Each month we ask one of our favorite San Diegans the question:
If you only had 24 hours to show a friend the best that urban San Diego has to offer, where would you take them?
Kristin Diaz de Sandi
Live: Chula Vista
Work: Chula Vista/Baja California
How Long: 9 years
Kristin went outside of the box and revealed some of her favorite spots both in San Diego and Baja California, we are so close that she couldn’t resist!
BREAKFAST: I may have a slight addiction to tacos. I mean, the first step is admitting it right? Some may not think of tacos when it comes to breakfast, but once you have tried the Tijuana style birria tacos from Fernandez Restaurant in South Bay, you won’t be able to stop. You can order up the standard birria tacos, which come tucked inside a lightly fried tortilla. All of those juices that the meat has been simmering away in, drip down your arm with each bite. Or hey, say you are feeling a little feisty, the “quesabirria” comes with a handmade corn tortilla filled with melty cheese, and then topped with that stewed beef goodness, and all of the fixings. Don’t forget the salsa, and also order one of their agua frescas of the day. My personal favorite: Pineapple!
LUNCH: I have this thing for the Valle de Guadalupe, or otherwise known as Baja California’s wine region. It’s only about a 90 minute drive from the San Ysidro border crossing, and worth every minute of that trek. A nice long lunch surrounded by vineyards, half a bottle of wine gone before the first dish comes out, and watching my little ones roam free in nature is what it’s all about. Deckman’s en El Mogor is one of my all time favorites to spend a leisurely lunch, of course consuming everything from incredibly fresh ceviche and oysters, to grilled quail, and the some of the ripest tomatoes that I have ever tasted from the property’s ranch. Here, 4 or 5 hours can go by in the blink of the eye, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Now, when I’m not in dreamland, you can find me grabbing fish tacos at El Pescador food truck in Chula Vista, or even a spicy torta ahogada at Tortas El Gallito, which is in the same parking lot.
DINNER: Gosh, there are so many! Corazón de Tierra and Misión 19 in Tijuana are high on my list when it comes to a “nice” dinner out sans kids. If we want to talk more casual, South Park’s Buona Forchetta has some of the most amazing pizza in San Diego. Oh, and on to that taco thing again, I could easily eat way too many carne asada and pork adobada tacos at Taqueria El Franc in Tijuana. They have just the right amount of meat to creamy avocado, cilantro and onion sprinkled, doused in salsa ratio. One of the only times you will find me drinking soda, is at a taco stand, and it must be orange Fanta.
BAR: If you have yet to try the Tamarind martini from Romesco Mexiterranean Bistro, you most definitely need that in your life! I have to admit I am more of one to order a glass (or bottle) of wine, and while their Baja California wine menu is awesome, there is just something about that cocktail that just keeps me wanting more! I also have a major crush on Saint Archer’s IPA. I love to make it out to their tasting room, and fill up our growler with those tasty suds.