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All 4,043 San Diego Restaurants

Isabel's Cantina

966 Felspar Street, San Diego, CA 92109 (Pacific Beach)
(858) 272-8400
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Ranked #266 of 4,043 Restaurants in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $0 - $30
Sun - Thu 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
Fri - Sat 8:00 am - 9:30 pm
Cuisines: Latin
Neighborhood: Pacific Beach
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Cass
Description: At Isabel's Cantina, Chef Isabel Cruz fuses Latin and Asian cuisine into sensual and creative concoctions that are both remarkably addictive and surprisingly healthy. By incorporating ingredients from spicy pork carnitas to tofu, Chef Cruz creates a vegetarian's haven as well as a meat-lover's paradise. The exotic dining space is at once dramatic and hip, with accents such as an enormous 15-foot Buddha statue staring down at the dining room. Casual booths, stark lines, and warm colors create an atmosphere not found elsewhere in Pacific Beach, attracting crowds for brunch, lunch, and dinner.
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37 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Weymouth, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2014

Got a little seduced by the website showing the words organic, farm fresh and healthy. Was disappointed to find out that many of the chicken dishes are not free range or organic. The eggs ditto. This means the choice on the breakfast/lunch menu decreases immensely. So, a big plate of salad leaves with a splattering of blue cheese and walnuts... More

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Ottawa, Canada
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2014

This is well worth a visit. Had dinner there last night and the pineapple rice bowl and the tamales were both delicious and would have them again in an instant. Wine list is small but reasonable. Only complaint is that the food was served very quickly so if you prefer to linger over dinner , it's best to let your... More

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La Jolla, California
Top Contributor
112 reviews 112 reviews
76 restaurant reviews
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2014

We enjoyed our experience from the time we arrived to when we left. The server, Nick, was excellent. We had a nice bottle of wine (the new malbec) and started with the "Plantains with Carnitas" which came with 4 large plantain slices smothered in carnitas. This didn't knock our socks off but it was very good. We shared everything to... More

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2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2014

We're so glad we found this wonderful place. The every morsel of food was exquisite! The place has great energy and the staff takes great pride in each dish. Regarding the Farmer's Trio special--who knew broccoli, kale and corn could be so delicious?

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Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2014

Had lived around this restraunt for years and had no idea what we were missing. We were very pleasantly surprised with our first visit and have been back several times. The chefs do a great job of combining different ingredients and flavors into fantastic and creative dishes. The price is also very reasonable, especially for what you get. Very recommended... More

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Pickering, Ontario, Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2014

We had chips and guacamole to start (very good!). I had chicken tamales with rice and beans and my daughter had Buddha bowl with chicken. Interesting mix of Mexican and Thai flavours. Would go back again.

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Tucson, Arizona
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

I visited Isabel's Cantina I was in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego over the Thanksgiving holiday (November 2013). I found the place by accident. Being snubbed by the wait staff at the restaurant next door, I was intrigued by the dragon over the door and a sign with a hand written menu that mentioned farm-to-table. I had a... More

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Salem, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
184 reviews 184 reviews
92 restaurant reviews
385 helpful votes 385 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2014

There is no sign out front, but look up to see the Asian dragon flying high above a Mexican restaurant (strangely no sign or marquee). Inside see a Santaria shrine in the foreground,a large Buddha gracing the back corner, and day of the dead stained glass windows. What is going on here? Really great cooking, that’s what! Thai-Mexican, it makes... More

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Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2014

Nothing to dislike and everything to LOVE!!! We spent 5 nights in San Diego & visited this restaurant 3 of those night for dinner. Highly recommend this quirky restaurant that serves up the most amazing vegetarian & vegan meals. Lots of dishes with a Mexican influence too. Everything we ate was just perfection on a plate. Just wish you could... More

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San Diego, California
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2014

I had the Avocado Scramble and my friend had the one of the daily specials and we both polished off our plates. The Mango Mint Mimosa was also tasty too. I loved the Asian style decor and the waiters were very friendly and attentive. Although there was a wait when we arrived, the line moved quickly.

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