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Apr 14, 2014 02:01 PM

Stuck in the Gaslamp District. HELP!

I am going to San Diego this week for a conference at the Westin Gaslamp Quarter. I plan to be at the conference nearly all day every day. I won't have a car and I don't have the time to venture too far from the conference. I will be typically eating late. I know, from reading the threads here, that many people are down on the Gaslamp Quarter. However, with my predicament in mind, could you recommend the *best* options in the area for late dinners? I have not particular needs regarding types of cuisine and prices, but I try not to eat meat, poultry, or pork. Thank you in advance.

Places for quick breakfasts and lunches are also of interest to me.

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  1. Cafe Chloe open until 10, though your non-meat choices may be limited.

    Oceanaire, albeit part of a chain, may be a reasonable choice.

    Top of the Market, part of the Fish Market.

    Urban India not bad for a buffet lunch (I think they do a menu at lunch, too).

    1 Reply
    1. re: RB Hound

      Nothing wrong with the Fish Market itself. Same fish as Top of the Market, less fancy preps, no white tablecloths.

    2. Tender Greens for lunch (call in ahead to avoid the line) or not-too-late dinner (open until 9).

      Blind Burro has some good seafood and veggie options for dinner (open until 10 or 11).

      The deli/salad bar at Jimbo's in Horton Plaza is a good quick lunch option very close to your hotel.

      1. We just got back from SD, where my husband was attending a conference. Best dinner meals close by were at Zanzibar on G St.,,
        and Basic (for very casual, but delicious, pizza and salad),

        We ate at Chloe. It was not bad but we were a bit disappointed as the love on this Board seemed to exceed the meal we had.

        11 Replies
        1. re: masha

          It's quite possible that Chloe has slipped a bit - your experience is certainly more recent than mine. I eat at the Zanzibar at UC San Diego quite often.

          1. re: RB Hound

            I actually think that more recently (last 12 months) Cafe Chloe improved quite a bit. The last few years one could get the impression that they were just doing their "day-to-day" cooking without great changes (which was still good enough to be one of the better resraurants in SD) but nothing unusual happened on their menu. More recently they are much more playing around with unusual ingredients (e.g. great lamb brain appetizer etc) or flavors (e.g. North African influences) and also their plates are getting better again (more focused, clean flavors).

            1. re: honkman


              'great lamb brain appetizer' from Café Chloe?
              I don't know one friggin' person whom is craving that crap.

              1. re: Beach Chick

                If you would eat more in France you would see that those dishes (lamb, veal brain) are very common all over France (like all offal dishes in Europe). Have you ever tried it before you can say it is not good ?

                1. re: honkman

                  I do business in France and see those offal things on the menu and tho' I do not eat that kind of stuff, I know the French love that kind of stuff and Germans too!

                  Are you sure your not from the inside of Untersberg?
                  ; )

                  Maybe if we were part of the Fore tribe in Papua New Guinea and when you passed, we would eat you limb to limb and save the brain for last, out of respect to the Herr Honk but the problem with that is there is a thing called kuru. .
                  A brain disease that resembles mad cow (Creutzfeldt-Jakob) disease.

                  No thanks but have at it!

                  1. re: Beach Chick

                    There is some scientific indication that prions are most likely not only transfered through (eating) brains but most likely also through blood and other pathways - so why worry when eating brain from time to time (and it is really tasty and the consistency is not unlike tofu, so you really might like it) - Life is a game where you will lose at the end anyway, enjoy it as much as possible

                    Are you sure your not from the inside of Untersberg? - Just call me Barbarossa

                    1. re: honkman

                      You know I love you BC, but LOL'd at "...the consistency is not unlike tofu, so you really might like it." Was that some Deutscher dry wit, or did I read too much into it?

                      1. re: mcgrath

                        Weak attempt at German humor, unfortunately the Internet is a very flat medium

                        1. re: honkman

                          LOL Kaiser Rotbart . .when the ravens stop circling, your troops are coming out of Mount Untersberg.

                          Have you been there...I am SO intrigued by this place!
                          Might have to go on the German Holiday of August 15th and look for that secret door to the inside of the mountain.

                          In regards to prions, one of the GMO arguments (and a very valid one) on gene insertion, when imbedded into the existing plant cells resulting in a new variation of the crop, the new gene, damages other genes in the plant as well, leading to malformed proteins within the plants DNA..

                          Diseases such as mad cow disease are caused by certain malformed proteins.

                          Oceanaire for Happy Hour rocks it if you get out early.

                          Genome Chica

                  2. re: honkman

                    haha..I grew up with cow brain "pane". Slices that were dredged in flour and bread crumbs, pan fried and served with lemon slices. I honestly think that most people would not be able to tell the difference from a med/soft pan fried tofu and would think..mmm this is creamy and the best tofu EVER!!

              2. I would certainly recommend Encore Champagne Bar and Dining. The menu is limited for a vegetarian, but they have several fish options on the menu (and I liked that the meat options were from sustainable sources.. so I didn't have any fish the night I went).

                1. There's nothing inherently bad about the Gaslamp and its restaurants, other than they're overly touristy and are home to many chain restaurants.

                  Seersucker, Blue Point Coastal, Bice Restaurante and Oceanaire are solid restaurants with seafood/vegetarian options.