Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > California >
Jan 12, 2007 09:33 PM

Too Cold for Outdoor Dining in San Diego?

We'll be in San Diego next week and have dinner reservations for the Ocean Terrace at George's at the Cove at 8:15. Having just checked the weather channel and noted that the on the date we'll be there the high is predicted to be 62 and the low 48, I'm wondering if I should be concerned. Do they have heaters for the terrace area? I also note there is a chance of showers and wonder if they have a plan B for rain.

We also have reservations one night at Trattoria Acqua. In addition, we're looking for recommendations for the Balboa Park and downtown areas. We have pretty eclectic tastes so anything from an ethnic hole-in-the-wall to fine dining would be welcomed. It's our first visit to San Diego and we're looking forward to exploring new dining territory.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. There are heaters, but it can be pretty windy up there. I'd suggest moving your reservation to their main dining room downstairs.

    1. I've been to the ocean terrace in the day and it was breezy and chilly although they have heaters. I found the bar was much nicer, it has the view and similar menu and prices although you cant book, you just show up and put your name down and have a few drinks while you wait. Trattoria Acqua is also outside mostly but a lot more enclosed so wont be so chilly.

      If you're in La Jolla then you could try Zenbu sushi, Jacks seems to be highly recommended.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jennywenny

        Zenbu is overpriced, average sushi. Only reason to go there is if you must have a martini with your sushi. If you want sushi in La Jolla, Sushi on the Rock is much better.

        Jack's is excellent but the bar area (Jack's Grille) is all exposed to the elements, save a roof over your head and some interior walls. Jack's Fine Dining is completely enclosed except for the area near the bar. Their "windows" are actually clear tarp. It would have been much colder this week had it not been for a floor heater that they brought for us!

        Trattoria Aqua is mostly outdoors seating, although they have some indoor tables.

        Near Balboa Park is an excellent Mexican place, Mama Testa's. Their entire menu is made of tacos from around Mexico--steamed, crispy, soft and floating in broth! Cheap, casual place but really good food!

      2. For the Balboa Park area, I'd recommend Vagabond. It's on 30th and Juniper in South Park. Another Chowhound has given it a nice long review at:

        We went for dinner last week and were able to make reservations for our party of four. Also, I'd like to throw in my two cents for the Kung Pao calamari appetizer -- not too spicy but loads of flavor. I've been craving it since both my meals there.

        1. Thanks everyone for your suggestions. We're thinking we'll probably pass on George's at the Cove due to the weather (It's 70 degrees here today [Atlanta] and I can't believe we're going to be in Southern California during a record cold wave!).

          What does anyone know about El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn? We're actually staying at the Hilton Garden Inn in Rancho Bernardo and El Bizcocho is just five minutes away. What I've seen on-line looks good.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rageorge

            Haven't eaten there, but heard many raves.

            1. re: rageorge

              El Bizcocho is one of the best in SD. The head chef is going to one of the international food competition this year, I think. Excellent food and service. We'd go more often if we weren't traveling in traffic during dinner hours. Definitely a "not miss," especially being in RB.

              Since you're in RB, I'd also add Cavaillon in Santaluz (towards your neck of the woods). Certainly closer than La Jolla and the food easily matches what you can find in La Jolla for cheaper. French bistro in a small, cozy setting. They also have brunch.

              I'd go to El Bizcocho or Cavaillon over Trattoria Aqua.

            2. Thanks for the input re El Bizcocho and Cavaillon. I made a reservation yesterday at El Bizcocho. Actually one of the the reasons we were thinking about Trattoria Acqua is for the view but as the weather forecasts get more iffy for outdoor dining I'm starting to reconsider. We're going to be in San Diego for five days so we'll have plenty of other opportunities to see the ocean. I think I'll call Cavaillon later today and see if we can get a table for Sunday night.

              Thanks again.