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Feb 29, 2008 08:05 AM

San Diego favorites

We'll be staying at the Hilton San Diego Mission Valley for a conference next month.

We're interested in non-tourist-y, un-fussy restaurants in the following categories: 1) authentic Mexican, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean 2) simple and great California fare using locally sourced ingredients 3) your favorite place that doesn't break the bank

Pretty sure we'll have access to a car, though places closer by would be nice too.

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  1. 1) Mama Testa, Chilango
    2) The Linkery
    3) The Better Half

    2 Replies
    1. re: honkman

      Could you tell me a little about each? Thanks so much!

      1. re: sundeck sue

        - Mama Testa is a small restaurant in Hillcrest only serving tacos but from all regions of Mexico:

        - Chilango is also a Mexican restaurant in Hillcrest which got excellent reviews but closed about two years ago. It just reopened recently and even so they might not be at the same level as before at this point they still provide good mexican dishes.

        - In the Linkery you know for more or less for every piece of food you eat where it comes from locally and how it was raised, planted etc. Also one of the best beer selection (many local micro breweries) in SD -

        - The Better Half is simply the best restaurant currently in SD. In open just recently but good extremly good reviews from everybody and has an outstanding ambience, service and food.

    2. Shanghai City
      Tajima (1 for the ramen, Tajima 2 for the izakaya style food)
      Cafe Chloe
      Izakaya Masa (I love their udon, skip the sushi)

      1. 1) Mexican - Super Cocina (East San Diego)
        Vietnamese - Lucky Pho (Mira Mesa)
        Chinese - Ba Ren (Clairemont Mesa)
        Japanese - Sushi Ota (sushi, Pacific Beach), Izakaya Sakura (everything, Clairemont Mesa), Tajima (noodles, Clairemont Mesa)
        Korean - Buga
        2) The Linkery (North Park)
        Market (expensive, Del Mar)
        3) Cavaillon, Cafe Chloe or The Better Half

        1. Mexican--Mama Testa's, El Cuervo. Both in Hillcrest and 5 minutes away.

          Asian--do a search for "Convoy" on the board and you will turn up Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Convoy Ave is about 5-10 min north of Mission Valley.

          Best California fare but will be in the $50-60 pp range--Market in Del Mar. 30-40 minutes north, depending on traffic. Also good is Nine-Ten in La Jolla, similar price range, about 20 minutes north, depending on traffic.

          1. 1) Mexican (cheap): Super Cocina (for guisados), Tacos El Panson (for al pastor tacos), Farmer's Market on Imperial (for market shops)
            Vietnamese: Pho Ca Dao (pho), K Sandwiches
            Chinese: Ba Ren (Sichuan)
            2) California: The Linkery (moderate, great beer); Market (pricey)
            3) El Salvador Pupuseria, Mama's Bakery (Lebanese wraps), Mamma Mia (Italian), O'Brien's (great local beer, bar food is okay)