Arizona Sojourn, Part Eight

September 9 – 20, 2020

Done with our doctor’s appointments late in the day on Thursday, we lit out for Solana Beach knowing we’d likely miss the dinner hour, so down around San Clemente we pulled off the freeway to eat at a Chik-Fil-A.  This is one of those conflicted calls to make as we generally like the food it offers but not its stance on LGBT issues based on statements made by its Chief Operating Officer, Dan Cathy, including this one the day after the Supreme Court struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act: “Sad day for our nation; founding fathers would be ashamed of our gen. to abandon wisdom of the ages re: cornerstone of strong societies.”

The Classic Chik-Fil-A Sandwich

The tweet was subsequently deleted, and in March 2014, Cathy said he regretted drawing his company into the controversy, telling the Atlanta Journal-Constitution he has been working with Shane Windmeyer of Campus Pride since 2012.  The article noted that the Chick-fil-A Foundation had “dramatically” cut donations to groups opposed by same-sex marriage supporters.

Protesters Outside a Chik-Fil-A

By 2019, Chick-fil-A President Tim Tassopoulos said the company will stop donating to charities with anti-LGBT views and would instead donate to those focused on education, homelessness and hunger.  These new organizations could include both faith-based and non-faith-based charities, but the company said none of the organizations have anti-LGBT positions. 

Popeye’s Version

So, perhaps we can now eat at the chain with a clear conscience although we likely won’t go out of our way to do so given that their primary attraction, outside of their very good shakes, it simply a chicken sandwich, an item decently produced at any of the other fast-food chains.  But it does go to show that companies can change their philosophy, and how you view them can and should change with the times. 

McDonalds Buttermilk Version (It’s Quite Good)

We landed in Solana Beach and met Kim, Marty, Brenda and Ken as they were finishing up a meal at the Pillbox Tavern (featured many times in this blog), sitting outside at a table among others set up in the parking lot.  After the drive down, the bourbon I ordered helped me make the transition from the car to the Beach, an attitude we’d adopt for the next few days. 

Outdoor Dining at the Pillbox

Although it was heatstroke that got me on the River Mountain Loop trail, not finishing that ride or climbing those last two hills still stung a bit and so the next day Ken, Joanna and I set out for one of our favorite local rides.

Torrey Pines Grade in the Distance

This one takes us south down PCH, up Torrey Pines Grade, down through La Jolla, east across Garnet Ave in Pacific Beach and then back up Santa Fe Street to the Rose Canyon Bike Trail. 

Sea Lion Cove in La Jolla

Normally where it ends, we’d turn left and climb up Gilman Dr. into the UCSD campus to find our way back over North Torrey Pines Blvd before descending the grade back to the Condo. 

Solana Beach to Ballast Point

This time we turned right and after some navigating made our way to meet Kim and Marty at Ballast Point Brewery in Miramar.  We’ve blogged about this location before and it is always a pleasure to return here for the great beer and good food. 

Ballast Point Brewery

We were seated outside on the beautiful deck and beers soon followed.  A warm day and good ride in me, I landed on the Long Fin Helles-Lager

Ballast Point Beer

and its tip of the hat to the classic beers of Munich.  Joanna and I split the Ballast Point Turkey Club Sandwich (Sliced turkey breast, bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, garlic aioli, on toasted sour dough bread). 

The Turkey Club

I’ve had many variations of this sandwich and can state categorically that is one of the better ones, the toasted sourdough containing the thoughtfully constructed ingredients, holding together without falling apart all the way to the last bite. 

The Deck at Ballast Point

Later that day and the following day, we’d head to what has to be our favorite spot in the area, The Confessional by Lost Abbey in nearby Cardiff by the Sea. 

The Confessional by Lost Abbey

Again, I’ve blogged about this place a number of times as we never tire of their great selection of beers, in particular their high gravity Belgians and IPA’s.  In addition, it sits next to East Coast Pizza, an outstanding purveyor of the New York style version of pies.  We’d hit the pizza hard the next day but for now it was the beers we craved. 

Beers at the Confessional

The following day we took Ken out again for another of our regular rides, this time up to Oceanside and back, a flat and easy 34 miles, returning to the condo to spend the rest of our time watching the Tour de France, drinking margaritas and gin and tonics (Ken has worked tirelessly to perfect each recipe, delivering quite possibly the best you’ve ever tasted), and discussing the political news of the day, which that weekend was the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. 

Solana Beach to Oceanside

Our second multi-day sojourn did for us exactly what we had intended, that is it got us out on the road, spending time in new places or re-visiting ones from the past.  Throw in good bike rides, memorable meals and breathtaking scenery and it all adds up to a successful outing, with planning in the works for the next. 

Sunset at Solana Beach



Ballast Point Miramar:

The Confessional:

East Coast Pizza:


  1. · · Reply

    Merry Xmas to you both and to Jessica and her family too!! We are thinking of you and hope you are all OK. XxSent from my HUAWEI P30 Pro

    1. Thanks – And we send the same thoughts your way. We are all still OK, but lockdown here in California means that for the first time as a family, we won’t be able to spend it together on Christmas Day. But it is a small price to pay for being safe.

      Merry Christmas to you!

  2. […] Unfortunately, the bookstore didn’t carry cards like that, but it did provide us with an avenue to stop next door for a spot of caffeine and one of the best turkey club sandwiches we’ve had since that memorable one we enjoyed at Ballast Point in North San Diego County ( […]

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