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Tajima: Try the Okonomiyaki!
Tajima is a quirky little Japanese restaurant hidden on Convoy Street in San Diego. You might say the decór is eclectic--it includes an inflatable beer pitcher hanging from the ceiling and a sword-weilding samurai cow on a shelf above a table. This aside, Tajima is probably one of the most authentic non-sushi-centric Japanese restaurants in San Diego. Okonomiyaki, a sort of pizza/omlet/pancake hybrid, is one of their specialties--as far as I know this is one of the only places this can be found in San Diego. I highly recommend Shabu Shabu, sort of a Japanese hot pot/fondue as a fun dinner for a date or social gathering. The ramen here is also quite good (I recommend "spicy ramen"), and in fact they have late night night ramen specials from 11:00P.M.-3:00A.M Thursday-Saturday. The 'specials' always includes very interesting dishes you might otherwise not ever try unless you visited Japan. The service is friendly and most of the time very prompt. Highly recommended.
Favorite Dish: This is a touch call, but I think I can narrow it down to two. Shabu Shabu is a lot of fun, and the dipping sauces they provide with the meat are delicious. I usually order the Spicy Ramen, though--it's quite filling and comes in a delicious spicy miso broth.
Trattoria Mare Monti: My italian pick
Very nice and busy italian restaurant in the heart of the Gaslamp Quarter. Very recommendable. The dishes were prepared genuinely the Italian way and I bet the cheff is, in fact, an italian. Eat outside and enjoy some people watching.
Favorite Dish: Carpaccio Di Bue: thinly sliced raw beef, arugola, capers, shaved parmesan, mushrooms and celery. Then Penne
with tomato sauce, cream, prosciutto, peas, and parmesan cheese.
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