Girls on Food

San Diego

Best Friend Time At Point Loma Fish Shop in San Diego

Before even moving to San Diego I made a trip down here to visit a friend and visited the best little fish shop in Pacific Beach. I was completely in love with its charm and all of its fresh and healthy options (and it’s onion rings). So when I heard the news that Fish Shop was opening a location in Point Loma, literally a 5 minute drive up the hill from my house, I was so excited. My best friend, fellow Girl On Food Tania, was coming down for a girls day and I knew I had to take her here to try out the new location!

Point Loma Fish Shop
1110 Rosecrans St, San Diego, CA 92106

We headed out to Point Loma Fish Shop on a sunny Sunday afternoon after a morning of wedding dress shopping for Tania, and we were both starving and so ready for some food. I started with a Karl Strauss Red Trolly while Tania sipped on a glass of Benzinger Sauvignon Blanc, and we got to checking out the menu.

The menu at The Fish Shop is set up so that you can choose your fish, pick a seasoning, and then choose how you would like it served; on a plate with two sides, on a salad, in a sandwich, or in tacos! There is also a menu of other favorites, such a fish and chips, and the signature fish tacos they are famous for, like the TKO taco which is seriously delicious.

Onions Rings and Coconut Shrimp

We decided to start with coconut shrimp, per our servers recommendation, and I threw in an order of onion rings, because I actually dream about them here sometimes. The coconut shrimp was so tasty, the breading was flaky and light and the accompanying sweet chili sauce was the perfect place to dip. The onion rings were the best thing ever, as per usual, gigantic and crunchy.

For lunch, I opted for mahi mahi in their Fish Shop seasoning, with a side salad dressed in citrus vinigrette and mixed grain rice. This is my go to order here, though sometimes I’ll switch up my fish or seasoning. The fish is so fresh and the fish shop seasoning is tangy and a little bit spicy, a perfect compliment to it. This is exactly the meal one wants to eat on a patio with an ice cold beer on a sunny Sunday afternoon, perfect in every way.

Tania decided on grilled yellowtail with a garlic butter glaze, along with a side of mix greens and mixed grain rice. She wanted to try yellowtail cooked, since it’s her favorite fish to eat as raw sushi, and she was not disappointed! She liked the subtle flavor of the seasoning that didn’t overpower the natural flavor of the fish.

Point Loma Fish Shop was the perfect pit stop in the middle of a perfect day, and is a place that I will be visiting time and time again. I couldn’t be happier to have a location so close to my house, this is a spot that is definitely going to become a favorite in the Point Loma and Ocean Beach community.

Thank you to Alternative Strategies for setting up this tasting. 

Vegan Ramen and Tempura Brussel Sprouts Stand Out at Tajima Ramen in San Diego

I will be the first to tell you that I have never been much of a ramen person. Even as a poor college student I would opt to survive off snacks instead of those packaged noodles.

When legit ramen bowls emerged as a trending soup in the US about 5 years ago, I had zero interest in ever really trying it. Then one day, my friends dragged me. I actually tasted proper ramen, and I was changed. I became a pretty big fan, which is why I was so excited to try Tajima Ramen down here in San Diego! I opted to visit the Hillcrest location as it is closest to home, and was pleasantly surprised by its small size but high energy. Even on a Tuesday night there was quite a crowd, though we were still seated quickly and experienced great service all night, and a highlight for me was the tunes they had playing that kept the vibe super cool.

Tajima Ramen
3739 6th Ave, Ste B, San Diego, CA 92103

We started with the Tempura Brussel Sprouts, which became a favorite of mine. These had a perfectly crispy coating and were served with ponzu sauce that was seriously delicious. Another favorite appetizer is Garlic Edamame, something that I pretty much eat any time it’s on the menu, and this iteration was perfect, I loved how the garlic coating was almost like a sauce and they came out piping hot!


White Out at Le Dîner en Blanc San Diego

Last week in San Diego I had the opportunity to participate in a unique pop up dinner party experience that takes place in different cities all over the world, and it was such a treat! Le Dîner en Blanc was launched in Paris in 1998 and is truly like nothing else I have ever experienced. Guests are required to wear all white, bring with them a table, chairs, table cloth, centerpiece, and picnic, and there are three phases to the release of tickets. First, guests who attended the previous year are invited, then anyone who is referred by one of those guests, and finally the general public is able to request a spot. Once confirmed, attendance is mandatory and the location remains a secret until 4pm on the day of the event!

This has taken place in some of San Diego’s most beautiful areas, and this year is was held in Liberty Station! Le DÎner En Blanc provides a unique opportunity to get dressed up in your elegant white attire, plan a fun picnic, and dine and dance under the starts with your friends and neighbors. It was such a treat to be involved in this special evening, and I had such a blast soaking up the sights, taking in everyone’s outfit, and snacking and sipping on some delicicate bites and champagne provided by Verbena Catering Co. I can’t wait to see where this Diner en Blanc takes me next year!

Thank you to Alternative Strategies for the media invitation to this special night!

Falling in Love with Union Kitchen & Tap in Encinitas, CA

Since I moved to the North County of San Diego ten years ago, I have been completely in love with Encinitas. This charming and chill beach town is literally what dreams are made of and the dream keeps getting better. Recently, I’ve been delighted to see an emerging food scene along the North County coast. Though the trek from Ocean Beach to Encinitas is daunting, I couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to try Union Kitchen & Tap. My friend, Paul, came to town last week. I knew this was my chance! We decided to make a day of it including meditation gardens, my favorite beach and a delicious dinner.

Union Kitchen and Tap
1108 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA, 92024

I’ll stop rambling and get to the good stuff! We started with the cocktail list…a very good place to start. The list is organized by liquor type and included the flavor profile of each cocktail. I often have a hard time choosing, so I loved this attention to detail. I was immediately drawn to the agave portion of the menu. I chose the Fleetwood which combined serrano-pineapple infused Blanco, dry Curacao, and lime. The cocktail list described it as “charred, tropical and tart”. It arrived looking beautiful and tasted just as delicious as it was described. I might have been heard saying it was the best cocktail I’d ever had AND it was even named after my favorite band! Paul opted for the Agatha with Belvedere vodka, watermelon, cilantro and lime. Described as refreshing, sweet, and bright, this was a great choice for our hot summer day and it was exactly those three things!


Going Retro at The Smoking Gun in San Diego

This past week I had to opportunity to head into San Diego’s Gaslamp Corner to check out one of it’s newest hot spots, The Smoking Gun! I was excited to see this new twist on a neighborhood bar and restaurant, offering up a southern inspired menu, nostalgic details, and old school games! I was immediately charmed with the details that greeted us, from the menu in an old school folder, to the drinks presented in this favorite childhood toy, and especially by the oldies playing all night long!

The Smoking Gun
555 Market St., San Diego, CA, 92101


Alex’s Media Field Trip to Park 101 and Barrel Republic in Carlsbad, CA

Last Thursday I was lucky enough to be included in a media field trip up to Park 101 and Barrel Republic in Carlsbad! Getting up to North County is not a thing I do very often, especially if I’m going to want to try some signature cocktails, so this was the perfect opportunity to see what Carlsbad has to offer!

Tamarack Sunsetter

We started the day by hopping onto the Coaster for a quick 1-hour train ride up to the Carlsbad Village station, and after hopping off the train just took a short walk right over to Park 101. We were greeted by a gorgeous spritzer, the Tamarack Sunsetter, and then given a tour of this new space.


The Taco Stand in La Jolla, CA #tacotuesday

If there is one thing you all know about me by now, it is that I love tacos, and luckily here in San Diego, the next taco is never very far away. It can almost be overwhelming, how do you choose?!? I have had my eye on one place in particular for quite some time though, and that is The Taco Stand! They have several locations around San Diego and are slinging some authentic and truly delicious tacos, so I was super excited to finally give it a try! My friend Mary Bradlee came out to visit with her adorable baby, and since La Jolla is where she used to live, I thought a La Jolla Taco Stand day was just the thing.

The Taco Stand 
621 Pearl St, La Jolla, CA 92037


A Clucking Good Morning at Breakfast Republic in San Diego

But first, Lemon Ginger Mimosa!

Having lived in San Diego for well over two years now, I’m ashamed to say I’ve done a terrible job at scoping out the brunch scene. While there are a ton of great spots down here, I am a super early riser and early eater, which means my breakfast happens around 7 am, and If I have to wait all the way until brunching hour and then stand in a line forever, I’m going to get hangry.

Breakfast Republic, who keeps popping up new spots all over the county, is one of those places that I always really wanted to check out, but just driving by and seeing the hungry crowds standing outside would deter me. When I got word that Breakfast Republic was opening up, less than a 10 minute walk from my house in Ocean Beach, I was beyond excited to finally get my brunch on, with my pal Courtney, like the rest of the Girls on Food.

Breakfast Republic
4839 Newport Ave, San Diego, CA 92107

Despite seriously scoping this menu out before going in, I was still seriously overwhelmed by all of the choices! Even the drink menu is expansive and full of both nutritious and decadent options. To start, I downed a cup of the Caffe de Olla they serve, which was hot and delicious. Then I also ordered the mimosa special of the day, Lemon Ginger! This mimosa had the tart citrus taste you want in a mimosa, with an extra kick from the ginger, and was perfectly sweet without being too sweet.


San Diego Reader’s Tacotopia 2017

There are very few things in this world that I love more than tacos, to be quite honest, tacos were over half the reason I even moved down to San Diego. That being said, I was probably way too excited to go back to Tacotopia, at Golden Hill Park, this year to help cast my vote for the Most Innovative and Best Traditional Tacos in San Diego. My friend Courtney and I spent our Saturday in Golden Hill Park eating our way through over 50 of San Diego’s best tacos!

It’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it!


This event put on by the San Diego Reader is always extremely well-executed with various beverage companies sampling products, tons of prizes and giveaways, live music, and this time- margaritas!


Hermosa Beach Fish Shop: Fast-Casual With Something For Everyone

I always feel my best when I’m following a pescatarian diet. I may post the best burgers in town, but in my off time, I try to limit my proteins to ocean and plant based ones. When I was invited to taste items from the Hermosa Beach Fish Shop menu I was relieved, cause after so many meat-packed tastings, I was excited to try some lighter bites.

Hermosa Beach Fish Shop 
719 Pier Ave, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254


Wood Ranch BBQ & Grill in San Diego

This weekend, a friend and I left our little Ocean Beach bubble down here in San Diego and ventured over to Mission Valley for dinner and drinks at Wood Ranch BBQ & Grill. The whole experience from drinks to dinner to dessert (which we were way too stuffed to finish) was excellent. I will definitely be back to visit whenever I have meat-loving visitors in town!

Wood Ranch BBQ & Grill
7510 Hazard Center Drive #215, San Diego, CA 92108

Tennessee Peach

After being seated, we followed our waitress’ drink recommendations, as we both had a hard time choosing. I opted for the Tennessee Peach which combined Gentleman Jack, peach schnapps, house-made simple syrup, mint, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. This drink was perfectly sweet and refreshing and really hit the spot. I also loved munching on the alcohol soaked peach once I reached the bottom!




Tacotopia at the Del Mar Track

I think at this point we have well established my love affair with tacos, but just in case it was unclear, I hit up The San Diego Reader’s Tacotopia at the Del Mar Racetrack this weekend and helped cast my vote for the best taco in San Diego.


Tacotopia at the Track

This event was executed extremely well, with 40 of San Diego and South Orange County’s best restaurants and food trucks pedaling out their best work to try to win the hearts and the votes of some hungry San Diegans.

I was impressed by the organization this event was handled, it didn’t appear that any of the vendors ever ran out of their goods, the lines stayed relatively short, and there were fun little extras like a taco themed photo booth, chips and salsas provided by Salud!, and lemonade stands for a bit of refreshment on this hot day.

IMG_9565Our first taco came from Bluewater Seafood, it was the day’s overall winner and it was definitely deserving of the title. I had one taco at Bluewater before, and I was impressed then, but this taco was even better and was seriously the perfect start to the day. Bluewater was serving up a spicy shrimp taco with a white sauce, homemade tomatillo, and a homemade mango slaw. This taco was a little too spicy for my guest, but had tons of the delicious white sauce and queso fresco to help balance it out.



IMG_9574Keeping with our fishy theme, we hit up Encinitas Fish Shop who was serving up some innovative smoked salmon tacos. Now, smoked salmon is not really my thing, but this taco was seriously delicious and really impressed me. It was a touch topping/tortilla heavy for the current taco marathon I was running, but the salmon was so flavorful and I enjoyed it.




IMG_9582One of my absolute favorite tacos of the day was this Abeulita’s Chicken Mole Taco from Common Theory Public House. I am mole obsessed and also have a weird love for pickled onions so in my eyes this taco was actual perfection, and it was devoured in about two and a half seconds.





My other favorite, which also snagged my vote for best traditional taco, was the baja fish taco from The Classic Taco. Unfortunately, this truck is based up in Orange County, but luckily I’m a frequent visitor up there! This fish taco was seriously about as good as they get, with a huge serving of perfectly crunchy fish and you could choose from so many salsas. They even hopped out of the truck to help me pick my perfect salsa, the pequin!

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Next up for me was Lolita’s, where I got the pollo asado and while this was a pretty standard take on a taco, it was really tasty with a big scoop of guacamole on top, which you will never hear complain.

At this point I’m five tacos deep and only an hour in, and realizing that maybe I should have paced myself just a little bit, but I am not a quitter.  Next up I hit up Ah-Jijo for their fish taco. I opted for the spicy chipotle sauce on top as opposed to the tomatillo. This taco was perfectly spicy, and had probably the crunchiest little piece of fish I’ve ever tasted, which was the perfect vessel for lots of toppings.


While my partner attempted to attack his ambitious plate of 3 tacos he’d collected, I decided to take a “break” and go find some chips and salsa, but on my way I was too tempted by Puesto to resist. Puesto is actually located right across from my work, I smell it all day long, and its torture. I’ve been once before and this taco was every bit as good as I remember. Puesto has figured out this genius idea of wrapping their delicious meats inside of a piece of fried cheese. Yes, you heard that right, and yes, it is basically the only way a taco should happen. Even though I knew this taco might come back to bite me later (all that cheese!) it was still more than worth it.

Finally on my way back from my Puesto pit stop, I was able to swing by the Salud! table for their chips and salsa. I was a little bummed they didn’t have a taco at the event, as I’ve heard some amazing things, but these chips were awesome and the salsa was nice and mild.


A while later, I caught my second wind and managed to scoop up one of these fish tacos from Henry’s Pub. Another giant serving of flaky, crispy fish, and more guac!

Lindsey, Courtney, and I trying to pull ourselves together after an all out taco binge.

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A while later, after taking a break to place our bets and check out the races, we returned to cast our votes, grabs some sweets, and hit up the Tacotopia photo booth! You can tell how excited I am about this giant rainbow sprinkle cookie (from Sammy’s Mexican Bakery), which was the perfect ending to a perfect day!


This event was so fun for so many reasons, starting with the plethora of delicious taco options and ending with the 311/Matisyahu concert that took place after the races. I will definitely be at the next Tacotopia, shoving more delicious tacos into my mouth, on my never ending hunt for the best in San Diego.