Home > Bucket List, buried life, cooking, food, Life list, Travel, What I want to do before I die > Diners Drive-ins and Dives, San Diego Style!!

Diners Drive-ins and Dives, San Diego Style!!

Got to ask you to go back in time with me for this one as it’s a bit late. Back all the way to Father’s Day. It was the morning after the City Chase race and the fam and I were going to Sea World. That morning we woke up and got the munchkin all taken care of and decided to go grab breakfast on the way to the park.

Hob Nob Hill in San Diego

After consulting with the Flavortown app on the iPhone we found that Nob Hob Hill was just down the street on the way to Sea World. Perfect for hitting up another DDD. It was in a neighborhood overlooking the harbor and just under the flight path of the jets as they land at San Diego International. The planes skip across the top of the neighborhood, and I mean skip (I swear that a couple of the jets scraped rooftops on their final descent!!) Robby and I took a walk around the block and he (and I) were fascinated by the planes that dropped down on us every couple of minutes. We had about a 20 minute wait for a table, which I didn’t think was that bad considering that it was Father’s Day and we walked in without a reservation.

The waitress and staff were really busy, but still found time to stop and flirt with Robby. He thought he was pretty hot stuff with all the attention that everyone was giving him. I decided to have that mornings special, a lobster omelette with Hollandaise sauce.

Father's Day breakfast, a lobster omelette, coffee, muffins and my favorite hash browns.

Everything was really good and even as busy as they were the staff was friendly. I really liked my omelette and loved the hash browns as usual. If you didn’t already pick up on it I have a unsually deep obsession with hash browns. They (and beer) are the reason that I know God truly loves us. All in all a great place. The menu looked like it had plenty of other great options and the bakery smelled fantastic. The locals are lucky to have such a great place to frequent.

I originally had second thoughts about having seafood and then going out into the heat of southern California, but I didn’t have any problems later in the day at all.

We had an awesome day at Sea World. Robby had a blast in their Sesame Street park. We put him in his swimsuit and let him run through the blasts of water that erupted from the ground. He loved it til one blasted him right in the face. Didn’t take him long to recover, get over it and run right back into the water.

Robby was having a blast in the water

He pretty much lost his mind when the characters came out and performed their mini concert. He was running around dancing and screaming like a girl seeing the Beatles for the first time in the sixties. It was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen in my life. I was running around trying to keep up with him and getting it on video so I everyone could see this crazy little monkey grooving to the Elmo concert. God I love that little boy!!

We caught a couple of shows and saw all sorts of cool animal exhibits, overall had a great day down there. I am having tons of fun watching Robby grow up. Everyday he can do more and has more and more fun. I cannot wait for all the things that we are going to get to do with him as he grows up.

That evening as we were leaving the park we looked up and found another DDD on the way home. This one is Tioli’s Crazee Burger

Crazee Burger! Do yourself a favor, find this place and go have a burger. You will thank me afterwards.

and I was a bit worried going to a burger place and not finding something for my wife to eat. However they also have a veggie burger that my wife said was awesome. I had the Santorini burger which was a half beef, half lamb with a Greek Tsatsiki sauce. It was delicious!! I can completely understand why this is continually voted best burger in San Diego. This one of my highly recommended stops when you are in the area. We also had the sweet potato fries that were awesome. Robby was a huge fan of the sweet potato fries. We couldn’t get the kid to stop wolfing them down. On top of the great meal it was a cool place to hang out. It has a great bar feel with sports playing on the tv’s on one side of the dining room, World Cup games when we were t her e.

An awesome Santorini Burger and Sweet Potato Fries

The other side has more of a dining room feel with photos up on the fall that are pretty cool and crazy. I do have to say the most impressive part of Crazee Burger was how cool the staff was. They welcomed us in, answered all our questions, played with our kid and offered him a kids cup for his drink, and just made us feel at home. Even if the food had been half as good as it was I would have wanted to go back because we were treated so well. Oh and the onion rings were great and came with an amazing dipping sauce that we used on everything we could. It was good enough to eat off your fingers.

Overall I was just disappointed that I don’t live closer so that I can visit Crazee Burger more often.

Pizzeria Luigi...Home of the Disgruntled Alternative Piemakers

The next day my wife didn’t feel very well when she woke up and we ended up spending most of the morning sleeping in and packing up to leave that evening. Originally we had planned on going to the San Diego Zoo and letting Robby check out all the animals. Dani didn’t feel up to walking around in the heat. She really didn’t feel very well and I just wanted to do anything to make her feel better.

So we packed up and jumped in the car and headed out to explore San Diego. We started out by going to a bakery and getting some breakfast sandwiches then found our way to some coffee. Since our original plan was off the table til our next trip we decided to take a self guided tour of San Diego and Coronado. Our drive was pretty fun and we saw some awesome beaches and places to explore the next time we are down in the area. From Coronado we headed to the Balboa Park area to walk through some of the museums and gardens. We took Robby to a kids exploration area that he ran around playing with all the other kids and the exhibits that they had out. He really was into this machine that took plastic balls and sucked them up a tube and shot them out the other side.

Robby got a kick out of the computer game

After hanging out in the gardens and running through the parks we decided to grab one last bite at a DDD before heading to the airport. Dani had heard of Pizzeria Luigi from the show and thought that it would be a good place to grab our last meal of the vacation.

We pulled up and walked into the Pizzeria Luigi. Decoration was almost non-existent and we were greeted with a snarl. The girl behind the counter was wearing a Misfits T-shirt over her bad attitude while another creature was behind the counter making dough for the pies. The counter had a deli style window in which were the pies and eats of the day. I decided on a slice of pepperoni and ricotta. It was alright, nothing too spectacular but it could have been the sprinkling of angst that it was served with. Unfortunately we hurried through our meal and we were eager to hear the sound of the door slamming behind us. I don’t know if I was expecting too much since Dani was excited to try this place out too, or if anyone would have been disappointed in the experience. It was too bad that we were treated so badly. Luigi’s had a lot of potential when we pulled up, but it seemed that they got caught up in their own hype and believed that they were better, cooler and more bad ass than the customers who walked in seeking a pie.

Trying to choke down a slice of pepperoni with a side of misplaced anger!!!

That wraps up the San Diego trip in a nutshell. There were other adventures and misadventures, dinners, drinks, lots of fun and the some of the worst travel ever. We survived the episode of Seinfeld where they lost the car in the parking structure (I swear it was gone!! We looked on every floor. It wasn’t there!), we survived our first major travel with a one-year old, and I learned a lot about myself as a family man and a person in general.

I guess that is what this is all about, learning who I am and who I am becoming. Not too many people get to live their dreams and I have been doing all the things that I have ever wanted to do with my family and friends right by my side. I also have stuck with it even when I thought it would be best to throw in the towel. I’ve been pursuing these challenges for over half a year now. When I first started a big part of me thought that it wouldn’t last more than a week. I like who I am becoming. Not too many people get to say that either.

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