yogurt

Park 101

Senor Grubby’s

Lola’s Mexican Deli

Cafe Elysa

Cafe Topes

The Goods

Caldo Pomodoro



Carlsbad Brewing Company


Carruth Cellars

Casa de Bandini


Crust Pizzeria

Ebullition Brew Works & Gastronomy

Hacienda de Vega

Hennessey’s Tavern

Richard Walker’s Pancake House

Al’s Cafe in the Village

Bantam’s Roost

Jeune et Jolie 

Karl Strauss

Park 101

Shorehouse Kitchen

Urban Plates

Wood Ranch

Pizza Port

Leap Coffee

Naked Cafe

Steady State Roasting


Barrio Eat Mexican

Lucha Libre Taco Shop

264 Fresco

Del Lusso’s

Mendocino Farms

Pronto’s Gourmet Market

BigFoot Natural Cafe

Mikko Sushi

Cold Beers and Cheeseburgers

Limited dining-in is back on the menu as COVID-19 restrictions are being reduced, be sure to check with your restaurant of choice before arriving to ensure that serves are available.

The city of Carlsbad has also recently launched several projects aimed to making Carlsbad a safer city for locals and visitors as well has supporting the local businesses during the crisis.

Safety Measures:

  • Touchless crosswalk signals in an effort to protect residents and visitors from the spread of COVID-19.
  • Face mask
  • Social Distancing
  • Handwashing

Carlsbad is Calling Campaign:

Carlsbad California

As you may know, tourism is important to Carlsbad’s overall economy, and 2020 was not a normal season. The City of Carlsbad was happy to fund “Carlsbad is Calling” a campaign led by Visit Carlsbad focused on positioning the city for staycations.  Carlsbad is the perfect Staycation Destination. Looking for a local getaway? Carlsbad has something wonderful around every corner.

The City of Carlsbad is proud of the programs created to support local businesses. Check out the  Innovation & Economic Development team talk about all that’s been done in this short video.

Economic Revitalization Package

Carlsbad Village

Carlsbad City Council approved a $5 million economic revitalization package to help businesses affected by COVID-19. The majority of the funding, $4.4 million, is for microloans and small business recovery loans directly to Carlsbad small businesses.

Gift Carlsbad

 Gift Carlsbad is a value-added eGift Card program that drives revenue to local businesses. This is a win-win situation for both the consumers and businesses.
Any Carlsbad business can participate and joining is easy. Most businesses are able to sign up and set up their account in about 10 minutes. Sign up at today. Chamber staff and CVA staff are available to guide businesses through the quick and easy signup process.
How it works:
  • Each time a customer buys an eGift Card through the online marketplace, they will receive a bonus eGift Card as well
  • Bonus funds and administrative fees are paid for through sponsorship dollars contributed by the Ready Carlsbad Business Alliance and the City of Carlsbad, meaning there is no cost for a business to participate
  • When a customer buys a $25 eGift Card, they receive a bonus $5 card
  • When a customer buys a $40 eGift Card, they receive a bonus $10 card
  • The total amount ($30 or $50) goes to the merchant within a few days

Economic recovery and revitalization efforts in Carlsbad are in full gear.  Visit Carlsbad and see for yourself.