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Jan 5, 2009 06:27 PM

San Diego Restaurant Week 2009

Where's everyone going? Some places haven't put out their menus yet, but what are the best bets for a great meal? I like Terra in Hillcrest, but I'm not excited by their menu offer this year.

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  1. Ok, I'll bite.
    The menus that tempt me are:

    Hexagone....I'll give them another is good
    Nine-Ten...always excellent
    Jsix....tempting menu
    Inn at the Park..if they have any space left
    WineVault and Bistro...excellent choices

    If I could choose only one it would be Inn at the Park. Parking is a problem here.

    1. Ok, I'll bite.

      Inn at the Park
      Wine Vault and Bistro

      If I could choose just one it would be Inn at the Park. Bound to be packed and parking is difficult but worth it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: P Macias

        I wrote a inquiry on this topic a week ago and no response so I am glad someone posted it again. Are any of these restaurants suitable for children? or are they more higher end couple romantic places.

      2. I just have a hard time going anymore, because my experiences before were not so much "foodie" experiences as...well, it felt gimmicky. I was hoping it would be a good way to get a peek at the restaurant's quality, but then I hear that during RW, they don't always make the same commitment to food and service. So, maybe it's not such a great way to get a sense of the place. And finally, with places like Wine Vault serving a 5 course (absolutly delicious menu) for $25 or Better Half serving 3 courses for $15...I have a hard time getting excited about paying $40 for 3 courses of questionable quality. I guess with my expanding waistline, I'd rather eat less, but hopefully see their best efforts (and admittedly, pay a little more in some cases) than to possibly waste the calories on mediocre efforts.

        Good luck though and I look forward to reading about your experience!

        1. I'm admittedly nervous for my first San Diego restaurant week, coming from Restaurant Weeks in NYC and Philly for the last few years. I have reservations at Indigo. Thoughts? Any other suggestions?

          1 Reply
          1. re: JJS360

            Indigo is my favorite of the Cohn restaurants, and I think they always have solid crowds that they are turning, so I might be wrong, but I'd be optimistic about their RW menu reflecting the quality of their normal operations. If you have the option and like veggie, the Good Things Growing is unique and fun.

          2. my thoughts are similar to $40 each for the places we want to try I don't feel it is much of a value considering the luck we have had in the past with food & service quality.
            I think we are skipping this round, maybe during the summer.

            10 Replies
            1. re: MrKrispy

              I'm glad someone else asked about this, I was just about to post the same question.

              As per pkt63 and MrKrispys thoughts, yes, I agree that you probably wont get the level of service as on a regular night (actually I know this personally, as I had a very subpar experience--service-wise at least--during the last restaurant week at a certain "high end" restaurant).

              However, I feel its worth the risk, especially for someone like me who cant afford the high end spots usually.

              Anyone have any recs for North County Coastal? I haven't been to Market yet, so would love to try that. Also, any thoughts on Arterra?

              Sbicca seems like a decent price at $30... but then again, I'd like to try somewhere new.

              1. re: tundrah

                Market is excellent, on and off RW. It is a "don't miss." We were at Arterra last year and it was pretty good (non-RW), although I felt like my entree was unbalanced with the acid vs other flavors and I like a fair amount of acid in my food. If you had to pick one over the other, it's Market, hands-down.

                Blanca is pretty solid as well, although I like Market better. Cavaillon is also very, very good.

                Sbicca, IMO, is very overrated and overpriced.

                1. re: daantaat

                  thanks daan. Market it is. And Blanca, ummm, yeah. I had my experience there.

                  1. re: tundrah

                    re: Blanca, eew, not good. I can understand the reluctance to return there...

                    1. re: daantaat

                      That's such a shame! My experience at Blanca was 100x better than at Market. Mostly the service was a lot better, but the food was more well-crafted and exciting at Blanca as well. I've been meaning to go back to Market, but it left a bad taste in our mouths (NPI) at the time so it's hard to get motivated.

                      1. re: pkt63

                        Ditto! We have had exactly the same experiences at both venues.

                        1. re: foodiechick

                          I was in charge of making reservations for a family occasion for 6 next weekend, with proximity to Solana Beach a priority. I have Market at 6 on Fri. and Blanca at 7:45 on Sat. We've been to Market before -- had their four-course prix-fixe meal and loved it. My understanding is that they are continuing the RW specials an additional week -- I don't know if they are serving their normal menu, but I believe so. Blanca will be new -- I'm already warned not to be thrown by its stripmall setting. My notes say that they are just offering the RW special menu.

                          Market had no availability for Saturday when I called a couple days ago. Pamplemousse had openings, but RW ends on Fri. Red Tracton's was nixed, unfortunately. AR Valentien had an opening on Fri. at 8:30, was serving the RW menu only, but that is a bit late for us. Can anyone give some feedback on possible alternatives of Kitchen 1540 or Firefly?

                        2. re: pkt63

                          Went to Blanca a couple of weeks ago with a bottle of 1999 Beaucastel which the hostess took. Had a drink at the bar with my wife. When we got to the table the bottle was waiting there...ALREADY OPENED. Then I ordered a split of champagne for the two of us, low and behold the bottle came to the table again ALREADY OPENED. Love the decor and a couple things on the menu were memorable but it's a shame that the service was not there. I don't think they know how to open a bottle of wine in front of a guest so I guess they dont.

                  2. re: tundrah

                    Same thinking as you guys. I mean really, can you come up with something other than short ribs for your $40 menu?! We are only trying one place this go around. It is one of the very high-end joints that I think has been complained about in the past, but the menu looks good, great value and we have had such good experiences there during non RW forays we haved decided to roll the dice. If it disappoints we will be calling "Uncle" on SDRW for good.

                    1. re: foodiechick

                      I'm totally missing what everyone sees in Market. I think that Arterra is a million times better. Last year's RW menu between Market and Arterra were so similar it's like they were doing it on purpose. I think Arterra did a better job. Blanca is boring they get rid of their regular menu and just do restaurant week menu. How many times can you have their short ribs? Unfortunately I don't think Blanca is going to be around much longer. They haven't made a menu change in so long. Other north county hopefuls would have to be Amaya in the Grand Del Mar or Kitchen 1540 in the new l'auberge hotel in Del mar. These would have to be my top two pics.