San Diego, California is one of the biggest tourist destinations in the world. I am lucky to say that I am a native San Diego girl. Born and raised in America’s Finest City has been a great life and when it comes to San Diego Restaurants, they have many that can’t be beat! Since San Diego is a very popular tourist destination, the selection of restaurants is huge and almost always gives an experience that creates great memories along with amazing food.
Whenever we have out-of-town guests they want to know what some of our favorite places to eat are. There are just so many that often it’s hard to squeeze in all the good eats during one visit! The most common request upon arrival of any guests of ours is to take them for Mexican food. For some reason, there is just something “different” about the San Diego Mexican food, whether it’s from a sit down restaurant or a local Taco Shop. I honestly could do a post strictly on my favorite places to get Mexican food, but that will have to be for another day.
San Diego is often broken up into a few distinct areas known as: North County, East County and South Bay. There are sights to see and restaurants that delicious all over the counties of San Diego.
It was very hard to only choose a select few, but here are some of the restaurants that are our favorite places to eat in San Diego. It’s a long list, but I wanted to include a variety of cuisines and in various areas in San Diego County.
Some Favorite San Diego Restaurants:
The Broken Yolk Cafe:
A San Diego favorite for breakfast that is served all day. Pancakes, Waffles, French Toast, Omelets, Eggs Benedict, etc..the menu is large and the food is always fresh. The Broken Yolk Cafe has even been featured on the The Travel Channel’s Man vs Food.
The perfect blend of a quick taco shop, with dine-in restaurant quality Mexican food. Sombrero has been a “go-to” place for all occasions, late night hunger, breakfast burritos, catering parties, etc…Sombrero is always a success. Sombrero has grown and has many locations throughout the county and even beyond San Diego now, but the quality is still homemade and the service is always fast and friendly.
Located right across the street from Pacific Beach, Taco Surf is a local taco shop that you must try if you are in San Diego! Taco Surf has a very mellow, laid back atmosphere with surf boards decorating the walls and ceilings and beachgoers taking a break from the sand to get their Mexican food fix. Taco Surf has the most amazing burritos, rolled tacos, guacamole and fresh salsa. You can’t go wrong with anything on their menu and the bonus is the friendly owners that work with pride behind the counter always making each visit feel personal.
Casa de Pico:
An absolute favorite in our family, Casa de Pico was originally in Old Town, San Diego for many years. In 2005 they relocated to La Mesa in Grossmont Center. Although the location has changed, the food is still the best when it comes to Mexican. The atmosphere creates the feeling of a fiesta from the minute you arrive. There are bright colors that surround you with the culture and live Mariachi’s playing festive music while you dine.
Rock n’ Jenny’s:
Hands down Rock n’ Jenny’s has the best Italian style turkey sub sandwich in North County. Located in Escondido, this local Italian sub shop has been a big success serving sandwiches, pastas, salads, soups and the BEST homemade Italian dressing ever! All this at a decent price too! This is Princess P’s favorite place to get a sandwich and she loves the owner, Jenny, who always takes the time to make my Princesses feel special!
If you’re looking for family fun and delicious American food, Corvette Diner is the place! With waitresses dressed in poodle skirts, music from the 50’s blaring out of the juke box and an arcade, this restaurant is a destination and a dining experience all in one. You can read more about the Corvette Diner in an earlier post Carole wrote.
Chicken Pie Diner:
Update: sadly, the Chicken Pie Diner has closed it’s doors after several decades in business.
Located in Poway, Chicken Pie Diner is famous for their chicken pot pies of course! They have a similar atmosphere to Corvette Diner, but on a smaller scale. The small juke boxes on each table top add to the fun while you are sipping on a creamy milkshake, enjoying a pot pie or their amazing burgers! You can’t go wrong at this little diner!
Company Pub and Kitchen:
Also in Poway (North County), this restaurant is a local “go-to” for Chris and I when we want a delicious bite and a cold beer. The gastropub has amazing bistro-style food, featuring favorites like Bangers and Mash, Trio of Sliders, Flatbreads and Steak Chibattas, just to name a few. They have a great happy hour and it’s also family friendly.
Pizza Port has a few different locations in San Diego County, but the original location is in Solana Beach on the famous Pacific Coast Highway. Pizza Port offers amazing pizzas ranging from traditional varieties to very unique flavors such as BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger, Meet Extreme Meat, Garlic Veggie or you can create your own. They also offer a full menu of appetizers, salads and frozen delights for dessert. Pizza Port is also famous for their on-site hand crafted beers that pair great with any pizza. This restaurant is so family friendly, they have plenty of arcade-type games to keep the kids happy while waiting for your fresh pizza. In fact I will be there later today celebrating one of my best friend’s birthdays, this is her all-time favorite place to go after a day at the beach!
The list of our favorites could go on and on, there are just too many good eats to squeeze into one post! Be sure to check back in a couple of weeks because I will be posting Part 2 of this series of Favorite Restaurants in San Diego. You can also find some amazing restaurants on an earlier post, 42 San Diego Restaurants to Savor.
What are some places you would be sure to include on the list?