I go to San Diego at least once a year to visit family and friends, yet I have never written anything about this perpetually sunny town. I love the beaches, Coronado, the famous San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park, and the Gaslamp district’s restaurants and nightlife but no matter what, I always spend a weekend morning in San Diego’s Little Italy. It’s main street, India Street, is packed with restaurants, delicatessens, cafes, and gelaterias that include al fresco dining options plus the neighborhood has a lively farmer’s market every Saturday morning. I highly recommend spending a few hours on Saturday or Sunday to explore this Italian enclave and here’s just a taste of what you can eat!
Buon Appetito is one of my favorite restaurants in Little Italy. You can depend on this place for a traditional Italian dinner with great wine. Grab a patio table in front of the restaurant for great people watching. The restaurant also has a sister wine bar next door, Sogno DiVino, which is perfect for appetizers and a drink before a night out and Buon Appetito also recently opened an Italian market nearby selling true Italian specialities.
I go to Cafe Italia multiple times in just one trip to San Diego. I love their coffee and espresso gelato especially. It’s also a great place to unwind with a book in the outdoor back patio, catch up with a friend, or again, people watch! I thought Cafe Italia’s gelato was the best in the neighborhood but my brother recommends Papalecco‘s gelato.
Filippi’s Pizza Grotto is the place to get your pie in Little Italy. You will have to wait in line for a while but the pizza is worth the wait. Feel free to grab a box of pie and sit out on the chairs out front. No matter if the sun is burning hot during the day or if it’s a cool summer night, Filippi’s pies will always taste just right.
No trip to Little Italy is complete without strolling through the Little Italy Mercato, or farmer’s market, held every Saturday morning from 8am to 2pm. The neighborhood is in full swing as streets are blocked off for local vendors selling everything from fresh produce, seafood, and pastas, to baked goods, bitchin’ sauces, and made-to-order crepes, tamales, and paninis. Local musicians are always on hand for entertainment and the weather is always spectacular. It’s the best way to start the day.
Have you visited a Little Italy lately and if so, what are your recommendations?