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2014-- NYer visiting for first time. What are must trys ???

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ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 09:23 AM

Most threads are from years back ... What are some uniquely san diego places that I should try.

Im a foodie and prefer side of the road trucks and such vs. uppity white table cloth places.

In search of ethnic neighborhood eateries , tacos, asian... Anything that this is good and unique in this part of the country.

Cant wait .... And thanks for all suggestions.

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    DoctorChow RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 01:15 PM

    I'm not sure we have anything out here that's completely unique vis-à-vis what you can find in NY, but we do have some pretty good non-uppity ethnic places. A Mariscos food truck was just mentioned by cstr on another thread today. Here are a few other places you might like:

    Carnitas Snack Shack (University Ave)
    Sushi Ota (in Pacific Beach, sort of)
    Que Huong (Vietnamese)
    Sab-E-Lee (on Linda Vista, Thai)
    Underbelly (in Little Italy, ramen)
    K-Sandwiches (Convoy St., banh mi)
    Flavors of East Africa (El Cajon Blvd.)

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      MrKrispy RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 01:23 PM

      If you haven't had a fish taco, you need to try one while you are here. A Mariscos truck (not sure which one has good fish tacos, I usually try the other stuff so maybe someone can help). Carne asada burrito in your area is a must.

      Mention what area you are staying and if you have a car, that will get you better responses.

      1 Reply
      1. re: MrKrispy
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        DoctorChow RE: MrKrispy Apr 24, 2014 01:45 PM

        The Mariscos El Pescador in Chula Vista (off Industrial) has very good fish tacos.

        Here's cstr's post (copied from another thread), with more detail on the location:

        "If you like food trucks, try the Marisco's Pescador fish taco truck just off the 5 south at the Toys R Us parking lot on Industrial Ave. Great Baja style fish tacos and other delectable seafood offerings."

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        Ela0427 RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 02:06 PM

        In-n-out double double animal style with animal fries. Not on the menu but on the "in-n-out secret" menu.
        any taco joint California burrito or carne asada fries.

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          Ela0427 RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 02:07 PM

          Kaito sushi or Sushi Ota. Where are you staying? San Diego is a big area

          13 Replies
          1. re: Ela0427
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            ItsMee RE: Ela0427 Apr 24, 2014 02:54 PM

            Im gonna be in the Hillcrest area . But plan on renting a car so i dont mind riding around.. Even wanted to go to LA

            1. re: ItsMee
              jmtreg RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 04:11 PM

              Last time I was in NYC the Mexican food was. . .not good. With you staying in Hillcrest, I'd go with:

              Mama Testa
              Carnitas Snack Shack
              One of the mariscos trucks on Texas Street, north of El Cajon Blvd. (both are on the west side of Texas).
              Local Habit (not for food, but for the beer)
              Tiger!Tiger! (same)
              Akinori Sushi - yes, sushi is everywhere, but Chef Akinori seems pretty proud of our local seafood, especially our local uni (which is amazing), and the local spot prawns. Sit in front of him and omakaze it up.

              Further down the road:

              Fathom Bistro - fantastic beer bar located on a fishing pier on Shelter Island
              In-N-Out - See the other comments above
              Tacos El Gordo - Best. Carne. Asada. Ever.

              I might add Alchemy or Buona Forchetta to that list, but as much for the experience of South Park as the food.

              1. re: jmtreg
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                DoctorChow RE: jmtreg May 4, 2014 09:09 PM

                A bit of serendipity today while driving along Linda Vista Blvd. What should I spot but a Mariscos truck, in, of all places, the parking lot of Filiberto's, a Mexican restaurant. (I ate there once, some time ago.)

                Naturally I stopped and got a fish taco, which was good, but that's not why I'm posting. What the heck was a Marisco's truck doing in Filiberto's parking lot? Was it going to be there on a regular basis? Or maybe something even better? Or maybe just for Cinco de Mayo weekend?

                I tried to ask the person who took my order, but I don't speak Spanish and he didn't seem to understand my English. Maybe he just didn't hear me. While I was eating my taco someone else seemed to be talking to them about the same thing, but the conversation was in Spanish. (Too bad my companion wasn't with me.)

                Linda Vista would seem to be a prime location for a Marisco's truck, with its sizeable Mexican population, and it would be very welcome!

                1. re: DoctorChow
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                  DoctorChow RE: DoctorChow May 5, 2014 11:37 PM

                  There again today...what gives? Anyone have info?

                  Really nice having it there!

                  1. re: DoctorChow
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                    MrKrispy RE: DoctorChow May 6, 2014 01:15 PM

                    Was the Filibertos open? Last time I drove by it looked like they were remodeling or something.

                    I saw one of the Mariscos in the Toys R Us parking lot (on Morena) move down the street to a business near Brick by Brick, and then saw them again parked in a few other lots on Morena

                    1. re: MrKrispy
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                      DoctorChow RE: MrKrispy May 6, 2014 02:39 PM

                      I didn't go up to the door, but I'm pretty sure I saw people seated at tables inside. That's why I was so surprised -- it seemed like it was open for business. I'll take a closer look next time I go by.

              2. re: ItsMee
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                MrKrispy RE: ItsMee Apr 25, 2014 09:25 AM

                If you are a late night person and staying in the Hillcrest area, you MUST visit La Posta #8 on Washington Ave for a late night taco or burrito. Not the best tacos or burritos in San Diego, but probably the most San Diego taco shop experience haha

                1. re: MrKrispy
                  DiningDiva RE: MrKrispy Apr 25, 2014 11:38 AM

                  And the burrito to have is the Carne Asada burrito. Nothing says San Diego quite like a CAB ;-)

                  1. re: DiningDiva
                    jmtreg RE: DiningDiva Apr 25, 2014 02:34 PM

                    Crap! I forgot about La Posta #8. *hangs head in shame*

                    1. re: jmtreg
                      honkman RE: jmtreg Apr 25, 2014 03:33 PM

                      Isn't Super Sergio's the taco shop to end all taco shops in San Diego

                      1. re: honkman
                        jmtreg RE: honkman Apr 25, 2014 06:06 PM

                        Not at 4:00 a.m.

                        1. re: jmtreg
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                          DoctorChow RE: jmtreg Apr 25, 2014 06:16 PM

                          Wow, a taco at 4 am. What a concept!

                          Makes me think of TJ in 1980...

                2. re: ItsMee
                  DiningDiva RE: ItsMee Apr 25, 2014 04:35 PM

                  If you will be in Hillcrest on a Sunday morning, the weekly farmers market is big and has a ton of food vendors selling interesting prepared food

                  For breakfast try Sooze, and if you can't get in there go next door to DBar, which also does a very respectable breakfast but is better in the evening for dessert.

                  If you're traveling with people Great Maple is also a good choice for breakfast especially, but be forewarned the portions are generous. Hash House a Go-Go is owned by the same folks, but the portions are over the top generous and every plate seems to come garnished with half a bush of rosemary. I think the food is better at Great Maple, opinions on the food quality at Hash House are mixed. Both locations serve all day long and all meals, not just breakfast.

                  Across the street from Hash House is the Tractor Room which serves up some great cocktails and does some interesting things with meats like bison, elk, etc.

                  Blue Ribbon Rustic Kitchen gets a lot of love on this board and is centrally located in Hillcrest

                  Actually, Hillcrest has something like 100 restaurants in a 6-block area, so you shouldn't have too much trouble finding something. Most are good to very good, few transcend.

                  San Diego is a pretty relaxed and laid back place, we don't really "do" uppity white table cloth...it's not in our DNA

              3. ipsedixit RE: ItsMee Apr 24, 2014 05:59 PM

                Las Cuatro Milpas
                El Cuervo
                La Posta #8
                Taco Surf
                Super Cocina
                Romescos
                Burger Lounge
                Slaters

                1. Dagney RE: ItsMee Apr 25, 2014 12:48 PM

                  Excellent suggestions so far! Here are a few more...

                  El Salvadoreno, located at 2800 Imperial Avenue, wonderful homestyle El Salvadoran fare.

                  Super Cocina, 3600-ish University Avenue, homestyle Mexican food.

                  El Borrego, 4300 El Cajon Boulevard, Mexican Barbacoa.

                  A Chau, 4600 El Cajon Boulevard, Vietnamese sandwiches.

                  Pho Hoa, 4700 El Cajon Boulevard, Pho, and some of the best to be had!

                  Alforan, mmmm....6300? El Cajon Boulevard, excellent Mediterranean food.

                  Chopahn, 6th and F Street in the Gaslamp, Afghan food, and some of the best quality food in the Gaslamp. This is a white tablecloth room, but the tone is definitely not "uppity," rather polite, quiet, and enjoyable.

                  Kabob House, 25th and Broadway, Mediterranean food, delish.

                  Enjoy!!

                  1. y6y6y6 RE: ItsMee Apr 28, 2014 07:41 PM

                    Mariscos El Pescador for the fish tacos or shrimp cocktail. I suggest getting both. Small cocktail is plenty.

                    El Comal for the chicken enchiladas with green sauce.

                    Tiger Tiger for the pork belly bahn mi and the beer.

                    Blind Lady Ale House for the pesto pizza and beer.

                    Juniper & Ivy to share small plates. Get reservations.

                    Rudy's Tacos for the carne asada burrito.

                    Stone Liberty Station for beers and anything on the menu that sounds good. Sit inside.

                    Kiko's Place for the fish taco. Nothing special, just huge and authentic San Diego fish taco.

                    Oscar's in Hillcrest (not the other locations) for the taco especial.

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                      AtomicSuplex RE: ItsMee May 7, 2014 05:17 PM

                      Since you're in Hillcrest, I quite like 100 Wines, which is more CA cuisine than ethnic, I guess, but it's quite good, has a great atmosphere, and you don't have to slog 20 miles to get there!

                      For something more ethnic, I always like Tajima (Japanese and opens late on the weekend, which you might need to get used to coming from NY. 9pm is bedtime for most restaurants here!).

                      Sab-E-Lee which others mention is great, but TINY. I think there might be 3 tables in the whole place...

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: AtomicSuplex
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                        DoctorChow RE: AtomicSuplex May 7, 2014 05:28 PM

                        I think there are actually six or seven tables at Sab-E-Lee, but yes, it's pretty tiny.

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