Kiss My Glass: 61 years strong

Matt Cieslak

Matt Cieslak of Manhattan Bar and The Elwood in Chula Vista.

(Courtesy photo)

From a young age Matt Cieslak knew he wanted to run his own bar or restaurant, so when the opportunity came up for him to take over Chula Vista mainstay Manhattan Bar, he jump at the chance. Now the bar is celebrating 61 years and earlier this year, Cieslak added a second project to his portfolio — The Elwood.

Both of Cieslak’s bars are located on Broadway in Chula Vista landing them in the heart of the trending #SouthBayUprising movement. In this episode of Kiss My Glass, Cieslak discusses the movement, along with the development of Third Avenue, new people experiencing old bars and where he eats and drinks around Chula Vista.

The Elwood

Once the Lion’s Den, Matt Cieslak transformed the old Chula Vista bar into The Elwood starting in April 2018.

(Courtesy photo)

Here’s a look at what else you’ll find in the episode:


  • #SouthBayUprising
  • Celebrating 61 years of Manhattan Bar
  • The development of Third Avenue
  • Losing weight now in anticipation of The Balboa opening in Chula Vista
  • Stints at Pizza Port and Blind Lady Ale House
  • Starting a business from the studs up vs. taking over existing location
  • Knowing from an early age he wanted to run his own bar or restaurant
  • Band lineups at Manhattan Bar
  • New people experiencing old bars
  • Where Matt eats and drinks around Chula Vista
  • A need for a really good place to get steak
  • Future projects

Kiss My Glass is a collaboration between PACIFIC and Facebook group Eating and Drinking in San Diego.

Listen and subscribe to Kiss My Glass and sister podcast Dish It Up wherever you listen to podcasts, including iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Soundcloud.

Keep up

Manhattan Bar: 400 Broadway, Chula Vista, 619.422.6641,


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