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Jan 4, 2009 08:50 PM

Lunch in La Jolla

I'm getting away with my daughter for a day and we've decided to make La Jolla our destination. We're looking for a great place to have lunch. She is 17 and appreciates good food and a unique setting -- funky or ecclectic is fun too -- any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. Well, you might as well eat somewhere in the village, since that is where the most site seeing stuff is.

    There are a number of excellent places. Nine Ten, Georges at the Cove, Roppongi, Tapenade and Trattoria Acqua are all in that neighborhood and have good food.

    Tapenade is off the main drag and probably has the best food followed by Nine Ten, although we recently had dinner at Georges and thought it was excellent, the hamachi appetizer was superb. Roppongi's is Pacific Rim tapas and is really fun. Experiences seem to vary but we have always had fun while attending. The main problem for us is that they have a really expensive corkage fee if you bring your own wine and then charge too much for their wines. It's a tough one because we want wine there but don't want to pay the steep tariff. Oh well, if wine is not an issue, you could do way worse.

    Trattoria Acqua is right over the top of the Cove, (like Georges is), and used to have killer sandwiches for lunch. Last time I was there, I was a bit underwhelmed but I am hoping that I just had an off day experience because I have always had a great time there in the past. Great views from here.

    Nine Ten is also great for lunch.

    One more idea would be Jacks, which I have ONLY heard about but it is on my list of places to try.

    Anyhow, La Jolla Village is a great place to get away for the day, we live in La Jolla about 10 minutes from the Village and still enjoy the heck out of it.

    Be sure to walk the coast between Childrens Pool and the Cove.

    1. Oh, go to Barbarella! It's not super groundbreaking food, but it is (in my opinion) excellent Italian, and the ambiance sounds just like what you're looking for... The restaurant is in a house and has some seriously funky decorations... Also, for an alternative idea, The Cheese Shop in La Jolla has good sandwiches (again, nothing super creative, just good basic food), and their oatmeal cookies are amazing...We get the food to go and then eat it on the beach...

      6 Replies
      1. re: weezerific

        Barbarella and The Cheese Shop are down in La Jolla Shores. If lindajp747 and her daughter are doing a "walk around town" type of thing, they might find getting in the car just to go to lunch a bit inconvenient - unless they want to walk around the Shores area as well.

        El Pescator has its fans, though I have it on good authority that going their daily can be a little tiresome.

        1. re: weezerific

          Great suggestions! I would also add a couple of places in the village that are delightful if it is a sunny day. The Cottage on Fay is very popular for breakfast, but it is also a very pretty patio dining experience for lunch. Interesting sandwiches, salads and other fare. The other great patio dining spot would be Cody's that looks down to Scripps Park and the ocean. Both are great lunch places (not too touristy with a local following) with nice food, great ambiance and prices that won't break the bank.

          1. re: foodiechick

            I like George's at the Cove on the top. It's a lovely view of LJ Cove, the food is good and the servers are cute.

            1. re: keena

              I like it too - especially for visitors, we are regulars. But I was trying to come up with something different as that is the first place everyone mentions - becoming a bit cliched. Despite that, it's still a good rec.

              1. re: foodiechick

                I can second George's. We dined there for lunch this past summer and view, food and service were great.

                1. re: foodiechick

                  I agree it seems cliched for us but if it's your first time in LJ and you're 17 (or any age), it's an awesome venue with all those other perks.

          2. Mission Cup Cafe on Wall St, across from the post office, has great breakfasts, brunches and lunches. They have an Asian-Latino flair to their cooking. Their "Double Happiness" bowl (grilled, marinated chicken and beef over brown rice) is really, really good. So is their grilled tofu. Atmosphere is small, cozy and pleasantly funky in a late 1960's/early 1970's way.

            If you're in La Jolla Shores, Piatti's has good lunches. Mediterranean-Italian style.

            Nine-Ten is excellent for lunch in a more modern, formal setting than the above places.

            1. all great suggestions but I would do George's on the terrace for first time in LJ.
              goldfish point cafe for a latte afterwards and walk the cove.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Beach Chick

                Unfortunately, I will no longer patronize the latter establishment for political reasons.

                1. re: foodiechick

                  loved to know what that's all about..
                  then how about the Living Room for a latte..
                  ; )

                  1. re: foodiechick

                    I am just curious, what political reasons ?