Food and Drink

What the heck is a lichtenhainer?

How a San Diego dentist’s historical German beer became an American medal winner

There’s nothing easier to find in North Park than a good IPA. But a good lichtenhainer? Only one place that I know about. So, what’s a lichtenhainer? I wondered too. The unsurprising answer would be ...

Italian olives, smoked mozzarella, and roast beef

No pizza, but Buona Forchetta's wine bar makes a good sandwich

When word broke last year that the hip Italian restaurant in my neighborhood was opening a bodega on the same block, it primed me for a 2018 anticipating all the authentic, imported delights it would ...

A spicy Old Fashioned

“What sets it apart is the bittersweet chocolate coming up the back”

Consider the quotidian comforts of the common whiskey flask. The preferred vade mecum of serious sippers, this versatile vessel fits in pocket, purse, or petticoat—a genie in a bottle who, at a moment’s command, provides ...

I’ve gone crazy and ordered a breakfast salad

And the bread bowl is not just a cheaper choice on the menu, it’s delicious

‘Body Butter,” says the sample the guy’s handing out. “Free application,” he says. “Step inside.” So La Jolla. “Not now,” I say. Truth is, I’m desperate for brekky. And also, I wanna to try this ...

An extraordinary battered sole

On a menu of lovely Thai dishes, a simple stir fry stands out

Turns out, I’ve been ordering cashew chicken all wrong. I’ve been doing so since my picky teens, when I was the opposite of an adventurous eater at Chinese and Thai restaurants. Probably for that reason, ...

Beer's still cheap in La Jolla

Rock Bottom has been doing this twenty years

I hit Rock Bottom on a Wednesday night — the one that’s been succeeding at the brewpub thing on La Jolla Village Drive for 20 years this year. The official name is Rock Bottom Restaurant ...

Photogenic, but still comfortable

North Park's new coffee shop has it both ways

In the food item as bowl domain, few have impressed me so much as the caramel apple dessert offered by the new North Park coffee shop, Deja Brew Lounge. Situated in a converted craftsman bungalow ...

Brick Bowl is a Korean restaurant

If you’re not down with sourdough or vinegar, you can order bibimbap or Korean ramen.

It reads like the sort of thing you have to try at least once. A new Kearny Mesa spot called Brick Bowl dishes up a new way of eating meat, cheese, and bread. Rather than ...

Solace for breakfast

A North Park restaurant changes its weekday game

Credit Urban Solace as a building block to the lifestyle destination North Park has become. The neighborhood didn’t yet have that national press cachet when Solace rode a rising comfort food trend into what’s now ...

When bad things happen to good breweries

Council Brewing to close, Benchmark Brewing barely holding on

The San Diego craft beer community was rocked this week by the news two of its best small breweries are in serious trouble. First, on Tuesday, Rachael and Matt Akin, the husband and wife team ...

In the company of cats

They say purrs lower blood pressure

Autumn in Paris! I’m in a French-feeling patio with about eight wood-slat tables under a big tree. Fall leaves saucer down in the breeze. We’re in the Gaslamp’s Chinatown area at 3rd and Island. “The ...

An almost everything-free bakery

No gluten, no dairy, no soy, no eggs, no nuts. Just tasty pastries.

A sign near the door of this bakery promises all goods are free of gluten, soy, dairy, eggs, tree nuts, and peanuts. What’s left? I’m forced to wonder. Starry Lane Bakery originally opened out in ...

Yo quiero gorditas

Doing better than the “best Mexican restaurant”

If you watched a lot of Taco Bell commercials in the late 90s, you might have been left with the impression that gorditas are large tacos made with pitas instead of tortillas. However, like a ...

One more craving

Park Blvd. croissants come close to Paris

It was my wife’s birthday and I was on a quest: To find a really superlative chocolate croissant. Here’s the backstory: We got engaged in Paris back in 2000, and one of the other highlights ...

The world’s first hard kombucha bar

The flavor possibilities are infinite

They call this North Park tasting room the “world’s first hard kombucha bar.” Not hard to believe given high alcohol kombucha didn’t really exist prior to spring 2016. That’s when Chula Vista-based Boochcraft took kombucha, ...

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