A very accomplished menu with
A very accomplished menu with some unusual ingredients that make this cafe very good.
1/1/0001 4:00:00 PM
Glad we found it!
My husband and I recently found this restaurant. It is small and unassuming but the food is outstanding. A bit expensive but everything is delicious and very unique. The service is excellent. We have gone twice and each time, we have been served by very knowledgable, pleasant and diligent staff. Dinner was wonderful. I had the lamb shank. A bit rich but delicious. My husband had the short ribs. Sauce on both were really interesting. Try the short rib sandwich at lunch or the turkey apple with cheese sandwich. It's all good!!
3/7/2013 4:00:00 PM
Treat a friend to a birthday dinner
I took a good friend here for a birthday dinner so we could try a place new to both of us. Our server was friendly, knowledgable and extremely helpful. We split the Azerbaijani Kabob Platter which was extremely flavorful and enough to satisfy the two of us. My friend had a glass of their Sangria and enjoyed it very much. When I thought it couldn't get any better, our server told my friend she could pick a complimentary dessert for her birthday. She ordered the flourless chocolate cake; it was warm and delicious and they even put a candle on it.
3/8/2013 4:00:00 PM
The food and service were
The food and service were amazing. Granted we were there on the first Monday they had been open so it was a little slow but everything was perfect.
3/10/2013 5:00:00 PM
Great food (beet tartar, chicken
Great food (beet tartar, chicken crepes, strawberry salad, short ribs and New York steak and peach cobbler) and wonderful service. Couldn’t ask for anything more!
3/29/2013 5:00:00 PM
This is a wonderful restaurant.
Two things stand out when thinking about Café 21 - food and service. Every server treats me like I'm important and gets the order right. They are real people. I have been there for breakfast, lunch and dinner and I really love the food. I wouldn't change anything about this restaurant. It's so good, everyone should go but I hope they don't because I want it all to myself.
4/18/2013 4:00:00 PM
We went for the first time 1 week ago and we had a very good experience. Service is awesome and food is excellent. We love it that is why we came back and we can't wait to try it again.
4/19/2013 4:00:00 PM
We were a group of 5 ladies
We were a group of 5 ladies who wanted to try Cafe 21's tapas. It's a very extensive list from meat and potatoes to dessert, all for $4. We tried 7 or 8 plus wine and sangria and were full when we left. It has a very European vibe with wooden chairs inside and a pet friendly patio. The gentrifying neighborhood is easy to get to and the small strip mall location has a parking lot, complete with a huge Liquor sign for the next door business to use as a landmark finding the place. I'd definitely go back again since the food was tasty and imaginative. Try the veggie fries -- not the kind they serve at the golden arches.
4/22/2013 4:00:00 PM
Interesting combinations of
Interesting combinations of flavors and spices. Ample portions. Diverse menu for each course. Casual, laid back - but serious about food.
5/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Great service and Great Food
Have been here several times and must say that I have never been dissapointed with any aspect of the place. The food is always fantastic, the wine list is great and the service impeccable. The wait staff is knowledgable enough to know when to make their presence known and when to leave the guest to their conversation, which is a rare find in restaurants anymore. The menu selection is not as large as some places, but they do everything on the menu extremely well. Recommend anything and everything off of the menu.
5/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
My wife and I first read about this place while looking for a new spot with good chocolate chip pancakes for our 10 yr old daughter...little did we know we were about to stumble upon the BEST pancakes we've ever tried-the tiramisu cakes at Cafe 21!!! They are simply to die for! Not to mention we also had very tasty curry chicken benedict concoction that was also truly wonderful. We in fact just went back for Mother's Day dinner and again, amazing. We ordered the chicken crepe appetizer (wow) and a NY steak which was cooked exactly to order, medium rare of course. One last thing-our server Adam was super. Patient and cooperative. Great service can make a so-so place good, he makes Cafe 21 a home run!
5/11/2013 4:00:00 PM
What a find
Café 21 was a true find in San Diego. I travel every week and use Open Table for recommendations. This was one of the best.
5/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
We had a party of 6. Everyone
We had a party of 6. Everyone got a different entree, and all were spectacular. Everything came out pretty quick, and the wait staff was great.
5/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
I only tried their happy hour tapas, which were delicious and well portioned for their price ($4 for most!). I also was lucky enough to catch their first glass of sangria per person for 21 cents deal that they have every 21st of the month! Even better was I received a coupon just for eating there that gives me 21% off my next dinner there (excludes happy hour), so I will definitely be back to try their delicious looking dinner menu.
5/20/2013 4:00:00 PM
Good food and a good vibe.
The atmosphere was pleasant and relaxed. We sat outside by the fountain. It was easy to talk, not too noisy. I especially enjoyed the pear and greens salad and the chicken quesadilla appetizer. The iced tea is steeped in a special container, there are many flavors and you get two big glasses and lots of ice. I have also had coffee here in the morning, which is delicious. The wait staff are very friendly and attentive at the right times.
5/21/2013 4:00:00 PM
I liked this restaurant because its small, cozy, and has a nice decoration. I guess it can be romantic in the evenings and for groups in the day time as it suits both. I recommend it for everybody whom would like to taste different way of cooking.
5/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
Café 21 - University Heights
This restaurant is able to make you feel as though you are in a more exotic location even though it's right next door to a liquor store on Adams Avenue. The food we ate was excellent (Cristo crepes, whole European sea bass, and Kabob platter). The foods at this eclectic restaurant are quite diverse. Mostly organically sourced and quite a few homemade items. The wine selection was also quite diverse (we especially enjoyed the Malbec and Big Guy Red). The service was excellent. A very friendly wait staff indeed.
5/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
The escolar was fish of the
The escolar was fish of the day....super fresh and done to perfection. The spaghetti squash with shrimp is over the top YUM! This is the dish I keep coming back for....superb.
6/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
will go back
we've been here several times , breakfast and dinner, food always good and flavorful. Great place.
6/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
B4 Concert Dinner
8 of us enjoyed a wonderful dinner of Happy Hour Tapas and cocktails before the Fleetwood Mac concert at SDSU. My favorite items were the fried avocado slices and the curry cauliflower gratin!
7/4/2013 4:00:00 PM
Our go to when back in the hood.
Wish they had a rest in nor county coastal. Badly missing a gem like this. Great staff, eclectic food. Two thumbs up!
7/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
NOT AS NICE AS THE GASLAMP
We adore Cafe 21, but this site is just not as nice as the Gaslamp. They do not have a full bar, so no Martini. They don't have bread pudding, which is incredible at the Gaslamp site. They do have incredible food. If I lived down the street from this one I would go, but if I was traveling, I would for sure choose the Cafe 21 on 5th.
7/20/2013 12:00:00 AM
Love this place. The staff
Love this place. The staff are great and the atmosphere is wonderful.
7/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Excellent service and great
Excellent service and great attention was givent to us. Food was absolutely wonderful and cooked perfectly.
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great little place
I always like Cafe 21. This is the second time I've brought friends, who plan to come back. Good job! Loved Riki and Adam.
8/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great little place!
Great food, great space, great staff! Definitely feel really well taken care of while here. The staff is so friendly which wins big points with me! The food and beverage were amazing as always!
9/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
This is the place you want to come back and try other menu items as they all are good
9/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
Deep Flavors and Wine List
We celebrated a birthday at the North Park outdoor patio, but the flavors hailed from far away - braised lamb with potato cake, lamb kufta with yogurt sauce, chicken curry cake, beef short ribs with potato cake and gorgonzola. All deeply delicious, arriving on a wooden carving board, excellent for sharing. The wine list was notable. Patio was shaded and pleasant. Service by a team of waiters was excellent.
9/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
Cafe 21 never disappoints
I've been to both the downtown and the normal heights locations, and they are both outstanding. Service is always friendly, but we had a great time with the staff at Normal Heights, which feels a little more like an intimate family business than the downtown location. The food is always amazing - expect rich, buttery, and curry flavors to highlight the food. I can't wait to return.
9/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Quirky and Unique
I came here after reading some reviews and finally have found a place where I would like to try practically everything on the menu. From their unique sangria blends to their fresh local produce this hidden gem was delightful and enticing. The entire staff was attentive so it felt like we had the whole restaurant at our service. The fresh clean flavors of our meal were amazing I had the creeps and potato pancakes while my partner enjoyed real blueberry pancakes and scrambled eggs(by real I mean the blueberries are within)! I can't wait to return!
10/15/2013 12:00:00 AM
Delicious and unusual dishes
This restaurant's innovative take on Azerbaijan cuisine is always good, but a new fall dish--stuffed eggplant--that I tried a few nights ago was out of this world.
10/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
This is my second time here and I plan to make it a weekly spot it's delicious for both food and drink. The unique combinations of wonderful ingredients you don't normally see is a treat and their menu is priced decently considering the quality and diversity you are able to enjoy. I highly recommend coming here for breakfast, brunch all their items sound mouthwatering and have yet to disappoint!
10/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
Fresh and tasty
The menu is unusually creative; we all had difficulty deciding between the many options, most made from scratch in-house. In the end they were all great. The place has a cozy, home-grown ambience. The servers were friendly, not too formal. It was the perfect spot for a catch-up dinner with old friends.
11/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Charming Spot, Great Variety
Great little place tucked into a small shopping center in University Heights. Our server recommended - and we happily polished off - the kabob platter and short ribs. The grilled pear salad was enough for two, and the wines by the glass selection offered great variety at an affordable price.
11/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
As good as it gets : )
If you haven't gone to Cafe 21, what are you waiting for? We always get an amazing meal here. This past time, we had the vegetable fries, the grilled pear salad, the shrimp with spaghetti squash, the kebab platter and the flank steak with black eyed peas. We finished with the desert special (peach cobbler) with ice cream. Everything is just so excellent. Flavorful and cooked to perfection. I have no criticism honestly. We love this place and highly, highly recommend.
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
Delicious comfort food. Small intimate setting. We've always had good food here.
We haven't tried their sister restaurant in the Gaslamp District yet. Wonderful persimmon
11/23/2013 4:00:00 PM
There was there a group of eight and when we told our waiter that we didn't know if we wanted appetizer or dinner. Without our knowledge he talked to the cook and allowed us to order from the tapas menu that ended at 6:00, we were seated at 6:00. When we were overwhelmed with the choices, he took over and brought us and brought a selections that served our needs. It was a very enjoyable evening.
11/26/2013 4:00:00 PM
Very accommodating to dietary
Very accommodating to dietary needs. Amazing spaghetti squash...yum! The heirloom tomato salad outstanding . The beet tower Devine. Can't wait to return! Thanks again Adam!
11/30/2013 4:00:00 PM