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CUCINA urbana

CUCINA urbana

Italian Restaurant, Bar, and Pizza Place$$$$
Park West, San Diego
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9.4/10
445
ratings
  • Don't forget it is Day after Thanksgiving today. You may want to call to confirm this place is open.
  • The Italian food at CUCINA urbana is a can't miss
  • Helen E.
    "The polenta board is great and the ragu changes daily."(9 Tips)
    Ruben F.
    "Try the polenta and the short rib pappardelle!"(6 Tips)
    Rachael G.
    "Stop here for a glass of wine before walking into Balboa Park."(4 Tips)
    Sukhjit G.
    "Try the Bittersweet Chocolate Budino - #nom"(2 Tips)
156 Tips and reviews
Filter:
  • Italian food
  • polenta
  • wine
  • good for dates
  • short ribs
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  • Ainee T.
    Ainee TinyOctober 16
    Grilled octopus 🐙
  • Ainee T.
    Ainee TinyOctober 16
    This place at the corner of Laurel st and 5th ave. Is a must! Decor is absolutely stunning, awesome service, food outstanding. Pictured: mushroom and goat cheese pizza and ahi tuna crudo. Both delish
  • Burak O.
    Burak OruçSeptember 1
    The most overrated place in foursquare, nothing special, pappardelle can be found in your corner trattoria, the service is so good though...
  • Linda B.
    Linda BaoAugust 4
    loved the pappardelle!
  • Gabby M.
    Gabby M.May 30
    The short rib pappardelle is really good and the Nutella zeppole in combination with the fruit sauce is AMAZING!👌🏼
  • Ben S.
    Ben SchwartzApril 13
    The pappardelle and the budino for dessert
  • Ailie C.
    Ailie ChangMarch 20
    Best thing here is the Polenta Board! I'm craving it all the way from New York! The Burrata + Prosciutto 'Caprese' is also a great starter.
  • sohail
    sohailFebruary 28
    Been here 5 times, everything is always so good. I tried the pesto pizza for the first time and it may very well have been the best pesto pizza I've ever had. The Brussel sprouts are also money!!
  • Neda M.
    Neda MashDecember 29, 2016
    My fave restaurant bc if the food, decor, atmosphere, and drinks
  • Dillon F.
    Dillon FerdinandiNovember 21, 2016
    The short rib tagliatelle and pear & Gorgonzola pizza are a must try. Good cocktails and fun atmosphere too!
  • Cameron B.
    Cameron ByersOctober 27, 2016
    Great atmosphere and decor. Spacious bar seating.
  • Irfun B.
    Irfun BOctober 1, 2016
    Everything EXCEPT steak is super delicious here!
  • Kar M.
    Kar MariscalAugust 13, 2016
    Parpadelle with short rib is amazing
  • Megan G.
    Megan GAugust 9, 2016
    Favorite restaurant in San Diego. Gluten free friendly options too! Burnt brussels sprouts and Short Rib Papardelle are amazing!!
  • Margot M.
    Margot MazurJune 29, 2016
    Incredible food and amazing wine choices. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly. Highly recommend for lunch!
  • Becky S.
    Becky SIMPSONJune 3, 2016
    Tuna panini omm nomms
  • Becky S.
    Becky SIMPSONJune 3, 2016
    Tuna panini
  • Grant A.
    Grant AcostaMay 3, 2016
    Did it tapas style with the Brussel sprouts app., cauliflower app., polenta board, risotto, cherry tomatoes and burrata...everything was fantastic!
  • Pelin G.
    The pizzas are delicious. Great ambience and decor!
  • Steve I.
    Steve IgnelziMarch 25, 2016
    Bustling high energy atmosphere. Community tables prompt conversation with neighbors.
  • Ser K.
    Ser KucukomerMarch 22, 2016
    Very nice and sophisticate food..
  • Benson B.
    Benson BleierMarch 3, 2016
    At first this place looked like all the other "new American" Italian cuisine but the food far and away exceeded my expectations,EVERY dish I had here was superb.
  • Dave A.
    Dave AlarconJanuary 2, 2016
    This is the kind of place you want to come back to try the whole menu! Everithing is excellent!!
  • Michelle F.
    Michelle FournierDecember 24, 2015
    Service was great. The brussel sprouts are a must try!
  • Rafiq K.
    Rafiq KiswaniDecember 4, 2015
    Stay classy San Diego. Very nice place for dinner.
  • Ben R.
    Ben RussoNovember 4, 2015
    Try the polenta board, and the lamb.
  • Sandra H.
    Sandra HansenOctober 10, 2015
    they are the best!
  • Foursquare Insiders
    Foursquare InsidersOctober 7, 2015
    “The draw here is a comfortable, homey energy and a neighborhood feel. The playful list includes bottles from diverse regions and grapes—and shockingly low prices.” - Laura Williamson, Wine Expert Read more
  • Oscar B.
    Oscar BarrazaOctober 1, 2015
    Beutiful food beautiful place :)
  • Isabella M.
    Isabella MariaOctober 1, 2015
    Good place to enjoy Italia food
  • Scott S.
    Scott SoenenJuly 26, 2015
    Excellent wine program. Rabbit sausage ravioli was fantastic.
  • Suhaib R.
    Suhaib RMay 18, 2015
    Love everything. starting from appetizers to desserts
  • Jose A V.
    Jose A Valencia-CMay 13, 2015
    Bugatini ! Just amazing
  • Roger M.
    Roger MaApril 8, 2015
    You can never go wrong with their pizza!
  • Maile K.
    Maile KarrisMarch 31, 2015
    Shortribs are Delish!
  • Rima
    RimaMarch 15, 2015
    Sat at the bar since it was super busy and still had a great experience. Bartenders very friendly & attentive. Get the sorbet sampler for dessert -- was AMAZING.
  • Carla E.
    Carla EnglandFebruary 10, 2015
    Order the polenta. It's out of this world:-)
  • Divya M.
    Divya MulanjurJanuary 31, 2015
    Amazing place! We had made reservations for a group and pre ordered a fixed menu. It was delicious. Go for the pizzas, wild mushroom cavatelli and short rib pappardelle. The tiramisu is to die for!
  • Luke W.
    Luke WhiteNovember 30, 2014
    Get a family sized platter of the bolognese and pick out a nice big Zinfandel from the self-serve wine racks. Everything is delicious but if you're short on bolognese expect fork battles.
  • Jasper T.
    Jasper TempelNovember 10, 2014
    Tiramisu & pasta
  • SJ8544123 L.
    SJ8544123 LOctober 7, 2014
    Loved the atmosphere♥ we came here for wine. cheese & salumi board and *truffle parmesan fries* were so good. late night num nums ;P
  • Ashley J.
    Ashley JSeptember 16, 2014
    Ragu polenta is so good
  • Gary R.
    Gary RobertsAugust 30, 2014
    Everything on the menu
  • Djordje G.
    Djordje GrkovicAugust 22, 2014
    The polenta lived up to the hype, and the octopus antipasti was grilled to perfection. Cocktails are quite delicious as well, especially their many takes on a negroni
  • Maya A.
    Maya AsterixAugust 12, 2014
    Asparagus risotto-pizza-pappardelle..delish!
  • Michael N.
    Michael NewtonAugust 10, 2014
    Short rib pappardelle is excellent. Also great shrimp puttanesca and my favorite wine pricing method!
  • Ileana R.
    Squash blossoms. Oh my.
  • Rachael G.
    Rachael GreenMay 19, 2014
    Been here 10+ times
    Stop here for a glass of wine before walking into Balboa Park.
  • Rachael G.
    Rachael GreenMay 19, 2014
    Been here 10+ times
    They've changed the gnuddi to an arrabiati sauce, but you can still request it old school style with brown butter sage sauce. Yumminess!
  • Rachael G.
    Rachael GreenMay 19, 2014
    Been here 10+ times
    Save yourself $8. No corkage fee on Sundays.
  • Jason H.
    Jason HughesApril 16, 2014
    Get reservations ahead of time. Great wine selection at retail prices, so no added markup. The lasagna was amazing!
  • Lorna J.
    Lorna JacobyApril 6, 2014
    Great wine list and they sell at cost and charge corkage so you can have some really great stuff. We had the Barolo. Several bottles ...
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Chocolate Nutella Zeppole - Wow. Filled with chocolate too.
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Chocolate Espresso Budino
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Chicken Meatball Parmigiano Hero - So good
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Truffle Parmesan Fries - Amazing
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Pepperoni And Fennel Sausage Pizza
  • Mike C.
    Mike ChauFebruary 14, 2014
    Try the Farro And Brussels Sprouts Leaf Salad
  • Justin E.
    Justin EckhoffDecember 18, 2013
    Order the grilled octopus. Lip smackin'.
  • Christanna H.
    Christanna HonerDecember 12, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Sit at the bar, get some Italian wine, eat squash blossoms and enjoy the man candy that shall take care of you. No, seriously, great service. And lots of amari.
  • Serious Eats
    Serious EatsNovember 6, 2013
    The pizza is always a good bet at this Italian restaurant close to Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo.
  • Kimber B.
    Kimber B.November 5, 2013
    Wow.... Amazing ambiance, hip place, food awesome, service great... Love, love, love the polenta!!! I will definitely be back and plan to make this a regular stop on my future San Diego trips!
  • Errol L.
    Errol LeBlancSeptember 9, 2013
    Lasagna all day long
  • Inga I.
    Inga IntriagoSeptember 9, 2013
    Get the Rosebud cocktail! It's like drinking a refreshing, juicy watermelon drink spiked with a smooth vodka. SO good!!
  • Steven Y.
    Steven YSeptember 7, 2013
    Wine bottles at retail plus $8 corkage fee; mushroom and fennel sausage pizza with truffle oil, short rib tagliatelle, strawberry tiramisu are awesome
  • Allen S.
    Allen ShiuAugust 22, 2013
    Everyone comes here for the short rib pappardelle, but it's CU's apps that make it a SD favorite. Get the polenta board, gorgonzola mousse, squash blossom, and the gnudi (order 2, they're that good).
  • Lisa S.
    Lisa SuzukiAugust 12, 2013
    Chase ATM across the corner. If you are coming with a big party, hit up the ATM before you come in. Happy hour at 5:00 pm and opens at 5:00 pm
  • raymie
    raymieAugust 10, 2013
    Great place! Definitely try the suckling pig.
  • Ruben F.
    Ruben FloresAugust 5, 2013
    Try the polenta and the short rib pappardelle!
  • James L.
    James LeeJuly 19, 2013
    Mediterranean octopus is amazing.
  • Kate
    KateJuly 18, 2013
    Been here 25+ times
    The new wheat berry kale salad is amazing. I killed it in about 2 minutes, and even ignored my beer so I could keep shoveling bites into my mouth!
  • Patrick P.
    Patrick PinaMay 25, 2013
    Been here 25+ times
    Remember to try everything on the menu. I know you have you favorite, but step out of your comfort zone. You'll discover something else just as fabulous here.
  • Paul C.
    Paul ClarkMay 9, 2013
    If you're not in a hurry, order dishes one by one. My second dish arrived before I'd finished the first.
  • Eater
    EaterApril 23, 2013
    Three years after opening, this is still one of the toughest tables to get in town. The shareable, Italian-inspired menu is modern and accessible. [Eater 38 Member]
  • Kate
    KateMarch 25, 2013
    Been here 25+ times
    Beet salad is amazing. It's also small which is nice if you're saving room for your entree.
  • Peter W.
    Peter WDMarch 15, 2013
    Try the Ragu with Polenta - #delicious
  • Parker M.
    Parker MFebruary 28, 2013
    By far one of the best meals I've ever had..the polenta board is phenomenal. Every dish we had was great. Cozy atmosphere, reasonable price, great staff. Look forward to new del mar location!
  • Carter G.
    Carter GibsonJanuary 17, 2013
    Three years after opening, this is still one of the toughest tables to get in town. The shareable, Italian-inspired menu is modern and accessible.
  • Nicole L.
    Nicole LingnerDecember 25, 2012
    The Polenta is a dream - no matter which ragu - and don't ever leave without the Chicken Liver Pate, seriously!!!
  • Omar P.
    Omar PerezNovember 13, 2012
    Been here 10+ times
    Try the Fig And Garganzola Pizza
  • Omar P.
    Omar PerezNovember 13, 2012
    Been here 10+ times
    Try the Mediterranean Branzino With A Lemon Dill Sauce
  • Willis Allen Real Estate
    Willis Allen Real EstateNovember 6, 2012
    Hip & happening downtown restaurant, steps outside Balboa Park. Everything is delicious & under $20. Extensive & affordable wine selection & daily happy hr. Order the giant meatball!! -K. Hill
  • San Diego Reader
    San Diego ReaderOctober 11, 2012
    Cucina Urbana executive pastry chef Jack Fisher shares his recipe for savory polenta in this week's Reader ("What the Chef Eats"). Read more
  • Ant R.
    Ant RamSeptember 24, 2012
    Eating ossabocca bone marrow & squash blossoms while listening to Florence & the Machine, I almost felt like a hipster. Find out which daily deal is right for you, free cork Sundays worked for me
  • iDork g.
    All tips are right. This place is a unique gem in the Balboa Park area. Lunch or dinner. Great service and friendly atmosphere. Don't be afraid to try something new. Come, sit, enjoy
  • Devon S.
    Devon StevenJune 28, 2012
    The best meal I've ever had in San Diego. The caprese, amatriciana, and zeppoles were all fantastic.
  • Jersey H.
    Jersey HMay 26, 2012
    Been here 50+ times
    Try the polenta board - it's basically always amazing.
  • John C.
    John CastellApril 22, 2012
    Fun and lively dining concept. Food was okay but not worthy of the uber-hype I kept hearing. Menu a bit confused and renamed to cater to average eaters; pizza, steak, pasta, hamburger. overly flavored
  • stacy c.
    stacy cromidasMarch 25, 2012
    Been here 5+ times
    highly applaud pan seared trout with brocolli but i guess geo bush would not
  • Softub
    SoftubMarch 7, 2012
    Their pizza is made with only with the freshest ingredients; you'll taste the difference. Their rustic presentation is playful, and pleasing to the eyes.
  • Softub I.
    Softub Inc.February 22, 2012
    Biting into a brick oven pizza is easily one the most exciting culinary experiences I've ever had--who knew that pizza could be so brilliant.
  • Softub I.
    Softub Inc.February 20, 2012
    The fired zucchini flowers are to die for.
  • Softub
    SoftubFebruary 20, 2012
    Their fried zucchini flowers are to die for.
  • Steve K.
    Steve KleineFebruary 15, 2012
    You can put a fried egg on any pizza and it really works!
  • Steve K.
    Steve KleineFebruary 1, 2012
    Kristen is an amazing bartender!
  • Mistiza C.
    Mistiza ColebankJanuary 30, 2012
    This place is my favorite! The service is incredible, food & beverages are delicious. Ask any of the staff members & they can assist with beverage & food choices.
  • PacificSD M.
    PacificSD MagazineJanuary 18, 2012
    Amazing grab and go wine selection to have with your meal or take home... And try the lasagna!
  • Kristin F.
    Kristin FoldvikJanuary 9, 2012
    Best wine selection
  • Gay T.
    Gay TravelJanuary 6, 2012
    Gaytravel Hot Spot! Almost the entire menu is under $20! Note: call ahead and make a reservation this place is popular!
  • Trey
    TreyJanuary 4, 2012
    Great wine prices and terrific food!
  • Kevin O.
    Kevin OsgoodDecember 31, 2011
    Everything we had was amazing! Yellowtail Crudo, Polenta, Risotto Pancetta, Pumpkin Ricotta Cheesecake.
  • Harry T.
    Harry ToorDecember 29, 2011
    Interesting place, try not to overlook it when driving by, it has a certain underground bunker status. A lot of items on the menu, perhaps too many.
  • Sukhjit G.
    Sukhjit GhagDecember 20, 2011
    Try the Bittersweet Chocolate Budino - #nom
  • Joe K.
    Joe KastorffNovember 19, 2011
    Have Bobby make u Fashionable Rye- its perfect!
  • Carmelle P.
    Carmelle PiñaOctober 13, 2011
    Been here 50+ times
    Either begin or end with one of their cheese plates.
  • Leeanne
    LeeanneSeptember 23, 2011
    Their daily polenta specials are worth asking about. If your Italian grandma kept up with foodie trends and shopped at Anthropologie, she might run the show here. Superb.
  • Shay M.
    Shay MamoSeptember 16, 2011
    The lasagna is served on a million degree plate that never gets cold. The dish stays too hot to eat long after you've burned the inside of your mouth and can't taste anything.
  • Sofie G.
    Sofie GogicSeptember 13, 2011
    They will sub gluten free noodles for wheat pasta by request!!!! Yay!!!
  • Dan M.
    Dan MirkinSeptember 11, 2011
    Don't worry about reservations for two :-)
  • Monica L.
    Monica LittleSeptember 8, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    You really can't go wrong here, unless you don't make a reservation!
  • Sara K.
    Sara KnookAugust 29, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Short Rib Pappardalle is to die for
  • Bop Design
    Bop DesignAugust 19, 2011
    Any Orrin Swift wine they have by the bottle - The Prisoner, Papillon, Saldo or Palermo. Pair that with the Forage Mushroom pizza and Caprese Salad. Delicious!
  • Mucho C.
    Mucho Comida™August 19, 2011
    Get the Patè, it's amazing and the ladies love it! Enjoy.
  • Kristy D.
    Kristy DettweilerAugust 15, 2011
    Was in a party of six and all us loved our drinks/apps/meals and dessert. The meatballs are enormous! The veal piccata is delicious. All the veggies tasted as if they were grilled, so good!
  • Courtney B.
    Courtney BergAugust 7, 2011
    Mushroom+ truffle oil garganelli -must have!
  • Lisa M.
    Lisa MerzwskiAugust 5, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Thursdays are 1/2 price pizzas from 5-6pm. The best! Sit at the bar and enjoy.
  • Kevin S.
    Kevin SheehanJuly 7, 2011
    Get here early bc the bar fills up fast!
  • Adrienne M.
    Adrienne MattJuly 2, 2011
    The polenta board is filling. Oxtail ragu is divine!
  • The Feast
    The FeastJune 13, 2011
    A festive, high-energy mood prevails amid crafty pizzas, polenta boards served with daily ragouts and familiar Italian foods stamped with modern twists. Bar and communal dining is also available.
  • Megan S.
    Megan SailorsApril 30, 2011
    love love love the atmosphere! the pricilla press cocktail is delicious and strong
  • James S.
    James SablanApril 6, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Be sure to take advantage of their valet service. It not only saves you time, but enhances the overall experience of the restaraunt. $7 is cheap compared to most parking services or structures.
  • David L.
    David LinderApril 2, 2011
    The Elvis sandwich(peanut butter, banana, bacon) is surprisingly delicious. Especially with the touch of syrup/ honey they put on there. Great fries too.
  • Brandon G.
    Brandon GhioMarch 26, 2011
    Gorgonzola pizza, with pear & caramelized onions topped with arrugula is a must. Add the summer julep and you've taken it to the next level.
  • Jennifer F.
    Jennifer FarrisMarch 4, 2011
    Gorgonzola mousse and sundried tomato app is amazing! + they have a retail wine license so it's Soooo cheap!
  • Aaron A.
    Aaron AFebruary 10, 2011
    Ask for Brittnay at the bar. She has a great knowledge of the wine list and pairs food very nicely. One of the friendliest people at the bar too!
  • Terry S.
    Terry StraitJanuary 12, 2011
    You HAVE to have the apple gratin! Goes fantastic with an Orin Swift "The Prisoner"
  • lori z.
    lori zitoJanuary 3, 2011
    Busy place any night of the week... but worth the wait. Bottles of wine are retail priced, with a $7 corking fee. The beet salad is divine.My only complaint... the hummus has chicken broth in it!
  • Emese G.
    Emese GaalJanuary 3, 2011
    Yummy lasagna and stuffed squash blossoms
  • Myk O.
    Myk OLearyDecember 29, 2010
    Get the salumi and formaggio board while you decide...
  • Misti L.
    Misti Lucero-WolfNovember 30, 2010
    Everything was amazing at Cucina Urbana, but I still dream about their fresh made mozzarella! Yummmmmm!
  • Visit San Diego
    Visit San DiegoOctober 22, 2010
    You can buy a bottle in their wine shop and drink it at your table for a small wine cork fee!
  • Visit San Diego
    Visit San DiegoOctober 14, 2010
    Try the Apple Gratin dessert - it's delicious!
  • Heather W.
    Heather WillensOctober 5, 2010
    watermelon salad, sea bass, and caramel apple crisp all home runs
  • James U.
    James UrsiniSeptember 19, 2010
    Eat at the bar or community table. Less of a wait!
  • Conway S.
    Conway SolomonAugust 31, 2010
    CU burger is out of this world
  • Jeff S.
    Jeff SilverAugust 29, 2010
    Wine at retail price. Get the Cabernet Franc.
  • Rydison
    RydisonAugust 10, 2010
    David A. Is the best server here!
  • Christina V.
    Christina VegaJuly 31, 2010
    Order a martini here! The grapefruit one is delicious!
  • Nicole L.
    Nicole LingnerJuly 22, 2010
    THIS IS MY FAV PLACE IN THE COUNTRY. It all works, knowledgeable staff, ambiance...food! Must order: Polenta of the day, chicken liver pate, short rib pappardelle, bittersweet chocolate budino, yum! Read more
  • COLLEEN R.
    COLLEEN RUGGJuly 10, 2010
    When ordering a cheese board, let the server suggest which ones to have with your wine. Every time I have done this, they have never let me down! Read more
  • Daniel A.
    Daniel AltbaumMay 25, 2010
    Been here 50+ times
    Amazing Place! Try something new...Pizza with and egg cracked on it. I know it sounds crazy, but it is so good.
  • Aaron S.
    Aaron StroudMay 10, 2010
    Everything on the menu is fantastic
  • Helen E.
    Helen EvansApril 25, 2010
    The polenta board is great and the ragu changes daily. The blackened cod is also superb, pistachio crust is amazing!
  • Shawn M.
    Shawn MoranMarch 30, 2010
    Try the bleu burger.
  • Laurel
    LaurelFebruary 26, 2010
    The strawberry fregolatta is great for dessert.
  • Ivana N.
    Ivana NedeljkovicFebruary 20, 2010
    Definitely try the cod, its yummy, yummy.
  • Douglass M.
    Douglass MannFebruary 3, 2010
    Sunday night they have cheap(er) wine. Read more
  • Ming L.
    Ming LimFebruary 3, 2010
    Sit in the communal tables. Fun, hip, excellent and moderately priced. Delicious.
  • dilek d.
    dilek dilerJanuary 16, 2010
    luv the sangria, luv the concept!
  • David G.
    David GreerDecember 21, 2009
    Everything I had was great... Stuffed Zucchini blossoms, pork chop, and the roasted strawberry dessert... SO GOOD!
  • Craig B.
    Craig BOctober 11, 2009
    generous pours, bar staff friendly, stick with simple menu items.
  • Cristian A. Q.
    Excelente comida y excelente atencion.
  • Edgar G.
    Edgar GarcíaFebruary 24, 2016
    El pulpo, excelente.
  • Alex C.
    Alex CastanedaDecember 15, 2014
    De los mejores restaurantes de comida Italiana
  • Letty Z.
    Letty ZetuneJune 3, 2014
    Delicioso papardele con short ribs
  • Pablo L.
    Pablo LopezDecember 31, 2012
    Gran lugar, las flores de calabaza y la pasta con short rib muy buenas, amplia selección de vinos y cervezas artesanales.
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