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Dec 23, 2010 05:34 PM

Quiet-ish restaurant?

We come to San Diego a few times a year to visit my parents and have found over the last few years that my poor mom has become increasingly hard of hearing. She wears hearing aids, but still has a hard go of it, particularly in noisy environments. Loud restaurants, or even slightly noisy ones, have become a big challenge for her and her dining companions (i.e. me and our family). So, my Chowhound challenge: What restaurants can you suggest in the San Diego area that are reasonably quiet? They live in La Jolla, but we're open to suggestions anywhere in the San Diego area, and across the price spectrum. Suggestions for newer, interesting, creative places would be particularly appreciated.


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  1. Marine Room in LJ
    Whaling Bar at the La Valencia hotel or Med. Room
    Tapenade in LJ
    Nine-Ten in LJ
    Addisons at the Grand Del Mar resort
    AR Valentien's at the Lodge at Torrey Pines

    Finding quiet restaurants anywhere are a rare thing..have a great time with your parents!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Beach Chick

      BC, I like your list, but the last time I was at Nine-Ten (for dinner) is was very loud.

    2. I agree about the paucity of restaurants that allow intimate conversation. It's clear most places design their establishments with enjoying the company of others as the lowest priority. The highest being, WOW factor, cuteness in their design arrogance and speed with which tables are turned the patrons rushed to stop the noise with which they're inflicted.

      Good news is that I suspect this is a phase like potty training where decent places will eventually learn WE DON"T LIKE IT, and will seek out places that welcome our business and encourage us to patronize their establishments.

      In the meantime, keep your cute cement floors, your decor suggesting an interruption in demolition (ooo! it has the rustic "unfinished look!) your loud music and your chatty servers.

      Whew. Can you tell I'm tired of these places?

      One place I recently had an excellent and quiet meal is Red Velvet Wine Bar. Quite lovely, fantastic food and wine.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Fake Name

        The science on this is interesting and basically its 'acoustic stimulation' loud noise, makes you drink more, eat faster and leave quickly as a patron.
        Quiet and conversation is a lost art..

        1. re: Beach Chick


          Drink more to kill the pain of all the noise.
          Eat more because there's nothing else to do- can't converse.
          Eat faster because you want it to end as quickly as possible.

          Wise up, restauranteurs, this fad will not last long. Give us rooms we can enjoy- the disco/diner is getting tiresome.

      2. I fully understand, my FIL wears hearing aids and loud noises can sound like being in a 'symphony hall' in the first row. I'd suggest Donovan's in LJ, you can ask the manager for a table in one of their smaller rooms.

        1. Thanks for the suggestions, Beach Chick. Several of those are new to me (I moved out of town over 10 years ago). We will definitely check some of them out next time we're in town. Any other suggestions anyone?

          1. the downstairs dining room at George's California Modern is usually pretty quiet.

            Georges California Modern
            1250 Prospect Street, La Jolla, CA 92037