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Thursday, February 26, 2015


The deadly Upas
FOODIE ALERT. Amorcito Corazon (Sweet Heart) just opened in North Park offering Mexican fare, including the tasty Classico Carne Asada burrito (size of a football).  Interesting take-out menu.  New place is Torta-ed between Lefty’s Pizza and Smoking Goat on 30th just up from Upas.

TAG TEAM TACOS. Tacos Perla serves delicious food, but the stylish Mexican food emporium—albeit small is size—is extremely creative in its marketing approach.  Founded by the Pearl Hotel team and located in the new North Parker lofts, Tacos Perla has teamed with two of its 30th and Upas neighbor bars to deliver its menu items to Modern Times Flavordome and Bluefoot bar.  While visiting Modern Times with West Coaster magazine publisher Mike Shess, we tried the Tacos Perla take out service.  Ordering by phone (and paying) the tacos were delivered promptly by a Tacos Perla staffer.  And, the ordered carne asada tacos impressed the taste buds.  Pillar to Post blog world headquarters is only eight blocks from Tacos Perla, we’re tempted to see if they’d deliver.  Stay tuned.

WHAT’S A UPAS?  Now that 30th & Upas streets in North Park is synonymous for deliciousness, what on Earth is a Upas?  It’s a tree and San Diegans pronounce it you-pus.

In San Diego’s mid-to-downtown area east to west streets are named after trees starting alphabetically south to north from Ash Street to Upas.

The Upas is native to Malaysia and some species grow to 100 feet. Its main feature is its full leafy canopy.  Has a tropical reputation as a tree not to mess with because of its toxicity (ancient natives used sap to poison tips of blowgun darts).

RESTAURANTS SURROUNDING 30TH & UPAS (with more in the works).

--Smoking Goat, 3408 30th St., 619.955-5295.  French-American cuisine. Now open on Mondays.

--Alexander’s, 3391 30th St., 619.281.2539, upscale Italian where top cuisine matches the d├ęcor.

--Underbelly II, 3000 Upas, Japanese cuisine, outdoor centric in modern building.  Huge following.

--Zensei Sushi, 3396 30th St., 619.546.6172, lively sushi bar.

--NEW, Amorcito Corazon, 3442 30th St., 619.293.3569. More of a take-out but has seating inside.  So far the carne asada classic burrito is drawing raves. Menu offers wider range of non-Mexican/American items.

--Jack-in-the Box, 2959 Upas St., 619.295.8443. Since the 1950s.  Ultimate cheeseburger still rules.

--Influx Cafe, 3000 Upas St., 619.795.0680,, go for the coffee stay for the salads and pasteries (choose your poison).

--NEW, Bazinga Eatery, 3382 30th St., 619.255.8940, www., mac & cheese specialties.

--Tacos Perla, 3000 Upas St., 619.795.0700. Upped the ante on Mexican cuisine in North Park.

--Cardamom Cafe, 2977 Upas St., North Park omelette is tops, double latte in a mug won me over.

--Lefty’s Chicago Pizzera, 3448 30th St., 619.295.1720,


--Mosaic Wine Bar (new ownership/remodeling), 3422 30th St.

--Eddie’s Philly, 3501 30th St., latter is now defunct and site will soon be another Queenstown Public House...unless it isn't.


--WOW Waffles, 3519 30th St., 619.458.9211,, try Liege Street Belgian Waffles.  Located behind Laundromat. 

--Paesano, 3647 30th St., 619.291.4090, oldest Italian eatery in mid-city with same ownership.  Fastest to go pizza in ‘hood as well as an established sit-down menu.  Family. Good prices.

--NEW, The Good Life Eatery, 3620 30th St., 619.756.7566, sweets, sandwiches, salads and soups.

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