Carlsbad Restaurants Your Tastebuds Will Love
The choice of restaurants in Carlsbad is huge—and here we share with you are tried and tested favorites of the very best places to eat in this coastal town.
There are many places to choose to eat in the popular coastal town of Carlsbad. There is a huge variety of restaurants and the choice can be overwhelming. Here we share with you our pick of the very best places to —a stylish Japanese restaurant, a farm to table bistro in a very unexpected location, a relaxed cafe in the heart of Carlsbad Village, and a family owned Italian restaurant serving excellent food combined with great service. Which one will you choose?
The Naked Cafe is a friendly cafe open for breakfast and lunch in the heart of Carlsbad Village. The service is friendly and the food tastes great and is well presented. The Naked Cafe is very popular, particularly at the weekend so go early if you want to avoid the wait.
There is indoor and outdoor seating at the Naked Cafe. We usually prefer to sit outside as it is a great place to people watch as it is in a busy, pedestrianized area of Carlsbad Village. The outside seating is also dog friendly. The indoor area is nicely decorated and has local art work for sale displayed on the walls. We find the indoor seating slightly uncomfortable after a while as the chairs, although they look stylish, are actually not that comfortable! Another reason to request a seat on the patio if the weather is good.
This is a vegan and vegetarian friendly place to eat. They also have some gluten free items on the menu.Things are clearly marked on the menu and you can also substitute soy or almond milk for an extra charge.
The menu offers a good selection of the usual breakfast favorites including Pancakes, French Toast, Scrambles, Oatmeal and Burritos. The Pancakes are huge—you can choose from Buttermilk or Organic Whole Grain (which is also gluten free). You then choose the style of pancake that you want. Our favorite is the Fuzzy Monkey with Banana and Granola. If you want something a little more conventional the Blueberry Pancakes are also a good choice.
They have a special section on the menu called Look Good Naked which shows the nutritional value of each item if you want to keep an eye on the calories. Our favorite is the Good Karma with four egg whites, brown rice, broccoli, zucchini, and salsa fresca for $9.50.
They also have a selection of Infused Dishes which are mildly spiced entrees. They have great names such as Transcendence Wrap, Goddess Wrap and Kung Fu Quesadilla.
You can Build Your Own Sandwich. You choose the bread or wrap and select which of the fillings, spread and side you want.
They have a good selection of drinks including beer and wine. We often choose the Praying Mantis which is iced green mint tea and apple juice for $3, or the large French Press of fresh coffee.
The Naked Cafe
300 Carlsbad Village Drive
Carlsbad, CA. 92008
(760) 720 – 7866
Naked Cafe is open every day 7:30am – 2:30pm.
Blue Ocean Robata & Sushi Bar
The Blue Ocean Robata & Sushi Bar is the place to go in Carlsbad Village for some of the best sushi in San Diego. The stylish surroundings are very modern with lots of wood and shiny stainless steel in the design. The tables are a little close together, but the atmosphere is lively and welcoming. Even the outside of the building will catch your attention—very modern and unique in the center of Carlsbad Village.
This restaurant is very popular. Make a reservation, particularly on the weekend if you want to avoid a very long wait.
The Blue Ocean Robata and Sushi Bar menu is very extensive with a choice of traditional sushi and sashimi, robata, and hot dishes from the kitchen. The sushi menu has the usual favorites of California Roll $6 and Spicy Tuna $6. There are some interesting specialty rolls: Heart Attack, Hotty Hotty and Marine Boy. Attention to detail is stunning and the presentation is always excellent.
There is an extensive choice of small plates including Chilled Oysters $12, Caramelized Eggplant $8 and Vegetable Potstickers $9.
If you want a larger entree then choose one of the hot from the kitchen items. Selections include Miso Glazed Black Cod $19, Grilled Octopus $19 and Sake Steamed Mussels $15.
If you still have room for dessert try the Ginger Butterscotch Pudding or the Flourless Chocolate Almond Torte.
The Blue Ocean has a great selection of cocktails - this is the kind of place that definitely seems like you should be drinking something out of a stylish glass! There is also a good selection of wine, sake and beer.
Blue Ocean Robata & Sushi Bar
2958 Madison St
Lunch (Monday - Saturday) 11 AM - 2PM
Closed 2 PM - 4 PM
Happy Hour (Sunday - Thursday) 4 PM - 6 PM
Dinner 4 PM - 11 PM
Bistro West is a real find in Carlsbad in a totally unexpected location just off the freeway. If you are looking for fine dining in a modern, sleek atmosphere with excellent service then you really should visit Bistro West.
The concept of the restaurant is to use fresh, seasonal, locally sourced ingredients. They source most of their vegetables, herbs and fruit from West Farm which is located close to the restaurant. This Farm To Table concept is surprisingly difficult to find in the area so Bistro West is a rare find.
We like to start with the Bistro Artisan Board which includes Housemade Mozzarella, Seasonal Cheese, Salami, Grilled Breads and Assorted Garnish. It is priced at $15.95 and is more than enough to share as an appetizer. The Chicken Lettuce Wraps at $11.95 are also very tempting.
There is a large selection of salads and as all the ingredients are fresh they are usually a great choice. We recommend the Roasted Beet Salad for $11.95.
The pizzas are excellent too with some interesting choices. Try the Chicken and Roasted Potato for something a little different at $15.95. There is a selection of classic pastas including Penne Bolognese with homemade meat sauce.
Burgers and Sandwiches are also available with traditional choices such as Classic Philly Cheesesteak and Hot Reuben Sandwich.
There is also a choice of entrees which are all based on traditional favorites but which taste so good because of the quality of the ingredients and the skills of the chefs. Our favorites include Wasabi Encrusted Salmon $28.95 , Gumbo $22.95 and Chicken Pot Pie $15.95.
It is worth saving some room for dessert but it may be difficult to choose which one from their very tempting selection. If you want something a little different then try the Sweet Potato Torte or Warm Gingered Pear Cobbler both for $8.95.
The restaurant is also child friendly and has a separate kids menu with favorites such as Grilled Cheese Sandwich and Chicken Fingers. A gluten free menu is also available.
There is a good selection of wines available by the glass and by the bottle.
4970 Avenida Encinas
CA 92008 (Cannon and I-5)
There are a number of Vigilucci's restaurants in the San Diego area but this one in Carlsbad Village is our favorite. Even though there are a number of locations this is still a family owned restaurant founded by Roberto Vigilucci two decades ago. If you enjoy authentic Italian cooking and excellent service then you will enjoy Vigilucci's.
There is indoor and outdoor seating available. We always choose the outdoor seating if possible - it is good to people watch and there are heaters outside for the cooler evenings. The one criticism of this restaurant that we do have is that it really is in need of a refurbishment inside - the decor is beginning to look a little dated. Having said that the food and the service more than make up for this so we return on a regular basis.
There is a lot of choice on their menu. Portion sizes are generous and the quality is extremely high—we have never been disappointed by any of our choices here.
One of our favorite antipasti selections is Carciofini al Forno—Oven-roasted artichoke hearts filled with Parmigiano, parsley, black olives, garlic and mozzarella for $16. The Caprese Salad is also excellent as it uses fresh high quality ingredients.
There is a large selection of Pasta Dishes including Fettucine Alfredo $16, Spaghetti alla Carbonara $18.50 and Penne alla Vodka con Porcini for $18.50. Gluten free pasta is available for an extra charge.
You may find it difficult to choose an entree as the selection is huge including Pollo Parmigiana $26, Saltimbocca Alla Romana $28, and Cioppino for $39.
You will be very tempted to sample one of their desserts. Of course they have the traditional Tiramisu and Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee—it is difficult to chose between them! The coffee here is also extremely good.
There is a full bar and wine list with wine available by the glass or the bottle.
Vigilucci's is very child friendly and there is a separate kids menu available.
2943 State Street
Carlsbad CA 92008
Monday – Thursday 11:30am – 10pm
Friday – Saturday 11:30am – 10:30pm
Sunday 11am – 10pm
Monday – Thursday 4pm – 7pm
Friday – Sunday 4pm – 6pm
Welcome to Vigilucci's, where families are raised in kitchens and food is a centerpiece of the culture.
Title picture source www.flickr.com
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