Eat + Drink

San Diego is a Culinary Melting Pot. Taste the World’s Flavors at These Top Restaurants.

Ahi poke is served with avocado and sesame seeds at Oscar’s Mexican Seafood. (Photo: Andy Hayt / Courtesy of Oscar’s Mexican Seafood)

San Diego’s diverse backdrop of neighborhoods reflect cultures from across the globe. Visitors can both glimpse these influences as they travel through the city, and taste them at some of the city’s top restaurants. From locally sourced, farm-to-table favorites to Mexican tacos, the San Diego’s food scene is a true melting pot of flavors. Check out some of the top restaurants in San Diego and open your mind (and your mouth) to all of the possibilities.

Around the World in Coronado

Leroy's Kitchen and Lounge
The dining room (above left) and a juicy burger with truffled fries (above right) at Leroy’s Kitchen and Lounge. (Photo: Courtesy Leroy’s Kitchen and Lounge)

When Coronado local David Spatafore opened Leroy’s Kitchen and Lounge in this chilled out beach town, he put the spotlight on farm-to-table food.

Yet, while the ingredients at Leroy’s are locally sourced, the seasonally changing menu is chock full of global influences. Named after Spatafore’s well-traveled cousin, Leroy Mossel, the restaurant dishes up unique plates with eclectic flavor combos.

Italy meets France in the mushroom and chevre ravioli served with with chanterelles and black garlic. You’ll even find a taste of the far East in the roasted brussels sprouts with Asian barbecue sauce.

Of course, you can also hit up an all-American favorite: the burger with Holey Cow cheese, bacon jam, house pickles, and truffled fries. Even the drinks menu has spark, thanks to drinks like a peppery chipotle vodka and ginger beer.

Mexican Spice in La Jolla

Oscar's Mexican Seafood
Oscar’s yellowtail tuna taco is served “al pastor”-style. (Photo: Andy Hayt / Courtesy of Oscar’s Mexican Seafood)

San Diego’s proximity to Mexico and the ocean is evident in the La Jolla neighborhood. Look for Oscar’s Mexican Seafood, an unassuming restaurant famed for its fresh menu of tacos, tortas, ceviche and burritos.

We recommend the Surf & Turf taco, a mix of skirt steak and shrimp, topped with cabbage, onion, tomato, cilantro, avocado and cheese. Or get creative with the yellowtail tuna taco served “al pastor”-style, marinated in adobo rub with pineapples. Order at the counter, then carry your grub to a bar stool or stand and chat with friends while you indulge. Oscar’s is tiny — its interior only fits about four people — and popular.

Indian Zest in Old Town

Indian Grill
Outdoor seating at Indian Grill (above left) and the restaurant’s lamb shish kabob (above right). (Photo: Courtesy of Indian Grill)

Craving Indian food in San Diego? Head to the city’s Old Town neighborhood and prepare to feast. Indian Grill has earned a loyal local following thanks to its authentic, organic menu.

Start with some veggie samosas and the house special appetizer, grilled wings. For your main dish, consider a traditional madras or vindaloo curry, or the popular lamb shish kabob.

Vegetarians can dig into a wide selection of entrees, including the popular chana masala and saag paneer. You’ll enjoy a true taste of India in the thick of San Diego.


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