The Unvegan

Recent Posts

10 Years of Unvegan
A Quick Bite at Burrito Express
Serendipity at Northern Waters Smokehaus
Twerks and Burritos at Casa Amigos

‘San Diego’

Tasting the Taste of the Himalayas

It all starts with a tandoori.
It all starts with a tandoori.

On the way into Taste of the Himalayas in La Jolla, a patron on the way out told us that we had to get the tandoori chicken tikka. There was a strong scent of smoke in the place, which had clearly turned off its smoke detectors a long time ago, and we figured this departing patron must have known what she was talking about.

By the Sea at Pacific Coast Grill

Things are happening here.
Things are happening here.

I’ve always said that restaurants with an amazing view often have a hard time pumping out amazing food. The idea being that the real estate is generally too expensive to get quality food. Nonetheless, I’ve been proven wrong a number of times and hoped Pacific Coast Grill in Cardiff by the Sea would by another in the latter category.

Panic at Pannikin

Commence panicking.
Commence panicking.

Coffee shops aren’t generally known for their food, but Pannikin in Encinitas isn’t your typical coffee shop. The place has a full-on menu and nearly every type of coffee or tea that exists in the world. But a look at the menu revealed very little in terms of meat – some turkey and some ham. Fortunately, there was something on the menu that drew me in.

Pure California at Jalapenos

Hefty like California.
Hefty like California.

Down in San Diego for a drinking and baseball excursion, I somehow found myself at a place called Jalapenos in Carmel Mountain looking to fill my stomach with something non-alcoholic. My buddy had told me that the California Burrito was the way to go here and went on to explain that said burrito had fries…inside. Yeah, I know, pretty awesome and I was ready to commit as soon as I learned what else filled the thing.

Por Ti Funghi, Volare

Hole in the wall?

While in San Diego with a couple of runners the night before the Rock and Roll Marathon, we needed some carbs. I wasn’t running, but I am never one to turn down a carbo-load. Knowing nothing of Italian food in San Diego and not really wanting to go to Olive Garden (no offense to the Garden, but we wanted to support something local), we turned to Urban Spoon. Yes, there’s an app for that. This directed us to Volare, a sort of whole in the wall in a sort of sketchy part of town. It looked perfect.

Strange Strips at George’s on the Cove

Where’s the fried stuff?

For my last meal in San Diego, we headed to La Jolla. I didn’t know much about La Jolla beforehand, but it ended up being a pretty cool little part of town. We did a little walk around The Cove and saw some pretty tasty-looking live seals. Sadly, these guys were not for eating, so instead we ate a place called George’s at the Cove.

George’s didn’t have a very unvegan-friendly menu (I should also make it clear that they had a burger on their menu that looked pretty good, but after the zoo and Hodad’s the day before, that was out of the question), but it did have an awesome view. Which is great, but you can’t eat a view. Because it doesn’t taste good. Filled with vegetarded dishes, I finally found something I could eat on their “sides” menu. It was called Cayenne Dusted Grilled Chicken Strips and this “side” came with arugula salad, fries and a parmesan garlic dipping sauce for the fries. I don’t know about anyone else, but this was the first time I had ever seen a side dish come with its own side dishes. This was strange to me, but I was okay with it because it meant I was really getting a full meal. The one thing I wasn’t okay with was the arugula salad. When I ordered I asked them not to worry about given me the salad and then I waited for my side meal to come.

Bacon Patties and Burgers at Hodad’s

A sign for good burgers.

One of the hardest parts of being an amateur food blogger is that when people are struggling to decide what to eat, they look to you. Never mind the fact that you don’t eat healthy, don’t like to spend too much money and are happier with a cheeseburger than foie gras. So even though I was with family in San Diego, the only place I knew to go to was Hodad’s in Ocean Beach, a divey surfer burger stand.

A Panda Burger at Canyon Cafe (CLOSED)

Could it really be panda?

Wandering around the San Diego Zoo for a day is certainly a good way to make an unvegan hungry. So many animals, yet none of them on my plate. After a while, the Red River Hogs started to look like walking bacon (and I actually don’t have to feel bad for saying that because they aren’t endangered in the least). Finally, as we reached the pandas and saw the long line to see them, we realized it was time for lunch. And we were in luck, because next to the pandas we found Canyon Cafe.

Cooking with Fire at Turf Supper Club

Looks good enough to cook.

While down in San Diego for a weekend, a friend recommended a restaurant/bar called Turf Supper Club. By the name of it, it sounds like an expensive and pretentious restaurant, but he assured me it wasn’t. What makes the place special, unpretentious and surprisingly cheap is the fact that you cook your own food. But these aren’t some thinly sliced Asian meat and veggies, these are full steaks, burgers, kebabs and fish. Cooking food yourself doesn’t necessarily appeal to all people, but at Turf Supper Club it is more of an event than work, you get so exited that once you are done you leave wanting to take a cooking class from Bep Truong.