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“Great atmosphere...awesome food!”
Review of CUCINA urbana

CUCINA urbana
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Ranked #13 of 4,959 Restaurants in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $30
Cuisines: Italian, Wine Bar
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Bar scene, Special occasions, Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: 5th Avenue
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
Reviewed February 26, 2014

On a mini-vacation in San Diego last week, and being Italian, always looking for 'real' Italian food, we found this gem. Besides the great food, it has an upscale feel, yet a very relaxed atmosphere. Very friendly service, and also kid-friendly. My grandsons were able to make their own pizzas, which they loved. Also loved that they got free refills on their drinks. For the adults, their sangria was awesome! Definitely would return here the next time we're in San Diego.

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Thank tahoegram
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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390 - 394 of 791 reviews

Reviewed February 23, 2014

Had a yummy lunch. The restaurant has a great vibe. So much thought has gone into every detail of the decor. We started by sharing a polenta board - which was to die for delicious. Rich thigh meat ragu with olives over a rich buttery polenta. Followed by a light brussels sprout and apple salad with farro. I was headed to a birthday afterwards and picked up a fantastic bottle of red in their wine room which has a great collection of wines for sale. I will be back - it was the kind of dining experience one craves for unique and tasty!

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Thank Schinks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2014

We tripped and stumbled over a few restaurants on a Sunday night and lucked into this one. First thing was that on Sundays they sell wine at cost so our bottle of wine was as cheap as it would have been for a glass in other places.

Then the food was absolutely awesome. From the olive tampenade in a small jar to the puttanesca and the pizza, everything was very tasty.

To make the night even better, the service was outstanding.

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Thank Batt2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2014 via mobile

Best pizza & California Wine in San Diego, nice place for couples dinner , the place for dinner with friends and family, best prices in wine.

Thank LuisEPerez
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 10, 2014

I was taken to Cucina Urbana by some local friends and, man, they know their italian food.

Food was incredibly well executed. Went their during Restaurant Week and had a set course dinner; burrata (just amazing) and short rib pasta.... So good.

But I think the best part was the service. We had a very nice waiter, can't remember his name though. Bold dude, very friendly. Please congratulate this man on his AWESOME service.

Also the ambiance and decoration of the place was very good.

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Thank Cristian U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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