One thing I respect about the ocean is that it takes as much as it gives. I’ve lost designer sunglasses (Prada), and gold jewelry to the unforgiving tides of San Diego’s seas. Luckily I’m an understanding, fortunate soul who knows what is lost usually returns to me ten fold. Enter the SD food scene: Those same crystal blue waters that caught me slipping and swindled my drip are the same pathways that introduced diverse flavors to San Diego’s culinary climate. Convoy Street brings the Far East not so far from downtown with a colorful collage of Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, and Chinese stores, spas, and restaurants. A stand out on the block is Yakyudori. A modern Japanese store front eatery specializing in ramen, and flawlessly executed yakitori paired with beer, sake, and soju. Osaka Japan native, and dear friend of mine Chie Nomaki introduced me to this sparkling gem of a restaurant. Once you get past the usually long line of eager patrons, the atmosphere of the restaurant is so authentically Japanese, dining there is like sacrificing your 3D form to become a 2D anime character. The space has both bar and table seating, with an open view of the chefs curating savory meats, veggies, seafood, and ramen until 2:30AM. Warm sake and takoyaki, which is a fried ball of yum with potato and octopus at its epicenter is a must for me. Soft shell crab, fried oysters, calamari, and the usually sold out miso eggplant consisting, char grilled eggplant coated in savory, salty miso will also hold your tongue hostage in the best way.
Ohitashi (o-hee-tah-shee) is a cooled marinated spinach salad with umami bonito flakes on top that I could probably eat a kiddie pool sized portion of. They also house a unique dessert menu complete with fried ice cream. Fun Fact: Japanese food is often served on small separate plates to maintain the integrity, and individual beauty of each dish. Perfect for the gram, and your gut! Having a stack of plates the servers quickly whisk away from your table is an uncommon occurrence. Unlike the plates, blowing a stack of cash isn’t required to have a fulfilling experience here, making it attractive to all crowds. Whether you’re already a Convoy connoisseur, or you’re deviating from your usual In-N-Out run. Yakyudori will have you googling new ways to say “delicious”. (I’ll give you a head start: Umai)
This Article Was Written by Anissa Ocansey