California is a place where being obnoxiously healthy is easy to do. Eating an organic diet isn’t just accepted--it’s downright trendy--and finding restaurants that serve fresh, local organic ingredients is a breeze. Down in San Diego, life’s a beach; the weather is ridiculous, the seafood is fresh, the cuisine is artisan and the produce is organic. Here are five amazing San Diego restaurants that offer fresh, organic cuisine to check out:
1. Spread. With a focus on plant-based cuisine and whole foods with plenty of organic, gluten-free and vegan options, Spread serves only locally grown, organic ingredients. Sourcing rare fruits, edible flowers and cheeky vegetables from area farmers markets, this organic vegetarian restaurant is open for dinner and features a menu full of innovative small plates and tempting desserts. Try the macadamia rose pesto grits, wild mushroom ragu or chocolate salad.
2879 University Avenue (North Park)
2. Blind Lady Ale House. While this pub is best known for its incredible selection of craft beers and devotion to the art of imbibing, you’ll also find a delicious range of gourmet artisan pizzas, European-style appetizers and fresh salads. The majority of the produce served at Blind Lady Ale House is certified organic and grown locally at Suzie’s Farm (Tijuana River Basin) and Crows Pass (Temecula Valley). Seasonal fare comes from neighborhood farmers markets, and sausages are made on-site with sustainable meat from the San Diego Meat Company. Trendy and hip, this restaurant’s décor features retro murals, exposed brick walls and cozy community farm tables.
3416 Adams Avenue (Normal Heights)
3. Starlite. Equally enjoyable for Friday night cocktails, a late Saturday lunch or lazy Sunday brunch, Starlite espouses fresh, sustainable cuisine served slowly and sourced locally with a focus on organic ingredients. 90 percent of the produce served here is procured locally, and 60 percent of the animal-based products on the menu (such as eggs, dairy, meat and seafood) come from sustainable sources. The menu features dishes including broccoli pot pie, housemade sausage and pickles, three-egg scramble with organic veggies and potatoes, and an ice cream sandwich made with organic ice cream and chopped pistachios between two housemade toffee-chip cookies.
3175 India Street (Mission Hills)
4. Lean and Green Café.Set in the breathtakingly beautiful coastal neighborhood of La Jolla, the Lean and Green Café serves healthy, organic cuisine for breakfast and lunch. This natural café’s entire menu is organic, and features customized fresh salads, breakfast dishes, smoothies, bowls and wraps (on whole wheat or gluten-free tortillas). Try organic juice blends fresh from the juicer, sample one of the many vegan and vegetarian dishes or indulge in an organic shake for dessert.
7825 Fay Avenue (La Jolla)
5. Ocean Beach People’s Organic Food Market. Ocean Beach is San Diego’s boho beachfront community, a colorful coastal neighborhood with beautiful cliffs and a population that marches to a funky beat. The OB People’s Organic Food Market has been around for more than four decades, and its full-service sit-down deli serves a wide range of housemade salads, sandwiches, baked goods, vegetarian/vegan entrees and more. Enjoy a meal in-house or take it to go and picnic on the beach.
4765 Voltaire Street (Ocean Beach)