Beyond the Brews: Exploring San Diego’s Food Scene

Posted by Jordan Bailey

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Though craft beers, fish tacos and casual sushi spots are what immediately come to mind when we think about San Diego’s culinary offerings, Bite San Diego wants to show you that the city’s food scene has a lot more to offer than meets the eye.

Bite is a walking food tour company that highlights the variety of local cuisines offered for visitors and locals alike. It was started in 2010 after the company’s founder Rebecca took a similar tour in New York.

“(Rebecca) started to realize San Diego was slowly becoming — not necessarily a destination for food — but was kind of creating its own cuisine,” said Jered Martin, Bite’s general manager.

“So she kind of just put two and two together to show locals as well as tourists the places that we like to go to, and places that other locals like to go to as well.”
bitecrop2Bite offers small group walking tours through seven of San Diego’s neighborhoods, and each tour visits at least five eateries along the way. At each spot, guests get a sample (or, bite) of the restaurant’s offerings.

“Our name is kind of an indicator, we are ‘Bite San Diego,’ not ‘Buffet San Diego,” Jered said.

Of the seven tours, Jered said the NTC Liberty Tour is his favorite. It goes through one of the city’s oldest military bases, and guests learn the history of the base while sipping artisanal teas and munching on healthy, organic snacks.

Pretty soon, the tour will also include a stop at San Diego’s newest foodie hotspot — the Liberty Public Market. This indoor marketplace boasts more than 20 food vendors, arts and crafts and a test kitchen.

Jered said he’s confident it will put San Diego’s culinary scene on the map — “It’ll really solidify us as a food destination,” he said.
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Two of Jered’s go-to spots for food in San Diego — Clairemont Mesa and Kearny Mesa — aren’t toured by Bite, and are often overlooked by travelers. Both neighborhoods have predominantly Asian populations and are the only place to go when you’ve got a “hankering for Asian food.”

Jered said he and a friend also adopted Bite San Diego’s model of sampling many foods from one restaurant with their weekly “fentures,” or, food adventures.

“Once a week, a friend and I go to our list of the many restaurants we’ve been wanting to try, and pick one to go,” he said. “We have some appetizers and order an entree or two and sample the menu to get an idea of what it’s like.”

“It’s one of my more recent hobbies, partially because of my job … The sampling aspect got me thinking, why limit yourself to just one thing on the menu?”
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Bite San Diego tours start at $47 and run Fri-Sun every week. To reserve your spot, ask your Scout or text “bite” to 619-356-2224

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