Food & Drink

The Coastal-Casual Ambiance of Pixie Deli in Aptos

Custom-made breakfast burritos and other dishes highlight local ingredients

Pixie Deli is a mere 100 feet from the beach in Rio Del Mar, and it’s got a vibe to match. PHOTO: TARMO HANNULA

Pixie Deli serves up handcrafted, house-made breakfast and lunch favorites from their beachside location in Aptos from 9am-4pm, seven days a week. Guests have the option of grab-and-go, as well as dining on the outdoor patio.

Dave Whiting has owned the place for two years and has worked in the food industry most of his life. He has a strong Santa Cruz leaning and a passion for using as many local vendors as possible. GT talked to him about the deli’s offerings and what sets it apart.

What makes Pixie Deli so special?

DAVE WHITING: Our location is fabulous. There are not many delis on the coast in California, let alone Santa Cruz. We are literally 100 feet from the beach in Rio Del Mar. It’s a casual and fun environment. Our motto is: “No shoes, no shirt, no shorts, no problem.” And we serve really great food—90% of what we sell here, we cook here. We roast our own turkey, chicken, tri-tip, and roast beef over mesquite charcoal.

What are a couple of the most popular breakfast dishes?

We are well known for our breakfast burritos; we have one of the best in town. We buy our eggs locally from Glaum and our tortillas locally from Del Pueblo. We custom make each burrito—you tell us what you want in there, and we do it. Our French toast is also fantastic. We use bread from Kelly’s Bakery that is thick-cut but light.

What’s your most popular sandwich?

Our No. 1 seller is our California Club. It comes with our house roasted turkey, veggies, bacon, and mayo and is served on sourdough bread. We also roast chickens every morning and sell half-chickens with salad, fries, or rice and beans. Another great option is our salmon sandwich; we smoke the salmon in-house and it comes on francese bread with all the fixings. One more popular option is the tuna wrap. It’s cooked over mesquite charcoal and served in a garlic tortilla with a housemade wasabi mayo.

What do you serve for beverages and desserts?

We have an assortment of local beers from Discretion, Uncommon, and Santa Cruz Brewing, as well as other craft beers, and also pour local Alfaro wine by the glass. Staying with the local theme, our coffee is from Verve. We serve Marianne’s and Santa Cruz Fun Foods ice cream novelties, as well as candy from Marini’s.

111 Venetian Road, Aptos. 831-688-1115,

Contributor at Good Times |

Andrew has been writing for most of his life and has been published in multiple forms. He has a B.S. in Psychology from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and an M.S. in Nutritional Science from California State University at Chico. His interests, journalistic and otherwise, are diverse. But like pretty much everyone else he loves music and sports as well as food, water, and shelter. His favorite animal is the Pacific green sea turtle and his favorite board game is Stratego. He is also prone to over-thinking and is glad that this paragraph will soon be over so that he can stop trying to describe himself within it.

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