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The Student News Site of The Bishop's School

The Tower

The Student News Site of The Bishop's School

The Tower

The Student News Site of The Bishop's School

The Tower

The Tale of Blue Whale

A profile on Blue Whale: La Jolla’s new beach-themed café
Anna Yang
The colorful dishes, beachy environment, and proximity to Bishop’s make Blue Whale an appealing place to get a quick drink after school, to hang out with friends, or do homework.

“As soon as you walk in, you can feel the energy,” said Kaila Turley (‘25,) a regular at Blue Whale, a beachy café that opened last October on Kline Street between Eads and Fay. “The baristas are so nice and friendly, and the food is really good,” she added. With its blue and white striped umbrellas, bright white walls, greenery, and surfboards, the local spot blends in perfectly with coastal La Jolla. 

Their menu features a wide range of dishes and drinks, including smoothies, acai bowls, chicken and waffles, and a variety of coffee. Mr. Mike Harrison, the owner of Blue Whale, explained, “My influences are Asian-Pacific Island, South American, Mediterranean dishes. I like healthy, I like flavorful, and I like fresh, and that’s what we built the menu here around.” 

Mr. Harrison added, “I like to use fresh, unique ingredients, to make things fun, colorful, especially with how social media is (@bluewhalesd). Everyone eats and drinks with their eyes first,” Mr. Harrison explained. “That’s why the basis for a lot of our food is based on how it looks, and then also how it tastes,” he added.

Mr. Harrison has a culinary background and has owned and worked at a wide variety of restaurants, including ones in Oregon, Alaska, Hawaii, and Las Vegas. He has also worked at The Cottage, another cafe just around the corner from Blue Whale. He said that his time there was part of his decision to locate the café to where it is now, since he was familiar with the business of the area. 

Their colorful dishes, combined with the clean and bright space makes the café an aesthetically pleasing environment. Kaila said, “Blue Whale stands out to me because of the unique atmosphere it has. In the morning, it’s a warm and quiet place to grab coffee and breakfast and study, and at night, it’s a great place to go get dinner with your friends and catch up.” 

A frequent at Blue Whale is also Eliana Leff (‘26), who agreed that some of her favorite parts of the care are “the ambiance, the tables to work at, [and that the] music is always calming, and the food is good quality.” Her go-to order is “the iced matcha latte, [which] is very refreshing. I also love grabbing a smoothie or having an avocado toast.” Another Blue Whale customer, Alex Yang (‘27), said that he likes “the unique and calming environment — I really enjoy [it]. The staff are all very inviting and kind.”

Mr. Harrison feels that Blue Whale is unique because “most of the restaurants around us

are all sit down dining where you  have a waiter and you order with the waiter and the

n it takes a little bit longer. Where ours is just kind of a little fast casual. You order at the counter and find your own seat.” He added that it brings in a wide range of customers, from business people to people visiting straight from the beach. 

Eliana added that, in addition to the ambiance and food, she likes “the theme of whales, the simplicity of the cafe decorations, the music, and how calming the place is in general.”

Mr. Harrison, pursuing the whale-theme, said that he will be opening an ice cream shop

this June in the complex just across the street, called Killer Whale Creamery. It will be closely related to Blue Whale, with flavors based off of the drinks at the café, including horchata, matcha, and tres leches. 

Thanks to its proximity to the School, many students frequently visit the café. With its welcoming decorations and wide range of colorful dishes and beverages, many of which are easily customizable, Blue Whale is an easy place to stop by for a quick bite afterschool or on the weekend.

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About the Contributor
Anna Yang
Anna Yang, Staff Writer
Anna is a sophomore, and this is her first year writing for The Tower. Outside of school, she loves playing soccer and reading. She also loves animals, and has recently started fostering kittens! Originally from New York, she likes traveling with her family, and visiting new places. She also enjoys MUN, and her favorite class is French, and she looks forward to being a part of The Tower staff. 

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