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Sep 1, 2005 04:51 PM

Visiting San Diego. Help needed.

  • s

Hello... We just decided to spend the upcoming long weekend in San Diego. Given the spur of the moment decision, we have had no time to look into reservations or research new and worthy restaurants. Any advice would be highly appreciated: We're looking for hot new places creating buzz among San Diego foodies and that might accept walk-ins for dinner. Bar seating OK. Will be staying in downtown and don't mind driving. Many thanks!

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  1. there have been many posts on new places lately--JSix, Spread and others. look for Gayla's reviews b/c she's the best reviewer! recommend doing a search on the board for more details b/c this is a frequently asked question.

    Less new but still good places are Region, Parallel 33, Arterra, AR Valentien, George's on the Cove, Tapenade, Roppongi's, Fresh, Cafe Chloe. Oceanaire in downtown is a chain but has gotten fairly consistently thumbs up on the board. If you need steak, LG's downtown gets thumbs up and Donovan's in UTC is excellent.

    4 Replies
    1. re: daantaat

      Hello daantaat and everyone!!

      would like to know if there are other seafood places we absolutely must check out while in SD for five days? so far, oceanaire and george's on the cove have gotten many mentions. we both love seafood and sushi/sashimi. i'm really into grilled crabcakes (very little filler), wild salmon, sushi/sashimi, cioppino, mussels and clams, Dungeness crabs, etc... Allergic to shrimp, but everything else ok.

      Thank you for your suggestions!!!

      1. re: starlightjulian

        SD has tons of sushi bars. The general board favorites are Sushi Ota near Pacific Beach, Sakura on Convoy (also known as Izakaya Sakura or Sakura 1 in the phone book), and Kaito in Encinitas. Searches on this board for those will give you a sense of people's feelings and the strengths and weaknesses (if any) of each.

        If your idea of sushi includes or focuses on exotic Americanized rolls, I very much like Sammy Sushi on Engineer. This is not to imply that Sammy's fish is not good, but just that the atmosphere is less Japanese and he is more willing to prepare things like spider rolls etc.


        1. re: starlightjulian

          FYI: the OP is almost 2 yrs old.

          anyways, Oceanaire and George's (fine dining room only) are both very good. Oceanaire's crabcakes are huge with little filler, so that should fit the bill.

          Jack's La Jolla has seafood on their menu and 3 separate dining areas and menus to boot. Their top level outdoor bar/dining area is good but gets loud from the live music. Fish is basic grilled filet w/ your choice of sauce, then you order your sides. Formal Dining Room downstairs has fancier preparations. Look at their menus to see which level looks good to you.

          Ed already named the best sushi places in town. Ota, Izakaya Sakura and Kaito are your more authentic sushi places. Sakura has a wonderful chirashi bowl that I drool over. If you're into hand rolls and more trendy menu/atmosphere, Sushi on the Rock in La Jolla and Carlsbad have an entire 2 pages devoted to hand rolls of all kinds. Cafe Japengo in UTC/La Jolla is trendy, Asian-fusion with a large, loud sushi bar.

          Cafe Chloe in downtown has a mussel entree, French bistro style with frites. I think the most recent incarnation is mussels steamed in white wine, tomatoes and something else.

          A lot of the top end places around have seafood on the menu and execute them well--Tapenade, AR Valentien, Market, Cavaillon to name a few.

          1. re: daantaat

            Mmmm... cannot wait for the gastronomic adventures to commence!!
            Thank you for your suggestions... keep 'em coming!!