Southern California Foodie Diary // San Diego to Orange County

fall classic travel essentials whats in my suitcase

Taking a break from fashion week posts for a moment, I wanted to share some snaps and good eats from our brief stay in southern California last week. Each time Nick and I visit, we have a long list of spots to try (mostly drool-worthy screenshots from Instagram saved on our phones!).

I got a few questions on this scarf from my packing photo…it’s actually a poncho wrap from LOFT. I really wanted it to work as it has a beautiful color scheme, but had to return as it’s several inches too long on me and tough to alter (perfect for someone a few inches taller). Stores really need to start offering their ponchos / capes in shorter lengths too!

square bar cafe san diego asos blue maxi dress petite

ASOS pleated maxi dress sz 0 (hem cut shorter); back in stock – see my review!

My favorite area to eat at in San Diego has to be Convoy Street ~ it’s an Asian food-lover’s dream plus has all the novelty desserts one could desire! We popped into Square Bar Cafe for one of their signature cereal-studded ice cream cones and crepe cakes. The crepe cake doesn’t compare to Lady M, but the red velvet ice cream was rather good. This spot seemed to be most known for their milk teas and other beverages which you can get to-go in these nice copper-top glass jars. We were all sugared out this time, but will have to go back for those.

square bar cafe cookie crisp ice cream cone san diego

Nick wanted to try a different taco spot from our usual TJ Oyster Bar or Tacos El Gordo (both soo good) so we ventured to the more modern Tacos Perla. They were out of almost everything so we didn’t get to try many items. As a condiment-phile, one thing I did love though was their array of 6 house-made salsas & sauces ranging from mild to super hot, with some creative flavors like a creamy carrot habanero.

tacos perla where to eat in san diego

China Max dim sum is a tradition whenever we visit Nick’s parents. The ambiance is nothing to write home about, but the little dishes are good, and I love the full picture menu for minimal confusion! One of my favorites there might be the wide rice noodles filled with roast pork (pictured below). This is also located on Convoy St, so dessert afterwards is just a hop & skip away!

china max dim sum san diego chinese food

I keep seeing the rolled ice cream trend all over Instagram but hadn’t tried it myself. Bing Haus was right down the street from dim sum and was in their soft opening stages, so of course we had to try. Each individual order of ice cream starts out in liquidy form and is poured thinly onto a frozen pan, then gets scraped into rolled-up ribbons. Both the cookies & cream and matcha green tea bowls were delicious, although I didn’t taste much of a difference between rolled vs. regular ice cream.

bing haus san diego rolled ice cream desserts

Alongside Pacific Beach in a strip mall of sorts, we came across this little acai bowl spot called Rum Jungle Cafe. The acai blend was a little icy and not the best I’ve had, but it did fill me up and I loved the presentation inside a fresh pineapple (all the fruit gets scooped out and served off to the side).

rum jungle cafe san diego acai bowl breakfast

Each time we drive from San Diego up to the LA area, an absolute must is to try a different poke bowl spot along the way. This time we picked Calipoke for their array of free toppings and it did not disappoint. I am still waiting ever so patiently for a good poke bowl spot to come to Boston – it’s astounding to me we don’t have one, because any good sushi place should basically be able to offer it! I hear one might be opening up in Davis Square this fall…it’s a ways outside the city, but I’ll take it over nothing!

calipoke poke bowl costa mesa CA eats

I also tried to take Nick to Brodard’s but of course we went on the one day they’re closed, and he was so bummed. I feel like every one of my Vietnamese friends from around the country know of their famous spring rolls with crunchies inside!

casa del mar santa monica hotel beach boardwalk

New Look top sz US 4, Morning Lavender skirt c/o altered (similar in petites, on sale)

This is one of my last outfits from our CA trip which I wore out in Santa Monica. I re-mixed these two separates (see the top also styled here, and the skirt also styled here) for a look that resembled a dress.

For fellow food-lovers planning a visit to SoCal, see my past posts on our favorite places to eat here and here. For those who live in the area, I’d love to hear any recommendations for us to put on our list for next visit!!


58 thoughts on “Southern California Foodie Diary // San Diego to Orange County

  • Reply Unknown September 21, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    Awww. There is another Brodard less than 2 miles away in Westminster!

  • Reply SamBam September 21, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Reply linda nguyen September 22, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    what nail color do you have on?? it's lovely blush shade!

  • Reply C. Berkley September 22, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    I love this look!!!!!! Adorable!

  • Reply K-Train September 24, 2016 at 8:15 am

    Saksoff5th is doing a 49% off sale on the the 21 inch bellagio suitcase and it looks like there's an extra 15% off promo code that might work EXTRA15. Just thought I'd share!

  • Reply kv September 25, 2016 at 5:15 am

    I always suggest Ritter's Kettle Bar, which is creole/cajun food, if you've never been. A first timer's must-try is their house pan roast medium spicy with seafood & their fresh oysters are large, fresh & juicy when in season – both good to share. This location is in Santa Ana & in the same plaza as Cauldron's, literally 2-3 doors adjacent.

  • Reply Мария Рябич September 26, 2016 at 2:32 pm

    such a cute post!

  • Reply PD October 3, 2016 at 2:24 pm

    Just read this post in time! We're heading to San Diego and OC in November from Canada, and I was just starting to compile my food list 🙂 Thanks for the recs, everything looks delicious!

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