This morning I was chatting with Heather (one of our 2010 brides to be) about San Diego, and instantaneously just upon thinking about the city I had an out of body experience and was teleported to Mario’s De La Mesa. Unfortunately the out of body experience didn’t last long enough to place an order. Mario’s is my favorite Mexican restaurant of all time. I won’t tell you how many years I’ve been going to the place (thereby keeping my prehistoric age a guarded secret), but I am here to tell you when it comes to restaurants I am pretty picky, and for me Mario’s has just never disappointed. Now it’s a rare day for me to come across someone who doesn’t like Mexican food, but the blessing and curse of being from San Diego is that you only truly love San Diego Mexican. And everywhere else you live or visit becomes a quest to find a restaurant or taco shop that can come close to the motherland. What is so great about San Diego Mexican? Baja cuisine to me has a big edge over other regions. They know fish tacos, they know the proper pinto bean to lard ratio, they understand guacamole, the carne asada marinades are perfect, and the use of the lime is celebrated. So when someone who has never had Mexican food from San Diego is raving about a place to try, I am by default skeptical.
Mario’s itself is a family run institution, and back in the day Mario himself would usually be there talking to patrons. Since then I believe it’s been handed down to another family member. They have long abandoned their location in La Mesa’s industrial sector for a more fashionably spot in La Mesa’s cute downtown area. To those who have never visited San Diego, La Mesa is a town a few minutes to the east of the city. If you’re in San Diego, or planning on visiting I definitely recommend checking Mario’s out. They score pretty favorably in Yelp reviews if you pay attention to such things. While I’ve never had anything at Mario’s I didn’t like, I’d recommend their carne asada as my top pick off of the menu. I usually have mine in burrito form.
Mario’s De La Mesa
8425 La Mesa Boulevard
La Mesa, CA 91941
Mario’s via 8mm circular fisheye: