Top Restaurants San Diego
1. Juniper & Ivy
2228 Kettner Boulevard, Little Italy
Photo by Luis Garcia
Full disclosure: Chef Richard Blais and I work on a Food Network TV show together. Fuller disclosure: There is no way this is not one of the top restaurants in the city. Blais is known for molecular trickery, and though sci-fi food is included in the price of admission, at J&I his staff is doing simple things well—like a Baja yellowtail tostada in shark sauce, or that buttermilk biscuit in smoked butter. With up-and-coming sommelier Tami Wong and some of the best service in town, it fires on every important cylinder.
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1A. Ironside Fish & Oyster
1654 India Street, Little Italy
Photo by Sam Wells
This building—the old Ironside Metal Supply—is a gem of Little Italy, which now ranks as San Diego’s culinary epicenter. In the wrong hands, a piece of local history could’ve been buried in beige stucco and beiger ideas. But Consortium Holdings micro-managed the design and turned it into a grand statement of 1920s décor. Two-star Michelin chef Jason McLeod is overseeing the seafood joint that’s worthy of the once-thriving waterside community, with possibly the best lobster roll around and an oyster bar that’s slinging them almost as fast as customers demand.
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793 J Street, East Village
Photo by Jen & Bec
Another Consortium project (between your starting and finishing this sentence, they’ve opened two more joints), Fairweather was a concept that was so, so ripe. With the craft cocktail scene awash in brown liquors and antiquated, Model-T drink recipes, one of the leaders in the city’s craft scene decided to tackle… boat drinks. Piña coladas, Mai Tais, Zombies, mezcals, rums, tequilas. It’s easy for the creative class to hate on San Diego’s vacation climate; it’s another thing to embrace it with panache.
4. The Patio
4020 Goldfinch Street, Mission Hills
I would live in their patio. It’s less a “patio” than a room without a roof—and a few massive holes where the walls should be. Gorgeous. Two plant walls are like cross-sections of the rainforest. There’s a fireplace for your cockle-warming. This is the second installment from owner Gina Champion-Cain and chef John Medall (the first Patio is in PB). It’s one of the most brunch-begging hangouts under San Diego’s perfect sun. They’ve got a custom-built cheese cave, one of the best octopus dishes (in nut-butter ragout) in the city, and 60-plus tequilas.
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5. Bottega Americano
1195 Island Avenue, East Village
East Village is finally shaking off its economic hangover, and Bottega Americano is the beacon. The Thomas Schoos-designed eat-drink-shop concept has been overdue in San Diego. And while this is no Eataly (which is a city, six times as large), the general idea is the same. You eat Italian fare (crudo, fresh pasta, pizza, etc.) from chefs Giuseppe Ciuffa and David Warner (ex-JRDN), you drink cocktails by Snake Oil Cocktail Co., then you shop for gourmet foodstuffs after basking your gullet in inspiration. This all-in-one food experience will be replicated many times over this year.
6. Croce’s Park West
2760 Fifth Avenue, Bankers Hill
It was time for Croce’s to leave downtown. When Ingrid and her husband, the late legendary folk singer Jim Croce, opened the restaurant 30 years ago, the Gaslamp was a seedy place in need of constructionists. The Croces helped build more safety, more interest, more scene. But come 2014, very few of Croce’s local crowd wanted to venture into The Gaslamp. It’s for the beautiful and the well-breasted now. So Croce’s moved to Bankers Hill, and it’s never been more alive.
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7. Land & Water Company
2978 Carlsbad Boulevard, Carlsbad
As the former chef of Harney Sushi in Oceanside, Rob Ruiz became known as one of the most ardent promoters of sustainable seafood. Though the doom-and-gloom predictions vary, most experts agree: Our seafood supply is in various degrees of serious peril. And unsustainable sushi is not helping. Located in Carlsbad’s iconic Queen Anne home from the 1880s (formerly the Ocean House), L&W Co. is Ruiz’ riff on sushi, French food, and traditional Japanese yakitori fare (grilled meat on sticks). Good eating for mouth and mind.
1205 Prospect Street, La Jolla
William Bradley deserves all acclaim. As the executive chef of Addison at the Grand Del Mar, he’s been nominated for a James Beard Award and praised over and over by Thomas Keller. As the culinary director for Bijou, Bradley mined his collection of classic French cookbooks to create a French bistro in homage to some of his favorites, including pâté de campagne (rustic pâté), oeufs mayonnaise (a boiled eggs-and-mayo bistro classic), steak tartare, and the comfort legend coq au vin. Chef de cuisine Shaun Gethin (ex of Gary Danko in San Francisco and Wynn Las Vegas) knows how to execute.
Paradise Point Resort, 1404 Vacation Road, Mission Bay
A multimillion-dollar renovation marked a return for both a classic San Diego property and chef Amy DiBiase. Paradise Point is a quintessential San Diegan resort—a bit funky, a bit old, a bit touristy, and all kinds of laid-back awesome. The restaurant (formerly the residence of the Hollywood producer who built the island resort) has been recast in a more modern, white décor and that phenomenal bay-view patio is a perfect place to have DiBiase’s bruleed chicken liver mousse or her Venus clams, a sort of California riff on chowder.
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10. City Tacos
3028 University Avenue, North Park
The taco is to San Diego what the cheesesteak is to Philly. And the humble hand-food is undergoing a massive overhaul in San Diego. Finally. There are Puesto’s designer tacos, or Haggo’s organic, and now North Park has City Tacos. This isn’t the simple braised-meat grease stain. Their pollo asado is served with arugula, diced tomatoes, golden raisins, and toasted almonds in a tamarind aioli on a house-made flour tortilla. Their veggie taco is portobellos, black beans, corn, and arugula. Good things happen when farmers market people make tacos.road map what is the definition where the london is located who's a scientist what tech would look like when workers are asked to participate what solution has a ph of 7 where to teach english online when science and christianity meet roadmap when will hairdressers open whose manager of salford city how much product to use on face when london snow falls from where designers buy fabric whose teachings are collected in bijak how development occurs how much starting money in monopoly who teaches naruto sage mode which device is nat typically implemented on how much phone 11 where are entrepreneurs located how business credit cards work where to manufacturer clothing where to find science articles how much solution for bissell carpet cleaner who product specific guidance who system unit how start up a conversation where to road map where to look from solutions who project in ku how to do roadmap which business development increases cash how long teaching certificate how to explain a teacher how far does a gps tracker work where to teach online classes how much product to bring to a craft show how design makes the world where to download solution manuals for free what technology was made in 2020 why product roadmap is important who studies science where to buy cars from manufacturer how much solution for hoover carpet cleaner which science is the hardest what solutions can be used in a nebulizer how much teaching course at unisa what startup apps do i need why solutions must be standardized who rehydration solution how many tech jobs are there where's tech n9ne from why startup need funding why equipment maintenance is important how many system restore points are kept where design store when product backlog is created where to donate technology near me how many development cards in catan expansion where to launch a boat near me how to state a solution what solutions are hypertonic how start up works where do entrepreneurs work what technology does verizon use where is technology made how when and where solutions what is far in development who manufacturers the flu vaccine where to buy cars from manufacturer when science speaks podcast how much startup capital for small business who devised celluloid film what business should i start quiz when equipment is purchased for cash how often answers survey when technology and humanity cross essay how much company car tax will i pay how much tech trash per c4 when entrepreneurship is successful class 10 how often do entrepreneurs fail from where to study science and technology for upsc how often does technology improve which system produces blood cells where is danielle from design star where startup folder windows 10 how solution is mixture how many manager does wizkid have why technology roadmap where technology meets business how much factory unlock iphone 6 where is james manager from startup who ends up with dalmi how far can technology advance when tech bubble burst what solution is used for sclerotherapy what business can i start with 10k when management is incompetent how product managers work with designers which system supports sales forecasting maker's mark when technology fails where to manage amazon credit card how entrepreneur helps in economic development where to business name registration who developed the polio vaccine how manufacturing overhead costs why entrepreneurs are bad at relationships who owns the most businesses whose project is manila international airport how to find development opportunities why equipment is uncountable whu business psychology how far route 66 how science goes wrong whose product is dr pepper how much system in human body how technological change affects jobs