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Forever SD - The 1 you'll never forget?

If you had to leave San Diego tomorrow, what <one> restaurant might haunt you forever? What place would you dream about? Yearn for?

On a previous post, Captain John made me realize that my very favorite SD place-- the place I would miss the most if I moved away-- would never be some place I'd write about on here. That pulled me off my pompous high-horse. I remembered other cities I'd lived in and how each one of them has one special place that lives in my heart.

Here it's Bahia in Bird Rock. It's their lobster burrito. Also because I ate there alot with my son when he was in high school and now he's gone. It was my first taste of Jarritos Tamarindo and zanahorias. I love the windows on three sides and the tiny slice of Pacific you can see sitting on a stool on the tiny back porch. This is what I'll miss if I leave SD. . .

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  1. Today

    It would be Bety's Tacos in Encinitas or Kaito in Encinitas

    2 Replies
    1. re: Enorah

      Kaito Sushi would be mine, or more specifically wherever sushi chef Kazuo Morita happens to practice his craft. http://sushikaito.com/FromChefMorita....

      Being separated from his sushi would be like being lost at sea without fresh water.

      "Water water everywhere, but not a drop to drink."


      "Sushi bars everywhere, but none of them will do."

      1. re: cgfan

        I am going with Kaito as well, Morita-san really changed my sushi world! I will never forget his sushi!

    2. After 18 years I can truthfully say--none. I wish it weren't so.

      1 Reply
      1. re: The Old Man

        I wake up in the night thinking about the shrimp tacos at Cantina Mayahuel on Adams Ave in Normal Heights. I would die without those!

      2. This may be a tad far afoot, but to me the finest food available in the Californias are the fish tacos at the open-air seafood market on the harbor in Ensenada. You have your choice of maybe a dozen tiny restaurants with identical menus. You look for the freshest salsas or the prettiest smiles. You cannot go wrong.

        And then you grab a couple of pounds of your favorite smoked fish or some live lobsters to take home.


        1. The lobster tacos at Pacific Coast Grill in Solana Beach
          The coconut crab cakes at Terra in Hillcrest

          1. Don't know if this counts, but I'm sorry I never went to The Blue Man in La Mesa, for a long time San Diego's only French bistro. But I was too young...

            1. Originally I'd intended for people to write about a place they frequent now, that they would miss forever if it vanished. But the scary part of it is, that everytime I go to Bahia, I think, Enjoy it now, because this won't last forever especially the way the upscaling on La Jolla Blvd is going. So I guess when you find some place you love, that fear is always there.

              1 Reply
              1. re: pickypicky

                We love Bahia too. Ever since our kids were little, we go there almost once a week or so. The food is great and the atmosphere by the beach makes it a complete SD experience for us. And the people working there are so nice and friendly and efficient.

              2. I'd have to say Super Cocina. After getting addicted to it from this board, if I moved away from San Diego, I'd be on a mission to find something similar wherever I went. Problem is that I've never really had that type/style of mexican cooking prior to Super so it holds a special place in my heart. Or should I say stomach! There may be other places out there or better renditions of certain dishes, but they'd always be compared to Super because it was my first introduction to guisados, etc. That's what Super is to me. Oh how I'd miss it!

                1. Folks, pardon the interruption, but discussion of places that are no longer open is beyond the scope of Chowhound, as our mission is to help folks eat better now. We know that so-called "nostalgia" discussions can be fun, but please help us keep this thread on topic by discussing restaurants that are still open, as we've had to remove some posts discussing closed restaurants.


                  1. I'm not real sure if there's one restaurant I'll miss but I would a certain type of food. This isn't exactly "chowish," but I would miss California/Carne Asada Burritos. I don't really even eat them that much anymore but they are a nice guilty pleasure I grew up with and I don't think other places make them the same way.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: DougOLis

                      I still have not tried one Doug. You are making me want one. A burrito crammed with fries. LOL

                      1. re: DougOLis

                        The Mister and I drive back east for Thanksgiving every year and as soon as we get back, the first place we wind up going to is an open taco shop-ANY taco shop for a CAB. You can't get that flavor anyplace else.

                        1. re: Cathy

                          At first I laughed, a CAB?? but, you're right, when I come back from a road trip, I head for Mariscos German or South Beach Grille, depending on what area I'm in. It's what SD does best.

                      2. I know it's been said but South Beach, in OB - nothing like a cold beer, good music on the juke box, a terrific mahi taco, and an ocean view. It's pretty much unbeatable. My mom has begged for the mahi taco recipe and tried numerous times to replicate, but honestly it's the whole experience for me.

                        1. I would definitely miss The Eggery's West Coast Benedict (made with Avocado, Canadian Bacon, etc.) and their Apple Cinnamon pancakes. Plus the sweet, friendly waitstaff that they have there...their service is great!