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Old Trieste in SD is...old...

I was so looking forward to dinner there last night.. had done my research..so I thought..I was so disappointed.. It was so bright in there.. a guy in a hawaiin shirt and jeans.. I was dressed up.. what happened to the reqd coat? There was ceiling leak with a table with bus tubs in the middle. the salad is ice berg coated in blue chees. While the dinner was ok I would never even think of going back..It makes me nervous now reading these suggestions!! I read GO!!! and fabulous etc.. Someone loved the fried zuchinni. hey it was thin sliced fried zuchinni.. no big deal..NOT that iIwas expecting a food heaven at all. I thought it would be more romantic and candlight.. i seriously think it was brightrer than Dennys..We should have walked out..actually I didnt think the staff was all that pleasant either,considering we did have a reservation and there are so few people in there... oh well bummer. It was my husbands bday dinner...Im off to make short ribs with gorgonzola polenta to make up for my choice!!!

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  1. by any chance, is your short rib recipie from Bon Appetit?

    1 Reply
    1. Wow, sound dreadful. Too bad because it used to be a pretty good restaurant. Some of our erstwhile elected officials (and maybe some not elected, but appointed) managed to rack up $40,000+ in food bills at Old Trieste a few years ago. It is old, though, been around a L-O-N-G time in SD. Sounds like it hasn't aged all that well.

      Let us know how the short ribs turn out, they sound better.

      1. Thanks for the report. I have often been curious to check this place out, but will now save my money for elsewhere.

        1. in case anyone wonders.. the short ribs were incredible.. plus the polenta of course...hard to dine out when you can make something that great.. ok well its sometimes more fun when someone else does the cooking... and the clean up!

          3 Replies
          1. re: butterbutt

            I agree about the Bon Appetit short ribs--they were excellent. The gorgonzola in the polenta really added a nice touch. And I agree that it's hard to go out when you can cook good food at home--except when the chef is better than you!

            1. re: daantaat

              I'll have to look that one up... tis the season for that sort of food again!

              1. re: Alice Q

                Bon Appetit October 07 issue. Cover recipie. It should be on the newstands. Or wait a month or two and get it for free off their website.

          2. Old Trieste might be the last of the old-line restaurants left in San Diego (remember Lubach's?). Old Trieste is still a pretty good call when you are out on a Saturday and don't have a reservation somewhere. Their liver and onions are outstanding...the last time I was there, half the orders were liver and onions and all of the cars out front were cadillacs and lincoln continentals. The clientele averages 70+.

            1 Reply
            1. re: buzznutter

              ah we do have those favorites for no reservations!!! Harrys bar and Grille and Elarios(Clays) Im sure there are others ...but these are always a good to go.. They are just busier in the week.

            2. That is too bad. I was there recently for lunch and it was very good. I called ahead for a reservation. I hope the night our writer was there was an off night, I have always comented on how dark it has alwasy been. You should also try BACI next time, it is a few block south on Morena.

              1. I was really sorry to read Butterbutt's post. When Diana and I had only been married a few years, Old Trieste was our idea of fine dining. We used to SAVE UP to go to dinner there, and it was a mini-tradition that we would go there on our anniversary. It's now been many years since we were last there, but I still remember it fondly. The first time we ate there, and those complimentary fried zucchini slices hit the table, I thought it was so exotic (FRIED zucchini????), but it was so delicious I wanted to make a meal of them. Those were the days when men were required to wear a jacket and tie (I wore my only suit), and there was still a sign outside with the dress code that included, "NO PEDAL PUSHERS." I guess nothing stays the same -- nor should it.
                . . . jim strain

                1. Sorry to bring up an old thread..
                  Has anyone been to Old Trieste lately?
                  I'm a Baci's chick, but back in the days with the parents, we would switch off from Baci's and Lubach's on Harbor drive and I would love for the place to be like it used to be.
                  Anyone been lately?

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Beach Chick

                    Husband celebrated birthday lunch their yesterday. Nothing has changed. Really, the only thing to order there is the fresh fish selection of the day - simple white wine, lemon-caper sauce.

                    Honestly, I don't know how much longer they will stay in business - only one of the original owner's sons is still involved.

                    1. re: foodiechick

                      Thank's chicka for the update.
                      It would be a great location for a chef to have a freestanding restaurant and make it his/her own..its intimate enough that it could be a really cool venue.

                    2. re: Beach Chick

                      I was treated to both the Old Trieste and the Baci in the last 3 weeks. Certainly decor is form the old school with heavy aged dark woods and the cooking is very traditional in a quality way. The main dish at Old Trieste is the Sea Bass, which was very GQQD. Not the kind of place to go to with a limited budget. Much better to be have a Government job expense account account like so many who go there and do not worry about the prices.

                      Same for Baci. Had a large portion of Veal Marsala.

                      Old Trieste Restaurant
                      2335 Morena Blvd, San Diego, CA 92110

                      Baci Restaurant
                      1955 West Morena Blvd, San Diego, CA 92110