Some of San Diego’s hottest restaurants and bars can be found with an easy stroll of the Hotel Indigo San Diego Gaslamp Quarter. Here are four spots to check out for craft cocktails, locally produced beer and menus spotlighting farm-fresh ingredients:
You & Yours Distilling Co.
You & Yours bills itself as San Diego’s first urban distillery, focusing on gin and vodka. The tasting room is outfitted with plush velvet couches, reclaimed wood, and marble, white brick and copper accents, while the bar features a rotating list of seasonal, specialty cocktails.
Visitors can also take a tour of the distilling facility, where owner and head distiller Laura Johnson has plans to introduce additional spirits.
Must try: The Concord Clover, a cocktail made with You & Yours Sunday Gin, concord grape, lemon and egg white.
Farm-to-table Italian restaurant Biga is run by chef-owner Tae Dickey, a Culinary Institute of America graduate who can often be seen scouring San Diego’s many farmer markets while not behind the stove.
The focus here is on fresh, high quality and local ingredients — Dickey even makes his own mozzarella, sausages and charcuterie. The artisan pizzas, fired in two 900-degree custom ovens, are a must, but you can’t go wrong ordering the house made pastas, roasted meats and fish and vegetable dishes.
Must try: The spicy Diavola pizza, topped with ‘Nduja, Calabrian chili, San Marzano tomato, pickled onions and house-made fior di latte cheese.
One of the anchors of San Diego’s dining renaissance is Neighborhood, a gastropub that remains one of the city’s best spots to sip a beer from one of dozens of local craft breweries.
The food is upscale pub grub, including burgers, beer-steamed mussels and a Nashville hot chicken sandwich. The restaurant shares its space with Noble Experiment, a speakeasy-style cocktail bar that’s located behind a wall lined with kegs.
Must try: The Neighborhood burger, topped with Gruyere and blue cheese, bacon and onion jam, arugula and brown butter aioli; Noble Experiment’s Modest Grouse, a cocktail made from Scotch, Yellow Chartreuse, lemon, peach and ginger.
Queensborough brings a touch of New York City-style edgy glamour to the Gaslamp Quarter. Think subway tiles, vintage phone booths, wrought iron, a subway turnstile, 1920s-style light fixtures, marble bar tops, diamond-tufted leather booths and exposed brick walls that will transport you virtually across the country.
The multi-level concept features Uptown, a street-level cocktail bar and restaurant with upscale bar bites and classic cocktails like the Whiskey Smash and the Penicillin that originated in Gotham. Downtown is a subterranean lounge and club with craft cocktails and bottle service.
Must try: Albondigas — smoked pork meatballs, seasonal vegetables and rice in a flavorful broth.