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Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

For a year, there was LW's SD BBQ, which was a true low-and-slow place, a runner up to Coops -- howbeit a somewhat distant runner up, I thought, and only when they were having a good day. I was sorry to see them go. Never heard of Brett's until just now.

I'm willing to make the drive to Brett's in The Great New Suburbia, if you're talking a place that's truly better to Coop's.

1 day ago
DoctorChow in San Diego

Balboa Mesa

Yeah. Too bad Pho Hut turned out to be below average.

Seems popular though; packed at lunch.

2 days ago
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

Hmmmm....maybe you're being humorously sarcastic? I assume you've been to Coop's in Lemon Grove?

2 days ago
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego restaurants OPENINGS (2015 edition)

Arrrgh. Well darn. Guess I'll pass. I was hoping there would be at least *some* redeeming social value to be found at this place.

2 days ago
DoctorChow in San Diego

Balboa Mesa

I had the red ramen at Ototo the first time I went and was unimpressed. However, other things I've tried from the menu have been very good, especially the nigiri. Among their "small plates", the garlic edamame is very good, as are the shishito pepers, gyoza, negi chashu, and cucumber kimchee. The salmon carpaccio sashimi is a favorite.

Agree about Keg n Bottle, and one shouldn't miss going into the large, very cold, walk-in refrigerated room in the back, where all of the six-packs (and larger) are kept. (The front area has mostly 22 oz bottles.) Just go to the back, open the sliding door, and walk in.

Feb 24, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Looking For Best Food With a View for Out of Town Visitor

Excellent. And they did a very nice job with the remodel, too.

Feb 24, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Looking For Best Food With a View for Out of Town Visitor

Good suggestions so far. I'll add Tidal, especially if you dine on the heated outdoor patio. I also like C-Level.

Feb 24, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Balboa Mesa

All of the new restaurants at the Balboa Mesa shopping center (Balboa and Genesee) are now open.

The three places in this extensively renovated and beautifully landscaped Clairemont shopping center that are most Chowhound-worthy (IMO), are 85C, Pieolgoy, and Ototo Sushi Co.

Boudin is fine. Locally-owned Chicken Charlie's has good fried chicken but sides are a problem. Habit is Habit. And locally-owned Mr. Fish and Chips is good, and sort-of-quick, if you're a fan of that style; I go there from time to time. Haven't yet been to Luna Grill (separate post).

Across the street, where renovations are also finished (except for the upcoming transformation of Albertson's to Hegger), the only things that interest me in the least, sorry to say, are Chipotle and Five Guys. Native Foods is ok, but I haven't been back. Dickey's is like Phil's, kinda sorta.

Nazca Grill to the north and Nobel Chef and See's to the east round off this intersection, the "downtown" of Clairemont.

Feb 23, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego restaurants OPENINGS (2015 edition)

Thanks.

Balboa Int Mkt is a favorite lunch place. But, always looking for variety and new things.

Feb 23, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego restaurants OPENINGS (2015 edition)

Luna Grill at Balboa Mesa (Balboa and Genesee) finally opened. Haven't been yet.

In fact, I've been to a Luna Grill exactly once, the one in Liberty Station, and it was some time ago. All I remember was that, whatever it was I had (apps, I believe), it was ok but not compelling.

Anything on their menu that stands out? Things to stay away from?

Feb 23, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego New Places Opening Thread Numero Tres.

Turns out this place is actually going to open as "Coastal Crave", a "cocktails and cuisine" spot with indoor/outdoor seating and what look to be pass-through windows along the bar to the outside area. It seems to be in the final stages of build-out, fairly close to completion and with furniture stacked up inside.

I'm glad it's not being called "Sky Box Sports Bar", a hopeful sign.

So many failures in this small but strategically-located shopping center. I hope this one gets it right.

Feb 22, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego Late Night Eats . . . Your Faves!

Well, because they claim to, like RakiRaki, which claims to have "custom" noodles.

Feb 21, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego Late Night Eats . . . Your Faves!

But, can't individual restaurants specify the way they want noodles made for them?

Feb 21, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

White Labs Tasting Room?

I think it would be a great outing for anyone, geek or non-geek, who's truly interested in understanding the nuances of flavor that come from yeast.

The microbiological science is fascinating, and the basics can be explained in lay terms fairly easily.

Feb 21, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

Agree completely. Phil's is one step up from having a McRib, IMO.

Feb 21, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego restaurants OPENINGS (2015 edition)

Thai Papaya Pok-Pok. At least that's what the new sign (above a small Sab-E-Lee sign) at the old Sab-E-Lee location in Linda Vista says.

Sounds more salad-like than noodle-like. "New noodle concept" is what was previously mentioned for the old location (Eater); same owners.

Not open yet.

Feb 21, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Carvel Ice Cream Cake

The Albertson's on Balboa (which is one of those changing) is/was a very nice store, actually. Far, far from the "dump' category.

They have/had good meat and seafood; terrific prices on several daily wines that I like; and my favorite daily coffee blend since Von's (around here, anyway) discontinued bulk whole-bean -- for $8/lb.

This is a very large store; it'll be interesting to see what Haggen does with it.

[We now return to Carvel Ice Cream Cake. The connection has been restored. Thank you for your patients, to use a physician's high-five expression.]

Feb 20, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Straddling the Border

Another interesting article, thanks for the link.

But, "Romanesco"?

Feb 20, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Straddling the Border

"Done in a Mexican way". A good term, perhaps the best way to describe the subtle or not-so-subtle expression to be found in certain dishes that aren't truly "Mexican" but do have some or a lot of "Mexican influence".

Feb 20, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

I like your expression "regionally individualistic", and my earlier suggestions to the OP for places to go and things to try were in that spirit. In other words, I don't really disagree with either you or cookieshoes.

I think the only thing that visitors have heard of about SD (aside from the multitude of local breweries) is our fish tacos. Visitors who haven't heard or read anything about SD at all probably anticipate good local seafood when they arrive, since, after all, the city is by the sea.

Feb 20, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

Sheboygan has brats. San Francisco has sourdough. New Orleans has gumbo. Lockhart has BBQ. San Diego has ______ .

Feb 20, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Happy Hours. .what's new and exciting?

A total win.

Feb 19, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

Ahhh...now you're onto the main point of discussion. Yes to all but your last question.

Yes, that would work for any city, so you have to ask the core questions.

Every city has it's local brews these days, for example, and those should not be missed.

Every city has it's local variations on familiar dishes, for example, and those should not to be missed.

San Diego has its local variations on some foods that should not be missed. If I were coming here, I'd want to try the local mussels, whatever my ultimate impression. And our pho.

And I'd want to go to Romesco and/or Comun.

Well, and visit the short list of local places I mentioned earlier.

Right now, SD just doesn't have something it can claim to be really "special" to the area, like Sheboygan does with brats. The closest we come is with fish tacos, which of course originated in northern Baja, not here.

I'm hoping that the wave of cross-border Mexican-influence restaurants will proliferate here, ultimately giving us a unique local culinary identity.

Feb 19, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Visiting San Diego - Not to miss suggestions please!

+1 on Regal Beagle, J&I, Bencotto, and Ironside (providing one can stand the noise level).

All good, but none are really not-to-miss, San Diego only, best-to-be-had in the USA, for their food.

Too bad we have to be careful to distinguish between Bluewater Boathouse Seafood in Coronado and Blue Water Mkt. & Grill on India near Washington.

But the one (now) in Coronado sounds decent! A very much gourmet-oriented close relative dined at Bluewater today (swordfish) and reports it was pretty good.

Feb 19, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Straddling the Border

Darn. Time to close the patent office -- all has been invented.

But TY. My companion would have prevented me from thinking I came up with a new word. But she's not here.

Maybe places that serve these little gems should call them by their proper name, though: tostaditas.

Feb 19, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Straddling the Border

Actually, I was surprised to see that too because I didn't know that J&I served "tostaditas" (made that word up). I guess they do, at least sometimes.

Anyway, I like reading articles like this one, regardless of the takeaway. I like the topic and am strongly supportive of this local culinary phenomenon that I hope will rapidly expand in SD.

Feb 19, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Piazza 1909

Maybe. But check out their website.

At first, I thought they might have been photos by our board's red-hot food photography expert, whose name is a fake. Maybe they were.

Whatever. The food looked good enough in the photos that I was tempted to devour the monitor in front of me.

But, on the other hand, thinking negatively as you seem to be suggesting, I suppose it could be a PR conspiracy...

Yes the restaurant sounds terrific and I will try it. I'm easy. I love trying restaurants, regardless of the outcome.

Feb 18, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego Late Night Eats . . . Your Faves!

Harrrumphus maximus.

Ve shall see, ya?

Feb 18, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

San Diego Late Night Eats . . . Your Faves!

Places with Baja style:

Romesco. Comun. The late Zarco.

I'm pretty sure Bracero will be like that.

I hope so.

Feb 18, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego

Piazza 1909

Yeah. OK. Delete "review" and insert "comments", then.

Feb 18, 2015
DoctorChow in San Diego