Eating and Drinking in San Diego

San Diego has many fantastic bars and restaurants featuring a wide variety of cuisines at a wide range of price points.  Note that the conference does not endorse any of these venues – these are just some ideas to help get you started as you explore the area.  The concierge desk at the Sheraton can also provide you with printed lists of recommendations.

In addition, if you’re looking for a grocery store, there is a Trader Joe’s approximately 3.3 miles from the hotel in Liberty Station/Point Loma.  Cab fare is approximately $20 round trip.  See this map for directions.

At the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina (Marina Tower)

The Sheraton has several restaurants and bars onsite.

Harbor’s Edge: Typical large hotel restaurant; good views of the water, outdoor and indoor seating. Breakfast: 6:30 AM – 11:00 AM; Lunch: 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM; Dinner: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM.

Quinn’s Mooring: Sports Bar serving sandwiches, salads, appetizers, and a few entrees.  Saturday – Sunday 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM; Daily 5:30 PM – 1:00 AM

Shoreline Restaurant: Snacks, drinks, and grilled items. Sunday – Thursday 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM; Friday – Saturday 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM

Starbucks: There is a Starbucks located in the main lobby of the Sheraton’s Marina Tower that serves breakfast as well as the standard coffee, muffins, etc.

Tapatini: Martini and Tapas bar.  Friendly bartenders are willing to be adventurous if you challenge them.  Full bar, excellent martinis.  Hours 4:00 PM – 12:00 AM daily.

Near the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina

Unfortunately, there is not much located within walking distance of the Sheraton due to its location on Harbor Island.  However, there are a few places you might check out if you’re trying to avoid a taxi or bus ride.

The Boathouse

Location: 2040 Harbor Island Drive

See website for complicated list of  hours. Yet another meat/seafood place with limited veggie options.  Food was edible, but not particularly interesting.  Decor is rather run-down.  Nice view of the marina, large outdoor patios. Casual.

Harbor Island Liquor and Deli

Location: 2040 Harbor Island Drive

Small liquor store that also sells sodas and snacks (chips, candy, etc).  Has a delicatessen counter that serves breakfast (eggs, omelettes) from 7-11AM and lunch (sandwiches) from 11AM until closing.  I believe they are open until 7pm except on Sunday.

Island Prime/C-level

Location: 880 Harbor Island Dr.

Probably the most gourmet (and expensive) offering on Harbor Island.  Island Prime is open from 11am daily, while C-level is open from 5pm daily.  Reasonable wine selection, excellent views.  Seafood/meat centric, but veggie options available (mostly salad and sides).  C-level has a gluten-free menu.

Papanani’s Deli

Location: 1350 Harbor Island Drive

Breakfast, sandwiches, limited pizza. Open 7 AM – 6 PM daily; until 7PM on the weekend.

Tom Ham’s Lighthouse

Location: 2150 Harbor Island Drive

Open at 11:30AM for lunch Monday-Friday, 10:30AM on Saturday, and 9:30AM for Sunday brunch.  Dinner starts at 4:30PM daily. Also fairly gourmet (and expensive).  Located on the opposite end of Harbor Island from Island Prime.  Seafood/meat centric, limited veggie options.  Reasonable wine list.  They supposedly have a fantastic Sunday Brunch, if you’re around on a Sunday, but reservations are recommended.

Point Loma

Most of the following places are located approximately 2-3 miles from the Sheraton.

The Brigantine

Location: 2725 Shelter Island Drive

Local seafood.  Lunch available in the Oyster Bar Monday-Saturday 11:30AM – 3PM.  Dinner 5PM – 9PM daily, hours extended to 10PM on Friday and Saturday.  Happy hour daily 4PM – 7PM daily and all night on Monday.

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern

Location: 4490 N. Harbor Drive

“Comfort food for the foodie”.  Burgers, salad, sandwiches, fish and chips. Lunch Mon – Sat 11:30 am – 3:00 pm; Sun 10:00 am – 3:00 pm.  Dinner Sun – Thurs 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm and Fri – Sat 3:00 pm – 10:00 pm.

Miguel’s Cocina

Location: 2912 Shelter Island Drive

Mexican food & Margaritas Open 11AM-9:30 PM daily; hours extended to 10PM Friday and Saturday. Happy Hour 3PM – 6PM daily and all night on Monday.

Mitch’s Seafood

Location: 1403 Scott Street

Casual, fresh seafood, fish tacos, located on the water.

Pizza Nova

Location: 5120 Harbor Drive

California style wood-fired pizza and pasta. Hours: 11:00 AM – 9:30 PM SUN – THURS, 11:00 AM – 10:30 PM FRI and SAT

Pomodoro

Location 2833 Avenida de Portugal

Reasonably priced traditional Italian fare.  Casual, indoor-outdoor seating.

Supannee House of Thai

Location: 2907 Shelter Island Drive

Reasonably priced Thai food, takeout available. Monday – Saturday Lunch 11:00-3:00 Dinner 5:00 -9:00 Sunday 12:00 – 9:00

Liberty Station

Liberty Station is another outdoor mall-ish type property approximately 3.5 miles from the Sheraton.  Due to its proximity to the local Naval base, expect to see lots of uniforms.  There is a variety of chain restaurants including burgers, pizza, sushi, and Thai, along with a Trader Joe’s and a number of other retail stores.  Check out the complete directory on the website.    Here are a few of the options available.

Con Pane Rustic Breads and Cafe

Location: 2750 Dewey Road

Gourmet Sandwiches and Bakery

Corvette Diner

Location: 2965 Historic Decatur Road

Kitschy classic 50′s diner.  Kid-friendly. Sun: 11am-9pm Mon-Thu: 11:30am-9pm Fri: 11:30am-11pm Sat: 11am-11pm

Oggi’s Pizza

Location: 2562 Laning Road

Inexpensive chain pizza joint.  Pizzas and flatbreads are tasty.  They offer a beer sampler of locally-brewed beers.  Very popular with occupants of the local naval base, so don’t be surprised if military folks outnumber civilians. Open daily starting at 11AM.

Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza

Location: 2401 Truxton Road

Inexpensive Wood-fired pizzas, salads, tapas.  Gluten-free crust available.  Eat in or have it delivered.  Mon-Thurs 11:00 am to 9:30 pm Fri-Sat 11:00 am to 10:00 pm Sun 11:00 am to 9:30 pm

Tender Greens

Location: 2400 Historic Decatur Road

Inexpensive soups and salads made with fresh ingredients, most of which are sourced locally. Daily: 11:00am-9:00pm

Gaslamp Quarter

There’s so much to do in the Gaslamp Quarter, and it’s so easy to get there from the Sheraton, that you may not want to go anywhere else.  If you just go to 5th and Market and wander around, you’ll find plenty to eat/drink/do. The following list is just a small sample of some of the places you can go.  The Gaslamp Quarter is approximately 3-4 miles from the Sheraton, depending on where in the Quarter you’re headed.

Andaz

Location: 600 F Street

The Andaz is a gorgeous rooftop bar that sits on top of the Hyatt downtown near Petco Park.  Everything is as expensive as you’d expect, but it’s worth going up there just to have a look around.  Tends to get packed with trendy business types and twenty-somethings on the prowl.  ”Upscale casual” dress code enforced, whatever that means.  They check ID at the door for all patrons, so don’t forget it.

Bacchus Wine Market

Location: 647 G Street

If you’re just looking to sample wine and/or buy a bottle of wine, check out Bacchus Wine Market. Open Monday-Saturday from noon until 9pm, they offer an eclectic selection of wines from around the world.

Barley Mash

Location: 600 5th (5th and Market)

Recently opened, Barley Mash boasts a good beer bourbon selection, along with typical bar offerings.  The food is fantastic.  It’s not cheap, but the prices are reasonable considering the quality.  The menu is creative and definitely not your typical bar food. Interesting speciality drinks.  Attentive and knowledgable wait staff.  Open 11AM-2AM daily.

Basic

Location: 410 10th Avenue

Popular modern, hipster pizza joint located near Petco Park.  Full bar, but all beer is in bottles. Long list of speciality cocktails served in Mason jars. Still, the locals seem to be packing in, so the food must be tasty. Open Mon – Sun 11:30am – 2am.

Bice Ristorante

Location: 425 Island Avenue

Opens for dinner at 5; happy hour 5-7 daily.  Italian fusion cuisine; menu changes weekly.  Fairly pricey.  Flash overkill website, you’ve been warned.

East Village Tavern and Bowl

Location: 930 Market Street

In case you didn’t get bowling out of your system a few conferences ago, check out East Village Tavern and Bowl.  Large fairly typical bar menu, reasonably priced.  Full bar.  15 beers on draft. Live music on Fridays.  Bowling lanes are separated from the main bar/dining area, so you won’t be overwhelmed with the sound of bowling. Mon-Fri 11:30AM – 2AM / Sat-Sun 11AM – 2AM.

El Vitral

Location: 815 J street

Open until 10 Monday-Thursday and midnight Friday-Saturday.  Happy hour 5-7 daily; Late night happy hour Friday/Sat from 10-midnight. Excellent gourmet Mexican food along with a monster selection of tequila and margaritas.  Several Mexican beer options, full bar. Location for the LPC closing party.  Wall of glass garage doors opens up to the lawn at Petco Park; indoor/outdoor seating.

The Hopping Pig Gastropub

Location: 734 5th Avenue

Large selection of locally brewed craft beers on draft alongside classics like Guinness and Young’s Double Chocolate Stout.   Reasonably priced  entrees, burgers, and small plates. Mon-Thu, Sun 12 pm – 1 am, Fri-Sat 12 pm – 2 am.

Knotty Barrel Gastropub

Location: 844 Market Street

Reasonably priced high-end-ish pub food.  Burgers, sandwiches, salads, fish-and-chips, with a little risotto and fried Twinkies thrown in for good measure. 22 beers on draft, 80 bottled beers speciality cocktails.

The Merk Bistro

Location: 850 5th Avenue.

Simple menu highlighting seasonal ingredients designed by Chef Gordon Ramsey.  Large wine menu.  Not cheap – entrees run around $20.

Nicky Rotten’s

Location: 560 5th Avenue

Beer and burget joint with a full bar and lots of sports on numerous TV screens.  Reasonably priced.  Interesting burger variations.

Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery

Location: 401 G street

National chain brewery and restaurant. Pizza, pasta, sandwiches.  Approximately 10 Rock Bottom house beers on tap. Hours from 11 AM – midnight daily; open until 2 AM on Friday and Saturday.

Tin Fish

Location: 170 6th Avenue (near Petco Park)

Serving casual seafood – Fried and grilled seafood sandwiches, fried seafood platters, fish tacos and burritos, quesadillas.  Open for lunch and dinner Monday – Thursday (11am-8pm) Friday – Saturday (11am-10pm) Sunday (11am-7pm).

Toast Enoteca and Cucina

Location: 927 J Street

Put money on a card (no charge to get the card) and serve yourself from 65 wines using an Enomatic wine system.  You can drink as little as 1 ounce of any particular wine, so it’s great for tasting new things.  400 other wines available by the bottle. Wine selection varies from low to high end and changes frequently. Tasty Italian pub food – pizza, panini, pasta.  Gluten-free pizza and pasta, veggie friendly.  It’s fairly small, so don’t show up with 20 of your closest friends.  Indoor & outdoor seating available. Open until 10PM Sunday-Thursday; 1:30 PM on Friday and Saturday.  Small dessert menu – probably not a bad place to go for a late-night glass of wine and something sweet.

Midtown/Little Italy

The Little Italy area is located approximately 2.5 miles from the hotel and features a number of Italian restaurants, pubs, shops, and art galleries.

Blue Water Seafood Market and Grill

Location: 3667 India Street

Casual, counter-ordered seafood featuring chowders, oysters, fish sandwiches and tacos. Prices are reasonable; beverage options are limited. Open Monday-Thursday 11 AM – 9 PM, Friday from 11 AM to 10 PM, Saturday from 11:30 AM to 10 PM and Sunday 11:30 AM to 9 PM.

Cafe Zucchero

Location: 1731 India Street

Quaint traditional Italian restaurant serving Iinexpensive pizza, panini, pasta, and pastries.  Casual.  See website for hours.

El Indio

Location: 3695 India Street

Inexpensive standard mexican cuisine (tacos, burritos, quesadillas, chimichangas, enchiladas, breakfast).    Open daily from 8 AM to 9 PM.

Saffron

Location: 3731-B India Street

One of San Diego’s first Thai restaurants.  Reasonably priced Thai food.  Monday-Saturday 10:30am-8:pm. Sunday 11am-8pm.

Other Locations

San Diego Brewer’s Guild

Location: Various

San Diego has a significant number of independent breweries.  Go to the Brewer’s Guild website and download their Visitors Guide for a complete list of breweries and pubs that feature local beer.  The guide includes a handy dandy brewery and pub map.

Seaport Village

Location: 849 W. Harbor Drive

Easily reachable from the Sheraton via the Big Bay Shuttle, Seaport Village is home to over 70 shops and restaurants.  It’s basically an outdoor mall.  Restaurants include several seafood restaurants, burgers, a Greek cafe, pizza, delis, etc.    Check out their webpage for more details.  There isn’t really any bar presence, but if you’re looking for food it’s not a bad place to go.

Seven Grand San Diego Whiskey Bar

Location: 3054 University Avenue

Massive selection of whiskeys (check out their online menu!).  ~30 beers on tap.