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Dec 5, 2013 10:55 AM

new restaurant to take our hosts?

I'm looking for dinner rec's to take my sister, her husband and their two kids (6 and 8). My wife and I will be visiting for a week (from Vancouver) in December and we usually take them out for their hospitality. This year I would like to make the selection!
We're hoping to find something that is new to them. Kid friendly, casual and fun, good drinks and/or beer selection for the adults (all in our 30's).
We're all adventerous eaters and open to any style of food which I realize is fairly broad!
We used to frequent The Linkery when it was open, and a pizza place downtown that was good.
Are there any new restaurants that fit the bill.? We have transportation and don't mind travelling too far from our homebase in Ocean Beach.

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  1. It may not be sufficiently "upscale" to pay back a week of hospitality, but I would recommend California Kebab in Pacific Beach. Particularly during the daytime, the space is open and fun, kids are welcome, the beer selection is great, and the view off the patio is fantastic. This is likely more appropriate for lunch or an early dinner (catch the sunset!).
    I have yet to try anything I haven't enjoyed, but it is by no means fine dining. There is validated underground parking (for 2h, I think), which makes it easy to find a space in an otherwise hard-to-park area.

    1. Check out Lion's Share's menu and see if that might appeal to you. Just know they aren't open for lunch (damnit) and seating can sometimes be limited.
      I've gone there with my two kids (then 6 and 8) and they liked their ginger ale, burgers and the deviled egg sampler; and viewed my kangaroo steak frites with a mixture of amusement, hunger and horror. The art on the walls is pretty wacky, too.

      If that doesn't work, maybe the Great Maple (haven't been, but heard some nice things) or Currant?

      1. Have you been to Sessions Public in OB (next to the Catalina Grill)?....The 3rd Corner is usually a safe choice in OB--while wine is their specialty they do have a decent selection of craft beer on tap....Jimmy's Famous American Tavern is always a safe bet as well in Shelter Island overlooking the might also wish to check out Stone Brewing at Liberty Station to see if they seat kids (I think they might--besides great beer and fairly close to home for you, they have huge grounds and "Game of Thrones" ambiance indoors that might keep the kids occupied/entertained while you enjoy your food and drink.

        2 Replies
        1. re: El Chevere

          Jimmys is OK, but the beer selection is not very good. You could also consider Slaters 50/50 for burgers.

          1. re: El Chevere

            I've seen kids at Stone Liberty Station.

          2. Parent in her 30s here ;) Waypoint Public (in the old Linkery space) is kid friendly with good beer--I've only tried their happy hour food but it was good. Also BLAH in Normal Heights--great pizza.
            Stone in Point Loma, mentioned below, is also kid friendly and pretty good, maybe not great, food.
            Great Maple is tough with little kids (crowded and loud), but good breakfast.
            Bueno Forchetta is another great pizza place in South Park, they are always thrilled to see the kids (owned by Italians).

            1 Reply
            1. I'll also second Waypoint Public. Same location as the Linkery. The grilled octopus salad was excellent as well as the cassoulet. Excellent beer list. Loud enough that the kids won't be bothering anyone and towards the back is an actual kids area with blocks, books, and toys. Reservations on a weekend are heartily suggested.

              5 Replies
              1. re: zmirzlina

                Cassoulet, you say? Was it the real deal? Duck confit? I don't think I've seen cassoulet very often in the US. Would love to find a local place serving cassoulet. Need to check it out.

                1. re: steveprez

                  The real deal. Generous with the duck confit, some lovely sausage and a nice helping of pork belly. The cassoulet beans were done perfectly with a nice toothsome feel but super creamy. Since the weather's gotten colder, been craving it again. Don't overlook the oyster po' boy tacos either. But the best dish was the charred octopus - super tender with a nice smoke.

                  1. re: steveprez

                    It is not a classic preparation (but has duck confit) but the version currently on the menu at Smoking Goat is good (the duo of veal is also highly recommended):


                    1. re: honkman

                      Thanks, zmirzlina, honkman! Now I have two places to check out for cassoulet. BTW, if you ever want to try making at home, this link is the best article I've seen for a recipe and instructions.


                    2. re: steveprez

                      Check out Tapenade in La Jolla if you're craving cassoulet.