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Apr 4, 2008 01:24 PM

Help for hubby's bus trip La Jolla Village Dr?

My hubby's going on business staying on Vista Sorrento Pkwy near Torrey Pines. He's looking for dinner places for at least 2 evenings. We're in OH so our normal pickings are pretty slim. He likes spicy good food, mexican, indian or chinese would all be wonderful. Not fancy where he won't stick out too much since he'll be by himself. Also, directions must be fairly straightforward -- he gets lost easily. Suggestions?

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  1. The closest decent Indian is Sitar, in the Staples food court off Sorrento Valley Road and the 805 freeway. It is a food court and he won't stick out as a solo diner, although because it is a food court, it's not really designed as a place to sit and relax. They do take-out, if he wants to bring it back to his hotel.

    If he wants "real" Chinese, he'll have to drive south to Clairemont Mesa Blvd and Diane Ave for Ba Ren, which fits the spicy, good and Chinese request. Another option is Little Sheep Hot Pot for Mongolian Hot Pot, also on Clairemont Mesa Drive. Roughly 15 minutes south w/o traffic.

    Best "real" Mexican and taco shops are in Hillcrest or further south, at least 20 minutes w/o traffic. He's in a pretty suburban area where there isn't a lot of good ethnic food in the immediate area.

    1. Well lets see if we can help.

      PF Changs is right on La Jolla Village dr. not too far. It is a chain,but they do do some very good dishes. I have frequently sat at the bar and eaten so that would be an option.
      OOh there is also Rendezvous,very good,in the Del Mar that is only ten minutes away and a nice area.There ,there is also Pacifica,eat at the bar option.. and there is still a Japanese restaurant there.. There are also Italian and Steak..all with gorgeous views..

      2 Replies
      1. re: butterbutt

        I disagree I think P.F. Changs is pretty bad and so is Rendezous and I have given each place a chance more than once.

        1. re: butterbutt

          "Well lets see if we can help.

          PF Changs is right on La Jolla Village dr. not too far. It is a chain,but they do do some very good dishes."


        2. Thanks for the suggestions. Ba Ren definitely sounds up his alley as does Sitar (though I'm not sure about the food court aspect). Have printed him off directions since he's off today. We'll (hubby, myself and 17 year old) will be in same vicinity in June so whatever he likes we'll probably go back to at that point (though daughter isn't too keen on spicy).

          Thanks again

          1 Reply
          1. re: SharonOhio

            It's somewhat difficult traveling around San Diego by bus, nevertheless finding good places to eat along the bus route. There's a decent Greek/Persian restaurant called Alborz that's not too far away. He would need to go north on Interstate 5, exit Del Mar Heights, and make a quick left. The restaurant is right behind Jack-n-the-Box. Here's the website:
            I like the lamb shank and eggplant stew.

            I have no idea if there is a direct bus route though.

          2. There's a community of Indian restaurants, markets and even a temple on Black Mountain Road near MCAS Miramar (Marine Corps Air Station). It's about 5 miles away from Vista Sorrento Parkway. Check out recommendations on chowhound for Surati Farsan and Punjabi Tandoor, both in that same neighborhood.

            P.S. I assume he'll have a car (don't know why everyone is concerned about bus transport), so have him get a GPS-equipped rental and tell him to go to Super Cocina (again, look on CH for reviews and address). Between those two places, he'll have lots of stories to tell when he gets back to Ohio (and for that matter to his hosts in San Diego as well).

            Surati Farsan Mart
            9494 Black Mountain Rd, San Diego, CA 92126

            7 Replies
            1. re: Leucadian

              Oh, I read the title of the thread too literally and didn't realize "bus" was the abbreviation for business.

              If you're not familiar with Indian food, ordering from Surati Farsan can be daunting and one may end up ordering items that taste too similar to each other. The chole samosa served with the garbanzo bean soup/stew is awesome though.

              Has your husband ever eaten from a taco truck before? Marisco's is getting tons of raves! The truck is parked on the corner of University and 35th. More details can be found: Super Cocina is also in the same vicinity.

              1. re: Leucadian

                Here are the maps: Note that the Tandoori shop is PUNJABI TANDOOR, so forgive the misspelling in the place tag. It's very casual, more of a lunch spot than dinner, I think. Super Cocina is also very casual, but not as much of an engineer-on-the-run-only-got-an-hour type place as PT. These are not fine dining, but genuine treasures nevertheless. Each of these places serves its own community primarily, whether it be Mexican, Indian, or Chinese (Ba Ren is terriffic). Your husband should have an enjoyable experience here. Oh, another spot to check out is Ranch 99 Market on Clairmont Mesa Drive, which despite its name is a huge Asian supermarket. It's a mindblower the first time you walk in. Finally, 'Trust CH'.

                Super Cocina
                3627 University Ave., San Diego, CA 92104

                Punjabi Tandoor
                9235 Activity Rd, San Diego, CA

                1. re: Leucadian

                  I strongly 2nd Surati Farsan Mart and Punjabi Tandoor. Surati Farsan Mart is easily the most "comfortable" for dining, as Punjabi Tandoor has 3 smallish tables inside and several plastic patio tables outside with no outdoor lighting. Punjabi Tandoor also does take out. Both are roughly 15-20 minutes away from Vista Sorrento Parkway. These are my first picks for Indian but I suggested Sitar b/c it is literally 5 minutes down the road from your hotel with less chance of getting lost.

                  I would not pick PF Chang's for "good" Chinese. It is fusion, at best and if you want good fusion, I'd do Roy's for Pacific Rim Fusion or Roppongi's in La Jolla for Asian Fusion. Rendevouz is ok if you're in the immediate area, although I would not call it "good" Chinese either. It's more fusion in the way PF Chang's is.

                  1. re: daantaat

                    Is Sitar the old KT's Tandoor? If so, I doubt that it's open for dinner, since it's in a lunch type food court serving the businesses in the area, not a 'local' night time place. By the way, there used to be an interesting Bakery up the hill at Sorrento Heights (?) Mira Mesa Drive and Camino Santa Fe. It is (or was) run by a Vietnamese baker who emigrated to Sweden first, then to USA, so he has a really interesting mix of products. I think he was making banh mi at one point, as well as Swedish pastries. It's been a long time since I've been by, so I'm not even sure he's still there.

                    1. re: Leucadian

                      The bakery is Sorrento European Bakery, and it's in Sorrento Mesa, next to the food court by the Marketplace, Yoshi Sushi, Silk Road, etc.

                      1. re: Leucadian

                        I don't know if Sitar is the old KT Tandoor. However, I've been there at night and it was open. So was one other eatery.

                  2. Cafe Japengo is an upscale Sushi place, I have often seen people at the sushi bar reading the paper or a book. The place has a great vibe, Hubby might not want to return to Ohio however.

                    UTC Area, you can dine at Roy's and sit at the Kitchen Counter.

                    Whole Foods Market has a great selection on their hot and cold food bars. It is communal siting and the offer free wifi.

                    North a few exits is Del Mar, and there a places like Bully's where you can have a great steak or burger at the Bar. A little more upscale is Il Fornio and you can dine at the counter overlooking the cooking area.

                    Let us know what he chooses.

                    Good Luck!

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: normalheightsfoodie

                      I really enjoy Cafe of the best calamari salads that has some kick and the sushi is of excellent grade..
                      Dumpling Inn has a sister restaurant, Rendevous in Del Mar Plaza that would be worth a visit..

                      1555 Camino Del Mar
                      Del Mar, CA
                      (858) 755-2669

                      1. re: Beach Chick

                        Rendezous is not much better than P.F. Changs. I've been there a few times and the best thing I've had was the cashew chicken and it still wasn't that great. Rendezous is not a place to go to if your'e craving good chinese food.

                        1. re: lovesfood11

                          Love Dumpling Inn..isn't it the same owner?

                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            Not sure, but I still need to try Dumpling Inn.

                          2. re: lovesfood11

                            Rendevous is "Chinese" food in the same way PF Chang's it. It's ain't the real deal but if you like Americanized, fusion-ized Chinese, then it will suffice.

                            I have to disagree on Japengo having the "best" sushi. I find their sushi overpriced for what it is and can go down the street to Edo Sushi for sushi of equal caliber for cheaper.

                            1. re: daantaat

                              I just returned from business in the UTC area. We ate at Cafe Japengo out of convenience and highly recommend it. Hubby is not a sushi fan, so I can't comment on that. We ordered from their dinner menu and really enjoyed the asian-fusion dishes. We had the Kona coffee braised pork ribs and sea bass in a miso broth with shrimp dumplings - the food, service and atmosphere were very good.