Avant feels much more like how San Diego does fancy: no dress code, but still classy and casually elegant. I was looking for a date night away from our 2-year-old, and Avant gave me a great excuse to put on earrings.
The folks at The Regal Seagull have a good thing going. After the success of their first location, Mission Hills' The Regal Beagle, the "sausage and ale house" has expanded northward to beachy Leucadia (get it? Seagull?).