Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Bergers Hit the Road! San Diego, 1/27 - 1/30

This entry we're expanding beyond food into travel. It is called Bergers & More after all.

So here goes.

JB & I decided at the last minute to take a weekend trip to San Diego. We wanted to see a new place, get some sun, oh and there was a golf tournament. Thanks to American and Hilton for the miles and points respectively, we were able to get free airfare and 2 of 3 nights of our accommodations.

Here are the highlights:

Friday, 1/27 - San Diego/Coronado

Mission - This plantation-styrestaurantant fed us one of the best meals of the trip. We wanted to start out with the Mexicali flair and here we could. JB ordered a breakfast burrito my urging and I ordered breakfast quesadilla that I had read about. Major YUM. My breakfast quesadilla had bacon, cheese, tomatoes, beans and lots of cilantro.

Hotel Del Coronado & Moo-time - We spent the day exploring San Diego, the gaslamp district, where we stayed, and Coronado, an island just off the coast of SD. We headed to the famous Hotel Del Coronado and walked on the beach picking up purple sand dollars (yes, purple!). Since we'd had a late, and large, breakfast we each just got a scoop of amazing ice cream from the Moo-time creamery. Get the vanilla.

Rama - San Diego has a lot of asian restaurants and Rama is one of the best. We stuck to basics here, spring rolls and pad see yew, in a very trendy setting.

Saturday, 1/28 - San Diego

San Diego Zoo - This is the best place to spend 5 hours. Buy tickets online and save a few dollars. We walked around the whole zoo and then took a bus your to make sure we didn't miss anything.

Little Italy - I guess every city has a Little Italy. SD's is still developing but we found a great shop, Niche Boutique and a cafe for a mid-afternoon snack.

The Beach - And every city now also has a W, where the bar is also bound to be trendy. The SD W bar is literally a rooftop beach with heated sand where you can almost see the sunset. The roof is really only three flights up, but the eye candy is really the view.

Chive - We had reservations at Candelas, a haute Mexican restaurant, but they could not honor our reservation. We found ourselves wandering around the Gaslamp district and fell upon a Chive. A newish spot that had one of the best chicken dishes stuffed with goat cheese and on a bed of risotto. JB got mini-burgers (of course) and feta fries, which were stellar.

J Bar - Stiff competition for the Beach, this rooftop bar had an even bigger roof and crowd.

Sunday, 1/29 - La Jolla

Buick Invitational - The main point of our trip. This was six hours of unadultarated golf, Tiger to the max. The Torrey Pines course is beautiful overlooking the Pacific, but the crowds were horrific. (Note: On Tiger Woods golf on xbox, they have a much smaller crowd)

George's at the Cove - The most romantic restaurant of them all is in La Jolla hanging over the edge of the Pacific. We sat upstairs on the less expensive Ocean Terrace. Fish tacos were a mandatory. Worth the trip alone.

Monday, 1/30 - Old Town, La Jolla

Old Town Mexican Cafe - We thought it was a necessity to visit Old Town San Diego, the birthplace of San Diego. I'd skip it next time. Although the chorizo breakfast quesadillas were not half bad.

Roppongi - We spent our last afternoon driving through all the beach towns and ended up shopping and gallery hopping in La Jolla. Our final dinner was at Roppongi, a renowned Japanese restaurant with a renowned early dinner special, half-price off all small plates. We cleaned up the ribs, tuna and more.

As I mentioned, this was a points trip so we were married to Hiltons, San Diego Gaslamp and Hilton Torrey Pines, respectively. They both had nice pools with views. The Gaslamp had huge complimentary breakfasts. TP had the benefit of golf course and Pacific views, plus JB saw Sergio Garcia in the elevator.

We used two great resources planning our trip that I would recommend: - The Food Network's website. They have a specific travel section. We took recommendations from both Bobby Flay and Rachael Ray, FYI Bobby's recs were better! - Lucky for us, the 1/20 Escapes section featured 36-hours in San Diego. We didn't follow it to a tee, we had about 84 hours after all, but we came pretty close.

Until we eat (and travel) again! KLB

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