San Diego

Ummm, remember that trip I took to California a couple of months ago? You know, the one that I talked about in depth for a few weeks? Well, believe it or not, I’m not done talking about it. The seven (wow! I really had seven??) blog posts I wrote only touched on half of my trip- the 5 days I spent in San Francisco and the wine country. As I’ve mentioned before, I used to live in San Diego and still have some very, very close friends there. So after the other girls headed back to Nashville, I hopped on a plane and headed south for some much needed relaxation!

I always want a window seat when I’m flying into San Diego so I can catch a glimpse of Balboa Park, or the Coronado Bridge, downtown, the bay, the ocean…oh really just any of it! I’ve just missed it all so much, I want to capture every little piece of it that I can. There are so many things about this city I love that I could go on and on and on forever, but for today I’m just going to touch on a few of the highlights of this visit. Feel free to drop me a line any time you’re planning a trip to SD, and I can hook you up with plenty of suggestions!

For me, every visit includes breakfast at Isabel’s Cantina in my old neighborhood, Pacific Beach.

Cantina has some great healthy options on the menu, like my pick from the  “power menu”:
Brown rice, black beans, zucchini, green onion, tomatoes, & cilantro served with grilled chicken & a tangy tomatillo sauce.

And there are a few not so healthy options as well, like the King Cakes. Filled with peanut butter, bananas and chocolate chips, they are completely irresistible to a girl like me who lusts after all things chocolate and peanut butter. And I don’t even like pancakes!!



You can order as a meal and get 3 of these babies, but I always opt for the healthy breakfast and just get a side order of 1 single cake. Of course, that 1 cake is enormous! My trick is that I eat all of the ooey, gooey center and leave the plain pancake edges behind, which I figure saves me a few calories. And besides, I’m only ordering them for the filling anyway!

Isabel’s Cantina

966 Felspar St
San Diego, CA 92109

Breakfast/Lunch: Mon-Sun 8am-3pm
Dinner: Mon-Thur & Sun 5-9:30pm
Fri & Sat 5-10:30pm

After this breakfast, my friend Andrew and I headed to the beach. Well, technically, it was the bay. You see, in San Diego there can sometimes be a haze that settles over the beach for hours at a time, but smart folks like me know that you can usually walk just a few hundred yards over to the bay and be in beautiful sunshine!

This is the little part of the bay that was just a few blocks from my old place, so it’s where I spent practically every weekend.


After an exhausting day of eating and sunning in Pacific Beach, Andrew and I headed downtown to spend the evening with my sweet friend Sherri.


Oh, I bet you thought this drink was at some fancy downtown restaurant didn’t you? Nope. It’s at my friend Sherri’s dining room table! This is how Sherri always greets me when I arrive to town. Now you know why Sherri and I are such good friends :-)

After she finished mixing up cocktails for the three of us, we headed up to her rooftop to enjoy the beautiful afternoon. And this is the view:

With cushy lounge seating, grills, and Sherri’s home bar nearby, I’d say it’s a pretty nice place to catch a baseball game, wouldn’t you?


After downing our cocktails, Sherri convinced us we needed to go check out the nearby cheese bar at Bice. Cheese bar?  Think sushi bar, but with dozens of different kinds of cheeses.



25+ cheeses lined up in front of you can be a bit overwhelming. How to choose? My suggestion- Don’t. Instead, make your drink selection, and then let the experts pick the cheeses for you based on that.


To go with our bottle of bubbly we had five fabulous cheeses served with honey, crostinis, grapes, and dried fruits.

Il Forteto Boschetto Al Tartufo- a semi-soft cheese made from cow and sheep’s milk. It was loaded with shavings of white truffles!

Caseificio Alta Langa La Tur- a soft cheese made from cow, sheep and goat’s milk. Light and fluffy in texture, with hints of mushroom and the tang of sour cream.

Caciotta Marzolino- a sheep’s milk cheese with hints of fresh grass and herbs. This one was perfect with the honey.

Lagrein- a firm cow’s milk cheese that was steeped in wine along with garlic, black pepper and other seasonings.

There was one other incredible cheese that I apparently forgot to write down, but I think you get the picture….it was amazing!

Bice Ristorante

425 Island Ave
San Diego, CA 92101

The last meal of my stay was a fantastic one, but unfortunately none of my photos turned out so I can’t share vivid details which would have surely made your mouth water. Cucina Urbana is located in Banker’s Hill, the neighborhood where I lived for a short while right before moving to Nashville. Sadly, this restaurant didn’t exist at that time but I have a feeling that if they had been open when I lived in that little house on the hill, I might not have moved!!! If you visit San Diego, please put this one on your short list.

Cucina Urbana

505 Laurel Street
San Diego, CA 92101
619- 239-2222

There is still one more special discovery I made on this trip, but I’m saving it for a post all to itself. Stay tuned for a very “sweet” gift idea in coming weeks :-)