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Jul 25, 2011 08:26 PM

Dinner for 9 Near Convention Center

Heading to San Diego for a convention next week. I am putting together a dinner for 9 ladies. Most have never met so I would like a place that has wide appeal to most people (i.e. though I love Indian I have no idea if all 9 will so I would rather skip it for this dinner).

Other must haves are:
- walking distance to convention center (short if possible)
- takes reservations
- Not super expensive (again...I don't know everyone's financial situation).

I know, I know....very open ended but please help a Calgary Chowhounder out!

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Roy's Hawaiian restaurant is next door to the SD Convention center and might work for you..
    Jsix at the Hotel Solamar is wonderful and a short walk.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Beach Chick

      Is Roy's good? My friend suggested that as well but I must admit that I have a huge bias against hotel restaurants. I looked at Jsix & I definitely want to go there before I leave. Not sure it has enough variety & price points for our group.

      1. re: Merry113

        JSix might be the best chance for really good food close to CC (and also in SD in general). I haven't tried this Roys but other Roys so far were underwhelming for the price. Most other options close to CC with enough room for your party will have mediocre food.

        ETA, Another possibility could be to contact Cafe Chloe and ask them if you could make a reservation for their backroom

        1. re: Merry113

          I go to the Roy's in the islands and the food is quite good but to be honest, I have not been to the SD location in quite awhile..just thought being from Canada, it would be nice to have a Hawaiian theme and the price point is decent and next to the CC.

          Jsix at the Hotel Solamar is excellent and it's a 'hotel restaurant' so your bias against hotel restaurants might have to be challenged..

          Nothing like Indian along the lines of Vij's in Vancouver, BC..don't even try here.

          1. re: Merry113

            Roy's is not really a "hotel" restaurant. It's the chain that Roy Yamaguchi built in the 80-90's that focus on Pacific Rim/Asian fusion cusine. Roy's is pretty good and will be better than most of the Gaslamp Quarter.

            Cafe Chloe is awesome, but a walk from the Convention Center.

            Cafe Chloe
            721 9th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

        2. I would consider Roy's too, it isn't what I would call a hotel restaurant, it just happens to lease the space from the Marriott. I think their food is quite good, but not inexpensive. Jsix is good, but I think they have fallen off. BICE - San Diego is quite good. Oceanaire is an option for seafood as is Donovan's on Fifth. McCormick & Schmick's in the Omni is quite good for groups, I've done a number of business functions there and they are moderately priced.

          Lou & Mickey's is the first restaurant you come to in the Gaslamp from the CC and I have also done a number of business functions there too. Look at El Virtal Restaurant as well.

          San DIego, CA, San DIego, CA

          Lou & Mickey's
          224 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

          1 Reply
          1. re: scottca075

            "Jsix is good, but I think they have fallen off." - We just had their 5-course tasting menu last week - 10 excellent dishes. Perhaps not as playful and unusal as higher-end restaurants like Blanca and Kitchen 1540 but together with Cafe Chloe the best mid-price/bistro-style restaurant in SD. Very focused on fresh local ingredients and Chef Graves has a great talent in amplyfing the natural flavors of his key ingredients in each dish.

            Cafe Chloe
            721 9th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

          2. Booked at Cafe Chloe! Thanks for your help.

            Cafe Chloe
            721 9th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

            5 Replies
            1. re: Merry113

              Wear comfortable shoes since its about 8-10 city blocks from the CC..
              price point adds up quick for dinner and the chairs are some of the worst I've ever sat in, besides, that, I do like Cafe Chloe...prefer breakfast/lunch.

              1. re: Beach Chick

                But the backroom is different as it has also soft benches and personally I think dinner is where Cafe Chloe shines.

                1. re: honkman

                  I didn't specify the backroom but I now have 10 ppl. Will they put me there automatically? I decided agains Roy's because it's a chain and I figure that people will likely go there if they decide to leave the hotel for a spur of the moment dinner since it's so close.

                  The price point looks comperable to other places in this area. Everyone will be responsible for their own meal so they have the opportunity to buy as much or as little as they can afford. What I didn't want to do is pick a cheaper place and have horrible food.

                  Regardless, breakfast/lunch is not available b/c we are at a conference so it was dinner or nothing. I know that every place has plusses and minuses. I'm just trying for one with more pluses than minuses.

                  1. re: Merry113

                    I can't really imagine where else they could put you than the backroom. They have one big table in the restaurant itself but it could seat only 5 people.

                  2. re: honkman

                    Never had dinner in the backroom and I've peeked in...bummed I wasn't sitting in the backroom..who doesn't love sitting in the 'backroom'..
                    Loved to see Cafe Chloe do banquettes throughout..

              2. The more I think about 10 people..schlepping 8-10 CITY blocks, when Jsix has one hell of a happy hour that has great drinks and food and it's a block away..
                Call ahead for them to set up a table for you..


                5 Replies
                1. re: Beach Chick

                  I passed Jsix by one of the ladies & she thought it was too expensive for the group. There isn't a big selection of food either. I'm happy with my choice. Plus there's always the option to cab it one or both ways.

                  Also, this is on a Saturday night. All restaurants I looked at only have happy hour during the week. Also OpenTable showed that they only had one reservation at 6 which is too early.

                  Really...we'll be fine.

                  1. re: Merry113

                    Just that you know - The prices at Cafe Chloe are pretty much the same as JSix perhaps $1-2 less for some entrees. The online menu at Cafe Chloe isn't always updated

                    1. re: honkman

                      Ignorance is bliss on that item. I did notice that there was a really old date on their menu. Oy. Maybe I should see if they can send me one. It did look like they had more options though. Ugh. Why do I always volunteer to set these things up? #facepalm

                    2. re: Merry113

                      You have a reservation at Chloe for a Saturday night. Keep it.

                      People can order appetizers as their meal if they feel things are expensive. There are no rules. They will enjoy the food.

                      The walk will be interesting for all of you. You will be walking slightly uphill to get there, and slightly downhill to get back to the hotel. Good exercise. Wear flat shoes. It is the downtown area of the 6th largest city in the US and there are many interesting things to see.

                      1. re: Cathy

                        Thank you! That is one of the reasons I was okay with the walk. We are going to be cooped up in the convention center all day so I seeing a bit of the city might be nice. Also there are 10 of us so no one would be paying the full price of a cab.