This Balboa Park Native Loves Por Vida Coffee and Poke Fries

Lani Bautista Cabanilla Creates Her Ideal Monday to Sunday

Photographed By: Grey Lockwood New Children’s Museum

Expert: Lani Bautista Cabanilla
Credentials: Visitor Programs Manager, The New Children’s Museum


A post shared by Cafe Moto (@cafemoto) on

On my way into downtown, I stop by Cafe Moto for a toasty Hazelnut Latte. Famous for roasting organic, fair-trade coffee, they also have an atmosphere with motorcycle garage-feels to fuel my energy!



Ono’s Café is my family’s go-to bistro. This hidden South Bay gem offers beautifully presented Asian-fusion cuisine, sushi, salads and wraps. A happy hour must is the Jalapeño Hamachi and ponzu edamame.



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Panama 66 in Balboa Park is a great family-friendly restaurant and open-air venue for live jazz and funk music. Their truffle-parmesan fries and locally-brewed IPAs are the best way to get over the week’s hump.


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An inspiring setting for meetings is Por Vida. Immersed with colorful murals, my go-to drinks are the caramel or Horchata Latte. I find the best vintage jewelry at their monthly Barrio Logan Flea Market.



The New Children’s Museum is an innovative place for play featuring interactive art installations, hands-on studios and programs like Finger Painting Friday. This fun and beautiful venue is perfect for making memories with my family.



A fun and light breakfast with my daughters is at Wow Wow Waffle in North Park. Situated in a little garden setting behind a laundromat, they serve a variety of sweet and savory Belgian-style liege waffles and hand-shaken lemonades in mason jars. My husband and I are plant collectors so we love to continue our relaxing weekend with a walk and shop through City Farmers Nursery while the girls say hello to farm animals.



A weekly stop for me is at Zarlitos Filipino restaurant in National City for their award-winning poke. Their over-the-counter selection features my favorites: spicy garlic ahi, ahi limu, and spicy salmon. If we have time to dine in, their Sunday breakfast menu includes poke fries and poke-silog dishes—poke, rice and a fried, over-easy egg on top!


The New Children’s Museum
200 W Island Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
Lani Bautista Cabanilla of The New Children’s Museum Dishes on Her Weekly Faves

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