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Feb 20, 2004 07:54 PM

Carlsbad Query

  • g

Any favorites? Good mexican? Good Chinese?

I'll be there tomorrow for the concert in celebration of Charles Darwin's birthday, and I might as well make it a full day in town.

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  1. Foodwise, it's a shallow gene pool here, with a couple of notable exceptions. Chinese: the best is Golden Taipei on Marron Rd. & Jefferson, between the Souplantation and Greek Corner Cafe. Fresh, friendly, clean and pleasant surroundings. They'll make anything on the menu to your order; add, subtract ingredients, it's up to you. Beer & wine available. The Lotus Thai Bistro on Carlsbad Village Drive and Pico is excellent. Jay's Gourmet Italian Seafood at Carlsbad Village Dr. and Carlsbad Boulevard is very good. Shrimp Fra Diavolo, Minestrone soup, salad with creamy Italian dressing, small pizzas, more fish dishes. A good place, small and noisy. Down I-5 and Palomar Airport RD. is King's Seafood. Big, busy and a big menu. Excellent seafood and service. NO good Mexican places in Carlsbad! Fidel's is about the worst,though others are competing for the title.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Local Boy

      I hope this isn't too late:

      The Armenian Cafe
      3126 Carlsbad Blvd.


      Lots of the usual middle eastern stuff which we love, which we order and which is delicious here. I'm not sure what makes it uniquely Armenian,if anything. Good lamb. I seem to remember the waiter talking up interesting stuff for breakfast; if this too late for Sat, maybe tomorrow morning. It is located about a block south of Carlsbad Village Drive on the east side of 101. If you eat here, let us know what you thought.

    2. Gee, didn't know Carlsbad did anything for Charles Darwin's birthday. Hmmmm. Anyway, I agree that the Armenian cafe is very good. Not as authentic as some, but I'm Armenian so I'm a snob with Armenian food. For Chinese, Chin's is great -- it is in the Village on one of the little east-west streets between Grand Avenue and Carlsbad Village Drive. I like Lotus Thai too. Caldo Pomodoro is an excellent Italian Restaurant on Grand Avenue and State Street. As far as Mexican, there is a little known place with not much ambiance, but with great food, called Pollos Maria. It is east of Carlsbad Village Drive on Harding Street. I think it mostly has outdoor seating though.

      1. Tip Top Meats
        OPEN DAILY:
        6:00 AM TO 8:00 PM
        6118 PASEO DEL NORTE
        CARLSBAD, CA 92009
        (760) 438-2620
        FAX (760) 438-3184

        About celebrating Darwin:
        "12 February 1809
        Charles Robert Darwin was born at The Mount in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England. Thousands of miles away across the Atlantic ocean, Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States, was also born on this same exact day."


        6 Replies
        1. re: kc girl

          Good God in Heaven, don't recommend Tip Top Meats to anyone! As I have read here before, and wholeheartedly agree, it is a terrible, simply terrible excuse for a "restaurant." Go there for breakfast if you want artery-clogging fare, but stay away at lunch or dinner!It's no wonder the Germans lost the war, if this joint is any indication of "quality." This place should be eliminated from further discussion, except to dissuade people from trying it! I have a suggestion: In Del Mar, Milton's Deli. Everything that Tip Top isn't!

          1. re: Irv Short

            Well, if anything proves there is no arguing taste, it is this board. First of all, I must defend Tip Top, not as a restaurant, but as a fine butcher and specialty food joint. Moreoever, breakfasts are in fact great and the cheap German blue plate specials (rouladen, schnitzel) are just fine.

            Milton's, the other hand, it the most watered down, weak sister, sorry excuse for a deli I have ever encountered. The first clue is that the joint is almost compeltely odorless - no tange of pickles and pastrami, no scent of warm buttery pastry baked goods. I regularly commute to LA for deli and would drive two hours just fro a WHIFF of Canter's. I do not know how Milton's stays in business unless it is the white bread, Coffee shop Del Mar crowd.

            1. re: Junoesq

              Right on Irv. I thought I was the only one that thought Miltons was a sad over priced excuse for a deli. I am not from N.Y. but L.A.. Art's. Canter's, Nate N Al's, even Junior's make Milton's look like a nondeli. If you want deli, go to D.Z. Akins or in No. Co. Hershel's is a much better bet than Milton's. I also have a soft spot for Tip Top. My G.M. lived 3 blocks from Tip Top origional location in Glendale. I have never eaten there, but I use the meat market often. The butchers know their stuff, I have never had a bad piece of meat. This is the only place that I have found that has good Brats or Kelbasa made fresh not in a factory in Wisconson.

              1. re: littlestevie

                I, too, have to defend Tip Top Meats. Every time I go to Carlsbad, which is about every 3 - 4 weeks, I eat there. I go to the butcher's counter, order a HUGE T-Bone and have them cook it for my lunch. Always excellent and their other food specials are tasty, too.
                I have found out that you DO NOT want to order a glass of beer unless you want to pay about $3.50 for an 8 ounce glass that isn't very cold.

                1. re: Dave Hicks
                  Gunter Antmann

                  My experience at Tip Top meats was not what I call pleasant. The dinner is what we had. Have not been there for the "large" breakfasts people had recommended. Dinner included a poor cut of meat, a salad that was prepared earlier in the day--or week--, served in a paper bowl with cellophane over the top and consisted of shredded carrot and miscelllaneos bits of lettuce. The crowning glory of this salad was a plasticine envelope of dressing! Red cabbage, normally af avorite of mine, was overly vinegar-laced and of such a quantity that it could have served a family of six. The price was low. At least the manangement realizes the chicanery in charging a lot for this less than adequate fare. I would not return.

              2. re: Junoesq
                Malcolm McCassy

                RE: "junoesque" (if that isn't a misnomer, what is?) and the report on milton's. You're full of shit.

          2. We drive over 20 miles to have the both the hunan scallops and the eggplant at the Overseas Restaurant at 2820 Roosevelt just south of the post office. (two blocks north of Carlsbad Village Drive) I think it's the best Chinese food I've had since I lived in San Francisco.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Bob Foster
              torta basilica

              OMG, I read this quickly & thought you wrote 'human scallops...' - think it's time to call it a night!

              1. re: Bob Foster

                Overseas is the most overlooked quality Chinese restaurant that i know of. Amazing how many people go to Chins just down the street when they could be eating far superior food at Overseas.

                Milton's, well what other choice is there in N.COunty? D.Z. Akins = way over rated! They wouldn't last a week in L.A..

                Whoops i just realized the original post was way back, my bad.

              2. Bumping the thread to see if we can resurrect this thread active. Moved from Encinitas to Carlsbad a year ago. Still haven't conquered all the eateries so I am interested to hear from all of you.

                Really have not had good Chinese in a while and would like your input especially on that.

                Really have not found good taqueria so I head down to Leucadia and Encinitas. Who makes a decent bean and cheese burrito in Carlsbad? Good carnitas?

                Big fan of Pelly's Fish Market, Tip-Top for meat, and the little market next door for fresh veggies. Sunday Champaign brunch @ Bellefleur has been great way to entertain us. Not a big buffet fan but Bellefleur seems to do a great job and you can’t beat 20 bucks for a Champaign brunch.

                2 Replies
                  1. re: WasabiBratwurst

                    Try Los Tacos in Oceanside next to the Einsteins off Jefferson and the 78. Very good authentic tacos and the place is CLEAN. The al pastor is very tasty. Like I said above and in numerous other posts, Overseas in the Carlsbad village is good. My New York friends claim it is very New York Chinese.

                    I hate to say it but I proudly do, Chipotle for carnitas, they use niman ranch pork not mystery pigs.

                    By the way, Pellys will cook your fish to temp, i.e. medium rare, seared ahi....mmmmm mmmm.