Where to Eat During Comic-Con
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, pizza delivery, and sweets suggestions for Comic-Con attendees.
The most important meal of the day is a great opportunity to fuel up with a big meal that will keep you full for hours. These local restaurants are all within walking distance of Comic-Con HQ and offer big plates for very reasonable prices.
The waffles are worth the wait! Choose from sweet cornbread, pecan, pumpkin, or peanut butter, plus savory options like benedicts, tamales and eggs, or the standard All-American breakfast. 222 Island Avenue, 619-236-9902, Opens at 7 a.m.
Gourmet omelets, pancakes, french toast, and crepes, plus an assortment of sandwiches, including egg-battered Monte Cristos. 750 5th Ave, 619-795-0721, Open at 8 a.m.
Get a grab-and-go breakfast burrito or sandwich for $5 (when you show your Comic-Con badge). 355 6th Avenue, San Diego, 619-338-6955, Open at 6 a.m.
Home of the 2+2+2=6 special (2 blueberry pancakes, 2 scrambled eggs, and 2 strips of bacon). Or, look to their Latino Breakfast plates for something different. Plenty of options for vegetarians, including soy chorizo specials. 1250 J Street, 619-232-7662, Open at 7 a.m.
Richard Walker Pancake House
A small spot that serves up gigantic omeletes, crepes, and oven-baked pancakes, including both sweet and savory options like the decadent oven-baked apple pancake (pictured above). Some advice: arrive early because seating can be limited and plan on splitting your meal with a friend. 520 Front Street, 619-231-7777, Open at 6:30 a.m.
The best option for lunch is probably to grab some basic groceries from Ralph's (G Street at First Ave) like sandwich ingredients, protein bars, and trail mix so that you don't miss too much of the day leaving the Convention Center for lunch. If you want a proper lunch, here are some great options:
The Hub Market
This downtown deli is a local favorite for an affordable, no-nonsense lunch. The deli offers a variety of sandwiches, served with a drink and side salad for about $6. Lunchtime can get busy, so call ahead to place your order. 748 6th Avenue, 619-239-1918
Best dishes at this casual Asian fusion restaurant include their tasty, tamarind-rich pad thai, chicken satay sandwich, and crispy rolls -- essentially a burrito-sized egg roll, filled with meat, rice, and veggies. Or, shop from their "little plates" menu, which includes 20 Asian tapas, all under $4 each. 744 Market St, 619-231-1088
Yes, it's a chain, but when you're craving a simple, healthy meal, there's nothing wrong with something familiar. Order an entree-sized salad to get your quota of greens (pictured above), or try some broccoli cheddar soup in a bread bowl -- an especially smart option before a night of drinking. 225 Broadway, 619-544-7400
Also a chain, but you can't beat their $5 burger and beer special (when you show your Comic-Con badge). 743 5th Avenue, San Diego, 619-234-4393
Sushi Deli 2
It may be a little farther from Comic-Con grounds than the other options, but this popular sushi restaurant is one of the best options for sushi downtown, and cheap to boot. Lunch specials are under $7, and come with rice and salad, but it's worth the extra buck to add miso soup. 135 Broadway, 619-233-3072
By the time dinner rolls around, chances are you're going to want to get off your feet for a filling meal. These Gaslamp Quarter and East Village restaurants are great spots to relax and refuel.
A local favorite serving 14 different burgers, available with your choice of patty (including beef, turkey, or veggie, plus grilled or fried chicken). The half-pound burgers come with a whack of fries for $9.95 -- a value that's tough to beat the in Gaslamp Quarter. 560 5th Avenue, 619-702-8068
Belly-up to the bar for a brew or grab a seat in the back for some New Haven-style pizza. Choose a pre-designed pie or build your own (hint: try the mashed potato with bacon). The building -- circa 1912 -- is one of the oldest downtown. 410 10th Avenue, 619-531-8869
The Hopping Pig
This new Gaslamp Quarter eatery specializes in porcine cuisine, allowing you to eat pork products in your appetizer, entree, and dessert. Their tasty beef and pork burgers give new meaning to the word "hamburger", and are served with fresh-cut fries, home-made ketchup, and aioli.748 5th Avenue, 619-546-6424
Worth the splurge! Local celebri-chef Brian Malarkey (of Top Chef fame) raked in the "best of" nods from San Diego Magazine readers in the 2011 Best Restaurants Issue, including Best Chef, Best New Restaurant and Best Business Lunch. Searsucker features American Classic cuisine, including steak, seafood, pork, and poultry. A-la-carte dinner entrees start at $22, or swing by for lunch, when you can grab a sandwich or salad for $6-$14. 611 5th Avenue, 619-233-7327
Comic-Con is a great opportunity to mingle with fellow convention-goers, but after a long day, it's sometimes nice to head back to your hotel and dine in comfort. When that mood strikes you, try a pizza from one of these local purveyors:
This spot may be a bit too far to grab a slice, but is an excellent option for delivery. Get a large (16 inch) party pizza with three toppings for $13.99. 619-531-0955
The downtown location is slated to open sometime this summer, but during Comic-Con, stuffed pizza is only a phone call away. Pies start at $12 for a small, which can easily feed 3 people. If your room has a fridge, get a larger size than you need and have the rest as leftovers. As good as the pizza is fresh out of the box, it's even better the next morning. 619-937-0808
This North Park pizzeria specializes in Sicilian pies, but the NYC-style pizzas are also great. Meat lovers should try the Meatda, which comes with meatball, pepperoni, and sausage, or if you go the NYC-style route, try the Barack-Oil-Ricotta, with broccoli, olive oil, and heaps of ricotta cheese (pictured at top). 619-282-3000
No food list would be complete without some dessert, including these sweet treats that are all within easy walking distance from the Convention Center.
Treat yourself to some dessert at this cute cupcake shop. Flavors rotate daily, but you can always get classic options like chocolate, vanilla, and red velvet. Tip: stop by on Sunday for a chocolate peanut butter cupcake. 518 6th Avenue, 619-235-9235
One of the cities' best gelaterias is located smack-dab in the middle of the Gaslamp Quarter. Look for 10 different chocolate-based flavors, plus crepes and gelato cocktails. 509 5th Avenue, San Diego, 619-238-9400
Pick up a pack of "Mini Homie Treats" and you can start each morning off with a sugar kick. $2.99 gets you three cinnamon rolls that are anything but "mini". 1021 Market Street, 858-715-0422