Josefas Cocina Mexicana (La Jolla)


Josefas Cocina Mexicana opened about a month ago and resides right on Prospect Street in La Jolla. This would mark the first time we had Mexican food in La Jolla.


It sits atop Richard Walker’s Pancake House on the second floor, next to Iberico, which is also owned by the same restaurant group as Josefas.


The restaurant boasts a patio outside, perfect to enjoy all of the sights and scenery La Jolla has to offer. There is also a spacious open indoor dining area.


The seating and decor is simple and fresh, while playing up to the Mexican theme throughout.


As you can see, the menu is rather massive. It took me a good five minutes for my wandering eyes to focus and begin the elimination process. Luckily the Josefas staff had recommendations for us to help facilitate our decision making. They also have a wide variety of margaritas and tequilas. 

Salsa and chips were provided while we perused the menu making our final decisions.


The first item we selected with the help of a very upbeat and energetic hostess on the first floor. I asked her a few questions and immediately she directed me to her favorite, the Queso Fundido Champiñón. This three cheese blend comes with mushrooms and onions. There are two varieties of cheese dips. Nacho cheese dips and this kind. The cheese comes apart like it would from a thick slice of Chicago pizza. It was ooey, gooey, and cheesy in the best way. I love mushrooms and adding those little tidbits on top set the tone. 

Another recommendation was the Molcajete Cielo, Mar, y Tierra. It comes with beef, chicken, shrimp, cactus, chorizo,tortillas, and a choice of either green tomatillo or red tomato sauce. It is served in a sizzling hot mortar that keeps the food hot for at least twenty minutes. The size of this is no joke. This easily could be enough food for one person ordering it as their entree. If the sheer size and persistent bubbling of the green tomatillo sauce doesn’t impress you, surely the variety of options it comes with should. My favorites were the chorizo and the chicken. The chicken was moist while the chorizo packed a ton of flavor. Originally I was excited for the shrimp but it turned out a little bland given the sauce had a more subtle tomatillo flavor. Most of the beef we got was a little fatty and chewy but a few pieces came out nice, which I think is how they normally prefer to serve it.


Michael went for the Short Rib Braseado. It is slow braised for eight hours with a cafe de olla reduction sauce. There were some veggies and mashed potatoes underneath. The meat of course was tender and the flavors bold and complex. Earthy and sweet, the beef delivered a dense and juicy bite.


Our waiter recommended the Pescado Papillote which was fish cooked in foil along with vegetables, lime zest, and cilantro. I can’t recall what kind of fish they were serving that day. It may have been some sort of sea bass, but don’t hold me to it. It was flaky, moist, and very mild compared to the beef. I could have used one extra dimension to add more flavor like spice or more citrus.


Since we make it a point to explore each and every food crevice a restaurant has to offer, we got the Chocolate Mousse and Flan de Queso desserts. The mousse was about average in sugary sweetness to other chocolate mousses I’ve had before. The apples, strawberries, and walnuts added a nice contrast. 

I preferred the flan over the mousse though. They served it with the exact same fruit and nuts as the mousse, but the flavors seemed to stand out more with the flan. It was firm enough to not break apart uncontrollably when you grabbed a spoonful, but soft enough to melt in your mouth once you got it there.

All in all we had a nice Mexican meal with a great view of La Jolla. It is on the pricier side for Mexican food, but given its great location you can understand why. While some of the dishes missed the mark slightly, a few of the other well executed dishes impressed us. With the menu being as extensive as it is, you can go here every week for months and still not try everything. Thanks to Samya and the Josefas staff for introducing us to our first Mexican meal in La Jolla!

Josefas Cocina Mexicana
909 Prospect St., Ste. 290
San Diego, CA 92037
Josefas Cocina Mexicana on Urbanspoon

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About Darren

Fooood! I love it if you can't tell already. I love everything about it. The taste, the smell, the look, the feel, the satisfaction, the gratification, and ultimately: the fun! I've been in San Diego for about 10 years now and it amazes me that there are still places to uncover. Traveling, eating, and taking pictures of food has always been a hobby of mine. So naturally Michael and I thought it made sense to share what we found with all of you. I tend to side with the savory but never shy away from a knock out dessert. If you have a place you think we haven't tried let us know! We're always on the lookout...

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2 Comments on “Josefas Cocina Mexicana (La Jolla)”

  1. Where was the first picture taken? That picture showing the Richard Walker sign almost threw me off a bit too! A rooftop location seems harder to find. Also, I’ve been trying out so many tequilas from events that I’m beginning to recognize bottles haha! Foodwise, that Short Rib Braseado looks amazing. Between all that food, I’m sure you guys had plenty to eat!

    1. The first picture was directly to your left when you walk into the restaurant behind the check in stand. I always love it when they make it easy on us and have something fun to display with the restaurant name. You can drink all of our tequila next event. 🙂

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