San Diego is home to a wide variety of restaurants that reflect the multicultural influences of California with fresh, delicious produce from the land and sea. From Asian-inspired restaurants to French spots with Belle Epoque design to sea-to-table seafood dining, you can have it all in San Diego’s restaurants. From fine dining to casual to American to global, you can find something for every taste in San Diego’s food scene. Discover the 10 best local restaurants in San Diego to plan your culinary adventure.

    1

    Dija Mara

    Enjoy Southeastern Asian cuisine

    Dija Mara is a cosy Asian restaurant with industrial-chic decor that serves sophisticated cuisine from Southeast Asia. Located on the South Coast Highway, Dija Mara is notable for its fusion of Japanese techniques with Balinese cuisine and Western touches. Some of the menu highlights include lamb jus curry, ceviche, chicken thigh skewers with peanut sauce and cucumber, wok-fried noodles with confit chicken, Balinese spare ribs, and tofu and tempeh. You could also get beer, cocktails, and wine at Dija Mara to turn dinner into an evening out.

    Location: 232 S Coast Hwy, Oceanside, CA 92054, USA

    Open: Tuesday–Thursday from 5 pm to 9 pm, Friday–Saturday from 5 pm to 9.30 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 2.30 am (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 760-231-5376

    Map
    2

    Wrench and Rodent

    Try innovative sushi

    Wrench and Rodent is an eclectic restaurant that serves seafood and sushi made with fresh, local ingredients. Located on the South Coast Highway, the restaurant focuses on local food, sustainability, and ensuring nothing goes to waste. The menu is innovative and diverse, featuring options like fish skin chips and guac, fish rib, and ceviche. You have a wide selection of nigiri and sashimi to choose from, as well as traditional sushi and “rodent rolls,” or plant-based rolls for vegans and vegetarians.

    Location: 1815 S Coast Hwy, Oceanside, CA 92054, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Saturday from 4 pm to 8.30 pm, Sunday from 4 pm to 8 pm (closed Monday–Tuesday)

    Phone: +1 760-271-0531

    Map
    3

    Jeune et Jolie

    Dine on French favourites

    Jeune et Jolie is an intimate restaurant that serves French nouvelle cuisine with light ingredients and rich, bold flavours. Most of the dishes at Jeune et Jolie are centred around seafood and vegetables that are available in the California landscape, but you’ll also find a raw oyster bar, exploratory cocktails, and fresh juices. Located on State Street in BLOC Carlsbad Village, Jeune et Jolie offers occasional outdoor dining experiences and rotating 5-course menus. Some of the past menu options include crab with cauliflower, pear, and almond, scallops with beetroot, cabbage, and maitake, and short ribs with celery roots, dates, and pistachios.

    Location: 2659 State St Suite 102, Carlsbad, CA 92008, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Sunday from 5 pm to 10 pm (closed Monday–Tuesday)

    Phone: +1 760-637-5266

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    4

    Campfire

    Relax by the fire

    Campfire is a thriving restaurant that serves wood-fired American fare and cocktails in an indoor and outdoor setting. Located on State Street in Carlsbad, the restaurant is a “destination” restaurant with woodland and camping decor to invoke the feeling of “gathering around a campfire with friends.” Campfire’s menu is diverse and offers a variety of global dishes, including ceviche, pot de crème, and brodo. You’ll also find raw or grilled oysters, crab, cured and smoked meats, and classic entrees like New York strip. If you want to sample everything, the camp-out feast provides tasting options.

    Location: 2725 State St, Carlsbad, CA 92008, USA

    Open: Sunday–Thursday from 5 pm to 10 pm, Friday–Saturday from 5 pm to 11 pm

    Phone: +1 760-637-5121

    Map
    5

    Market Restaurant & Bar

    Sample seasonal produce

    The Market Restaurant & Bar offers a unique dining experience with seasonal dishes that feature locally grown produce, home-raised meats, and fresh-caught seafood. Each day, the menu is changed to offer the freshest ingredients, all complemented by a craft cocktail menu. Located in Del Mar, the restaurant features some of the best produce from the California landscape. You could try dishes like baby beetroot, avocado, and grapefruit salad or chicken pozole verde to start. For entrees, options may include roasted Icelandic code, grilled beef tenderloin, or veal schnitzel.

    Location: 3702 Via De La Valle, Del Mar, CA 92014, USA

    Open: Tuesday–Saturday from 3 pm to 8.30 pm (closed Sunday–Monday)

    Phone: +1 858-523-0007

    Map
    6

    Addison Restaurant

    Sample molecular gastronomy

    Addison Restaurant is a California gastronomy restaurant with dishes inspired by regional ingredients and Southern California flavours. Located on Grand Del Mar Way, Addison Restaurant is the city’s first Michelin-starred restaurant and a distinctive dining experience. The menu for Addison Restaurant rotating seasonally to ensure everything is as fresh and delicious as possible. All meals may be complemented by an extensive wine list with labels from California and around the world. When you dine, you can choose between a 5-course tasting menu or a 10-course tasting menu.

    Location: 5200 Grand Del Mar Way, San Diego, CA 92130, USA

    Open: Tuesday–Saturday from 5 pm to 10 pm (closed Sunday–Monday)

    Phone: +1 858-314-1900

    Map

    photo by l_zimberoff (CC BY 2.0) modified

    7

    A.R. Valentien

    Have a fine dinner overlooking the countryside

    A.R. Valentien is an intimate eatery that serves sophisticated seasonal American fare with a fine-dining experience. Located in the Lodge at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, A.R. Valentien features a craftsman design with exposed wood beams and a cosy atmosphere with a deck and views of the golf course. The menu features several courses of fresh, local food, such as charcuterie with liver and short rib, citrus salad, and ahi tuna carpaccio. You’ll also find delectable dishes like swordfish with salt spring island mussels, caramelised sea scallops, and roasted liberty duck breast and confit.

    Location: 11480 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Thursday from 5 pm to 9 pm, Friday–Saturday from 5 pm to 9.30 pm (closed Monday–Tuesday)

    Phone: +1 858-777-6635

    Map

    photo by Navin75 (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

    8

    Yakitori Hino

    Experience yakitori

    Yakitori Hino is a Japanese eatery that specialises in the traditional style of cooking yakitori grilled over Japanese bincho charcoal. Located in Kearny Mesa, the restaurant offers a range of Japanese foods to accompany the skewers. Options for skewers range from chicken wing, heart, gizzard, and liver to beef with wasabi to pork with yam cake. For small dishes, you can have seaweed salad, monkfish liver with plum sauce, spicy fried chicken, and more. There’s also a sake bar with bottled sake and cocktails.

    Location: 7420 Clairemont Mesa Blvd, San Diego, CA 92111

    Open: Thursday–Monday from 5 pm to 10 pm (closed Tuesday–Wednesday)

    Phone: +1 858-880-6048

    Map
    9

    Menya Ultra

    Enjoy authentic Ramen noodles

    Menya Ultra is a Ramen noodle restaurant that serves a variety of homemade noodles from award-winning Ramen Master Mr. Endo. Located on the Clairemont Mesa Boulevard in Kearny Plaza, Menya Ultra is a great place to try choice ramen and relax with Japanese beer. One of the aspects of Menya Ultra’s success is that Mr. Endo creates noodles from scratch using wheat, salt, and lye water for homemade dough that’s hand-pulled. You can customise your Ramen with ingredients like pork chashu, bean sprouts, wood ear mushroom, and roasted sesame seeds.

    Location: 8199 Clairemont Mesa Blvd m, San Diego, CA 92111, USA

    Open: Monday–Thursday from 11 am to 2 pm and 4.30 pm to 8 pm, Friday–Saturday from 11 am to 8 pm

    Phone: +1 858-571-2010

    Map

    photo by RightCowLeftCoast (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    10

    The Fishery

    Dine on fresh seafood

    The Fishery is a combination restaurant, market, and wholesale distribution centre for a unique concept that’s a favourite in the community. The restaurant is housed in a mid-century, brick-and-mortar warehouse only a few blocks from the ocean on Cass Street. With access to the seafood market and an open kitchen, the Fishery serves the freshest and most available seasonal fish and produce. You can get anything from oysters in a half shell and shrimp cocktail to ceviche, squid ink risotto, and whole fish.

    Location: 5040 Cass St, San Diego, CA 92109, USA

    Open: Wednesday–Thursday from 11 am to 8 pm, Friday–Saturday from 11 am to 9 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 8 pm (closed Monday–Tuesday)

    Phone: +1 858-272-9985

    Map

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