We’re going to start a series where we interview some of our most faithful users. We’ll talk to them about their rankings and the city they live in. Our first installment is with Andrew Isaac (@AndrewJIsaac). Andrew’s a 26 year old student at Thomas Jefferson School of Law. He’s originally from the small town of Rolla Missouri. After finishing his undergrad at The University of Missouri he moved out to the west coast.
Andrew at his finest
Foxtrot: So how long have you lived in San Diego? You like it there?
Andrew: A shade over 2 years. Love it here.
Foxtrot: A little different than Missouri?
Andrew: (*laughs*) Yes very different. Everything is different. The lifestyle and the attitude is different. Since the weather is so nice every day everyone is more active. People surf, hike, try to be outside as much as possible.
Foxtrot: So lets start with your "Best Beer Bars in San Diego" ranking. San Diego is known as one of the best cities for microbrews. Would you agree?
Andrew: I would 100% agree. There’s a ton of great local breweries like Coronado Brewing Company, Green Flash, and you also get a lot of the northern California microbrews.
Click to view Andrew’s Beer Bars ranking
Foxtrot: What makes Hamilton’s Tavern #1
Reason I put Hamilton’s #1 is due to their selection of beer. One of my friends told me to try this beer, it’s called Firestone Walker Parabola. It’s a Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout. It was super hard to find, but it was at Hamilton’s the first time I went. They’re also super knowledgeable about their beer and you can tell they all really appreciate good beer..
Firestone Parabola at Hamilton’s
Foxtrot: I had no idea that you were this into beer.
Andrew: I’ve gotten really into it since I moved to San Diego. I interned at Anheuser-Busch in college but you mostly learn about how to mass produce beer there. San Diego gives you the opportunity to explore all the different types of beer.
Foxtrot: So moving on to your "Best Taco’s in San Diego" ranking, talk to me about some of your favorite places.
Andrew: So the reason I was even able to come up with this list is because of my friend David who was born and raised in San Diego and lives closer to the border.
Click to view Andrew’s tacos ranking
#1 on my list is Tacos El Gordo. They have a ton of unique meats. They cook their adobada on a rotating spindle letting it self marinate. On top they put homemade guacamole sauce and salsa. The way they blend the flavors together is just perfect.
Tacos El Gordo
Foxtrot: How about Las Cuatro Milpas which comes in at #2 on your list?
Andrew: Really good homemade tortillas. The bean mixture is mixed with Mexican Chorizo and the rice brings the whole thing together. But one of the main reasons I ranked this place so high is because the price is super reasonable. It’s literally like $7 for soda and 3 tacos. And it’s enough for two meals. Normally you don’t think about reheating tacos, but these are just as good reheated.
Foxtrot: How long did it take you to find these places? Are they well known or more secret?
Andrew: Some of these places aren’t well known. It took me a while, maybe a year, year and a half to find all the ones I have on my list. Many of these places aren’t going to show up at the top on Yelp if you search for tacos. Almost all of them I got from recommendations from friends.
Foxtrot: Okay so beer and tacos were pretty obvious lists for San Diego, what’s a type of food that San Diego is surprisingly good at?
Andrew: You wouldn’t associate cheesesteak with San Diego but they surprisingly have a lot of great places that make them. Its a transplant city and you get a ton of people from the east coast. The best places are actually started by people from Philly. They try to make it as authentic as possible.
Click to view Andrew’s cheesesteak ranking
My favorite place for cheesesteak is at Monkey Paw. The bread they use is perfect for Philly Cheesesteaks.
Philly Cheesesteak at Monkey Paw Pub & Brewery. Photo courtesy of FoodSpotting
Foxtrot: Looks like there’s a wide range of great places to eat and drink in San Diego.
Andrew: Definitely. And I don’t take it for granted. Growing up in such a small city, there wasn’t many options. I have a big appreciation for having access to all these great places to eat and drink.
Thanks to Andrew for his time! You can follow him on Twitter at @AndrewJIsaac and be sure to check out his rankings on Foxtrot!