Food Observations

A blog for eaters

Brigantine Seafood

One of our new favorite things to order at the Brig are the “Napa Valley Nachos”! House-made potato chips with grilled chicken, fontina & point reyes blue cheese, crispy bacon, green onions, sour cream. Highly recommended.


Ottavio’s Italian Restaurant

It seems to be the holiday season when I really crave good Italian food the most! Then I get to January and realize that my “holiday season” must last all year. Most recently I enjoyed this excellent “Linguine a la Vongole” at Ottavio’s Italian Restaurant in Lakeside, CA. Made with an abundance of whole baby clams sauteed in butter, garlic, basil and white wine. If you prefer a red clam sauce, that is optional too. Ottavio’s is a wonderful family-owned restaurant that has been in business since 1952. They clearly pride themselves in serving authentic Italian cuisine and they have been a staple in San Diego’s East County for generations.

Par Lounge and Deck

I really love the “Small Plates” menu at Par Lounge! Some of my favorites include the calamari, served with lemon and a tasty horseradish remoulade. I also enjoy the new steamed mussels in a white wine, citrus, butter, chili/herb broth. Comes with crostini!

Phil’s BBQ

Tasty “Sausage Tickler” at Phil’s in Rancho Bernardo! Unfortunately when you order their “Tickler” meals you’re locked into cole slaw. I’d much rather have mac salad but they won’t sub out.


Such an exquisite meal at Truluck’s in La Jolla! Unfortunately this remarkable restaurant closed permanently last December. Florida Stone Crab Claws are a delicious cornerstone here. We also started with a Jumbo Lump Crab Cake that was accompanied by a tasty dilled tartar sauce. My main dish of Norwegian Salmon was excellent; perfectly cooked and moist. Shared accompaniments included Lyonnaise Potatoes and Crab Fried Rice. Truluck’s always delivers a truly phenomenal dining experience! Everything from start to finish was a complete standout; from the service, to the food and the absolutely stunning atmosphere.

Casa Machado Mexican Restaurant

Outstanding “Steak & Shrimp” at Casa Machado! Grilled top sirloin steak with one cheese enchilada and three bacon wrapped shrimp. Comes with rice, beans (omitted) and hot, supple tortillas.

Piacere Mio

Exquisite Spaghetti Carbonara at Piacere Mio Del Sur! I eat carbonara all over and this place makes among the finest in SoCal.

Location: 16490 Paseo Del Sur Ste 135 Del Sur Town Center San Diego, CA

Marechiaro’s Italian Restaurant

Excellent “Half & Half” (spaghetti and ravioli) with house made hand formed Italian sausage patty at Marechiaro’s! An East County institution since 1955.

Location: 14120 Olde Hwy 80 El Cajon, CA

BJ’s Brewhouse

Outstanding HH “Classic Burger” and Mini Pizookie at BJ’s in Esco!

Jacked Up Brewery

In business since January 2017, Jacked Up is one of my favorite craft breweries in SoCal! Situated in the heart of Esco, they have a great tasting room that features a varied selection of live bands on the weekends. I think my favorite thing are their delicious selection of pizzas. Here’s the “Jacked Up Special”. Tomato sauce topped with mozzarella, pepperoni and meatballs. It’s the perfect compliment to any of their craft beers.

Location: 800 W Grand Ave Escondido, CA 

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