Food and Drink

A well-meaning gringo in Tijuana

One dish, one drink at a time, south of the fence

A few months teaching English in Colombia did little to prepare me for the elaborate linguistic pozole that stews in the streets of Tijuana. When I moved south of the fence three years ago, I ...

This human thing going on

Small, original restaurants with real people

Could there be classier places than the ones on this list? For sure. Cheaper? Yes. Cooler? Of course. But the places I find myself going back to have this human thing going on. They’re small, ...

Not just warm fuzzies

Special meals

I’ve moved around my entire life, so my memories are loaded with the kind of special meal you associate with a meaningful person, place, or time. Some of the special meals I’ve chosen remind me ...

Crushes evolve

Restaurants in the running for a long-term food relationship

I love crushes. I get crushes on television shows, on singers, on colors, cookbooks, chefs, and, of course, food. My longest food crushes are enduring passions for buttered popcorn and marshmallow Peeps (nobody’s perfect), and ...

It’s not news, but it’s love

Critics have to eat even when they’re not critiquing

As a critic, you eat for your readers. It’s not enough to enjoy, say, a burger and tell folks, “It was yummy!” You have to judge the grind, the pack, the cooking, the seasoning, the ...

Bizarre life, delicious food at the border

Restaurants that comforted me in the time of my discomfort

Being both Mexican and American did nothing to prepare me for the bizarre life at the border. Mastery of Spanish did little to help understand the complexities of Tijuana. In this city, cultures clash, streets ...

Taste of the familiar

A sampling of standbys

While I enjoy trying new places, I still tend to gravitate toward the familiar. I don’t want to have to guess whether a restaurant will have friendly service, a comfortable space, and satisfying food — ...

Where dress flip-flops are a thing

Once people got picky about beer, they started getting particular about food too.

San Diego has always had the makings of a food mecca, but it’s only been in, say, the past decade that a majority of citizens have decided they don’t want to settle for an average ...

Europeans and Asians eat mackerel and bonito

Americans have a narrow definition of what constitutes fine table fare

Fun Fact Number One: University Heights seafood counter Beerfish couldn’t get www.beerfish.com because some obscure rod and tackle outfit with the tagline “Worse for wear and overpriced” has it locked down. Fun Fact Number Two: ...

Jack White leaves Ballast Point

It's now truly a Constellation Brands company

On the heels of Thursday's announcement by head brewer and COO Yuseff Cherney that we was leaving Ballast Point came the news that founder Jack White is also leaving the beer company he launched 20 ...

It’s like a Korean Chipotle

That’s not a good thing

I’m not sure what the actual distinction is between fast-food and fast-casual restaurants, but I’m inclined to believe that if broccoli is served it’s better at the latter. At least, that was my thinking going ...

Chiefs depart Ballast Point

Head brewer Yuseff Cherney joins exodus of executives

Only a month shy of celebrating its 20th anniversary as a brewery, Ballast Point Brewing has seen a number of high-level departures from its executive staff this week. Yuseff Cherney, the company's longtime head brewer ...

A ribbing at the racetrack

Pitmasters dish it up at the state BBQ

The Del Mar BBQ State Championship brought 47 grillers and smokers from around California (and Arizona) to compete at the racetrack on Sunday, July 17. While a panel of Kansas City Barbeque Society judges did ...

The secret language of coffee buyers

"You won't learn Spanish from this book."

"My Spanish is terrible," admits Andy Newbom. Nevertheless, the 13-year coffee professional has co-authored a new book titled Coffee Spanish for Coffee Buyers, a field guide intended to help coffee buyers, roasters, baristas, and coffee ...

The Bees of Bennett Valley

Fresh, herbaceous and very refreshing

Inspired by a photograph his fiancée took during a recent visit to Bennett Valley, Bankers' Hill bar manager Zack Gray developed the Bees of Bennett Valley cocktail, a cross-pollination of the lemon-honey-and-gin classic Bee’s Knees, ...

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