Best Restaurants in San Diego | City Guides | Long Distance USA Movers

A Guide to the Best Restaurants in San Diego

Have you been on the lookout for the best restaurants in San Diego because you want to spend a nice night out with your significant other? Maybe you’ve been thinking about moving to San Diego and want to scout out where you can go and have some of your favorite food? Whatever the case may be, the following guide will surely be useful, even if you’re a tourist.

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San Diego

If you are relocating to America’s Finest City, you’ll want to choose your new home based on the best San Diego schools, amenities, hobbies, livability, but also restaurants where you can spend your free time. There are many interesting things to do in San Diego, especially so if you’re a foodie, as the city has to offer so many different, tasty, and diverse food options.

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The Best Restaurants in San Diego That Serve Seafood

After relocating to California, you can expect the Mediterranean climate, but you can also feel the Mediterranean influence when it comes to the seafood options that are available here.

Top of the Market

Top of the Market is one of the top-notch restaurants in America’s Finest City when it comes to high-quality and fresh fish, prawns, and so much more. The location is perfect, with a nice view of the Bay, and the setting inside is very romantic and intimate. In case you’re moving with children, this would be a perfect place to take out your significant other when you find the time to enjoy yourselves. The staff and the servers care about their customers, and the service is impeccable, regardless of if you were passing by and decided to enter or if you reserved a private dining session in advance.

Ironside Fish & Oyster

Ironside is a wonderful place that offers tasty seafood and delicious cocktails, located in an auction house on India Street that has been fully restored. During the day, it’s a perfect place for families with kids, offers various kids menus, and the chefs are always ready to accommodate any preferences, special requests, and allergies. In the late evening, the atmosphere can change to a more sophisticated and outgoing one, suitable if you want to go out for a delicious meal with your friends or make new ones and have a good time.

The Fishery

The Fishery was founded in 1997 by a fisherman and his wife, who bought and restored an old warehouse and turned it into a diner. All of the employees, from the owners to the chefs and the servers, are hard-working people dedicated to providing a quality and unique experience to their customers. It’s both an eatery and a fish market, so you can expect the freshest meals possible. Not only is it a great place to eat, but it also has an extensive wine and beer list that you may find enjoyable. It also has an outside patio where you can enjoy the nice weather. Dogs are also allowed on the patio, so if you’re moving with pets, this will be a perfect place if you want to bring along your four-legged companion.

Crab Hut

This is definitely a must-visit place if you are into tasty seafood and want to have a good time. Crab Hut is a family-run business that was founded in 2007 with the idea of bringing “some good ole Southern sass and flavor” to this city. You can expect great service and some delicious fares. The products are as fresh as they get, being grown and raised locally in America’s Finest City. It may not be the most luxurious place in town, but it’s definitely a runner up. It would be advisable to visit it yourself and see how good it is, especially the homemade sauce that everyone is crazy about.

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Seafood in the area is some of the freshest you’ll come across

Top-Tier Italian Food Restaurants

There are many amazing Italian places all across Sandi. You can find authentic Italian eateries, as well as various places that offer a mix of Italian-American combos.

Parma Cucina Italiana

This magnificent Italian place is located between University and Robinson, just a couple of minutes away from Little Italy. It offers authentic Italian dishes, a wonderful and intimate ambiance, and some of the friendliest staff you’ll come across. The homemade lasagna and pasta are their specialty, but it also offers various fish and seafood options. The chefs will be glad to take any special orders and requests, and they also have gluten-free and vegetarian alternatives. You can pick from a variety of Italian wines to go along with your pasta, or you can bring your own wine. It’s a family-run place, and you will definitely feel like a family member if you decide to give it a try.


Piatti was established in 1987 and offers some of the tastiest casual and authentic experiences that Italian cuisine has to offer. It’s located in one of the best neighborhoods in San Diego – La Jolla Shores. You can enjoy homemade pasta dishes, try some of the pizzas that every critic’s review seems to favor, and drink some of the finest Italian wines that can be found in the US. It may seem too fancy at first, but if you give it a go, you will see that it’s a very laid-back place where you will get to taste some amazing Italian meals.

Cucina Urbana

Cucina Urbana is a place where Italian cuisine meets the organic freshness of South California. Not only is it a wonderful Italian restaurant, but it’s also a retail wine shop, with over 200 wine options from around the globe. You will find a diverse and affordable menu of some of the tastiest meals made from local, organic products. Whether you’re searching for innovative pizzas, a variety of homemade pasta and dolci, or want to try out some of the most delicious wines you can find in California, Cucina Urbana is the place to go. It’s a perfect place for families who want to have a night out, as well as couples who want to enjoy a romantic evening.

Ambrogio15 – One of the Best-Rated San Diego Restaurants

This is one of the most popular Italian food places you will find in the city, perhaps in the entire state. It offers a unique and authentic Milano-style pizza, made in a unique and innovative way. They have their own special dough recipe, use high-quality ingredients, and try to stay true to the Milano cuisine the founders grew up with. It was established in 2016 by three friends from Milano, Italy, who studied in Sandi and decided to give back to the city by providing an authentic pizza-dining experience. You can try their authentic pizza, homemade focaccia, or a variety of antipasti and desserts that all blend into a unique Italian dining experience.

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Italian places are many, from authentic to innovative ones

Sushi Places You Have to Check Out

Whether you are very familiar with sushi or want to try it out for the first time, you’ll have a variety of top-notch locations to choose from. Sandi is a foodie’s dream when it comes to the variety of options, but Japanese cuisine is one of its biggest selling points.

Sushi Ota

This is one of the finest sushi places around, founded in 1990 by Chef Ota. He worked as a chef all across Japan, where he learned and mastered the trade and decided to open his own place in Sandi after one visit. You can expect superior service, an authentic Japanese experience, and some fresh and tasty Japanese meals if you decide to visit Sushi Ota. You can look up any of the reviews and read why the previous customers were amazed by the meals and the service provided. You can always go there when you have the time to do so and see for yourself why it’s one of the most popular Japanese food spots in the city.

Harney Sushi

This is where you can find a unique, innovative, and premier experience. You can try both traditional styles of sushi and the unique mixes created by the expert chefs at Harney’s. It was founded in 2001 by connoisseurs who tried to challenge the traditional way of making this specialty and succeeded in creating something truly unique and delicious. It’s located in Old Town and is one of the reasons why this is among the best places to live in San Diego. It has a bar and an outside patio and is suitable for families, groups of friends, or couples out on a date.


Nobu is a world-renowned Japanese restaurant chain that opened a spot here in 2007. It was originally founded in New York, but today, it’s a world-wide empire that offers some top-notch food and service to its customers. It is located across the Convention Center and offers a variety of different experiences for families, couples, or singles. The food bar is open at night, and you can also have some drinks at the lounge bar. If you have a special occasion you want to celebrate, you can always call up and reserve a private dining room.


This oceanfront restaurant offers some of the most amazing views and a wonderful mix of Californian and Japanese cuisines. You haven’t experienced life until you’ve had some of the tastiest Japanese dishes and craft cocktails on the beach and in perfect weather. You can reserve a place in advance, but because of its popularity, it may be hard to get one. The only real downside to this place is that dogs aren’t allowed.

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Some of the sushi bars here are on par with the ones in Japan

The Sandi Twist on Mexican Cuisine

Whether you’re looking for affordable tacos and burritos or want to have a nice Mexican cuisine family experience, America’s Finest can provide.

The Mission

If you want to experience tasty Mexican cooking while enjoying the weather on a patio outside with your pet by your side, The Mission is the place to be. It’s one of the most popular lunch-and-breakfast places you will stumble upon. The options are plenty, the service is amazing, and the prices are very affordable.

La Puerta

This is where you can go out with your friends or family and enjoy some high-quality Mexican cuisine and have some drinks in a fun and hospitable environment. Located in the downtown area, La Puerta aims to offer a unique and unforgettable experience. Tacos, margaritas, and tequila for everyone are what La Puerta is all about. The service here is amazing, the drinks are aplenty, and you are sure to have a good time. The main aim of La Puerta is tasty and healthy dining, combined with artsy and welcoming surroundings.


Puesto was founded by a family of first-generation Mexican-Americans, providing authentic and unique Mexican cooking for all. It offers high-quality meals and is a perfect place to sit down with your family and enjoy a night out together. You can get traditional Mexican cuisine, as well as a variety of Mexican drinks, tequila, mezcal, different wines, and beers. In addition to some of the tastiest tacos, you will have a choice from a selection of fresh catch ceviches, starters, salads, and guacamoles.

Casa Guadalajara

If you’re looking for the perfect Mexican experience with mariachis, lush patios, margaritas, and festive décor, Casa Guadalajara is the right place for you. The menu has so much to offer that if you try it once, you’ll fall in love and will be sure to come back again. Casa Guadalajara is the place to be if you want to have a fun time with your friends.

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The Mexican cuisine is varied and exotic, and the restaurants express it perfectly

Quality Chinese Eateries

There are so many different Chinese places all across America’s Finest City that it’s going to be hard to pinpoint one of them as the top one. The choices are plenty, delicious, and diverse, and here are some of the ones everyone would gladly recommend.

P.F. Chang’s

This is the place to be if you want to eat some traditional wok dishes that are made from scratch every day. The products are authentic and tasty, and the place has its own convenient parking close to the restaurant. So if you will be bringing your car with you and have ordered auto transport services, parking won’t be a problem when going to P.F. Chang’s. The cuisine that can be found in P.F. Chang’s is quite diverse, even though Asian is at its core. You will find many different meals, including Vietnamese-style soups, hand-rolled sushi, wok-fried chicken and beef, and traditional Chinese dim sum.

Dumpling Inn

Dumpling Inn is a place where you can experience classic Chinese cuisine. It was founded in 1994 and has been providing high-quality and fresh, traditional Chinese food ever since. It is a family-owned place where you can come with your own family and enjoy the best of this Asian cuisine. You will surely fall in love with the ambiance and the décor of the interior and its welcoming feel.

Golden House

This is among the favorite Chinese cuisine places with the locals, run by a Chinese family that’s been cooking this way for ages. The recipes that are used in Golden House are ancient and unique, and the prices are very affordable, especially when considering the cost of living in San Diego. There are many different pork, chicken, seafood, and family menus to choose from.

Mandarin Wok

This is one of the most welcoming and friendliest Chinese cuisine places you’ll come across. It’s an authentic Chinese restaurant where you can dine with your family or order take-out. The general atmosphere in Mandarin Wok is very relaxed, and the service will be so good that you’ll feel like a part of the family. It is a place that will make you want to come back for more.

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Wok cooking is very popular and for a good reason - it’s delicious!

The Story of Morning Glory

Morning Glory is one of the rare places which simply have to be mentioned on their own. It is one of the most popular spots to visit in America’s Finest City, and for a good reason as well. If you pay a visit to their website, you’ll see the following: “As you’ve probably noticed, we suck at websites. But that’s okay. We don’t make websites. We make breakfast.”

It’s been described by many customers as gorgeous – so much so that you are sure to fall in love from the moment you walk in. The staff is lovely and welcoming to everyone, and the dishes are very varied and delicious. In fact, pancakes get their own section! The only downside could be the wait, because the restaurant is so popular, especially on Saturdays. You can have a lovely meal with your friends, go out for drinks, or go on a date and have a unique experience in Morning Glory.

Born & Raised

If you’re searching for a high-end, lavish and grand place that will pamper you and all of your needs, then Born & Raised could be your best bet. It’s not your everyday steakhouse, as it has so much to offer that you’ll surely want to come back and try their whole menu. Dry-aged steaks are what it’s all about – they’re worth the price. The décor is mesmerizing, and the service is wonderful. There are many different dishes to try out, and if you’d like to have a drink at the bar, there are various craft cocktails that may surprise you by how good they are.

Jeune & Jolie

This is where you will find some of the tastiest meals that the French nouvelle cuisine has to offer. It is an intimate 80-seat restaurant where people go to taste some light but high-quality cooking. It’s not just French cuisine that you can find in Jeune & Jolie; it’s a wonderful mix of Caribbean, African, and Vietnamese cuisines. You will have a choice from various delicious seafood and vegetable options, with a seasonal menu. There’s also a cocktail program they invented, a variety of French spirits and wines. Ask anyone in the city for their favorite place to have dinner or celebrate an important life event, and most people will recommend Jeune & Jolie. The staff is very kind and helpful and will do their best to make your stay there a superb experience.


The place describes its mission as a return to the origins of cooking and hospitality. The idea is that we used to gather around the campfire, make meals for our family, and share stories and ideas. This is a wonderful feeling that you’ll come to experience if you give Campfire a chance yourself. The majority of the dishes here are smoked, roasted, or grilled, as the name itself suggests. The décor is another nod to the Campfire name, with mountain and woods motifs. There’s a teepee set up for the kids, with a kids menu as well, so it would be a perfect place for a tasty lunch with your family. Amazing and tasty meal options, a variety of cocktails to choose from, and some of the most delicious desserts, including S’Mores.

Il Dandy

Yes, this is another Italian food place, and no, it wasn’t included under the Italian section of our list. The reason is that it deserves a unique place in this guide. Il Dandy was founded by father and son Antonio and Lucca Abbruzzino, who both earned Michelin stars in their native Calabria. Their style is a mix of the modern and traditional cuisine of Southern Italy with fresh and bountiful produce from the local farms. They offer amazing homemade pasta, an antipasti section, many different salads mixed with octopus, beets, and seared yellowtail. Some of the most delicious pizzas you will ever try can be found in Il Dandy, from their classical Calabrian pizza to the vegan eggplant option. They also have a carefully compiled cocktail program, a selection of wines, as well as various craft beers.

Bottom Line SD is a Foodie Paradise

If you can’t wait to visit all of these amazing restaurants once you have figured out how to move, contact your movers and sort out the packing and moving services so that you can go exploring America’s Finest City as soon as possible. In case you’re moving during the holidays, then it would be a perfect time of the year to check California in winter.

Gemma Collins

Gemma is an NJ local that has explored all the US states, making her the perfect person to write about moving.

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