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Feb 22, 2008 12:47 PM

Visiting San Diego

I am going to be in San Diego from March 4-8th. I am staying at the Marriott Hotel & Marina, by the Convention Center. Where are good places to eat around there? I won't have a car..but if something is worth going to let me know. I love Italian, sushi, vegetarian. I also hear the fish tacos are good in San Diego. Where are the best?
Are there any good bakeries???
Thanks for your help!

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  1. It is a bit of a walk, uphill, but the Little Italy section is on India street. You'll see it on a map of downtown.

    Solunto Bakery. The make sandwiches and have pizza slices, breakfasts ...and there lots of other reccomendations of where to eat in Little Italy others will give you.

    As RBHound says below, do a search of "Gaslamp" and "downtown SD" for other reccomendations. Also, quite a few inexpensive places were listed when ComicCon was in town. Search that also.

    1. Maria,

      You've probably posted the most frequently asked question for San Diego visitors, meaning that some people might not be as excited to give you their opinions. My suggestion is to search the California board for "Gaslamp" or "Gas Lamp", as well as "fish taco".

      1. South Beach Grill in Ocean Beach has really good fish tacos, they are a better deal for Happy Hour M-F 3-6pm. Bon Appetite Magazine wrote them up as 'Best Fish Taco' in the US. Fillippe Pizza on India St, only this location, probably the best old school pizza around. IMO, The rest of Little Italy is a tourist trap along with the Gaslamp District. For Fish there is the Fish Market by the Convention Center, Island Prime for a high-end steakhouse with a good harbor view. Many other Mexican Taco, Sushi and Vegie places check out 'threads' this CH site.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cstr

          "IMO, The rest of Little Italy is a tourist trap along with the Gaslamp District."

          Yeah, the usual Chowhound mantra, though when you go through all the posts concerning the Gaslamp District you find about a dozen that people claim are good and aren't tourist traps. "Yeah, the Gaslamp has a bunch of tourists traps, except for A and B and C and D and E and..."

        2. here you go!

          Also - I modified an email below that I sent to a friend recently who asked me the same question and is staying at your hotel. It's advice I would give to anyone, in fact, I'm thinking about turning it into a blog post. ( - scroll down on the right side for recommendations) -

          "My number one recommendation for you is Café Chloe – at the corner of 9th and G – it’s a very short cab ride from the hotel – or a 10-15 min walk. It’s kind of small with little tables, so if there are more than two of you, you might want to call and reserve their large table (which seats 4-6) The food is good and I think you’ll like it – they’re open breakfast, lunch and dinner. I went to afternoon tea there a few weeks ago and wrote about it – it’s about four or five posts back now I think.

          The restaurant in the Marriott – Molly’s, is actually very good – local artisanal cuisine. The ex-chef who put the place on the map (Brian Sinnot) is now cooking at the Hotel Del, at 1500 Ocean, which is one of the best fine dining restaurants in town. The Hotel Del also has a new wine bar that looks cool – I haven’t been yet.

          You should definitely check out Extraordinary Desserts on Union Street. There is also one on 5th – near Balboa Park - though the Union one serves savory food plus beer and wine.

          The Hard Rock hotel near there has a coffee shop that is supposed to be good called Mary Jane’s, might be worth checking out - and a Nobu. Rama is also highly recommended for Thai, and I like Chive, which is on 4th, between Market and Island. All of these are an easy walk.

          I also really like Starlite on India Street. It’s a new place with inventive cocktails and really good relatively inexpensive meals made with fresh/local ingredients. It’s primarily a bar though, so it’s 21 and up. I wrote about it a few weeks ago, if you search my blog for Starlite it should come up. In a similar vein but with no kid restrictions - I also really like the Guild, Jayne’s Gastropub, and Linkery. All of these are a short cab ride from the Convention Center.

          Other possibilities – Saffron, Dao Son, Mama's Lebanese, Lucha Libre Taco Shop, Eclipse Chocolat, Bite, The Kebab Shop, Mama Testa, Bread and Cie (best bakery around), and Con Pane (second best bakery). Google or search for these on my blog for more info. Most are within a short cab ride of downtown and Hillcrest, where several of them are located, is a nice walking district."


          1. Love eating at the oyster bar at the Fish Market on the bay..
            Little Italy has some great restaurants..
            Taka for sushi is one of my fav's in the Gaslamp..
            Dobson's for the best mussel bisque with puff pastry..
            Take the water taxi or ferry over to Coronado..go to the Brigantine for seafood happy hour..great fish tacos..have a drink at the Hotel Del.
            Have a great time Maria!