La Jolla’s El Pescador: A part of the neighborhood


By Dave Schwab

Staff Writer

El Pescador Fish Market La Jolla is known as widely for its neighborliness as it is for its fresh seafood.

“This is a great community to have a business in,” said fish market/seafood café owner Sean Shannon. “We have a lot of good customers that we have a relationship with and it’s almost run as a 1950s meat market where it’s on a first-name basis. We like that. The customers like it. It’s like a big family in here.”

A surfer who grew up in Solana Beach, Shannon said it’s ironic he ended up setting up shop next door to Mitch’s Surf Shop which he and his friends frequented as youngsters.

In La Jolla since 1985, El Pescador at 627 Pearl St. started out in Del Mar in 1974 strictly as a fish market that gradually morphed into a café and moved to La Jolla by popular demand. Shannon said the first dish El Pescador sold was a shrimp cocktail-lemonade combo for $1.

Since then, the menu has expanded greatly to include all manner of soups, salads and seafood dishes.

“Probably the signature thing is our sandwiches,” noted Shannon.

Shannon talked about something else distinguishing his market/café.

“We’re like In-N-Out Burger — we don’t change,” he said. “The type of fish changes with the season, but our menu stays pretty much the same.”

Shannon said his clientele is a mixture of locals and seasonal visitors from all over the country who come here to vacation or live part of the year. He talked about what keeps them patrons back to his establishment.

“It’s the consistency and the service,” he said. “And, as expensive as seafood is, we try to keep the prices as low as we can and do more of a volume.”

El Pescador is open 7 days a week, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

For more information call (858) 456-2426 or visit