A Look at 2 of San Diego’s Hottest Restaurants of 2016

Herb & Wood in Little Italy and The Grass Skirt in Pacific Beach are two of the hottest restaurants to join San Diego's dining scene in 2016. Here's a look at these two buzzy spots.

32 photos
1/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
Cute, kitschy signs of tiki culture are everywhere.
2/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The sign out front inviting patrons into The Grass Skirt in Pacific Beach.
3/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The outside of the dual-concept poke and tiki lounge in Pacific Beach.
4/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
During the day, the spot on Grand Avenue in PB houses a small poke restaurant.
5/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
This is the "secret" path that leads you from Good Time Poke into The Grass Skirt.
6/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
Tiki, tiki, tiki.
7/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The Grass Skirt has a cool and colorful vibe, paired with smooth tiki tunes.
8/32
Andrew Jorgensen Photography
SDCM's Matt Spencer says cocktails have gotten too serious over the past few years. The Grass Skirt changes that, offering cool, tropical cocktails.
9/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
Inside The Grass Skirt, colorful murals fill the walls, transporting you to that island life.
10/32
Andrew Jorgensen Photography
The Grass Skirt is located at 910 Grand Ave., at the former site of Good Time Charlie’s in PB.
11/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The bar at The Grass Skirt. If you order certain cocktails off the menu, keep your eye on this wall. It lights up with fire, smoke and other bells & whistles, depending on what you order.
12/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
Tiki details everywhere.
13/32
Andrew Jorgensen Photography
The Grass Skirt is the latest dining and drinking destination from SDCM, the creative group behind popular local hotspots like Kettner Exchange and FIREHOUSE American Eatery + Lounge.
14/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The interior of The Grass Skirt. The restaurant serves an elevated menu of Polynesian-influenced fare and very cool, quirky cocktails.
15/32
Monica Garske/NBC 7
The interior of The Grass Skirt. The restaurant serves an elevated menu of Polynesian-influenced fare and very cool, quirky cocktails.
16/32
Jim Sloan Photo
The Big Eye Tuna Ribbon at The Grass Skirt features kaffir, soy, avocado, radish, chive and chili oil. The plating is unique -- in that fish bowl is a live gold fish.
17/32
Andrew Jorgensen Photography
“Tiki is something we’re pretty passionate about here, said SDCM co-owner Matt Spencer, talking about the debut of The Grass Skirt. This cocktail is dubbed the Tiki Iniki.
18/32
Good Time Poke/The Grass Skirt/SDCM
Open evenings, The Grass Skirt is the latest tiki-themed spot to open in San Diego as the tiki culture revival continues to trend. The cool cocktail program at this tiki watering hole will be spearheaded by Beverage Director Steven Tuttle.
19/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
The entrance to Herb & Wood.
20/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
San Diego-based celebrity chef Brian Malarkey says he's beaming with pride over Herb & Wood. “I’ve never been so proud in my culinary life to walk up to a table because guests are in awe of everything – the service, the atmosphere, the food, the cocktails. This restaurant hits on all senses,” he told NBC 7.
21/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Herb & Wood opened in spring 2016 and has been buzzing with patrons all year.
22/32
Sam Wells
The Oxtail Gnocchi at Herb & Wood.
23/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Herb & Wood is housed in vast building, with lots of room to sit and wine and dine.
24/32
Sam Wells
The Roasted Beet Burrata at Herb & Wood includes sherry, walnut pesto and Jamon Iberico.
25/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Art fills the walls at Brian Malarkey's Little Italy venture, Herb & Wood.
26/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
The restaurant is in Little Italy, on Kettner Boulevard. At its helm is celebrity chef Brian Malarkey and Chris Puffer.
27/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Patio seating area at Herb & Wood.
28/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Next to Herb & Wood you'll find Herb & Eatery, a small restaurant and chef's market filled with gourmet foodie findings.
29/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
The entrance to Brian Malarkey's chef's market, Herb & Eatery, on Kettner Boulevard.
30/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
The display case at Herb & Eatery filled with colorful salads, pastries and more.
31/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
Next to Herb & Wood you'll find Herb & Eatery, a small restaurant and chef's market filled with gourmet foodie findings.
32/32
Monica Garske/ NBC 7
The display case at Herb & Eatery filled with colorful salads, pastries and more.
Contact Us