The Prado at Balboa Park
1549 El Prado
San Diego, CA 92101Neighborhood:
Downtown / Gaslamp
Contemporary AmericanPrice: $30 and under
The Prado at Balboa Park
- Dining Style: Casual Elegant
- Website: http://www.cohnrestaurants.com/theprado
- Phone: 6195579441x203
- Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 3:00pm, Saturday - Sunday: 11:00am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Sunday, Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Mediterranean, Contemporary American
- Executive Chef: Jonathan Hale
- Dress Code: Smart Casual
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
- Entertainment: Our Lounge offers live musical entertainment from 8:00pm - 10:00pm every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
A word from The Prado at Balboa Park
Just minutes from downtown San Diego, the convention center, and Mission Valley. The Prado at Balboa Park is located in one of the parks most beautiful buildings. Under chef Jonathon Hale's creative direction the Prado Restaurant has won honors as San Diego's Best New Restaurant, has been named one of America's top 10 restaurants by Gourmet Magazine, received the coveted "four star" award by the California Restaurant writers association. Continental cuisine paired with truly excellent service, unique ambiance, hand crafted decor and outdoor/indoor dining year round are just some of the reason's why we've won "most romantic" and "best special occasion" restaurant.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerContemporary American
- Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked 1000-Point Tables
- Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
The Prado at Balboa Park - Best Restaurants in Downtown / Gaslamp ›
The Prado at Balboa Park reviews from OpenTable diners
351 reviews since May 4, 2014
- Ambiance4.5Noise LevelModerate
great for outdoor dining (271)special occasion (196)scenic view (157)romantic (156)great for lunch (156)fit for foodies (117)neighborhood gem (89)good for groups (73)great for brunch (68)vibrant bar scene (40)notable wine list (40)kid-friendly (36)hot spot (32)late-night find (27)Show More
- Outdoor diningjsbradburyDined on 8/29/2014Took my fiancé here for dinner, requested a table out on the patio. As usual, The Prado took great care of us. The wait staff was attentive without being overbearing, food was excellent and brought in a timely fashion and sitting outside on a San Diego summer night is always pleasant. We will definitely be going back.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Lovely Setting in Balboa ParkJrcinmsVIPDined on 8/29/2014Our daughter lives in the area and, on a visit, we wanted to try local restaurants. We were happy to find The Prado on a warm summer evening! We requested outdoor seating and it was so pretty with twinkling lights and very nice setting. Tables are a little close together us my only negative. Good food, my daughter and I split the Paella and that along with an appetizer each was plenty. Although we couldn't resist the Tres Leches cake for dessert! It is memorable.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Beautiful ambiance overpriced food.OpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 8/27/2014On our annual trip to the Old Globe Theater in Balboa Park, we dine before at The Prado. The ambiance of the restaurant is beautiful with its welcoming Spanish courtyard. We were greated with efficiency and seated quickly. It was then the problems started. We hurried to order because our server told us that the play started an hour earlier which was incorrect. When we ordered we were astounded at the portion of the meals - halibut 4 inch square over two tablespoons of a salsa with a tablespoon of slaw about $30 - nothing else. Then we ordered desert which took and had to rush to finish so we could leave. Our server dissapeared often. We had more attention from the bus boy! We will be looking for another place to dine next year.Special Features:
- Comfortable and RomanticOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/27/2014My first date with a special lady was at Prado. She selected it due to the fact she is unfamiliar with the area and new to San Diego. What a pleasure and treasure I found in casual-fine dining. I never experienced such attention to detail by servers and food preparation per my special request. It will be visited for all our special occasions!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- WonderfulOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/26/2014I ahve only come o The Prado a handful of times but this last time I went was by far the best. On a Tuesday night they have a really great acustic "band" (A singer/guitar player and box drummer) which really is fun to see while enjoying a drink at the bar. My friend and I had a wonderful time and we will be coming back for sure!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- PartymgntDined on 8/26/2014Very pleasant evening before a theater event in Balboa Park. It is nice that this restaurant which is so convenient to the Balboa Park scene is very good both in ambiance and food.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Completed theatre eveningOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/24/2014Went before theatre at Old Globe. Perfect, wonderful experience, food and ambiance. Recommended to us and we in turn recommend to others!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/24/2014I always enjoy the Prado; good food, good service, great ambiance, especially on the patio, and, as I am a theatre-goer, great convenience!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Good food, great serviceRarelyreviewDined on 8/24/2014Ordered off theater-goers' menu. Fair selection; chose Caesar salad (excellent), pork prime rib (good). Server was courteous, knowledgeable, accommodating. I eaten at Prado several times and service inconsistent. Hope my most recent experience bodes well for future.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Unique and exquisiteEastVillageDined on 8/23/2014There's no place like Prado in Balboa - truly exceptional food, service and environment. Easy parking, nice walking before and after dinner - great menu. Can't wait to return.Special Features:
- Wonderful except for parking!SoCynCyrVIPDined on 8/23/2014The food was awesome, the service quite good,. I do wish restaurants would consider setting aside a section just for families of small children. I know they have to eat but some are unruly and messy. Parking was HORRIBLE! Valet full. Nearest lots FULL. We were late because of driving around looking for a spot and finally had to bribe a valet to take the car! Maybe better on a weekday? But for food and service..... worth the hassle.Special Features:
- great placesavage3735Dined on 8/22/2014The food was awesome the service could not have been better. Our waiter gave us plenty of ideas of things to do and see in the area and then went back to the kitchen to ask the rest of the staff for ideas. Really could not have asked for anything more. This place was the perfect way to top off a great day.Special Features:
- In the ParkGregDined on 8/22/2014Totally did not expect to find such a nice restaurant in Balboa Park.Special Features:
- WowAngelesj888Dined on 8/22/2014Best overall dining experience period. Server was excellent and food was beyond amazing. Even treated us to a celebratory desert selection.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- MenuHowiDined on 8/22/2014There has not been many changes to the menu in the past couple of years. We attend 2 times a year it August and it usually looks the same. Still like the venue.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- EliseCVproudDined on 8/22/2014Daniel might just be the best server in San Diego! Great cocktails with average food.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- First of many visitsOpenTable Diner Since 2001Dined on 8/21/2014We are moving our son to college in San Diego and wanted to have a nice dinner close by. We love Balboa Park and thought it would be fun to eat at The Prado - and we were not disappointed. Our appetizer of the trio of skewers and the chicken tortilla soup were great. My entree of Chicken with Cheesy grits was spectacular and my son had the Thai style shrimp and noodles and my husband had the Salmon and Short Ribs - both of which were wonderful prepared and plated. We have decided that this will be our go to restaurant when we visit him in school. The decor was fun and worth a walk around the restaurant. And the service was top notch! We will be back - next time seating on the terrace!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Romantic Anniversary RendevouxCaliGirlDined on 8/21/2014I had requested a special outdoor table for our anniversary and was pleasantly surprised with the perfect location and service.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Food fantastic, staff accommodatingSnofrostDined on 8/20/2014The food was plated as if it was on a food network show and it melted in your mouth validating the beautiful looking food. They have a view of a romantic little courtyard if you sit outside. My fiance got cold late at night and the wait staff were very patient with us and made sure we were very comfortable. We ended the night with an amazing dessert while listening to a live guitar player singing some classic rock genre music in the bar area since it was warm in there. We are from out of town but hope to visit again soon. Compliments to the chef!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Outstanding for special occasionsSusanVIPDined on 8/20/2014Service, ambiance and food all outstanding, on the expensive side.Special Features:
- Great anniversary dinnerMarkDined on 8/20/2014We enjoyed another wonderful evening at The Prado. The service was excellent, the food is always delicious and the outdoor garden was beautiful. It's the perfect place to enjoy a celebratory anniversary dinner.Special Features:
- wandaOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/20/2014The person who seated us, Matthew, was very personable and led us to his favorite table on the patio. Our meals ,as usual, were all delicious, as was the wine. It was a wonderful way to spend a summer night finished off with a play at the Old Globe. The Prado is always consistent as are all of the Cohn restaurantsSpecial Features:
- PTJPTJVIPDined on 8/20/2014I was pleasantly surprised by this restaurant since I had really low expectations. Service was outstanding; the waitress was extremely knowledgeable, attentive and helpful. The food was great. I had a steak panini topped with a fried tomato, house-made potato and tarot chips, and a broccoli-mandarin orange salad. All were superbly prepared and generously portioned. The patio setting was wonderful.I would recommend this to a friend.
- Theater diningGloberVIPDined on 8/19/2014Great for pre-Old Globe dining! Tuesday night is also date night!Special Features:
- Great gal's lunchOpenTable Diner Since 2000VIPDined on 8/18/2014Wonderful lunch during a beautiful day in Balboa Park. The Market Salad was amazing. Would definitely be back!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Beautiful daysandycDined on 8/18/2014The perfect way to enjoy a beautiful day with a special friend on the patio.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great Pre-Show DinnersMargeDined on 8/17/2014The Prado features a menu for theater goes which includes wine, salad or soup, and a main dish for around $32.00--great food and good value!Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 8/17/2014Always enjoy a meal at The Prado. Very top notch.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Prado is a San Diego gemSherylCPADined on 8/17/2014A great choice for pre-theatre or just fine dining, the Prado serves consistently great food within the wonderful ambiance of Balboa Park.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 8/16/2014The food here is so good and fresh. Love it and will highly recommend. My server was not very knowledgeable that's my only complaint. She checked on us only once. I've been here before and the service was excellent.Special Features:
- rkwgolfrDined on 8/15/2014Although we had reservations and thought we would be in the main dinning area, we were given a table near the noisy bar. We had to request seating in the main dining area where there was plenty of empty seating. Unless you like the bar atmosphere I would recommend you request the main dining area when making reservations. We only go to restaurants like the Prado for special occasions and like quiet surroundings. The food was excellent. Not rushed.Special Features:
- What happened to the Prado?CarolDined on 8/15/2014I have always had good experience at the Prado before but took. Y family on Saturday and it was not a good experience. The waiter co used our drinks twice. The Pisco sour was a very very bad excuse for Pisco - don't bother! Good was okay and location lovely
- Love The Prado!LunaDined on 8/14/2014As always, The Prado delivered! A lovely environment serves as the perfect backdrop for exquisitely prepared food. Perfect beginning to an evening at the park, including the Old Globe Theater.Special Features:
- Always dependably very good!FanofPradoDined on 8/14/2014Service & ambience excellent! 2 out of 3 entrees great, but shrimp was fishy & strong tasting. Otherwise wonderful! Happy to keep coming back again & again.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Consistently goodmaryDined on 8/14/2014The Prado is always a good choice. Food is very good and well pricedSpecial Features:
- LitprofDined on 8/13/2014Excellent spot right in the middle of Balboa Park.Special Features:
- Worst of the Cohn Restaurant ChainVoraciousVVIPDined on 8/11/2014Came in for lunch with friends. It was a scorching day so we sat in the dining room. Friends ordered fish tacos, which they enjoyed. I ordered the asian chicken salad. I used to order this salad every time I came to Prado. It was always fresh and delicious. This time, not so much. The chicken tasted like it was boiled, with no seasoning whatsoever, and old. It was as if the mango was cut up and stored in the fridge for a LONG time. Seems like they just didn't care and needed a dish to add to the menu.Special Features:
- Again and againFritzDined on 8/10/2014Have been coming here for thirteen years each year on the anniversary of our first date (at the Prado). Always a special place for us. Consistently good food and service. Menu has stayed almost the same over the years. May be time for some minor tweaking though.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 8/10/2014Went to a play and ate there first for bday celebration with two other friends. Food was disappointing. The shrimp in the paella was super fishy. The rest of the dish was good. Friend had the gnocchi and it was very salty. The service was amazing!! Our waiter made all the difference in the world. I let the waiter know about the shrimp and he alerted the kitchen.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Bravo PradoJohnnyDined on 8/8/2014Food: I got the duck and my wife got the pressed arugala salad. Both were delicious! We weren't big fans of the calamari fries though. Service was great from hostess to service. Waitress was very nice and attentive. The ambiance was very nice - the jazz music and the hanging lights, plus being outside at sunset made it a very enjoyable dining experience.Special Features: