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10 San Diego Restaurants with the Best Health Ratings

We often see articles online about the best- or highest-rated restaurants in a particular area. Have you ever wondered what type of food safety ratings your favorite restaurant has received? Or, have you weighed the question of whether the highly praised eatery in the city you’re visiting is also safety-conscious?

Importance of food safety

Food safety is critical for restaurants to maintain to avoid spreading dangerous foodborne illnesses. A high food safety rating indicates that the restaurant and its employees are following important protocol to protect consumer health. This includes keeping food stored in proper locations and at adequate temperatures, ensuring employees wash their hands and wear gloves when handling food, maintaining a clean environment, and so forth. To learn more about food safety, check out our food handler and food manager training courses!

Restaurants that excel at food safety

Here at StateFoodSafety, we want to highlight businesses that have gone above and beyond in providing exceptional food with exceptional food safety finesse. By chance, each of these restaurants turned out to be casual, sit-down restaurants. We also tried to exclude large national chains from the list and focus more on local businesses.

Top 10 safest restaurants near downtown San Diego

Without further ado, here is our list of the 10 safest restaurants within a half mile of downtown San Diego. These restaurants earned the highest inspection scores from the San Diego County Health Department. (To see a complete list of restaurant food safety ratings for San Diego County, click here).

10. Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers

  • Type of food: Burgers / Sandwiches
  • Health Department Rating: 98 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.48 mi
  • Fun Fact: Features several burger challenges that offer free food if completed in the allotted time
  • See it in Maps

9. MAKE Pizza+Salad

  • Type of food: Pizza
  • Health Department Rating: 98 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.45 mi
  • Fun Fact: Allows guests to customize and craft their own pizzas
  • See it in Maps

8. Richard Walker’s Pancake House

  • Type of food: Breakfast
  • Health Department Rating: 98 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.40 mi
  • Fun Fact: Owned and operated by a father-son family team
  • See it in Maps

7. Olala Crepes

  • Type of food: Crepes / Breakfast
  • Health Department Rating: 98 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.39 mi
  • Fun Fact: Recipes developed by French founder’s grandmother; crepes made from organic flour imported from France
  • See it in Maps

6. Donut Bar

  • Type of food: Donuts / Breakfast
  • Health Department Rating: 98 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.19 mi
  • Fun Fact: Their founding chef has been featured on shows hosted by Ryan Seacrest, Steve Harvey, and Ellen Degeneres
  • See it in Maps

5. La Puerta

  • Type of food: Mexican
  • Health Department Rating: 100 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.33 mi
  • Fun Fact: They have specialty drinks always made with freshly squeezed juice
  • See it in Maps

4. Lucky’s Lunch Counter

  • Type of food: Sandwiches / Breakfast
  • Health Department Rating: 100 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.50 mi
  • Fun Fact: Stylized with an engaging baseball theme patterned after retro Chicago; proud supporter of the San Diego Padres whose stadium is located directly across the street
  • See it in Maps

3. Grabbagreen Food + Juice

  • Type of food: Variety Bowls / Wraps
  • Health Department Rating: 100 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.26 mi
  • Fun Fact: Menu full of superfoods and fresh, natural products built by two moms wanting to create a healthy alternative to fast food
  • See it in Maps

2. Grapes & Hops Deli

  • Type of food: Sandwiches
  • Health Department Rating: 100 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.41 mi
  • Fun Fact: Large selection of deli sandwiches made exclusively with Boar’s Head meats
  • See it in Maps

1. Gaslamp Burger

  • Type of food: Burgers
  • Health Department Rating: 100 / 100
  • Proximity to Downtown: 0.19 mi
  • Fun Fact: All beef comes from grass-fed cattle with no antibiotics or hormones
  • See it in Maps

— Calvin Clark

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