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Date Night Suggestion - Central San Diego

Folks, we have a rare opportunity for a date night tonight. We'd like to stay somewhere in central SD (North/South Park, Hillcrest, Kensington, Mission Hills) but for some reason are pretty uninspired on where to go this evening!? Where we don't want to go - Cafe Chloe, Alchemy and Urban Solace as we go there often enough.

Wife is pescatarian, I eat anything. Needs cocktails.

Hit me with your best shot. Otherwise it's Tacos el Paisa and a much needed nap in the car... ;-)

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  1. This is an easy one:
    Seven Grand for cocktails, followed by Smoking Goat.
    Counterpoint (they now have cocktails)

    1. Have you been to Wet Stone Wine Bar in Bankers Hill?

      1. Jayne's Gastropub is nice out on the back patio.

        1 Reply
        1. re: bocasdeltorro

          +1 on Jayne's.

          And Farmhouse should definitely be a front runner.

        2. Love Wet Stone but wife is meeting a friend there on Friday.

          We haven't been to Smoking Goat since they first opened - good suggestion. I'll run it by the wife. Bonus we can walk there. Love 7 Grand but they open pretty late and we need to be home kind of early.

          I read Counterpoint has cocktails but haven't tried them yet. Another good suggestion.

          Jayne's was one I mentioned this morning and wife shrugged it off for some reason.

          Anyone try Soda and Swine / Polite Provisions yet?

          Wife suggested Great Maple, D Bar, Haven (pizza place in Kensington?)... I'm not familiar with these places however but am open to something new.

          4 Replies
          1. re: zmirzlina

            Voyou is another charming, intimate wine bar in Hillcrest with a menu that would please your wife. Parking can be a bit of a challenge but this is a nice place.

            http://www.voyousd.com

            1. re: zmirzlina

              Haven is good, but no cocktails.

              Fish Public is next door and there is always Ken Club for libations.

              Great Maple is good not great, deserts are good. Soda and Swine is pretty meatcentric.

              1. re: zmirzlina

                DBar is good, but noisy and I'm not sure they've got cocktails.

                1. re: zmirzlina

                  My vote would be for Farmhouse Cafe except for the cocktail requirement. Maybe drinks at Small Bar and then a walk over?

                  We live down the street from Polite Provisions and have been a few times now. I enjoy it but it would not be my first choice for a rare date night-- it can get noisy and the bar side has been understaffed every time we have visited so drink service can be slow and haphazard (never any problems ordering food though).

                  As the name implies the menu is fairly meat-oriented. From the pescetarian-compatible side dishes I can recommend the giardiniera, the macaroni and cheese, and the apple salad. My only major complaint about the food is the heavy hand with the salt shaker.

                  I've only sampled a few of the many cocktail options. So far my default choice is the Ocean Side, based on gin and lime flavors with celery bitters.

                      1. re: honkman

                        Third Cucina Urbana, but recommend reservations asap.

                            1. re: DoctorChow

                              I don't know. . .CU can be a bit loud.

                              1. re: jmtreg

                                Our concern as well. And we eat there enough.

                                Anyone try Pacific Fish yet in the old Kensington Grill location?

                                I think we'll do Jayne's - it'll be nice on the back patio this evening and their cocktails are wonderful. Wife not in the mood for French...

                                Thanks everyone for the suggestion.

                                1. re: zmirzlina

                                  I went to Fish Public two Sundays ago around 12:30 ready to chow down on something hopefully delicious. They didn't have a sign up, but I knew where the Kensington Grill was, and the door was open. Too bad I didn't check their website -- only open for dinner! I plan to go there soon -- maybe next week.

                        1. Although the service is iffy, Alexander's (right across the street from Searocket), would be a good date night spot. Good decor, good food, and with the weather being as warm as it is, sitting out on the back patio is awesome.

                          If you are more into beer, you could go with the Ritual Tavern. Again, more intimate, a little bit quieter, and has a good back patio. Jayne's Gastropub would also be a good choice, and serves good cocktails (or you could eat and then walk over to Polite Provisions).

                          Since you want cocktails, I'm going to avoid suggesting Pomegranate, BUT, you could grab a bite at Imig's - this is the bar and grill inside the Lafayette Hotel. Brandon, the bar manager, is a legit mixologist, and the food has been pretty good there.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: jmtreg

                            I would avoid Alexander's--such mediocrity. For a rare date night, I recommend the back patio of Jayne's or head to Smoking Goat.

                            1. re: globocity

                              not been to Alexander's.....have been to Old Venice and was not impressed--same owner, same food???

                              Brooklyn Girl is always a winner as well for me.

                              1. re: El Chevere

                                No to Alexanders. Ugh. No. Risotto with standard rice, not arborio or carnaroli = 100% unacceptable.

                                No to Brooklyn Girl. You can do better, (So sad for me, since it's only three blocks away. I'd eat there every week if the food was worthwhile.)

                                1. re: notjustastomach

                                  BG would be worthwhile if the prices were about 5% cheaper across the board.

                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                    Surprised....love the Michael's pizza, pasta dish with shrimp ($19, reasonably priced), and pork chop. They had a flat iron steak with chimichurri sauce a few weeks back that was very good....sorry and surprised to hear the lack of love for this place--not saying it's great or the best place in SD but certainly consistently good when I've been there.

                          2. Not a fan of Alexander's. Always found the food super heavy.

                            And Brooklyn Girl menu didn't interest her.

                            It was hot. She wanted a salad. We drove to Tender Greens, got it to go and sat on Sunset Cliffs and split a bottle of Nelson from Alpine brewery I'd been sitting on.

                            Made Brown Derby's when we got home and put the little guy to bed. It was a nice night.

                            Thanks for all the suggestions!