Feast! Entries for January, 2013

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Ra downtown: $3 sake and free sushi lessons

Ed finds Rogelio the sushi chef doesn't laugh at his, well, ignorance

“Patience, Grasshopper. Quality sushi takes time.” That’s what stops me, at the head of the menu. A kinda quote from ...

WNL5: La Jolla’s Whisknladle celebrating a successful half-decade

It was 2008, but I remember it clearly, sharing a table with young restaurateur Arturo Kassel and discussing the origins ...

Ocean Beach mini-donuts

The OB Farmers' Market contains wonderful, portable, miniaturized treats.

I was minding my own business, waltzing through the Ocean Beach Farmers’ Market (Wednesdays from 4-7 on Newport Street) in ...

Downtown: Nose to the phos at Pho Xpress

It's the aroma, getting richer and richer...

The thing about the Vietnamese soup-meal pho is the more you slurp it down, the better it gets. The more ...

MOGL cares for La Mirage

Locally-run loyalty program establishes a fundraising drive to help an ailing restaurant owner.

Yesterday, I (and all the other MOGL subscribers) got an email with the subject, “request to help a restaurant owner ...

Eclipse falling on Fern Street

Local chocolatier seeping like molten morsels into South Park

After spending the past half-decade in North Park, Eclipse Chocolat is moving to South Park. In doing so, owner Will ...

Hillcrest: farewell Urban Eats, welcome Parma

More musical chairs at a challenging location

First it was an Italian coffee house, Caffe Vergnano 1882 - it had been going since 1882 at the chain's ...

Shkoffing pizza Chicago style

Berkeley Pizza in the Gaslamp has the right crust.

I will shamelessly admit that every time I go to the Little Italy Mercato, I snag a sample of Berkeley ...

Overseas Suds, Part 2: Italy

Cucina Urbana adds Italian craft beer to its repertoire

Many in the craft beer know are on to the fact that Italy is gaining a great deal of notoriety ...

High expectations for Gang Kitchen

New, pan-Asian spot downtown set the bar high, delivered in some respects. Still has lots of potential.

Gang Kitchen was hyped and hyped, and then hyped a little more in the months leading up to its opening. ...

Barrio Logan’s new star: Cocina Doña Tina

Can the new Mercado's restaurant compete with Cuatro Milpas?

They say it has been 21 years coming. But the Mercado apartments are open, its supermarket is open, and now ...

Overseas Suds, Part 1: Japan

Brews Up and Ogawashi team up for Japanese craft beer tasting

Thanks to the prevalence of craft beer in San Diego, our citizens are becoming very familiar with brews from the ...

Italian Street Food at Monello in Little Italy

A Menu Inspired by Milan

Following in the footsteps of their Little Italy predecessors, when Bencotto Italian Kitchen owners (Chef Fabrizio Cavallini, Valentina DiPietro, and ...

Win cash at Old Mill Cafe

North Park restaurant has a novel idea for generating customer loyalty.

Old Mill Cafe is trying to buy my loyalty. And yours, too. All of our loyalties. With cold, hard cash. ...

Off Days are On Days: Sunday Brunch and Tapas Tuesdays at Starlite in Middletown

I never saw an episode of Cheers -- the show was before my time -- but I get the gist, ...

Buck-a-shuck for oysters at Spike Africa’s, downtown

New fish joint brings its own legend to Horton Plaza

At last: hope for the corner of 4th and Broadway. I was there Friday night around six, and the corner ...

25 Forty on Thursdays

The weekly special at this Old Town bistro is a hit.

I went to 25 Forty Bistro and Bakehouse (2540 Congress Street) for “Trattoria Thursday” last night and I was served ...

El Vitral: “Window” joint open? Closed?

The place with 220 tequilas and awesome happy hour deals has a sign on the door...

Down at the ballpark. Worrying. The Proper Pub, 20 yards away, closed down for lack of interest, like no foot ...

Green Flash embarks on Hop Odyssey

Mira Mesa brewery to release six hop-forward beers in 2013

Since moving into their 45,000 square foot digs in Mira Mesa in 2011, the folks at Green Flash Brewing Company ...

PubCakes mixing things up

Craft beer-infused dessert biz going in a new direction

I met Navy linguist-turned-pro baker Misty Birchall at a San Diego Brewers Guild meeting in 2010. Despite being a local ...

Pacifica's iWine

My thoughts on wine lists delivered via iPad.

Last night, I journeyed up to Del Mar to check out a tasting menu from the new-ish chef at Pacifica. ...

Bermuda Triangle! Revealed in Old Town Market Cafe...

"People get in the warp area, and weird things happen."

A turista comes up, confused. “Excuse me. Is this Old Town?” My buddy Jason nods. “Yes sir. This is Old ...

Phileas Foggs speaks proper English

Making a long-delayed return to Poway craft beer bar and resto

Last week, I shared news on a special barleywine being brewed by Karl Strauss Brewing Company to celebrate the five ...

Dark Horse Coffee is open!

Normal Heights now has its very own super-small-batch coffee roaster

I’ve watched, hawk-like and keen-eyed, as Dark Horse Coffee postponed opening over and over and over again. Normal Height’s new ...

Stone Age in Middletown? Not So Fast food at 57 Degrees

This is not your great great great great great great grandpappy’s food. (But it’s maybe as near as we can get…)

I see the shadow of disappointment cross June’s face. Guess it's because I said "bread” when she asked if I ...

Kamikaze 7 crashing into Gaslamp

Restaurateur/TV personality opening nightlife-driven downtown sushi spot

Kevin Roberts. That name rang a bell when someone brought it up late last week. Then it hit me, a ...

Boar burger fail

Burger Lounge's new burger (and its free burger offer) are non-delicious in Hillcrest.

I’ve been seeing everyone and his cousin lined up at Burger Lounge in Hillcrest as of late. This is probably ...

Point Loma's coffee roaster

Red's has great decor, under-performing espresso machines.

Based on looks alone, I liked Red’s Espresso Eatery (1017 Rosecrans Street) immediately. The place had an unexpected amount of ...

The Counter: East Village's littlest burger?

The Counter has a deal of a meal…uh, might bring your microscope

This is so typical. I’d been watching this corner – 6th and G – for months, waiting for these guys ...

McDesi at Kasi

New Indian spot in Hillcrest serves curry fast food style

Naked Pizza tried to simplify ‘za with iPhone apps and pictographic menus. While the PB franchise is still in operation, ...

Sea & Smoke flowing into Flower Hill

New restaurant from Urban Solace creator coming to Del Mar

Chef Matt Gordon was once the darling of North Park. A bearded, burly guy whose pork belly and brown liquor ...

Gaslamp: Dick’s cleaning up (its patio, not its act)

Dick’s Last Resort is a mess – so you’ll stay warm

Dick’s is all screwed up. You know Dick’s Last Resort (345 Fourth Avenue (between J and K Streets), Gaslamp downtown, ...

Downtown's newest cocktail bar

Bailiwick enters the cocktail fray with some good drinks in a high-profile spot

The new cocktail spot downtown, Bailiwick (756 5th Avenue), has a cool look about it. It’s a mixture of shabby ...

The Prado at Night

There are exactly 200 restaurants participating in San Diego Restaurant Week this year. So far, I've only been able to ...

El Patio de Old Town: Hot soup on a cold night

Nothing better than a roaring fire, bubbling tortilla soup, and Old Town to yourself

Is it cold? Claro que si. Is it crowded? Claro que no. Is the soup sabroso? You betcha. Specially sitting ...

This Burro blind, not dumb

The Blind Burro’s got some serious pre-game game

I didn’t sob when The Fleetwood closed its doors. Despite its sleek appeal, it always came across as another style-over-substance ...

Scoops and stamps

Is it a cafe with a post office or a post office with a cafe?

I saw a cool and random thing the other day in Old Town — a combination post office and ice ...

Time Stands Still at Farmhouse Cafe

Farmhouse Cafe is about to celebrate its 5th anniversary with a celebratory four-course dinner that will be served for the ...

Letting the beer outta the box

It’s not too late to get some highly coveted beer at The Lost Abbey

Last year, I wrote about one of the most ambitious beer projects to be undertaken by an American craft brewery—the ...

Chef Brian Malarkey judges ABC's The Taste

New cooking competition reality show premieres January 22nd, also stars Nigella Lawson, Ludo Lefebvre, Anthony Bourdain.

San Diego chef Brian Malarkey will be a judge and team mentor on ABC’s new reality/cooking competition show The Taste, ...

Dogs for UH

Two of the best street foods join forces in one liquor store parking lot.

University Heights’ street food scene is exploding! Well, sort of. I cruised by the liquor store at Texas and Meade ...

Fabrison's: crêpe lessons in the sky

Ray dishes on crêpe secrets from France

Ray's flying over San Diego Bay. Okay, aboard the 901. Looks down from the Bay bridge to the 32nd street ...

Another local anniversary ale

Karl Strauss hooks Philleas Foggs up with 5th anniversary brew

Last week, I noted the trend of local breweries developing anniversary ales for popular craft beer bars. In doing so, ...

Bento and sandwich shop in Old Town is a just plain excellent idea

Oh, man, this is a great idea. Like, a really great idea. Bento and sandwiches living together as one. Two ...

Downtown: Tivoli's brewski breakfast

Tivoli's best daytime meal deals include beer

Oh man. I never do this. Have beer for breakfast. But here I am, sitting in the Tivoli, jes' 'cause ...

Schuy's the limit for cookbook author

Local chef pens comprehensive guide to food, beer and craft brewing culture

The first time I heard the name Schuyler Schultz, was when I took a meeting in late 2009 at The ...

No musubi?

Ocean Beach Hawaiian bar doesn't deliver on the island food, but the vibe's still cool.

I was feeling mighty mainland the other night, freezing in the cold and darkness, so I thought to myself, hey, ...

Tent City, Coronado: Bring home the bacon!

Great bacon burger, but…...what's it gonna take to chow into a chunk of real bacon?

Carla and I were dining out the other night. Tent City (1100 Orange Avenue, Coronado, 619-435-4611). We went a little ...

Long Line, Short Menu at Las Cuatro Milpas

I have "almost" gone to Las Cuatro Milpas in Barrio Logan on several occasions, always to be deterred by the ...

RB Inn's sign flashes "No (chef) Vacancy"

Rancho Bernardo Inn names chef for its upcoming restaurant

Last year, Rancho Bernardo Inn (17550 Bernardo Oaks Drive, Rancho Bernardo) closed its ancient fine dining restaurant, El Bizcocho, in ...

Escape

Downtown fish bar charges a premium price, but the fish is seafood is indeed fine.

A sense of good humor marked the menu at Escape Fish Bar with little snippets and jokes (“stalk us on ...

Jing Si: East Village has good coffee, place to think

The Taiwan-based Buddhist bookstore has really vibes for daydreaming, or writing your thesis without pressure

“From good thoughts to everlasting deeds.” These sayings are all around you, but they’re the only things interrupting your thoughts ...

Santee gets a brewer in Butcher's

Butcher’s Brewing takes over Manzanita Brewing’s original brewhouse

It seems like only yesterday I was venturing to North Park’s Ritual Tavern to get a taste of a brand ...

Sherman's Shack replaces Urban Chicken

Grant Hill loses a chicken house and gains a burger joint.

Urban Chicken was cool. It wasn’t the best place in the whole wide Grant Hill, but the chicken was tasty ...

Currant's HH: Mussel deal makes a ripple

Happy hour at Currant is, uh, raisin' the bar...

So I’ve just swung by Sushi Deli 2 (see blog yesterday). Didn’t go in, but last time I was there, ...

Anniversary ales abound

Alpine Beer, Societe Brewing pay sudsy homage to O'Brien's Pub

When assessing the San Diego craft beer scene, most people see two camps—breweries and the venues that deal their product. ...

Japanese in Hillcrest

One yakitori grill closes, another opens in its place.

Raku is gone, replaced by Tec Chan, which isn’t all that different. The inside looks basically the same, although some ...

Sushi Deli 2 downtown: If you could bottle their secret…

Is it a rock star? Is it an iPad 5 launch? Is it their soy sauce?

This was the scene downtown at 3rd and Broadway, next to the Spreckels Theater. http://sandiegoreader.com/users/photos/2013/jan/10/38192/ http://sandiegoreader.com/users/photos/2013/jan/10/38194/ Except this crowd has ...

New Mexico Cafe: vuelve a la vida!

A visit to the ladies in Barrio Logan cures the bug

Oh man. This was the only place I could come to. Last two days Carla and I have been heaving. ...

Beer's birthplaces vs. home sweet home

A post-European perspective on San Diego's beer scene

For years, I stowed away as much extra money as I could muster, storing it in the bank and fighting ...

Cheapest steak in town?

North Park bar may just have the best deal on a steak dinner, but it's only one night a week.

I don’t know how I missed out on steak night at Gilly’s, living right around the block and all, but ...

First Look: ChuckAlek Independent Brewers

Sights and details from the debut of Ramona's first craft brewery

The first time I wrote about ChuckAlek Independent Brewers (2330 Main Street, Suite C, Ramona), the only thing I had ...

Prep Kitchen Little Italy: 2012 was a very good year...

Honors keep rolling in. My honor: best bread to soak up sops

Spotted this on India… http://sandiegoreader.com/users/photos/2013/jan/07/38013/ Wow. That's two nods for Best New Restaurant, a Best Chef (Ryan Johnston) and a ...

Fresh wasabi at Ikiru

Japanese restaurant in Liberty Station has the hard to find condiment on the menu

I’ve had my eyes open looking for fresh wasabi ever since a reader told me about a (since closed) sushi ...

Imbibe blares, "Blair's the man!"

Local craft beer champion named Imbibe Magazine's Beer Person of the Year

A few weeks ago, San Diego bar owner Scot Blair and I were touring the Malheur brewery in Buggenhout, Belgium. ...

Sora on Broadway: Drink and ye shall eat

Free HH food as long as you buy full-fare drinkies

Wow. This is swank. Sora (655 West Broadway, downtown, 619-564-7100). I’ve come in for happy hour. Thursdays and Fridays, you ...

Luncheon at Pamplemousse Grille

The illustrious-sounding Pamplemousse Grille in Solana Beach is not cheap, but Chef/Owner Jeffrey Strauss does his best to assure that ...

Suds, second chances at The Local

Revisiting a previously black-listed downtown bar and restaurant

Sometimes one’s experience at a venue can be so remarkably bad that it results in that place being black-listed for ...

Kalina Village House

La Mesa Ukrainian restaurant boils and stews it all

Having recently read Dead Souls, I’ve had the culture and cuisine of Eastern Europe at least somewhat on my mind. ...

Ida's Deli: Lebanese surprise in the giant black building

Ida's got a big following for her hot beef melts

Walking past that big black glass building at 7th and B in the financial district. Thing I notice is the ...

Downtown Ue Kara: Sushi goes Mexican?

Everybody around here knows it: Arturo's take on sushi has Baja written all over it

Big surprise at this little place next to the old Churchill Hotel. http://www.sandiegoreader.com/users/photos/2013/jan/03/37847/ Arturo, who owns Ue Kara Grill (819 ...

Can it, BP!

Ballast Point to employ new look and packaging material in 2013

Two short years ago, the sight of aluminum cans made craft beer fans point and snicker. Now, thanks to a ...

City Heights' Pupuseria

Few things are more satisfying to eat on a cool evening (or any evening) than this Salvadoran specialty — a great alternative to tacos!

I espied El Salvador Pupuseria on my way back from Tom’s BBQ. Honestly, I don’t know how it had evaded ...

Little Italy: The gastropub pioneers are back! (Think Ironside...)

The guys who gave you Craft & Commerce, Neighborhood, El Dorado, Underbelly, are landing again in LI

Are these guys on a roll or what? Arsalun Tafazoli and Nate Stanton started off - only five years ago! ...

Chewing on Brick + Mortar

Checking out replacement to Gordon Ramsay's hellish disappointment

The last time I was in the space currently housing Brick + Mortar (820 Fifth Avenue, Downtown), I was cringing ...

Chinese BBQ in City Heights

Ducks, chickens, and pigs all meet a savory, crispy, soy sauce-drenched end.

There’s not much to Tom’s BBQ in City Heights. The storefront comprises a counter, register, display case, and a table ...

Feast's top-dozen posts of 2012

Most popular Feast entries of the past year

1) Dinner at the Movies: Cinepolis Del Mar Luxury Cinema 2) Le Dîner à San Diego: Evening in White 3) ...

Ceviche jackpot

Tijuana restaurant is totally worth the wait in the linea

I have got to start bringing my phone with me when I go to Mexico. I always try to travel ...

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