DINING 3701 India St., San Diego, CA 92103 (Mission Hills)
Shakespeare Pub & Grille (619) 299-0230
Happy Hour: 4 to 7 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; 4 to close on Thursdays. Additional late-night happy hour: 10 p.m. to close, Fridays and Saturdays.
ness? With or without a royal wedding steering our attention to all things British, the answer is undoubtedly a jumbo plate of fish ’n’ chips drizzled in malt vinegar, which is exactly the aroma that storms your nostrils upon walking into Shakespeare Pub & Grille. San Diego’s oldest and truly authentic British pub quenches the thirst cheerfully during happy hour, when 20-ounce “imperial” pints of Guinness and more than a dozen other draught imports are priced at $4.95. Well drinks sell for $3.75 and bottled beers are $1 off. Food remains at regular prices. Hospitality comes in the form of efficient wait
hat pairs best with a roasted- tasting pint of dark, rich Guin-
Get Happy! Dr. Ink
up a drinking hunger, and it’s bloody fantastic. Ditto for the curry dipping sauce we requested for the fries. The vegetarian in our trio ordered the shepherd’s pie using quorn, a mushroom protein common in Eng-
service delivered with charming British accents, not necessarily fusty Queen’s English, but distinctly formal enough to confirm that your server wasn’t groomed on this side of the pond. If you’ve never been to a pub in the U.K., this paints the experience, right down to the red telephone booth perched out back and the HP Sauce sitting at every table. The taps extend to creamy Boddinton’s, New-
castle Brown Ale, Fuller’s London Pride and the requisite Black & Tan, which gives you amber Bass ale on the bottom and the coffee-like Guinness on top. Yes, the Brits are famous for such single-glass combos, so expect to also see Harp and cider, Guin- ness and champagne, hard cider with blackcurrant liqueur and something called the “shandy,” which blends 7-Up with Harp. Where pubs in England lack outdoor seating— or at least the year-round sunshine to support it— Shakespeare’s compensates with a spacious, west- facing patio that can leave you tanned and beautiful on clear days. Inside, you’ll find a bright main room cloaked in dark wood, as well as framed, R-rated comic strips reserved for the men’s restroom. Beefing up our beer choices was the fish ’n’ chips using cod and tempura batter. At $14.95, the dish isn’t exactly cheap, but it’s very good. Conjure
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crisp greens—the former dumped directly from the pan over the latter. The deluxe flavors owe to a zesty house dressing, a sprightly sauce that also flavors salads of barbecued beef, brown rice and “silken” tofu. Broiled black cod, offered here with “Kyoto miso flavor,” has be- come an international favorite at chic eateries and is the signature dish at Nobu restaurants. Served hot, of course, it stars buttery fish, brushed with a fairly pungent glaze and lightly crisped under intense heat. It melts succulently on the tongue and takes a sharp flavor from a strip of skin. The cod harbors a few lengthy bones, as fish sometimes does. The understated décor for this plate consists of a single, slender baton of carrot.
Among other cold tapas options
are string beans with sesame paste salted cuttlefish, spicy tofu, and “Japanese wild vegetable (sansai) with squid.” Plentiful hot choices include fried Japanese eggplant in smoked bonito broth, potato croquettes with curry-sauced vegetables, Kurobuta pork sausage with Dijon mustard and takoyaki octopus balls, noted as “famous Osaka street food.” More substantial when ordered as “bowls” (over rice), the ginger teriyaki dishes taste less of ginger than of well-browned, slivered onions and raw, finely minced and very green scallions. Pork pre- pared in this way and served over rice is very tasty and, following in the wake of several tapas, some- what filling. The short list of sushi rolls offers mostly familiar choices.
land that sure beats tofu. I wasn’t sure if it was the Boddington’s clouding my palate, but the crumbled faux beef sure tasted like the real deal. As for those traditional canned peas that accompany most of the dishes, I hated them as a kid, and still do. The pub is somewhat of an event center for ex- pats and Anglophiles alike, especially during U.K. soccer matches. There are also regular quiz nights, music trivia contests, live acoustic music focusing on British bands (May 22) and of course televised, tape-delayed viewings of the royal wedding, with festivities beginning at the crack of dawn on Friday, April 29, and likely spilling into the weekend.u
Drinks: Nearly all of the leading, memorable beers from England flow into regular and imperial-size pint glasses, replete with creamy tops and gentle fizzing.
Food: Provided you don’t come knocking for spicy foods, then you’re in good hands with authentically constructed shep- herd’s pie, fish’n’ chips, bangers and mash and the like.
The $2 saving on 20-ounce imperial pints are as cost- saving as it gets anywhere. Meals are a little pricey, but portions are generous.
Don’t be surprised if your waitress starts calling you “luv” after your first pint.
Duration: The varied happy-hour periods throughout the week (except on Sundays) accommodate both working folk and late- night pub crawlers.
Presented in a handled black basket, tempura-fried shrimp and/ or vegetables are lightly coated and fried crisp, not greasy. The hot dipping sauce is excellent, but under no circumstances, warns the server, should one mix it with the infinitesimal amount of spicy green tea salt served in a separate dish. Yet after dunking a round of tempura kabocha pumpkin in this
fearsome concoction, the verdict was: “What’s the big deal?” Small matter—at Yu Me Ya the sake, cooking and service certainly are big deals, and worth treasuring. Even a single ball of marshmallow- y green tea mochi (something like ice cream), split in half, dusted with sugar and impaled with a cute paper umbrella, is a treat for tongue, eyes and spirit.u
Owners William and Tammy NOW OPEN!
We offer outside catering!
THE HEART OF ETHIOPIA IN THE HEART OF HILLCREST
Hillcrest, 530 University Ave., 92103, 619.269.6142 WWW.BAYUSETHIOPIANCUISINE.COM
San Diego Uptown News | April 29–May 12, 2011
Shakespeare Pub & Grille.
OPEN: FOR LUNCH & DINNER OPEN 7 DAYS: 11-3 & 5-10 LUNCH BUFFET: $9.99 MONDAY-FRIDAY
Family Boutique Winery
SAN DIEGO COUNTY GRAPES
Great place for fundraising 619-840-5579
11:30-9p.m. Everyday OPEN
Fiesta de Reyes—Old Town 2754 Calhoun Street, Suite G www.sdwinery.com firstname.lastname@example.org
$5 & regular $9.50
Off tasting Five wines
Souvenir glass expires 5/31
3883 Fourth Avenue San Diego, Hillcrest (619) 683.3230
1246 N. Coast Hwy 101 Encinitas (760) 633.4288
NOW IN HILLCREST
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