How do these SD places rate, hounds?
- LBQT Jan 17, 2002 05:18 PM
These places were recommended to me for an upcoming trip to San Diego. I couldn't find any reference to them on this board, and trust this group's opinions more than Zagat. So, hounds, what's the story on these:
Rhinoceros on Orange in Coronado
El Agave in Old Town
Pamplemousse Grille in Solana Beach
Jasmine on Convoy
Original Pancake House
Fish Market on Harbor Dr.
El Agave is excellent. Pamplemousse is good, but very pricey...Tapenade in La Jolla or El Bizcocho (in the Rancho Bernardo Inn) are better choices at the high end. Fishmarket is ok, but Blue Point Coastal Cuisine would be a better choice for downtown seafood. The Pancake house is a chain, but a very good chain. Jasmine is excellent, but in sea of strip malls...if you are here for an extended stay great, but not a must if you are here for a limited time.
re: Bob Foster
I must concur -- the Original Pancake House is great. But yes, they have long lines (30-45 minutes, easy), particularly on Sunday when everyone's gone there straight from church.
If you're in the mood for Italian, try Caffé Bella Italia. There's one on Mercury, and one on Garnet (I think). The one on Mercury is only open for breakfast and lunch, though. Fantastic place -- I rarely get past the specials because they're all so good, and they make the best foccacia in San Diego.
Pamplemousse Grille is fine...but doesn't remotely compare to any of our continental-in-flavor LA restaurants (in food or bang per buck). I say stick with Tapenade or one of your other choices.
In my opinion:
El Agave is overrated for food--probably because everybody is drunk on the excellent tequila selections.
Pamplemousse used to be great, now is only good, and is expensive. I stick with the regular items because the specials have been roundly disappointing. Tapenade or George's or El Bizcochco are clearly better.
Pancake House is great--try the baked apple pancake and side of bacon.
Pamplemousse Grille in Solana Beach is super expensive, and while the food can be excellent, the service is spotty. It is a great big splurge place and worthy of a special occassion.
Fish Market is part of a chain. It's nothing special.
I would suggest Roy's LaJolla which is really in UTC area just east of I-5. They just celebrated their first year anniversary. I've been there at least once a week (if not more) since May and find it to be outstanding every time. They have yet to miss on a single course.
Tapenade is wonderful and the Prix Fixe menus are a deal. I've been to Nine-Ten also in La Jolla and felt it was good on some courses, iffy on others.
Parallel 33 in Hillcrest may be the most overlooked and under rated dining spot in town. Small, great service, dead on the mark cooking.
Jasmine is good, but a few blocks away is Emerald which has amazing Dim Sum on the weekend, if not every day.