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Diners' Choice: Great for outdoor dining restaurants in San Diego

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OpenTable
Updated 05 February 2024

Looking for the best restaurants that are great for outdoor dining in San Diego? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyses nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favourite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you book, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Sorrento Ristorante restaurant
4.8
4.8 (16)
$31 to $50
Italian
Little Italy
About the restaurant
Sorrento Ristorante offers traditional Italian cuisines in its warm and hospitable ambiance. The restaurant is decorated with simplicity. Washed in decent shades of brown, it has a decorate ceiling. Tiny bulbs hang from the ceiling to create a romantic environment. Large pillars in the dining room are decorated with fresh flower arrangements and glasswork. The restaurant has a native Italian staff. It has a beautiful outdoor patio, serving the warmth of San Diego nights. Sorrento Ristorante is popular for its variety of authentic Italian dips and sauces. Guests can customize their meals by pairing up the sauces with their main meals. Pesto sauce makes a nice combination with all pastas. Chocolate mousse is served with chopped dark chocolate chunks and white chocolate cream topping. The lightly tossed bleu cheese is prepared in the craft kitchen. The bar at Sorrento Ristorante serves Italian wines and beer.
Top review
OpenTable Dinervip
Dined 5 days ago
Our server was fantastic! Very attentive. Food was excellent!
A photo of Jacumba Hot Springs Hotel restaurant
4.8
4.8 (59)
$30 and under
International
Jacumba
About the restaurant
Nestled in bouldery mountains along historic Old Highway 80, in a magical high desert community lies the Jacumba Hot Springs Hotel. The hotel has been designed with a sense of place, with natural materials, textures, & objects from ancient & primitive cultures from around the world. Our restaurant offers indoor dining under vintage ceramic lights and desert landscapes or our large outdoor shaded patios under a canopy of old-world lanterns and pine trees with a live music stage.

Our menu features an International High Desert menu that showcases the farms and ranches of Imperial Valley, the fresh seafood of Baja, and specialty regional purveyors. Make sure to save time to enjoy high desert elixirs, herbal tinctures, cold-pressed juices, tonics, and cocktails, handcrafted in our exotic desert hideaway bar.

Once you are here, nothing else matters.

Top review
Rick
Dined on 24 Feb 2024
The food was excellent. Nice selection of vegetarian and non-vegetarian entrees. Restaurant was clean and modern in Southwestern style. A nice little excursion, only an hour or so from San Diego. We'll definitely go again.
A photo of Bouquet Restaurant + Bar at Ponte Vineyard Inn restaurant
4.7
4.7 (492)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Temecula
About the restaurant
Enjoy fresh, locally-sourced cuisine fine wines and refreshing cocktails at Bouquet Restaurant, located at our luxurious AAA Four-Diamond Inn. Dine out on the terrace surrounded by manicured Italian gardens with stunning views of the vineyard and our 1-acre pond.

Enjoy live music during brunch Saturdays and Sundays from 12pm-3pm!

Top review
ChloeM
Dined 7 days ago
Such a vibe and good food highly recommend the calamari
A photo of Rancho Santa Fe Bistro restaurant
4.7
4.7 (310)
$30 and under
American
Rancho Santa Fe
About the restaurant
Welcome to The Rancho Santa Fe Bistro located in the heart of the beautiful downtown Rancho Santa Fe, CA. Our unique bistro offers an amazing menu and a superior wine selection for any brunch, lunch or dinner occasion.

Owner / Chef Mozy Jahanguiri, who has run restaurants in Chicago, Minneapolis, and Dallas, has opened The Rancho Santa Fe Bistro in the space formerly occupied by The Pantry on Paseo Delicias. Mozy has prepared a menu that offers a wide variety of healthy and stylish fresh grill and more offering a balanced approach to food and wine along with bistro favorites including Oysters Rockefeller, traditional escargots, baked brie with grapes and honey and more for starters. Entrees to satisfy any taste of carefully sourced meats, seafood and much more. Be sure to check out Bistro's beautiful wood wine cellar, housing an extensive collection that spans an impressive 100 years (1897-1997) at a variety of price points.

Top review
KeithF
Dined 7 days ago
It was weird to charge $2.20 per person for 1 piece of bread about 1.5" x 5" It was good and warm. But not uniquely special at all. Food was good.
A photo of Small Barn Old Town restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1220)
$31 to $50
Bistro
Temecula
About the restaurant
Small Barn is an exciting addition to the Temecula restaurant landscape offering a casual but elevated dining experience in the form of a modern bistro. The menu is inspired by classic preparations found on bistro menus around the globe while showcasing the bounty of ingredients produced in the region. The restaurant atmosphere is crafted to be a welcoming gathering place that is beautifully designed and relaxed, but with a vibrant energy that encourages socializing and discovery.

On the site of the historic Knott Family Homestead, Small Barn has brought new life to a landmark building from the early 1900s. Great care has gone into preserving the structure and with it the legacy of a prominent Temecula family that was among the area’s first settlers. Small Barn has maintained the original residential scale and offers extensive outdoor seating including the large wrap-around porch, covered patio and fireside lounge seating.

Top review
ErinG
Dined 3 days ago
The food was incredible. We got several apps/small plates and we were very impressed. The cocktails were also fantastic and friendly service and atmosphere impressed us greatly. All around a wonderful experience!
A photo of VAGA Restaurant & Bar restaurant
4.5
4.5 (19)
$31 to $50
American
Encinitas
About the restaurant
For a true “vaga”, the journey is never-ending; the spirit and palate, always curious. Drawing ingredients and inspiration from near and far, VAGA explores San Diego’s ever-changing confluence of culture and wanderlust through the cuisine of native Chef Claudette Zepeda.
Top review
HarryC
Dined 5 days ago
We enjoyed the evening. The venue, service, and food were great.
A photo of Ambrogio by Acquerello restaurant
4.4
4.4 (64)
$50 and over
Contemporary Italian
La Jolla
About the restaurant
Join us to experience Michelin Star Chef Silvio Salmoiraghi's Signature 7-Course Tasting Menu Daily.

*For guests short on time, you can experience a shorter version (4 Courses) of Chef Silvio's Signature Tasting Menu Tuesday-Thursday*

At Ambrogio by Acquerello we seek to operate within the frame of a New Italian Cuisine, built on concreteness, innovation and respect for our great Italian Culture and Materia Prima, as well as the amazing resources of San Diego.
We work without employing sous-vide or parboiling techniques but cooking "à la Minute" to accomplish maximum quality and an integral respect for the “materia prima”, seeking to sweep away the customer through the experience and hospitality that we strive to offer.
Italy, France, Korea, Japan and California: the five countries that define our cuisine and allow us to create a unique set of masterpieces where the traditional flavors of Milan typical foods meet the exoticism of Pacific Asian influences.

Top review
HughDvip
Dined 7 days ago
We were absolutely enchanted with the experience! Every course was perfect in flavor and presentation. My highest recommendation!!
A photo of Topside Terrace restaurant
4.2
4.2 (369)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
Downtown
About the restaurant
A quintessential San Diego open-air terrace, Topside Terrace takes advantage of the San Diego climate while marrying the sites and sounds of downtown. Inspired by coastal living, we specialize in evening fare and weekend brunch serving Baja California and Classic American Fare paired with contemporary cocktails and draft beer.

Happy hour every Sunday-Thursday from 4pm to 6pm!

Live Music every Wednesday night 6pm-8pm & Sunday Brunch 11am-1pm!

Top review
VinSD
Dined on 15 Feb 2024
As always, excellent food, beautifully plated and served, and great service. Nice drinks -- I recommend the Aeronaut (basically a lovely Aviation). For Valentine's Day, they had a music duo who played soft-pop love songs from many eras and took requests. The tables on the rooftop were nicely spaced and the heaters and lights made the ambience romantic and comfy. We love this restaurant, even though it's on the pricey side.
A photo of Mission Avenue restaurant
4.2
4.2 (33)
$30 and under
American
Oceanside
About the restaurant
We opened our doors in August 2014 with a vision of greatness: great drinks, food, and atmosphere, with a chill, unassuming vibe. A come-as-you-are locale, where everyone — from local to the traveler — is welcomed. Insider or outsider, there’s a seat at the bar just for you.

Located just blocks from the Oceanside Pier, join us in our industrial-chic lounge with two large garage doors which make you feel like you're dining outside, or on our heated and dog-friendly patio, from lunch to late night. Be sure to check our daily happy hours, midweek lunch specials and weekend brunch. Come see us. Pull up a seat and make yourself at home.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on 18 Feb 2024
This was a great spot, we sat outside on a Sunday afternoon and it was a great experience. The staff was quick and attentive. The food is great, good size portions, good food. It is relatively quiet, even sitting along side the street. I had a peanut butter coffee cocktail, That was great. The smoke ribs grilled cheese: excellent. Spicy bbq wings; outstanding.  Great experience, I will definitely go back again. Great ambience, great neighborhood to walk around.
A photo of Be Good Restaurant & Experience restaurant
4.0
4 (543)
$30 and under
American
Temecula
About the restaurant
Be Good Restaurant offers a variety of food and drink options while focusing on unique family-friendly experiences for all ages! Our one-of-a-kind restaurant provides a complete scratch kitchen and craft cocktail bar meaning each item is made to order without the use of pre-made items. Be Good proudly supports our local community utilizing local produce and brewery options at all times to serve you the freshest cuisine in the city of Temecula.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on 19 Feb 2024
Tables were dirty. Has to ask someone to clean it.
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