Looking for a good meal in San Diego? With so many terrific restaurants to choose from, a good meal isn’t hard to find. But if you want something great, then you ought to visit the following restaurants:
Great Maple for Breakfast and Brunch
There are obviously a lot of terrific restaurant options to start your day right in San Diego. But you should really plan to try Great Maple at least once. And after that, you’re likely to become a regular.
It’s a family-friendly place, but it’s also a good location for a bunch of friends or even for a morning date. It seems to have just about everything you’d want to see in a classic breakfast place, and it features that effortless cool that makes you feel simply good to be there. And it sure makes the great food taste even better.
If you’re there for breakfast, then it’s absolutely mandatory that you get a few of their huge, made-to-order maple bacon doughnuts. Add the chilaquiles, and you’re off to a fantastic start.
Ironside Fish & Oyster for Seafood
It’s always a good time for some seafood, and besides, it’s generally a healthier option than red meat. You might be surprised to learn that in San Diego, a great place for seafood is in Little Italy. It’s even famous for its donuts.
In the Ironside, just about anything you want will be available if you’re hankering for seafood. You can get an entire lobster, and then add some crab cakes and oysters to that.
You really should try the lobster roll here, as their fresh lobster matches beautifully with the crispy shallots, chives, and the brown butter mayo. Then add the fantastic hand-cut fries with the mystery aioli sauce. Get some oysters as well, and don’t forget to ask for the homemade donuts while you’re already there.
The Crack Shack for Fried Chicken
It seems like there’s a foodie rule that says all great cities must be home to a truly fantastic restaurant for fried chicken. In San Diego, that’s the Crack Shack. This restaurant is among the finest in the city, whether you want fried chicken or not. But you’ll want that chicken once you’re here.
On your first visit (or for every visit, for that matter), ask for their Firebird. They’ll get you some spicy fried thigh chicken meat, but it’s not too spicy for most people. It also comes with crispy onions, pickles, some cool ranch, and a potato roll for everything.
Try the Senor Croque as well, if you want to go with a fried chicken breakfast sandwich. And don’t forget to get the mini biscuits, regardless of what time it is. Slather these biscuits with a lot of the miso-maple butter, and it’s just heaven.
The Taco Stand for Tacos
It shouldn’t be surprising that San Diego has a lot of restaurants that offer outstanding tacos. One of them is the Taco Stand, where the tacos are simply marvelous. The individual flavors of everything are fantastic, such as for the homemade tortillas, the cheese, the meat, and the heavenly salsas. It’s basically like an All-Star party of flavors.
Yet the place is subtly low-key, with a definitive no-frills vibe here that will just help you to relax. And the price is also quite reasonable—no one will complain about $3 tacos that taste this good!
Try the Sonora tacos (but ask them to hold the beans), along with the Al pastor and baja (fish taco).
Buona Forchetta for Pizza
The city, and the whole state of California, contain plenty of magnificent pizza parlors. But there are quite a few San Diego residents who stoutly maintain that Buona Forchetta is absolutely the best them of all.
They focus on Neapolitan-style pizza here, with artisanal toppings available including the standard fresh mozzarella and crushed tomatoes. The bestselling Sergio pizza is a must-try as well. It features prosciutto di parma, mozzarella di buffala, parmesan, and arugula, and that combination of flavors must be tasted to be believed.
Sushi Ota for Sushi
You’ll find this in Pacific Beach, though it’s easy to miss if you’re not determined enough to find it. It’s in a strip mall set between a 7-11 and a Planned Parenthood office. And it doesn’t look all that swanky at all.
But here, you always get premium-quality cuts of fish, and they prepare these in both traditional and also innovative ways. Try the Tokusen Sushi entrée, with 10 different nigiri sushi pieces along with a tuna roll
Mystic Grill for Middle-Eastern
You’ll find this place on Balboa Avenue, and you’ll consider yourself lucky when you do find it. You sure have plenty of excellent appetizers here to start your meal, like the Hummus with Beef Shawarma (garbanzo, lemon, and tahina sauce topped with beef shawarma), Tabouli (parsley, tomato, mint, onion, lemon, and extra virgin olive oil), falafel (garbanzo and fried vegetables), and kibbeh (meat and crushed wheat, rolled and filled with pine nuts and spiced minced meat).
Then you can go with the kabobs and shawarma plates, and get some baklava for dessert. It’s one yummy meal, and it sure doesn’t hurt that the Mystic Grill menu prices are very low.