5 Best Grubs In San Diego, According To Chef Andrew Betita

BY ANDREW BETITA, Chef Aestus (Santa Monica, California)

Aestus restaurant chef Andrew Betita

As a San Diego-native, chef Andrew Betita knows the best places to get your grub on.

SEE ALSO: The Surf Meets the Turf in San Diego: Lucha Libre Taco Shop

Currently headlining a brilliant modern and farm-to-table-inspired menu at Aestus – a contemporary hotspot situated right on the sophisticated Wilshire Boulevard – Betita is bringing his master chops from his run as sous chef in various renowned restaurants in southern California. But he credits his early years at Jose Andres’ The Bazaar at the SLS as a period where he learned the most to form his current culinary style: modern and traditional Spanish cuisine and its underlying connections to the Mexican and Filipino dishes he grew up cooking and eating with his family.

Facebook Aestus restaurant dishe

At Aestus, don’t miss his brilliant new American cuisine, including:

fire-roasted chicken that comes to life on the open kitchen’s wood-fired grill to soulful housemade pappardelle to grilled lamb chops that find their foil in whatever hyper-seasonal ingredients are at their peak.

When it came to where should we go for a delicious bite in San Diego, chef Betita gave us a hearty list that will make your next trip an incredibly tasty one!

1. Galaxy Tacos

2259 Avenida De La Playa, La Jolla, CA 92037 (map, website)

Call: 858.228.5655

This year my sous-chef and I have been traveling to Baja and eating a lot of progressive Mexican food. The cuisine at Galaxy Tacos is delicious, wonderfully sourced, technique driven and stunningly beautiful!  I’ve made it a point to stop by every time I head down to see my family. I always order the birria clams and a grilled trout. Chef Trey Foshee is killing it!

Facebook Galaxy Taco Los Angeles restaurant

Facebook/Galaxy Taco

2. TJ Oyster Bar

601 E. Palomar St. Suite C-2, Chula Vista, CA 91911 (map, website)

Call: 619.421.4787

My cousin Irene first brought me to TJ Oyster Bar a few months ago.  Every time I’m here I always order a dozen oysters and a tamarindo michelada (or three).  It’s a family-owned restaurant, which recently opened a second location down the street from the original.

Facebook TJ Oyster Bar Los Angeles restaurant

Facebook/TJ Oyster Bar

3. Oscars

746 Emerald Street, San Diego, CA 92109 (map, website)

Call: 858.412.4009

If you love Mexican seafood, then Oscars is THE spot to get your grub on! The fish is fresh and the flavors are spot on. Make sure to order some fish tacos and the mixed ceviche (fish and shrimp).

Oscars Mexican Seafood San Diego

Photo: Oscars

4Yokohama Yakitori Koubou 

3904 Convoy St., #108, San Diego, CA (map, website)

Call: 858.277.8822

Some of my favorite people in San Diego live down the street from this gem. Claremont has excellent Japanese food and Yokohama Yakitori Koubou certainly stands out. The meat is so fresh and they always nail the execution. I love to eat the chicken tails, chicken skin, chicken thigh and a pitcher. I love chicken!

Facebook Yokohama Yakitori Koubou San Diego restaurant

Facebook/Yokohama Yakitori Koubou

5. Tita’s Kitchenette

2720 E. Plaza Blvd., National City, CA 91950 (map, website)

Call: 619.472.5801

Tita’s Kitchenette makes great home-style Filipino food. I stop here when I need my afritada or sinigang fix. Spring for some lumpia and finish it off with a turon and a halo-halo. I’m allergic to peanut butter, but I hear the kare-kare is killer!

Facebook Connie Lodge Tita's Kitchenette San Diego

Facebook/Connie Lodge


Restaurante Casa Plasencia 

Robirosa 250, Aviacion, 22014 Tijuana, B.C., Mexico (map, website)

Call: +52.664.686.3604

If you’re game, then Restaurante Casa Plasencia is well worth the wait at the border and on your way back home from Tijuana! The octopus will blow your mind and they have delicious wines from El Valle de Guadalupe, where they specialize in big red blends. Make sure to head upstairs and get an education in matador history, where the walls are beautifully plastered with torero memorabilia and art, chronicling Tijuana bullfighting.

Restaurante Casa Plasencia San Diego

Restaurante Casa Plasencia 

Have an amazing meal of your trip at chef Andrew Betita’s Aestus Restaurant

507 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401 (map, website)

+1 (424) 268 – 4433. Follow Aestus on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram.

Facebook Aestus restaurant burgers

What do you think of the chef’s recommendations? Let us know in the comments.


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Categories: Foodies, It List

Author:Jetset Times

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