March 2019


ASCRS•ASOA Annual Meeting city preview • May 3–7, 2019
San Diego restaurants

San Diego’s food scene has something to suit every palate

The Blind Burro
639 J Street, East Village
The Blind Burro features Baja coastal cuisine using local, sustainable seafood and produce whenever possible, including Baja-inspired tacos, salads, and entrees. The restaurant also showcases an array of tequila, mescal, and spirits that enhances its Mexican vibe. Come late night, the restaurant converts into a fun and unique lounge with a selection of vampiros—open-faced, overstuffed crispy tacos.

Born and Raised
1909 India Street
An ultra high-end and expensive steakhouse, Born and Raised wants you to bask in the Art Deco décor coupled with images of old rap musicians and enjoy tableside presentations by staff donning white tuxedo jackets. Wet and dry-aged steaks are on the menu, along with non-beef options like duck, lamb, and pork chops. As with many steakhouses, the sides are a la carte and feature smoky creamed kale, king oyster mushrooms, and bean cassoulet, to name a few. The experience of this restaurant has been described as “like dining on the Titanic, with gangsta rap.”

Casa Guadalajara
4105 Taylor Street, Old Town
Casa Guadalajara offers all the charms of a classic Mexican restaurant—a picturesque hacienda, Mexican folk art, a Mariachi band, and a courtyard with splashing fountains. The menu features traditional and regional Mexican specialties, including ceviche, fajitas, enchiladas, mole, tacos, and more.

Cucina Urbana
505 Laurel Street, Banker’s Hill
A California-inspired Italian kitchen and wine shop, Cucina Urbana offers a variety of affordable dishes including pizzas, pastas, salads, and antipasti created by chef Joe Magnanelli, all in the setting of a rustic country farmhouse. According to its website, the restaurant is being heralded as the leader in the new regime of affordable dining in San Diego, coupling Italian classics with fresh, local produce and organic, sustainable products.

Hash House a Go Go
3628 5th Avenue, Hillcrest
Noted by numerous magazines and websites as one of the best breakfast and brunch spots in San Diego, Hash House a Go Go offers old farm recipes with a twist that aim to “keep the fun in food,” according to executive chef Andy Beardslee. The fried chicken, eggs Benedict, and hot sticky granola have been described as “life changing.”

Juniper and Ivy
2228 Kettner Boulevard, Little Italy
Juniper and Ivy offers “refined American food with left coast edge,” courtesy of acclaimed chef Richard Blais, according to the restaurant’s website. The menu offers a variety of seafood, entrees, and small plates coupled with al fresco dining and a fun, energetic atmosphere.

435 5th Avenue
Located on the Pacific coastline, San Diego provides a great opportunity for those looking for fresh seafood, and a relative newcomer for ocean fare in the area is Lionfish. Described as modern coastal cuisine, Lionfish offers a wide array of fresh catch fish, sushi, hot and cold appetizers, and a selection of non-seafood options.

Lola 55
1290 F Street, East Village
If it’s creative tacos, interesting cocktails, and a casual vibe you’re craving, look no further than Lola 55. Options like filet mignon, rainbow cauliflower, and insanely spicy smoked fish grace the taco menu, with sides like ceviche tostadas, chipotle rice, and pozole verde following. Top it all off with a churro served with almond cajeta and lime zest.

Luce Bar and Kitchen
1959 Morena Boulevard, Bay Park
A neighborhood tavern-style restaurant, Luce features a seasonal California and Italian Gastropub/Enoteca style menu with items made from local and organic ingredients whenever possible. The restaurant offers selections of small plates for sharing, cheese and meat boards, artisan pizzas, burgers, and entrees. Luce also has a vast selection of beer and wine, featuring California- grown wines, local and domestic craft beers, and specialty European brews.

The Prado at Balboa Park
1549 El Prado
Situated in a beautiful hacienda in historic Balboa Park, the Prado offers contemporary California-inspired cuisine with a variety of dishes from both land and sea. The restaurant has an outdoor terrace and patio, as well as a cocktail lounge with its own tapas bar.

611 5th Avenue, Gaslamp Quarter
Chef Brian Malarkey’s menu focuses on fresh, local items, offering seafood caught on the San Diego coast as well as a selection of locally brewed beer on tap. The restaurant’s open kitchen design creates a laid-back, comfortable atmosphere, where “friends and family can chat with chefs and servers as easily as they can with each other,” according to its website.

True Food Kitchen
7007 Friars Road, Linda Vista
Establishing itself as a top-ranked restaurant, True Food’s motto is “honest food that tastes really good.” The menu is based on Dr. Andrew Weil’s anti-inflammatory diet, “a way of selecting and preparing foods based on science that can help people achieve and maintain optimum health over their lifetime.” The restaurant offers an array of salads, entrees, sandwiches, and refreshments that are as delicious as they are healthy.

1106 1st Street, Coronado
A European-style café and bakery on beautiful Coronado Island, Tartine offers a variety of French-inspired dishes, salads, sandwiches, and daily specials. Stop in for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or to pair a coffee with one of Tartine’s handmade pastries, cakes, or cookies.

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