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Any must try places for a good meal or happy hour fun near Little Italy??

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We will be staying near Little Italy area around the Pacific Highway. Little Italy is suppose to be within walking distance so I thought I would see if any suggestions here first.

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  1. I had a very, very good lunch at Trattoria Fantastica last week. My friends had their smoked chicken gnocchi and homemade ravioli -- both excellent. Their fried calamari was light and crisp and delicious. I had the imbottita -- slices of eggplant stuffed with bucatini pasta in pesto sauce, then all topped with a light marinara. Terrific! They have gelato in the case and pretty decent sfogliatelle and some other tasty-looking pastries that I did not get around to trying, at the attached Cafe Zucchero.

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    Trattoria Fantastica
    1735 India Street, San Diego, CA 92101

    1. Pete's Quality Meat for sandwiches and Pappalecco for Gelato. The Little Italy Mercado on Sat AM is also very fun.

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      Pete's Quality Meat
      1742 1 2 India St, San Diego, CA

      Pappalecco
      1602 State St, San Diego, CA 92101

      1. Best moves in Little Italy:

        Puerto La Boca - Argentinian/Italian, which really makes it Argentinian. Really good happy hour prices now

        Mona Lisa Deli - Sandwiches

        Petes Meats - Sandwiches

        Buon Appetito - Italian

        Assenti Pasta - Fresh Pasta

        Landini's - Pizza By the slice

        Burger Lounge - Burgers

        Little Italy Farmers Market - Everything

        Tango Wine - Wine tasting

        El Camino - Nightlife

        Pappalecco - Gelato and coffee

        Sogno Di Vino - Glass of Red

        Santanas - food at 3 am to 6 am

        Po Pazzo - smooth cocktail

        3 Replies
        1. re: stevewag23

          Second Buon Appetito. There's a good wine bar connected to it also, I think Sogno Di Vino. You can go down a few streets to Extraordinary Desserts afterwards.

          1. re: stevewag23

            I should add:

            Anthology for music.

            1. re: stevewag23

              Wonderful list! Thank you!

            2. We really like Enoteca Style, at the south end of Little Italy on India St. Wednesday nights they have a 1/2 price bottle deal, which makes the already reasonable wine prices a steal. Food is pretty good, too. Cheese plates are tasty, and the salads are very good. We like the pear and spinach salad, it has a really mustardy vinaigrette. Atmosphere can be a little yuppified, but I do like their wine choices, lots of good, food-friendly options.

              12 Replies
              1. re: Josh

                I like that place too. Although, agreed on the yuppification of the spot.

                Good spot to get a glass of red before going to hear some music at Anthology.

                I have always had that place on my death watch, because of location.

                How is the spot on Wed nights? Decent crowd?

                1. re: stevewag23

                  Only been once so far (on Wed), but it was busy. I was pretty impressed with their selection of white wines. German riesling and Portuguese vinho verde on the same list is pretty rare.

                  1. re: Josh

                    Good tip. I would like to try those Portuguese whites.

                2. re: Josh

                  Josh, I don't know how you feel about their beer selection but I believe that Thursday night is their beer night and those go half off I believe all night. In response to how busy it is, I go quite often and it is usually at least half full. They also do a pretty decent take out business at both lunch and dinner due to the condos upstairs.

                  1. re: jturtle

                    Are you referring to a disco or dance place when you talk about music and good wines to enjoy there??

                    1. re: jturtle

                      Yeah, their beer list is really nice too. Obviously they know what they're doing. I'm definitely a fan.

                      1. re: Josh

                        we are a early 40ish couple so would like to go out on the town after a bite to eat.. Is there a link here for nightlife??? not top discos but more people watching listen to music fun atmosphere. good food niblies and drink specials. could be around little italy or short cabbie away.. Hubby likes good beer~

                        1. re: palmtree38

                          What type of music? The Casbah, one of San Diego's best music venues (IMO) is nearby.

                          1. re: DougOLis

                            I don't think the Casbah has "niblies". Sounds like they're looking for some Gaslampery.

                            1. re: Josh

                              ahh, it appears I conveniently ignored that part of the question

                          2. re: palmtree38

                            http://www.anthologysd.com/index.html

                            The most classy place in san diego to hear music.

                          3. re: Josh

                            Any place one can enjoy Young's double Chocolate stout or a Delerium Tremens is ok in my book. I'd say a few drinks at enoteca then a good show at Anthology is a great night for me.

                      2. Croce's in the Gaslamp is another option..
                        Ingrid Croce is the wife of the late Jim Croce.
                        They have some great jazz bands and decent food...more emphasis on the good jazz.
                        Anthology is a great venue..did they get a new chef?
                        Casbah...classic!

                        www.croces.com

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: Beach Chick

                          Hey Beachie!
                          Casbah classic?? maybe we can do this... I just hate the faux people attitude places.. Down to earth fun crowd is what we like.
                          We can go for nibblies first and then hit one of these..
                          thanks for the suggestions!!

                          Do they ever have chowhound get togethers??? Meaning regulars that go to a restaurant and meet up and give it a good vote and meet the others they chat with on the board?

                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            This Anthology looks amazing! My spouse just lovesssssssss Blues and we both like jazz as well. Hopefully when we come they will have something up this alley.. Do you go and have food here and then watch the show from your table??

                            thanks everyone got some good rec's

                            1. re: palmtree38

                              If he's a blues fan, you might enjoy Patrick's II in the Gaslamp Quarter. It's more of a party-type atmosphere. Anthology is a place to dress up - it's a high-end jazz and supper club. Anthology is a good place to see jazz, the acoustics are great.

                              1. re: Josh

                                Great ! Thanks Josh your soooo full of information... I just love this board