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San Diego Magazine names their Top Ten San Diego Restaurants of 2012.

Here they are:

1. Sushi Shirahama
2. Prepkitchen
3. Table 926
4. TJ Oyster Bar
5. Brooklyn Girl
6. Solace & The Moonlight Lounge
7. Que Huong
8. Vivace @ Park Hyatt
9. Haggo’s Organic Taco
10. Carnitas’ Snack Shack

Can't believe I've never made it to Haggo's.

What were your top restaurant experiences of 2012? Mine best meal experiences this year were (in no particular order):

Jair Tellez meal at "El Take It Easy"
Starlite Lounge
Collaboration Kitchen (I know not really a resto)
Wine Vault
AR Valentien
Pacifica Del Mar
Flavor Del Mar
Cafe Chloe
Prep Kitchen
Barrel Room
Smoking Goat
Sushi Ota (at the sushi bar)

Burlap was one of my most disappointing meals of 2012 and Cowboy Star I thought was good but overpriced.

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  1. My best meals in 2012 were (alas) south of the Border

    Erizo in TJ
    A luncheon in August at Mision 19
    Drew Deckman's summer vinyard pop-up at Mogor/Baden

    4 Replies
    1. re: DiningDiva

      How about SD since we're on an SD board!

      1. re: cstr

        Most of my serious eating was done SOB this year

      2. re: DiningDiva

        Have you had a chance to check out La Caza Club?...hearing a lot of good things about that place.

        1. re: El Chevere

          It's on my list. I, too, am hearing good things and a chef acquaintance cooked there for the recent Baja Culinary Fest and had positive things to say about it.

          Have you?

          Also planning to check out El Lugar de Nos in Tecate

      3. Forgot to add Paon in Carlsbad to my list. Superp food and service.

        1. I'll report back tomorrow, I'm going to Sky Room :)

          3 Replies
          1. re: Rodzilla

            Can't wait to hear about Luke Johnson's final offerings. We are going to try Paul McCabe's first big dinner at La V on Christmas Eve. Also, kind of a last supper for us as we will be enjoying Chef McCabe's pre-fix menu in The Whaling Bar before it closes forever on January 12th.

            1. re: foodiechick

              So many wonderful years on Christmas Eve at the Whaling Bar and Manny at the helm.
              It was tradition for us locals to at least have one drink and see everyone at the bar and then hold court in one of the booths, eating and drinking till late and then singing Xmas songs all the way home in the village.
              Great memories..will you have a toast for me since I can't be there.
              Thanks Chica!

            2. re: Rodzilla

              Looking forward to your report, R. We have reservations for the 29th. Tried it 2 months ago, and it was good enough to deserve a last encore!

            3. Can't wait to try Haggo's Tacos..sounds like my kind of place!

              2 Replies
                1. re: cstr

                  Tofu taco...yuk!
                  The crumbles that I make taste just like ground beef but better and I do a slightly crunchy taco with extra sharp cheese, avocado, sour cream, jalapenos and a hot hot salsa..no pico de gallo crap.

                  Here is the menu for Haggo's..pricey and no 'Crumbles'..what's up with that?


              1. My top experiences were anywhere that didn't imprison live trees or have 8 ft portraits of Barbara Streisand. Anywhere the young male waitstaff did not call me or my friends, "hon." Anywhere a Seasoned Chef DID the cooking, called the shots, and managed the kitchen like a pro. Anyplace that didn't have a crab cake or beet salad on the menu.

                3 Replies
                1. re: pickypicky

                  Okay, so you had NO top/good experiences in SD?

                  1. re: RhonelyInsanediego

                    Au contraire. Read carefully. (Although the crabcake/beet salad narrows it down alot.)

                    1. re: pickypicky

                      You finally made it to Super Sergio's?

                2. My top 5 for this year:

                  1) Every meal we had at Whisknladle, especially those at the bar- the cocktail service so nicely matches the dinner service. I know some folks say this place is getting tired, but I really dig it still.

                  2) Finally made it to Kaito this year- among the best sushi I've ever had in an unassuming environment.

                  3) Bull Taco on new years- yah the food was just ok, kinda good, but really new years on a nice day and getting to walk down to the beach with my wife- that's awesome

                  4) Tabl3 at George's- nuff said.

                  5) Sea Rocket Bistro- really just for one item- the sea urchin. Holy hell this was good.

                  Bottom 3 for this year:

                  1) Burlap- hands down the worst meal I've had in a long time at this price point

                  2) Addison- ugh. San Diego deserves better if they're going to do fine dining. This place couldn't compete in any other major city

                  3) El Take It Easy - El take It The Heck Out Of Here

                  1. TJ Oyster Bar deserves a shot but they are always packed.
                    Always scrumptious.

                    Fig Tree Cafe in Hillcrest, assorted small plates with my vegetarian daughter.

                    Monk fish at French Gourmet

                    super disappointed with Brooklyn Girl so went back a 2nd time. Nay.

                    1. 1. Private wedding reception at Georges Modern with a cake from Dbar

                      2.TBL3 at Georges

                      3. Delicias with McCabe and Molina cooking

                      4. Urban Solace 5 year reunion celebration - donation based, apps with some of the best bites of the year.

                      5. Visits to Oscars Mexican Seafood never disappoint and they remain the reigning champion of fish tacos.

                      * Private preview dinner from a local gourmet food shop owner (adding it because everything is available in the shop)

                      *Nigiri and Sashimi at Ogawashi the majority weren't under the typical diners circumstances. That said, I don't expect food quality to suffer.

                      * All of the desserts from Jeff Bonilla at the Evolve Cuisine Pop Ups. Wherever he ends up..I'm going.

                      From Pittsburgh

                      Justin Severino's CURE
                      Brian Pekarcik's SPOON (formerly of Bertrand and Mister A)

                      I may compile a year end most memorable dishes on my site. Thanks for the idea Rhonely!

                      1. Top 3 (no order)
                        - October Omakase at Akinori (which included matsutake mushrooms)
                        - TBL3 in November
                        - Evolve cuisine final event
                        (I also enjoyed Mision 19, but I guess that's not in SD)

                        Bottom 3:
                        - Collaboration Kitchen - doing it for charity is no excuse to mess up nice seafood that badly, especially if there's no 501 c3 forms given as part of the payment process
                        - Mia Francesca - FoH killed my appetite
                        - Evolve Cuisine American Classics - minor "scandal" involving a punctured sous vide bag