San Diego’s Little Italy is a Foodie Paradise

Enjoy five fantastic dining spots in San Diego's Little Italy for a taste of everything.

If you spend any time at all visiting or researching San Diego, you're bound to hear about Little Italy. This historic neighborhood was originally settled by Italian fishermen, hence the name, and is actually a pretty diverse and walkable area to explore for food and drink. You might find the abundance of dining options a little daunting, so we've rounded up some of our favorite eats in San Diego's Little Italy.

Five Favorites in San Diego's Little Italy

Harumama Noodles & Buns

Traditional Japanese dishes get refreshed with a fun presentation and a dash of panache at Harumama. Noodles, rice and dumplings are available daily, with options from poke bowls to ramen interspersed with bao buns and teriyaki bowls.

The ultra-Instagramable character buns are a major draw here, available with sweet and savory filling options, either by the piece or as a six-piece "party box." There's more than enough variety here for anyone to find something to love, whether you opt for more modern or for the comfortable classics. 

Cartoon Bao at Harumama Noodles & Buns San Diego | WhereTraveler
Cartoon Bao at Harumama Noodles & Buns

The Crack Shack

Another “local” restaurant with an outpost in Las Vegas, The Crack Shack, features “chicken and egg fare” with an emphasis on quality. Fresh-fried, crispy Jidori chicken is served up on several crave-worthy sandwiches loaded up with local produce and house-made sauces. The "Coop Deville" (with pickled Fresno chilies, pickles, lime mayo, and Napa cabbage) and the Firebird (spicy-fried with cool ranch, crispy onions, and pickles) both pair perfectly with a side of their signature schmaltz fries. 

Firebird at The Crack Shack San Diego | WhereTraveler
Firebird (Courtesy The Crack Shack)

Extraordinary Desserts

For a truly extraordinary experience, make sure a visit to Extraordinary Desserts is on your itinerary. The beautiful modern space is perfect for grabbing a sweet treat any time of day, whether you favor cakes, pastries or pies.

The show-stopping presentation almost makes it difficult to finally take a bite of these picture-perfect desserts, decorated with fresh flowers and fruit. The menu also includes savory sandwiches, salads and charcuterie options for those looking for more of a meal. Whatever you do, don’t leave without getting a dessert! 

Cake Case at Extraordinary Desserts San Diego | WhereTraveler
Cake Case at Extraordinary Desserts

Queenstown Public House

Tucked into an actual house, with plenty of patio seating and quaint decor, Queenstown Public House brings the flavors of New Zealand to sunny southern California. Open daily from lunch until late; you can find plenty of dishes loaded up with New Zealand lamb mixed in with fresh and healthy salads and sandwiches.

The brunch, happy hour and dinner menus feature a mind-bogglingly large selection that may make it hard to settle on an order. The warm and personable Maori service will ensure that you come back for more than just a meal. 

Prawns & Grits at Queenstown Public House San Diego | WhereTraveler
Prawns & Grits at Queenstown Public House (Courtesy Tom D.)

Landini's Pizzeria

If you want to get in at least one Italian meal, make sure it's at Landini's Pizzeria. Now open for over a decade, with an outpost in Las Vegas, this family-owned pizzeria specializes in New York-style crust. Daily slice specials, panini sandwiches and indulgent pasta dishes fill the menu, prepared with fresh produce and an authentic Italian touch. Customer favorites here include the Meatball Ricotta Marinara and thick Siciliana pizzas, as well as the homemade tiramisu for dessert. 

Late Night Slices at Landini's Pizzeria San Diego | WhereTraveler
Late Night Slices at Landini's Pizzeria