One of my favorite hangout locations anywhere is the stretch of Coast Highway 101 in Leucadia where Coastal Animal Hospital and Lou’s Records are located. It still has a bit of that Leucadia funk going on and when you add live music, food trucks and pets as Brian Evans, DVM from Coastal Animal Hospital has done with his Food Truck Monday, it sounds like a fun evening for a great cause. I caught up with Brian recently to learn more about the event happening Aug. 3, and his taste in music and food.
Let’s jump right into the event. It’s a great idea, how did it come about?
I have wanted to create a nonprofit for animals for a long time and the challenge for any new nonprofit is to raise money. This idea came about as a great way to raise money and enjoy a casual summer evening where people could also bring their pets. It also appealed to me because food trucks have such great variety and can be very innovative. This is something everyone in the community would be able to participate in. The idea of creating another expensive, exclusive black tie dinner event just didn’t really fit with us or the Leucadia vibe.
Food, music and animals, it’s a great mix. Tell me about the food portion of it. What food trucks will you be having?
We have three great food trucks for our inaugural event. There is Organic Food Truck, which serves a variety of delicious food such as Lobster Mac N Cheese, Seared Ahi Tuna Salad or even an organic Chili Dog, to name a few. There is also Dos Bandidos, which serves various Mexican specialties and also offers portabello ceviche. The last food truck is That’s What Cheese Said — specializing in Philly cheese steaks and other cheese-laden sandwiches and foods, which is most likely where you will find me on Monday.
Tell me more about The Hana Fund, how does it operate and why is it so important?
The HANA (Help-A-Needy-Animal) fund is a 501c3 nonprofit that we started last year with the aim to prevent economic euthanasia for curable diseases. There is a huge need for this as there are a ton of nonprofits aimed at rescuing dogs and cats but very little available money for pets who get sick and are homeless or who are in families with extreme financial difficulties. There is a lot of need out there and we are just trying to make our corner of the world a little better.
So back to the music portion of the event. You are located in on of my favorite places anywhere, next to the iconic Lou’s Records. The building you are in was occupied by Lou’s at one point and had plenty of live performances. Do you ever feel any of that energy?
Yeah, we definitely feel that. We actually have a lot of people walk in to the building with their jaw dropped because they remembered coming in there and rifling through music for hours on end. I was one of those people too. The building definitely looks and smells a lot different now, but the energy is still there. We still get to participate every year with the Summer Fun on the 101 event where we host live music in the parking lot and get to enjoy that old vibe. By the way, we have some fine musicians playing the event including David Zimmerle, Mike Rudolph and Heather Nation.
Continuing on the music theme, what was your first concert and where was it?
That would have to be Oingo Boingo at the San Diego State Open Air Theater. I was 14 years old and was dropped off with a friend and we were totally excited. Danny Elfman and crew blew our teenage minds that night and ignited a concert habit that kept us going back for more. We saw more incredible shows there, at the Casbah, Soma, Che cafe and any other venue we could find.
What would be your dream concert lineup? Three bands, one stage, one night, any era, dead or alive, who are you booking?
What a tough question. For nostalgia, I would put Boingo as the opener because they put on a great show and really get the crowd pumped. One of the best shows I have ever seen was Radiohead and they would be my next set. Their drummer was one of the hardest working people I have seen on a stage. My final pick would have to be some classic rock and roll and I think The Doors would bring the entire evening home.
What are your top five North County restaurants right now at any price point?
If I don’t include Jorge’s Mexicatessen as a true restaurant (I have ordered a bean rice and cheese burrito from there nearly every day for lunch for the past eight years), I would have to say my first love is Q’ero. The small, intimate setting with slow food reminds me of the tiny incredible restaurants all over NYC. Yu Me Ya would be on this list for the same reasons. My other top picks are Blue Ribbon Pizza, Bangkok Bay and for a real treat, the Pony Room at Rancho Valencia.
Tell me about Coastal Animal Hospital, besides you’re amazing location, what are your differentiators?
The concept for our hospital came about from my time as a house call veterinarian. I loved treating pets in an environment where they felt comfortable, and I wanted Coastal to have that same feeling. Our tagline is “Modern Medicine, Classic Service,” and we embody that mantra with incredibly friendly staff and cutting edge services. We still offer house calls and are proud of the medicine we practice, including minimally invasive surgery options. We are the only small animal practice in San Diego performing our spays laparoscopically, which is less painful for pets.
Food Truck Monday is happening Aug. 3 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at 434 N. Coast Highway 101, Encinitas. Check out Coast Animal Hospital at sdcoastalanimalhospital.com.
Lick the Plate can now be heard on KPRi, 102.1 FM Monday – Friday during at 4:10 and 7:10 p.m. David Boylan is founder of Artichoke Creative and Artichoke Apparel, an Encinitas based marketing firm and clothing line. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or (858) 395-6905.