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Sep 9, 2011 09:41 AM

Montreal foodie looking for reco's in San Diego

Will be travelling from Seattle to San Diego in September. Looking for reccomendations what to eat in San Diego.
Originally from Europe, I've travelled all around Europe so I am quite accustomed to European cuisine and of course Montreal has French bistro cuisine down.

I am looking for moderately priced options and an occasional splurge for both breakfast/lunch/dinner. I like locally sourced foods, places with their own identity, have a weakness for good beer (being Belgian), mixology oriented bars and all types of ethnic cuisines.

Montreal is not really known for their outstanding seafood, so I hope to get my fair share on the West Coast.
Will be staying in the Little Italy area. Planning to visit the Stone Brewing Company on my way to San Diego.

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  1. San Diego, is not really known for its seafood, save the fish taco. I'd look at past threads about fish taco joints to decide which one to try. My personal favorite is brigatine in del mar. As far as the immediate area where you are staying (little italy), there are probably 2 italian places worth going to, bencotto, and buon apetito. If you are a seasoned european traveler and have been to italy, these places may not be anything new for you. Avoid the rest of the tourist traps in little italy. There is an extraordinary deserts location also near little italy that is worth checking out. As far as locally sourced, I'd try whisk n ladle in la jolla. Very nice ambiance and excellent food. Depending on when you come to san diego, you may overlap with restaurant week which offers nice discounts, also something you may want to consider.

    1. Your weakness for good beer will definitely be indulged in SD! Try to time your visit to Stone so that you can visit the tasting room at The Lost Abbey in San Marcos. They make many Belgian-inspired beers that are quite good.

      Churchills Pub in San Marcos also tends to have an outstanding tap selection and is having their "sour fest" on 9/17 which should have many hard to find sour beers. That is also Zwanze Day at Stone, where they will be tapping the 2011 Cantillon Zwanze. The Zwanze Day event at Stone is a ticketed event but I do not think that Churchills is ticketed.

      For seafood, search the board for Mariscos Germain and Mariscos Godoy which are food trucks/restaurants that specialize in Mexican-style seafood.

      Mariscos Godoy
      651 Palomar St 25A, Chula Vista, CA

      The Lost Abbey
      155 Mata Way Suite 104, San Marcos, CA

      1. I would hit the 30th Street Corridor. Jay Porter of the Linkery (one of the restaurants you should check out) has put up a pretty good compilation at - Given your desire for good seafood, check out the Sea Rocket Bistro, which has apparently improved by leaps and bounds since they hired their new chef. Or, check out the various Mariscos German taco trucks (seriously). Lastly, you will find good beer everywhere, or almost everywhere - we're not Brussels by any stretch, but San Diego is a very good beer town.

        3794 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104

        Mariscos German
        3515 University Ave, San Diego, CA 92104

        Sea Rocket Bistro
        3382 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104

        1. North Park is a good place to go, but I am not sure the Linkery is at the same level as Urban Solace, Jayne's Gastropub or The Smoking Goat for food and Toronado for beer.

          I would look at Super Cocina for lunch or an early dinner. It is some of the best Mexican food in San Diego, but it is an absolute hole in the wall.

          In University Heights on Park Ave there is a good place for beer called Small Bites and some interesting places to get like El Zarape, Soltan Banoo and Muzita Abyssinian Bistro.

          In Little Italy there is a new Italian small plates restaurant called Davanti Enoteca that is pretty good. There are several other decent places in Little Italy, none really stand out. Bencotto has a good reputation, but I find it no better than three or four comparable places in Little Italy. I find Arrivederci Italian Restaurant in Hillcrest better than anything in Little Italy.

          Soltan Banoo
          4645 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92116

          Urban Solace Restaurant
          3823 30th Street, San Diego, CA 92104

          Super Cocina
          3627 University Ave., San Diego, CA 92104

          Muzita Abyssinian Bistro
          4651 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92116

          El Zarape Restaurant
          3201 Adams Ave, San Diego, CA

          1 Reply
          1. re: scottca075

            Don't forget Sea Rocket Bistro.

            With their new chef they have moved up to the front of the pack for that neighborhood, IMO.

            Sea Rocket Bistro
            3382 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104

          2. Two excellent fish places in SD. The FIshery for lunch or dinner. El Pescador for terrific fish sandwiches. Ask at both places what's fresh off the boat and local.

            El Pescador Fish Market
            627 Pearl St, San Diego, CA 92037

            5040 Cass Street, San Diego, CA 92109