After 33 years as SD staple, Saffron Thai finally arrives in La Jolla
by DAVE SCHWAB
Published - 05/04/18 - 02:42 PM | 4074 views | 0 0 comments | 51 51 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A bit of the East is coming to the Jewel, as Saffron Thai will open a second location this summer near the Village in La Jolla.

After 33 years in Mission Hills on India Street, the new Saffron Thai is expected to open this June at 1055 Torrey Pines Road.

“I’m thrilled to expand Saffron to La Jolla,” said restaurant founder Su-Mei Yu, herself a La Jollan who is excited to be creating a new eatery in her own backyard. “Customers have been asking me for years to add more locations, but I haven’t found the right opportunity until now. I look forward to delighting my neighbors on this side of San Diego with the cuisine, convenience and affordability of Saffron.”

The restaurant’s award-winning menu is both affordable and nutritious. Saffron is known for its use of the freshest, in-season ingredients, as well as its sauces and broths made daily from scratch.

Opened in 1985, Saffron was San Diego’s first Thai restaurant. Yu’s unique approach involved using healthy Thai cooking techniques to create delicious dishes, which earned her national acclaim and a loyal customer base.

An accomplished cooking instructor, Su-Mei Yu is also an Emmy-nominated TV personality. Yu writes frequently for food magazines including Food & Wine, Fine Cooking and Gastronomica. She is also the author of Asian Grilling and the award-winning cookbook Cracking the Coconut.

Born in Thailand to Chinese parents, Yu was sent to boarding school in the United States and became a social worker and an assistant professor before opening Saffron. 

The Saffron expansion comes a year after Yu joined forces with San Diego hospitality firm Karina’s Group. Yu is now affiliated with other popular dining establishments like Karina’s Mexican Seafood, Savoie Italian Eatery and Karina’s Ceviches & More.

Karina’s Group will be providing design and operational expertise for the new Saffron Thai, along with the capital needed for its expansion.

The new space which Saffron is moving into, which formerly was inhabited by Chipotle, will undergo a facelift.

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