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Aug 1, 2009 09:10 AM

San Diego - Imperial Beach area

Coming to SD - Imperial Beach , Thanksgiving week. Will have a car. 4 adults and a 6 month old baby.Will eat out and cook. Mostly fish and veg. eaters. Looking for very good, not too formal restaurants and farmers' markets.
Thank you for any help.

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  1. HI, buenosaires

    I am hoping that others with more recent experience will chime in as well.

    We like Meijo Sushi on Palm, we have been going there for maybe nine years since they opened. It's our go-to dinner break on the way back from OC and LA. trips to home forty miles south.

    They are very family friendly. The regular customer base in Imperial Beach seems to be mostly composed of locals, including families from the nearby military base.

    Meijo serves solid, familiar American-influenced Japanese food. There is a blackboard with four or five specials. The cooked items (Teriyaki and Tempura, etc.) are very satiffying, plus there is reliably good, not exotic or intimidating, sushi, with a wide selection of rolls.

    Also, I suggest that you check out the online media sources, such as the San Diego Reader, and the San Diego Union Tribune,

    And, the City of Imperial Beach has a website that promotes local businesses, but I don't have the link handy.

    Hope that you and your family have a wonderful visit!

    1. If you're going to IB, and you're gonna cook some nights, then you're gonna need some good San Diego drink to go with it.

      Luckily, Alpine Beer Company has a bottle account at:

      South Bay Drug and Liquor
      779 Palm Ave. Imperial Beach, CA 91932

      The place is as bizarre as sh*t, since it's a pharmacy/drug store/liquor store in the middle of a weird strip mall. But, that being said, I would KILL to have bottled Alpine beer available within a 15 mile distance from my house (which I don't, and I live 2 miles from downtown).

      Chalk it up to Alpine Pat's crazy marketing plan to give a bottle account to that part of the county. But, believe me, it's worth it to go in and snag some 22 oz bottles of Pure Hoppiness and McIlhenney's Red.

      (You may want to call ahead and make sure they have bottles in stock, just in case they are fresh out.)

      1 Reply
      1. re: cookieshoes

        Interestingly enough, there was an article in the UT Business Section on Friday about South Bay Drug & Liquor. I'm sort of shocked that Peter Rowe didn't write the article, but I bet he suggested it. :)

        South Bay Drugs
        779 Palm Ave, Imperial Beach, CA

      2. Not in IB itself but close enough in Chula Vista that I highly recommend the following Mexican restaurants:
        Aqui es Texcoco - try the Flautas de barbacoa (lamb), quesadilla con huitlacoche (corn), or especially the quesadilla con flor de calabaza (squash blossoms), tacos de cabeza (lamb head)
        Mariscos Godoy - Mexican seafood so it should fit your fish request. try the Zarandeado, ceviche, clam culichi, peppered shrimp, pulpo (octopus)
        Tacos el Paisa - If you decide to eat pork/beef this is the spot for great Mexican street food. Adobada/Al Pastor tacos, cabeza tacos, carne asada tacos, lengua tacos

        1. If you are staying in IB and do not plan on venturing out of the area to eat here are my suggestions:

          The Tin Fish at the end of the IB Pier, great view especially at sunset, tacos or a grilled seafood plate will be your best bet.

          Aroma Thai go here if you're looking for Thai food, to me it's like food court Thai but most of those who live in the area think it's great.

          Cow A Bunga Micro Ice Creamery has some great ice cream.

          Jalisco's Cafe, it looks a little scary from the outside but it's has some great Mexican food, I especially enjoy breakfast here, beans and rice might be you're only options if you go for lunch or dinner but not sure.

          I B Forum, they have great lobster taco's as well as mahi mahi and shrimp tacos.

          Marco's Restaurant is a family run Italian place that's been in IB forever, if you're looking for Italian go here, the food can be hit or miss but good for groups and kids and when they hit it the food is fantastic, gnocchi or carbonara are good bets.

          Beach Club Grille is Greek and my parents love this place, I on the other hand am not a big fan of Greek food but I think its ok.

          Big Kahuna's for Hawaiian food, my brother and his family state this is the best Hawaiian food around, but note they do not leave IB to go out to eat very often, I have actually enjoyed my meals here, their Saimin is good on a cold day.

          Rodrigo's Mexican, is in the same strip mall as Big Kahuna's and is where I now go for my Mexican fix when I'm in IB; everything is always fresh and tasty.

          Stardust Donut Shop if you like fresh donuts or cinnamon rolls, they have random hours but if like donuts or cinnamon rolls it is worth checking out.

          Have fun and good luck!

          4 Replies
          1. re: alki_chick

            Has anybody ever tried the MZM Seafood Bistro in Imperial Beach ? I read somewhere years ago that it is quite good.

            1. re: honkman

              Never heard of MZM Seafood Bistro; when I'm back in the area in October I'll look for it and try to check it out.

              1. re: honkman

                Driving around through IB a couple weeks ago, I passed MZM. I remember reading something about them a looong time ago, that they are good.
                Walking in, and looking around is as far as I've gone though.

              2. re: alki_chick

                Jalisco's Cafe rocks..their tamales are so good.
                Marco's is another great place but haven't been there in years..good to know its still around.

              3. When I was driving around in IB, I was looking for the Olive Oil Sandwich Shop, but didn't find it.