Business Roundup: International fare comes to La Jolla

The changes on Prospect Street just keep coming! Hot on the heels of the opening of Duke’s La Jolla and the closing of Roppongi sushi, two businesses have opened on the 1200 block of Prospect Street — Jonty Jacobs beef products and Enchanted Illuminations candle shop. Further still, Bistro du Marché (by Tapanade) opened on upper Girard Avenue, and other businesses are planned throughout the Village.

Jonty JacobsPerched above La Jolla Cove and specializing in snacks, spices, sauces and meats from South Africa, Jonty Jacobs opened in the International Shops Plaza, 1237 Prospect St., Suite V last month.

“My wife Monique is from South Africa and when she moved to the states, she couldn’t find Biltong anywhere,” said Jonty co-owner Camran St. Luce. Biltong, he continued, is a dried meat strip, similar to beef jerky, but all natural, and with a more robust flavor. Jonty Jacobs offers a lean cut of beef and a traditional cut with a slight amount of fat, as well as a sausage-like product called Droewors, which St. Luce reluctantly compared to a Slim Jim.

“Jerky is all dried out but with Biltong you can really taste the meat,” he said. “You can take it camping or hiking or give it to your kids because it’s a great high-protein, low-carb snack. A lot of people say it tastes better than prosciutto and have it with a glass of wine.” Other products available include curry spices, sweet and savory snacks, soup mixes, sauces and sodas.

At Jonty Jacobs — so named because Jonty is the name of Monique’s butcher back home and her favorite cricket player, and Jacobs is her mother’s maiden name – customers choose the type of meat they want, and it is freshly sliced in store.

“We have another location in New York and people from all over would come to our store and tell us we should look at a store out here. … Plus our target market is South Africans and there are thousands in this area of San Diego, so we thought this would be a great location,” St. Luce said. He added they intend to open another store in Los Angeles. or (855) 952-2627.

Enchanted Illuminations Just across the street, Enchanted Illuminations candle and candle accessories shop sits at 1264 Prospect St. Boasting every type of candle, candle-based décor and accessory, owner Christina George opened the emporium in early November.

While the store already sells candles in different types – gel, flameless, artisanal, tapers, votive and more – of every color and scent imaginable, George will also open a wax dipping station in the coming months, for patrons to make their own candles. “We will also have a creation station with that station where people can build centerpieces for events. We’ll have gems and beads and sand and wax to make anything they can imagine. We want to be a shop where adults can come in and play and see what looks good to build a good centerpiece,” she said.

In addition to the candles, Enchanted Illuminations sells decorations to house them, including lamps, wall sconces, hanging terrariums, outdoor decorations and more, for both flammable and flameless options. George said they also put together gift packages with soaps and other pampering essentials, and certain items can be engraved.

She encourages patrons buying votive “testers” to see if they like the scents before purchasing something larger, and offers monthly discounts on items with the scent of the month (December’s is Balsam Fir) and a “candle lovers club.”

Coming from a finance background, George said she decided to enter a business that afforded more creativity. “I looked at 50 places and my realtor suggested La Jolla. This was the only location I fell in love with it. It’s a community here, the people are great, and being near restaurants, there is a lot of foot traffic,” she said. (858) 255-8436.

Bistro du Marché

If you miss the signature items at Tapanade, which closed to make room for upcoming Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center, you’re in luck. The executive team (and husband-and-wife duo) Jean-Michel and Sylvie Diot opened Bistro de Marché in October to offer a French bistro experience at 7437 Girard Ave., near La Jolla Elementary School.

“We had 18 years of food history in La Jolla (with Tapenade) and that’s something that takes a lot of work, so we didn’t want to lose that or give that up. We knew we wanted to stay in La Jolla,” Sylvie said. “Our first night open we were completely booked. It was an amazing experience.”

Tapenade favorites, such as the tomato tart, mushroom ravioli and roasted figs with gorgonzola, are also on Bistro de Marché’s menu, along with coq au vin, a New York strip steak, scallops with braised endive, cheese plates and seared duck breast.

“We serve bistro food, just like what you would find in France,” Sylvie said.

Bistro du Marché is currently only open for dinner (5 p.m. nightly) but would like to open for lunch in the coming months. Last reservations are at 9:30 p.m. on weeknights and 10 p.m. weekends. (858) 551-7500.

Coming soon:

Sicilia Bella: The space formerly home to Mary’s English Kitchen – which later partnered with SoulWise Counseling — at 7918 Ivanhoe Ave., will become Sicilia Bella. A sign in the front window reads: Authentic Sicilian homestyle deli and café.

Gallery at La Plaza: Jeff Mitchum, considered the “Ansel Adams of color,” will open his namesake gallery at La Plaza La Jolla, on Girard Avenue at Wall Street. The space will house approximately 175 fine art prints and more than 40 pieces of glass artwork and eco-furniture.

An award-winning photographer, Mitchum once shot for National Geographic and his original fine art photography has been featured in the Smithsonian Institute and the J. Paul Getty Museum. His masterwork “Third Day,” is one of the most valued landscape photographs ever acquired at $1.8 million in 2014.

Gallery on Prospect: A sign fronting 1141 Prospect St. indicates the Michelangelo Gallery will be opening there.

New restaurant? A sign posted on the upper level of 909 Prospect St., above Richard Walker’s Pancake House, proclaims Lena Craft Mexican will be occupying that space. More details to come.