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Restaurant Reviews

Vegetarian fare with Vietnamese flair

Posted: November 17th, 2017 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr. Just inside the entrance, a tiny wooden footbridge takes you over a pond of bubbling water and into the elegantly peaceful dining room of The Purple Mint Vegetarian Bistro. It’s a place where plant-based meals rule the day — and won’t scare off carnivores — and where you’ll actually encounter purple mint, […]

A decade of good eats with a side of celebrity

Posted: September 15th, 2017 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr.

The last time I ate at The Trails Eatery was in 2011, when owner Stacey Poon-Kinney was riding a high wave of publicity from the Food Network show, “Restaurant Impossible.”

The San Carlos eatery had been selected for a $10,000 makeover, which meant the show’s domineering host, Robert Irvine, would rescue the business from despair — his way.

Where beer and food cheerfully unite

Posted: August 18th, 2017 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr.

The name dates back to 1896, when San Diego Brewing Company opened on a parcel of land that eventually became part of the 32nd Street Naval Base. With a capacity to produce 75,000 barrels of amber beer, the brewery ranked as the largest manufacturing enterprise in the region.

Mission Brewery emerged several years later, proving that craft beer resides in San Diego’s DNA and that it isn’t a recent phenomenon invented by millennial hipsters.

Endangered species

Posted: July 21st, 2017 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr. | Restaurant Review Given its fossilized environment — red booths, heavy carpeting and drab, wood paneling — Bully’s offers a welcoming atmosphere staffed with young energy. Though loaded with sports memorabilia and flat screens, it’s one of the last classic steakhouses in San Diego stamped with the same level of nostalgia as […]

Persian and Arab delights

By Frank Sabatini Jr.

A visit to Tak Grill potentially sends you on a culinary odyssey through several countries beginning with Iran, where Hossein Ebrahimi ran a similar eatery before emigrating to the U.S. several years ago.

His native recipes for minty shirazi salad and succulent meat kebabs are supplemented by dishes common to Turkey, Lebanon and Greece — chicken shawarma, stuffed grape leaves, lamb-beef gyros and falafel.

Family fare

Posted: February 17th, 2017 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr. Count it among the few remaining holdouts in San Diego that doesn’t try wooing you with pretentious food and trendy design elements. Brother’s Family Restaurant, with its “Grandma Jennie” pancakes and unassuming atmosphere, is revered instead by many as a home away from home.

A taste of Indonesia

Posted: July 15th, 2016 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr. The widely rooted concept of a “gastropub” has arrived to Mission Valley, in a tucked-away segment of Camino del Rio South that dead-ends at TGI Fridays. Situated at the base of a low-rise office building, the Mission Valley Gastropub is the re-branded version of Bali Thai Café under the same ownership. […]

Decisions, decisions

Posted: June 17th, 2016 | Featured, Food & Drink, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments

By Frank Sabatini Jr. During its run in the College Area, which lasted almost 10 years, Pita Pit attracted a cult following typically enjoyed by non-corporate eateries slinging food exceedingly more inventive. Now, the Canadian-founded chain, boasting more than 600 outlets worldwide, has returned to a small Linda Vista strip plaza not far from the […]