San Diego, CA
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Contributors residing here:
Burgers and Fries
- Crest Cafe: 425 Robinson Ave (Hillcrest)
- Hands-down best diner in San Diego. Friendly, attentive service and great sandwiches and burgers. Typical diner fare with some Mexican and homestyle twists.
- Hodad's: 5010 Newport Ave. (Ocean Beach)
- Great burgers and not a whole heckuvalot else on the menu. Fun atmosphere. The walls "papered" with old vanity plates from all over the US.
- Rocky's Crown Pub: 3786 Ingraham Street (Pacific Beach)
- Awesome burgers in a pub style atmosphere. There is literally nothing else to eat here besides burgers and fries, but they do it really well. Cheap beer and awesome burgers are what this place is famous for.
Chinese / Dim-Sum
- Dumpling Inn: 4619 Convoy Street (San Diego)
- Tiny hole-in-the-wall place with awesome food and low prices. One of the best Chinese restaurants in San Diego. Try to get there early, the dining room is tiny and there's often a line outside for tables.
- Jasmine: 4609 Convoy Street (San Diego)
- Also one of the best Chinese restaurants in SD, Jasmine has an enormous dining room that often hosts wedding receptions and is therefore often full, so come on a weekday or with alternate dinner plans in case the restaurant's been rented out that evening. It's not on the menu but try the crispy fried long beans with garlic salt, they're delicious. Jasmine also serves excellent Dim Sum.
- China Max: 4698 Convoy Street (San Diego)
- A unique restaurant in that it blends authentic Chinese with Chinese-American dishes, though with a concentration on the former. Specializes in dim-sum for lunch and seafood from their live tanks for dinner. Dim sum here is unique in that it's ordered off of a menu.
- Del Mar Rendezvous: 1555 Camino Del Mar # 102 (Del Mar)
- Awesome Chinese food in a nice location. Not what I would call an "authentic" chinese restaurant, but amazing none the less. Try the crispy pungent chicken, or the braised beef with bok choy.
- Extraordinary Desserts - 2929 5th Ave (Balboa Park West)
- Delicious cakes and baked goods with amazing floral presentation. Big crowds after dinner every day, so get there early. Great date place.
- George's at the Cove: 1250 Prospect St. (La Jolla)
- Lovely ocean views and great food. Comparable to Pamplemousse.
- Pamplemousse Grille: 514 Via De La Valle (Solana Beach)
- My favorite upscale restaurant. It's been voted best San Diego restaurant three years running by the Zagat Survey, and I tend to agree. The cuisine is Californian/Continental and truly excellent, and the place itself is elegant and cosy, not stuffy. I won't recommend specific items as their menu changes frequently, but I've never ordered a bad (or mediocre) dish there.
- Dobson's Bar and Restaurant: 956 Broadway Circle (Downtown)
- The best seafood bisque in San Diego. Also excellent chops, steaks, and drinks. Known for being a hang-out for news folk and lawyers. Reservations recommended. It's run by a former bullfighter.
- Region: 3671 5th Avenue (Hillcrest)
- "Farm Fresh" restaurant specializing in locally grown and organic foods. Great atmosphere, good desserts.
- Chez Loma: 1132 Loma Ave (Coronado)
- Hidden on a side street in beautiful Coronado, Chez Loma is a small, delicious and authentic French restaurant. Good service, excellent wine list. Try their early-bird dinner special for a three-course meal at a low price.
- The Prado: 1549 El Prado (Balboa Park)
- A gem in the middle of Balboa Park. Californian cuisine with a central- and south-american influence. Good drinks and truly creative and tasty entrees. Some of the best tortilla soup in San Diego. Lounge has smaller menu, and live music most nights. Great happy hour.
- Greek American Family Restaurant: 392 N El Camino Real (Encinitas)
- Family-owned and operated Greek place that makes the best Spanakopita ever.
- Troy's Greek and American: 10450 Friars Road (Grantville, AKA Slightly east of Mission Valley)
- Family owned and operated. Very friendly people and good service. Great greek food, although I'm not sure where the American comes in, maybe I've never made it to that page of the menu. It's a tad hard to find if you're not from the area. It's located in the corner of a strip mall on Friars Road, right at the corner of Zion where Friars merges with Mission Gorge Road. It's behind the Carl's Jr. on the corner.
- Alexi's Greek Cafe: 3863 5th Avenue (Hillcrest)
- Great Greek food that won't break the bank either. The Gyros plate and sandwich are both a fantastic value that come with very generous portions. The hummus and freshly warmed flatbread are great for an appetizer, and so is the flaming cheese. The Greek salad is so big that there is no way one person could ever eat the whole thing by themselves.
- Monsoon: 729 4th Ave. (downtown San Diego)
- Tasty Indian food and neat decor. They sometimes have bellydancers during the evenings.
- Annapurna: 10606 Camino Ruiz #6 (Mira Mesa)
- Delicious homemade authentic Indian. Initially came here on several recommendations from a few Indian co-workers of mine. Amazing lunch buffet and good service.
- Borelli's: 285 N El Camino Real (Encinitas)
- American-style Italian food. Inauthentic but delicious.
- Antico Toscano: 1288 University Avenue (San Diego | Hillcrest neighborhood)
- Consistently excellent; pastas cooked al dente. Just opened for lunch literally on the day of this edit (1 November 2006); used to be dinner-only.
- Bella Luna: 748 5th Avenue (San Diego | Gaslamp district)
- One of many good Italian restaurants downtown.
- Jamroc 101 Caribbean Grill: 101 N Coast Highway 101 (Encinitas)
- Pretty much the only Jamaican place I know of in San Diego, it's tiny but delicious, and they serve goat curry (which is excellent).
- Kaito: 1476 Encinitas Blvd (Encinitas)
- Supposedly a Japanese/Italian restaurant, but I've never tried any of their Italian dishes. Good sushi, and discounted during happy hour.
- Samurai: 979 Lomas Santa Fe Dr. (Solana Beach)
- One of the longest sushi bars in the state, they usually have at least 4 or 5 sushi chefs working simultaneously. Great sushi, and if you're a regular the chef might make you something delicious that's not on the menu, like marinated maguro sushi with fried garlic slices on top. They also have a few Teppanyaki tables, also very good.
- AP: This place is expensive and has a fairly small sushi menu (no baked/fried rolls) but the quality is very high. The fish was great, the rice was genuine sushi rice (marinated in vinegar), rolls were mostly fish, and most sushi was served with a dab of extra flavorings (garlic, hot sauce, herbs, etc.). Excellent cooked food as well.
- Tomiko: 87 Encinitas Blvd (Encinitas)
- Good sushi with a spectacular ocean view.
- Lotus Thai Cuisine: 3761 6th Ave (Hillcrest)
- Delicious Thai food in a casual atmosphere. Try their early-bird dinner specials for a three-course meal on the cheap. Very nice interior.
- Phuong Trang