.The Sand Bar

Beachside Bites and Bevs

Born in Sonora, Mexico and raised in Capitola, Tania Mendez grew up in the restaurant industry where she started working at 16. She has been a bartender/server for four years, saying she loves Capitola’s small town feel and that the place simply “feels like home.”

The physical space is redolent with beachy vibes, accented by calming blues and punctuated by an ocean view patio. The menu is full of elevated pub fare and seafood specialties, with breakfast favorites like crab cake eggs benedict and classic fluffy pancakes.

Go-to lunch items are the coconut prawn tacos and the raved about calamari sandwich. Dinner standards include chicken teriyaki with grilled pineapple and garlic lemon dill salmon, a classic family recipe. Dessert options are chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream and cheesecake with raspberry/caramel syrup. Hours are 9am-8pm every day for food, with the bar open later.

How did The Sand Bar survive the extreme weather?

TANIA MENDEZ: Our community was a big part of the support, both emotionally and financially. It’s been an emotional roller coaster. When the storms hit, we all lost our jobs and didn’t know when we would re-open. We were very impacted and sustained a lot of damage, but we’ve done many repairs and renovations to get the restaurant back on point. We finally reopened about a month ago, and we were one of the last places on the Esplanade to do so. It’s so great being back to work.

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Tell me about Jeff’s old-school connection to Good Times?

A picture of him and his mother came out on the cover in 1978. She was giving him a piggyback ride and the article was about her being what would now be defined as a “soccer mom.” And now, he has his mom’s back and she works here behind the scenes. It’s a really cool full circle moment, and I think it’s really sweet.

211 Esplanade, Capitola, 831-462-1881; thesandbarcapitola.com

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