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Cucina Urbana

Certificate of Excellence
$$
Italian, Organic, Pizza, Pasta, Wine Bar
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505 Laurel St, San Diego, CA 92101-1634 (5th Avenue)
+1 619-239-2222
Website
Today
5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Sun 4:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Mon 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Tue - Thu 11:30 am - 2:00 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri - Sat 5:00 pm - 11:55 pm
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Description: CUCINA urbana is a California inspired Italian Kitchen and Wine Shop...
CUCINA urbana is a California inspired Italian Kitchen and Wine Shop. Owner Tracy Borkum's flair for combining great ambience, award-winning cuisine and unparalleled service are once again starring components in this Urban Kitchen Group creation. The restaurant is being heralded as the leader in the new regime of affordable dining in San Diego and has been the subject of praise from numerous local and national publications. The restaurant's interior evokes a modern kitchen combined with the history and comfort of an old rustic country farmhouse. A touch of home, splash of bohemia and many objects new and old attract the eye. A focus on raw, sustainable material and reclaimed local material is found throughout. Discarded fence boards recovered from San Diego county wrap columns, walls, service stations and the back bar. Chef Joe Magnanelli's menu offers affordable selections of vasi + antipasti + boards + insalate + pizza + pasta + piatti + dolce. His whimsical expression of Italian classics coupled with the use of the freshest local produce, and organic and sustainable products comprise a diverse menu with all items at or below $20. Whether dining traditionally or 'family style', guests have become hooked on favorites such as stuffed fried squash blossoms, ricotta gnudi, braised black cod and veal piccata. Wines of 'The Americas,' including California, Washington, Oregon, Argentina, Chile and Italy are among the major wine-producing regions offered in CUCINA urbana's retail priced Wine Shop. Guests are invited to visit the restaurant's retail area to select a bottle for lunch or dinner (a corkage fee of $8 applies) or purchase wine to go. Additionally, CU plays host to a monthly 'Winemakers Series,' where guests are invited to enjoy hors d'oeuvres, taste a variety of wines and mingle with a winemaker in a casual, informal setting. - Strong commitment to seasonality + sustainability - organic + local product used whenever possible - wines from the Americas and Italy - sold at retail pricing - special discounts for cases of wine to go! - Local artisan beers + italian favorites - housemade infused liquors + specialty cocktails
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 511 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 332
    Excellent
  • 124
    Very good
  • 41
    Average
  • 11
    Poor
  • 3
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4.5 of 5 stars
Cool Food in Cool Setting

Great place close to town for interesting food and atmosphere. Very popular for the after work crowd or date night.

5 of 5 starsReviewed August 2, 2015
David_S56003
,
Houston, Texas
Good for:
  • Local cuisine
  • Special occasions
  • Large groups
  • Doing business
  • Bar scene
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511 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2015 NEW

Great place close to town for interesting food and atmosphere. Very popular for the after work crowd or date night.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Connecticut
Level Contributor
63 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2015 NEW via mobile

A lovely dinner on our last night in San Diego -- everything was top notch, especially the branzino, tempura squash blossoms and ravioli with rabbit sausage. A very nice vibe! Close to Balboa Park.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Pensacola, Florida
Level Contributor
183 reviews
102 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2015 NEW

Great meal with friends. Nice wine selection. We enjoyed the meal and the atmosphere. Highly recommend the chicken live pate and the Short Rib Pappardelle

Was this review helpful? Yes
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2015 NEW

The food is very good. The restaurant is hip. You should get a reservation. We ate here on a Thursday and did not have a reservation so we had to wait. Loved the short rib parpadelle. I did feel that charging a cork fee when you are purchasing wine from the restaurant ridiculous.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Grayslake, Illinois
Level Contributor
55 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2015 NEW

Nice place, good food, good wine menu and craft beer selection. The food is standard Italian fare, but with fusion twists, e.g. my chopped salad included chili seasoning that gave it a nice little kick. It has a new location vibe and the staff is enthusiastic, but not overly so.

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Clovis, California
Level Contributor
240 reviews
143 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2015

A cross between eclectic Italian and semi-California cuisine. Interesting takes on all dishes, including the first course, burned Brussels sprouts, with a fabulous house made hot sauce. The chopped salad is unique and excellent, almost like an antipasto. I had the sweet corn agnolotti for my main, my wife had the moist and delicious roasted chicken. Top is off with... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Level Contributor
333 reviews
222 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2015

i don't give easily 5 stars to a restaurant but Cuccina Urbana certainly deserves it. the service, great dishes and deserts and overall experience is unique. if the acoustics was a bit better - i would have given 5.5...

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Kentfield, CA
Level Contributor
97 reviews
50 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2015

The cocktails and dishes here are a wonderful walk on the wild side. The service was excellent and responsive. The only negative is the noise level in general so I was happy we were tucked into a comfortable corner so we could all chat. We picked this spot for its write-up in the Wall St Journal. It was a great... More 

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Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2015

Simply put. One of the best meals I have had. The blossoms are amazing and so I'd the grilled octopus. Mains courses were delicious and so was the dessert. Amazing

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Palm Springs
Level Contributor
22 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2015

simply delicious and beautifully presented, all natural you won't be disappointed regardless of what you going order I love the bar especially sitting facing each other

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Additional Information about Cucina Urbana

Address: 505 Laurel St, San Diego, CA 92101-1634
Phone Number: +1 619-239-2222
Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  San Diego
Open Hours:
Sunday 4:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Monday 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Tuesday 11:30 am - 2:00 pm  5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Wednesday 11:30 am - 2:00 pm  5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Thursday 11:30 am - 2:00 pm  5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Friday 5:00 pm - 11:55 pm
Saturday 5:00 pm - 11:55 pm
Average Prices: USD 10 - 30
Cuisine: Italian, Organic, Pizza, Pasta, Wine Bar

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 505 Laurel St, San Diego, CA 92101-1634
    (5th Avenue)
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  San Diego
  • Phone Number: +1 619-239-2222

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 10 - 30
  • Price Range: $ $
  • Cuisine: Italian, Organic, Pizza, Pasta, Wine Bar

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Good for: Local cuisine, Special occasions, Large groups, Doing business, Bar scene

Description

CUCINA urbana is a California inspired Italian Kitchen and Wine Shop. Owner Tracy Borkum's flair for combining great ambience, award-winning cuisine and unparalleled service are once again starring components in this Urban Kitchen Group creation. The restaurant is being heralded as the leader in the new regime of affordable dining in San Diego and has been the subject of praise from numerous local and national publications. The restaurant's interior evokes a modern kitchen combined with the history and comfort of an old rustic country farmhouse. A touch of home, splash of bohemia and many objects new and old attract the eye. A focus on raw, sustainable material and reclaimed local material is found throughout. Discarded fence boards recovered from San Diego county wrap columns, walls, service stations and the back bar. Chef Joe Magnanelli's menu offers affordable selections of vasi + antipasti + boards + insalate + pizza + pasta + piatti + dolce. His whimsical expression of Italian classics coupled with the use of the freshest local produce, and organic and sustainable products comprise a diverse menu with all items at or below $20. Whether dining traditionally or 'family style', guests have become hooked on favorites such as stuffed fried squash blossoms, ricotta gnudi, braised black cod and veal piccata. Wines of 'The Americas,' including California, Washington, Oregon, Argentina, Chile and Italy are among the major wine-producing regions offered in CUCINA urbana's retail priced Wine Shop. Guests are invited to visit the restaurant's retail area to select a bottle for lunch or dinner (a corkage fee of $8 applies) or purchase wine to go. Additionally, CU plays host to a monthly 'Winemakers Series,' where guests are invited to enjoy hors d'oeuvres, taste a variety of wines and mingle with a winemaker in a casual, informal setting. - Strong commitment to seasonality + sustainability - organic + local product used whenever possible - wines from the Americas and Italy - sold at retail pricing - special discounts for cases of wine to go! - Local artisan beers + italian favorites - housemade infused liquors + specialty cocktails
Open Hours
Sunday
4:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Monday
5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Tuesday
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Wednesday
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Thursday
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Friday
5:00 pm - 11:55 pm
Saturday
5:00 pm - 11:55 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Cucina Urbana staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?