If you are a fan of Mexican food and you are in San Diego, you are certainly in the right place.
Tacos in all flavors, types, and sizes are a very popular dish that can be enjoyed for a quick stop meal or enjoyed in a restaurant with friends or family.
The fish taco is one of the most iconic and popular dishes that San Diego has to offer and you’re never too far from options! We have gathered some local spots that we recommend in North County San Diego for a quick bite or for lingering for lunch or dinner with margaritas.
1. PureTaco – 2742 State St suite 102, Carlsbad, CA 92008
This new modern American taqueria is a fast-casual restaurant that opened in 2021 and continues to be busy all times of the day. The restaurant offers a wraparound patio for outdoor dining along with a couple seats at the indoor/outdoor bar. Most known for their hand-pressed tortillas, you can enjoy traditional chicken, shrimp, pulled pork, and veggie tacos, naming just a few favorites on the menu. Haustay faves are the pho beef and the green curry shrimp. The owner of Pure Taco also owns a local favorite in another Carlsbad neighborhood of Bressi Ranch called Casero Taqueria.
2. Casero Taqueria – 2674 Gateway Rd #195, Carlsbad, CA 92009
Casero Taqueria offers mazing customer service with indoor and outdoor dining and relaxing ambiance. The outdoor area has an amazing view and is beautifully decorated with comfy couch pillows for an ideal and relaxing lunch or dinner.
In case you don’t want to leave your 4 legged friend at home, they allow dogs in the patio!
The food is delicious, some recommendations are the Mexican Cobb, Baja fish taco and burrito. And of course, Margaritas are a must.
3. Fresco Cocina – 2858 Carlsbad Blvd, Carlsbad, CA 92008
This new trendy hot spot is one you won’t want to miss, whether you’re looking to get a crafty cocktail lounging on the couch at the bar with some apps, or wanting a full dining experience, this modern Latin inspired restaurant won’t disappoint. They offer heated and covered outdoor seating, private parties, a full bar with happy hour specials, and you can even order catering services if you decide you want to continue taking in the views from your cozy temporary home while still experiencing some of Carlsbad’s finest. A few favorite tacos to add to your list are the chile sweet potato and you can’t go wrong with the fish of the day. The owner of this restaurant also has a sister property in downtown called 264 Fresco, which is an Italian inspired eatery.
4. Senior Grubby’s – 377 Carlsbad Village Dr, Carlsbad, CA 92008
Founded in 2008 in the heart of Carlsbad Village, Señor Grubby’s offers true authentic Mexican food, a great family atmosphere, and an award-winning cocktail bar.
A great atmosphere to enjoy with family and friends, the service is fantastic, and they have an amazing staff. Be sure you go on Tuesday and get ready for a fabulous Happy Hour!!
5. Miramar Fish Taco & Beer – 41 Douglas Dr, Oceanside, CA 92058
Family owned and operated Miramar Fish Taco and Beer serves up authentic Mexican cuisine that features seafood and beef options.
They offer two styles of tacos; Baja and Sinaloa and lots of craft beers to choose from.
Something fun to keep in mind is that they change the menu every six months to keep the menu fresh while rotating through your favorite classics.
6. The Taco Stand Encinitas – 642 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA 92024
Inspired by the taco stands of Tijuana and Baja Peninsula, the Taco Stand offers up authentic Mexican grub with handmade corn tortillas, grade meats, and the freshest ingredients used to make their guacamole and salsas from scratch daily! In addition to delicious tacos and burritos, they also have a great selection of Mexican flavored popsicles, refreshments, imported beer, and freshly prepared Rosarito-style churros. Be sure to try the camaron (spicy shrimp) tacos.
7. Fish Shop – Encinitas – 1010 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA 92024
The Fish Shop originally opened in Pacific Beach in 2010 serving up the freshest seafood and fish. Now they also have a location in Encinitas and are complimented with outstanding service in a relaxed atmosphere that is both family- and dog-friendly.
They hand-make all their seasonings and sauces and hand-cut their fries and onion rings daily. There are over 2,000 combinations to choose from so get ready!!
8. City Tacos – Encinitas – 1031 S Coast Hwy 101 Ste A101 Encinitas, CA 92024
Be prepared as City Tacos will almost always have a long wait time but the food is stellar so it’s worth the wait!
Combining traditional recipes with SoCal flavor to make their tacos unique, they offer meat, fish, vegetarian, and even Paleo options offering something for every taste with creative salsas to customize each bite.
We recommend the Pescado and portobello tacos. They serve four different salsa with tacos which are all tasty. And extra points for a dog friendly patio dining with a few tabletop fire pits!
9. Urbana Del Mar – 12841 EL CAMINO REAL #200 Del Mar highlands, Del Mar, CA 92130
At Urbana Del Mar, you can expect tasty, high-quality food and a cool vibe!
Their tacos have so much flavor, down to their homemade corn tortillas. Their spicy margaritas have their own distinctive taste and look.
The fish taco is great, but they also have other things on the menu that worth the try If you want to be a little extra, order the old-fashioned.
10. The Brigantine – 3263 Camino Del Mar, Del Mar, CA 92014
Enjoy ocean or racetrack views with a relaxed and happy Cali vibe. Owned by The Morton family, they opened the first restaurant on Shelter Island in 1969.
The Brigantine signature is their passion for quality seafood, family values, and seasoned restaurant experience. You will taste years of hard work, innovation, and commitment to good food.
The Crispy Lobster Tempura Taco is a must!
Make sure to make a reservation in advance and do not worry about the parking as they offer valet.
New to the scene
New to Carlsbad Village is Tortilla Mia, a Mexican restaurant serving the best options from brunch to dinner. Check out the menu here!