A Taste of San Diego

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I decided that San Diego was my next stop for a foodie adventure.  After a few Google searches and some yelp review reading, I realized that it would be impossible to get a taste of San Diego in one trip.  So, I narrowed down the possibilities and just focused on Coronado and Little Italy. I will definitely be back soon to explore The Gaslamp Quarter, Old Town San Diego, Mission Bay and La Jolla–the food options are endless.

Our first stop was the famous Hotel Del Coronado.  The Del opened over a century ago and I can only describe it as classy. Edward, Prince of Wales, Clark Gable and Ronald Reagan are just a few well known people who have visited the Del.  The hotel is sophisticated and elegant with breathtaking views.  Because we had quite a few food stops on this trip, we decided on drinks and appetizers at the Babcock & Story Bar overlooking the ocean.

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Nothing says classy more than a couple martinis paired with an olive & almond plate.The marinated California olives had an earthy, pungent taste. The toasted almonds as a “chaser” helped balance out the saltiness of the olives.

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For drinks, we ordered a Marilyn Martini from their 125th anniversary cocktail menu and a Coronado Martini with pimento stuffed olives.  The martini consisted of Nolet’s gin, dry vermouth, orange bitters and a lemon twist.  It had a very strong floral taste while the Coronado Martini just tasted like straight vodka (or as I like to describe it–jet fuel).  It was fun to try new drinks and tap into the “Old Time America” theme we were experiencing as soon as we stepped foot into the hotel. We will definitely be back to try some of the other dining options the hotel has to offer.

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After a walk along the beach, where we can see Mexico from a distance, we made our way to our next food destination: Miguel’s Cocina of Coronado. It was only fitting to taste a bit of Mexico being that we were so close to the border.  Miguel’s Cocina is located in the courtyard of the historic El Cordova Hotel and is right across the street from The Del. It was a perfect day to sit out on the patio and enjoy lunch.

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The chips and salsa they served also came with a jalapeno white sauce which was so delicious. The spiciness of the jalepeno was softened by the white cheddar sauce. I loved it so much that we went with one of their house specials: camarones jalisco as well as their grilled swordfish tacos. The sonoran-spiced swordfish fillets with red cabbage and shredded cheese in corn tortillas were fresh and delectable.

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The Camarones Jalisco was jumbo shrimp stuffed with jack cheese and rajas, wrapped in bacon and grilled.  It was also topped with the jalapeno white sauce that I love so much. The frist bite of the shrimp wrapped in bacon was an explosion of smoked bacon mixed with the sweet, succulent taste of the shrimp. The consistency of the bacon and the shrimp together almost made it feel like I was biting into a juicy steak (crazy, I know). The portion of the rice and beans were also perfect. We didn’t leave there feeling “too full” for dessert.

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After a quick trip across the water on the San Diego/Coronado ferry, we made our way through Seaport Village and walked our way to our last stop for the day in Little Italy: Extraordinary Desserts. As soon as we walked in, they handed us a piece of paper where we could write down the desserts we wanted so we could hand it off to our server when we were seated.

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We might have went overboard with 3 desserts and french pressed coffee, but it was totally worth it.  We also ended up having to run all the way back to the ferry so I feel like our 3 dessert dinner was justified. 😉

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Probably my favorite dessert of the evening was a slice of their Viking cake.  This cake was dangerously decadent, but so worth it. Chocolate Crème brûlée and milk chocolate cremeuse are hidden between chocolate cake layers.  The cake was topped with crushed chocolate almond pralines that put me in a sugar coma within two bites.

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Their banana creme tarte was also delicous. The sweetness of the cream and banana was paired nicely with the tart of the pureed mango on the side. Lastly, we tried their raspberry tart which was light and fluffy. It was the perfect end to our food filled day.

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For more information on the places we visited, check out the links below. Remember to always take the time to explore new places and eat new things.  It will leave your heart light and your stomach full 😉

Babcock & Story Bar: http://www.hoteldel.com/babcock-and-story.aspx
Miguel’s Cocina: http://www.brigantine.com/miguels_cocina/location-coronado.html
Extraordinary Desserts: http://www.extraordinarydesserts.com/