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Neighborhood Guide: Escondido

Sleepy North County enclave? Hardly. Escondido mixes it up with high-end restaurants, greasy spoons, craft beer, scenic trails, art centers, and more.


Stone World Bistro and Gardens

This Month

December 5
Holiday Tree Lighting and Winter Wonderland Festival
California Center for the Arts

December 12
Second Saturday ArtWalk
Downtown Escondido

Burger Bench

Located in the former Escondido Times-Advocate building, the fast-casual eatery will serve the three Bs: burgers, beer, and later down the line, breakfast.
237 East Grand Avenue


Chef Patrick Ponsaty—one of only two French master chefs in San Diego—draws upon Californian and French influences for his upscale menu. For something more adventurous, try the Innovation/Inspiration Menu, which changes daily.
417 West Grand Avenue

Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens

It may have branched out to Liberty Station, the East Village, and even Berlin (this spring), but Escondido is the beer behemoth’s home base. This indoor-outdoor space comprises gardens, trails, a tree tunnel, and—oh yes—plenty of brews.
1999 Citracado Parkway

Culture Craft Coffee + Espresso  

The newest café for your daily cuppa sources locally roasted beans from James Coffee in a space outfitted with art from Escondido’s Stephen Fishwick Fine Art Gallery. 
1205 Auto Park Way 

Peterson’s Donut Corner

The 24-hour spot specializes in glazed raised dough, deep-fried croissants, and “Texas-style” treats, customizable donuts that range from 3 to 10 pounds and can be cut into various shapes and decorated with any toppings.
903 South Escondido Boulevard

duck confit at the wooden spoon

Lake Hodges

One of the highlights at this reservoir—loved by hikers and mountain bikers alike—is the Piedras Pintadas Trail, an easy 3.8-mile loop when paired with the Bernardo Bay path, which features Kumeyaay Indian rock art.
Lake Drive

The Wooden Spoon

Don’t let the shabby exterior fool you; five-star chef Jesse Paul executes an inspiring menu of duck confit, beer donuts, and more in a formerly abandoned taco shop.
805 East Valley Parkway

Agrusa’s Super Sandwiches

A neighborhood institution, this no-frills, family-run sub shop is a must for sandwich lovers. The Super Submarine is a perfect medley of Italian meats, mozzarella, and “all the trimmings.”
1606 East Valley Parkway

San Diego Zoo Safari Park

urban barn

Whether by caravan, trike, or cart, get up close and personal with the 2,600 animals who call this 1,800-acre sanctuary home.
15500 San Pasqual Valley Road

Urban Barn  

This flooring store turned vintage wonderland now houses antiques, upcycled treasures, and new items—everything from furniture to chandeliers to jewelry—from 30 vendors.
404 East Grand Avenue

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