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Best Of 2010 — Dining
Best New Restaurant: Cucina Urbana & Dolce Pane E Vino
At Cucina Urbana, savor out of this world Italian fare priced at under $20, including ricotta gnocchi in sage brown butter and risotto carbonara, while sipping on wines sold at retail prices, local artisan beers, house-infused liquors, and specialty cocktails. (619/239-2222, www.sdurbankitchen.com)
The local crowd is flocking to Dolce Pane E Vino, which boasts a stylish yet comfortable atmosphere. Don’t miss the Five Cheese Panini or the Quattro Stagioni Pane with baby artichokes, olives, prosciutto, and mushrooms. (858/832-1518, www.dolcepaneevino.com)
Favorite Restaurant: Del Mar Rendezvous
Prime ingredients woven into traditional yet modern Chinese fare paired with excellent service makes this intimate and calming eatery a Del Mar treasure. Don’t miss the gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options. (858/755-2669, www.delmarrendezvous.com)
Best Fine Dining: Market Restaurant + Bar
Exceptional cuisine in a dynamic and multi-hued setting makes this restaurant unlike any other place. You’ll love the selection of small production wines that pair nicely with sushi, dinner, and dessert. (858/523-0007, www.marketdelmar.com)
Best Casual Dining: Urban Solace
Get American comfort food at its best at this quaint and relaxing eatery in North Park. Where else can you get Crispy Frog Legs or Not Your Momma’s Meatloaf with ground lamb, figs, pine nuts, and feta cheese? (619/295-6464, www.urbansolace.net)
Best Family Restaurant: Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza
A San Diego favorite for more than 20 years, Sammy’s constantly evolving menu offers a little something for everyone in the family. Highlights include the BBQ Chicken Pizza, Chinese Chicken Salad, and the signature Messy Sundae. (www.sammyspizza.com)
Best Restaurant Service: Kitchen 1540
In addition to having your taste buds sent into overdrive as you enter Kitchen 1540, you will be greeted by friendly hosts and escorted to your table where you will receive top-notch service and personal attention. (858/259-1515, www.laubergedelmar.com)
Best Restaurant Decor: Delicias
Serving California-fresh cuisine under the expertise of executive chef Michael Knowles, Delicias draws the attention of fine diners with its distinct and refined elegance. Look for the grand opening of its 5,000-bottle wine cellar this month. (858/756-8000, www.deliciasrestaurant.com)
Best Quick Bite: Rubio’s
Rubio’s is the perfect pit stop when you’re hungry and in a hurry. A bevy of made-to-order fresh and delicious Mexican fare, along with hot red and chipotle-based salsas, will keep you coming back for more. (www.rubios.com)
EDITOR'S PICK — Best Tapas: Café Sevilla
I adore this intimate and romantic eatery in the Gaslamp Quarter where the Spanish tapas remind me of home. The stewed rabbit with fresh rosemary and thyme in Rioja red wine sauce taste just like my mother’s recipe. (619/233-5979, www.cafesevilla.com) MARIA DESIDERATA MONTANA
WILDCARD — Best Local Green Company: Claire’s On Cedros
Claire’s On Cedros bakery and café is housed within a building that is just as sustainable as its menu. LEED Platinum-certified, it is the first free-standing restaurant of this distinction in the U.S. The restaurant’s philosophy of food is “to serve wholesome, healthful food prepared from scratch.” (858/259-8597, www.clairesoncedros.com)
Best Restaurants 2010 — Cheers once again to the winners of our San Diego's Best Restaurants survey as featured in February’s issue. To learn more about each eatery, please click here.
More Best Of 2010: