The Prado at Balboa Park
The Prado at Balboa Park

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.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 6th Avenue
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet offered Tuesday through Friday 5:00pm onwards. Saturday and Sunday from 11:00am onwards. Public parking lots available in Balboa Park.
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 photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerOutdoor Dining
  • Diners' Choice WinnerContemporary American
The Prado at Balboa Park reviews from OpenTable diners
366 reviews since June 27, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.3
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
great for outdoor dining (280)special occasion (208)romantic (164)scenic view (146)great for lunch (139)fit for foodies (128)neighborhood gem (113)good for groups (74)great for brunch (51)notable wine list (40)vibrant bar scene (36)hot spot (32)late-night find (23)kid-friendly (19)Show More
  • Never disappoints
    Green12
    Dined on 10/21/2014
    My friends and I ate outside on the patio where there is plenty of shade and a terrific view. The service and food were very good, as always. You never feel rushed when you dine here, the staff is accommodating, and the atmosphere is fun, yet the noise level is comfortable.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Great Restaurant and Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    Came here for my one year anniversary. Ian was our server. Very honest with his recommendations. We ordered the Pot Stickers. Not just any pot stickers. These were amazing. I ordered the salmon and braised ribs. My gf had the 8 oz. steak. Both dishes were great. Happy Anniversary K.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Didn't disappoint!
    lovestoeatVIP
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    We recently moved back to San Diego after 3 years away and decided to try The Prado again. We weren't disappointed! One in our party can't eat gluten and another is a vegetarian, and all 3 of us had delicious meals (short ribs and salmon combo, seafood cake, and pork prime rib). Their Blood Orange Cosmos are the best. We like the unique and comfortable inside decor as well as the outdoor patio. Our server was very good too...friendly, attentive and knowledgeable about the menu. A great night out....
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • always spot-on!!
    Princess
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    never can go wrong with this little gem- food wonderful and service outstanding!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • long wait
    LUV2EATPRIMERIB
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Had 2:00 reserv. Arrived on time. Rest. not busy. Had to wait 20 plus min. I discovered large sections of rest. were 'closed off"!I guess not enough help at time.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Pre-Globe place!
    Special
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Loved every minute here, great service, delicious food, not rushed but plenty of time to get to an 8pm performance at the Globe. Memorable time!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a winner!
    onlyfreshwilldo
    Dined on 10/15/2014
    Food is always delicious, Service was perfect. Ambience is quintessential San Diego. We love the Prado for lunch when you can enjoy the views and outdoors. We have been many times and always look forward to returning.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 10/14/2014
    Excellent service from entering the restaurant until the end of the evening. Food was well prepared. No complaints and spent an enjoyable evening with friends outdoor.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • acarekids
    Dined on 10/13/2014
    Love the grounds surrounding the restaurant, it makes any meal very pleasant! Service was prompt!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always a treat
    dineoutVIP
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    wonderful, creative food that's not gimmicky, just delicious! Beautiful space, good service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • too expensive
    expensive
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Too pricey for the amount of food we got. Food was goo but too small.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Had a great experience!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    the food and service were both excellent. Ourmeals were prepared perfectly, and our waiter Steven was a delight. Great service and very personable. We'll definitely do it again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great
    KHFdez
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    We eat at Prado often. The food is great and the atmosphere is pretty.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Average in every way.
    gjcoburn
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    I was shocked they did not serve Clam Chowder on a Friday night.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • poor seating
    Pardo
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    it is interesting i have dinned here several times with my husband and always been seated outside ( never requesting it) Friday i took a girlfriend there for dinner . we were assigned to of the worst table in the restaurant ( back in the far corner ) at there third try we gave up . why is it when two women show up for dinner we are offer terrible tables, but when man and women show up they are offered better tables. we were told by the manger that we needed to call the restaurant and request outdoor dinning after booking our reservation on open table will i go back , not really
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Outdoor Dining
    diningrealtor
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    I took one of my best clients out for dinner and chose The Prado because I have been there many times. The food was fantastic, service was excellent and you can't beat the ambiance. Great place to go if you're looking for a nice, relaxed atmosphere to have dinner and be able to have a conversation with your guests. I will be back!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • calliegirl
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    We had a great experience. Went for an afternoon cocktail and the waitress was excellent. Went back in the evening for dinner. Our reservation was for inside dining, but we were able to get a table outside. Wise decision. We had received a gift certificate from our daughter. It was my wife's birthday and decided to use the certificate. The happy hour was great. I spilled my glass of wine in error and was immediately served another glass at no charge. Our dinner waiter was superb and attentive. We received a complimentary dessert which was excellent.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very enjoyable romantic dinner
    fundiner
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Dinner was delicious and service was excellent and friendly! Tuesday "Date Night" menu is a tremendous value!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Prado
    Dean
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Experience was very good. Would have been outstanding if the food (paella) were a bit warmer and the service was a bit more expeditious. Arrived and was seated at restaurant on time, 60-70 minutes before planned departure, about which the waiter asked without our prompting. (theatre performance in the immediate vicinity). Had to ask another waitperson for the check 75-80 minutes after our arrival so we would not be late for the play. Check was made available immediately.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a Delight
    Emma
    Dined on 10/4/2014
    We told the waiter that we were having a reunion, implying that we didn't want to be rushed and he was a gem and let us enjoy the evening. He even brought us a free dessert, with a candle, as a reunion present. The menu is great, the food is delicious and presented beautifully. Love the beet salad. Lovely dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great staff
    FrancesVIP
    Dined on 9/30/2014
    The staff, from managers to wait staff, were very attentive. The food choices ranged from meat to fish to vegetarian. Pre-thater dinner is a relaxing experience. It's why I keep returning to the Prado.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • SD Restaurant Week
    bonmanVIP
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    I was on vacation and met up with my friends... Looks like they extended their restaurant week menu which turned out to be delish! I had the corn chowder soup as an app and then braised short ribs in red wine as my entree... Yum!!! We ordered all 3 desserts.. vanilla crème brulée, chocolate hazelnut cake with marshmallow ice cream, and cream cheese flan... All were amazing!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always great
    vegasbill
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    Returned again to The Prado at Balboa Park and was not disappointed in any way. They got it right again. The food, service and ambiance were all as expected and great. The pricing is reasonable. The valet parking was easy but pricey. It's definitely one of our "go to" spots when entertaining out-of-towners, celebrating a special event, attending the theater or just treating ourselves to a great evening. If you've never been there you have missed a treat.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Go-to place for celebrations
    OBbatgirl
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    We love the food and the ambiance. Great service too..
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not what it used to be
    mas13
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    Very disappointing "special" menus for pre-theatre or Restaurant Week (VERY limited choices), with uninspired starters and less than thrilling main courses. My husband ordered off the regular menu and was very happy with his paella. I chose the pre-theatre menu, and was not impressed, especially with the dry, semi-tough, under-seasoned short rib. But the service is excellent and the proximity to the Globe can't be beat.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Service Inattentive
    sd8557
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    This was not our first visit to The Prado. We were offered the opportunity to still participate in their Restaurant Week menu and pricing. While the food was good the service was lacking. The server got the beverage order incorrect but did offer to let us have the incorrect beverage at no charge. The server did not check in with us very often to see if we needed anything else or any refills. The server also brought the check before everyone in the party was given the opportunity to order dessert. Unfortunately, this was not the first instance of less than stellar service at The Prado.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • EricB
    EricB
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We went for Restaurant Week and really enjoyed it. I ordered the calamari fries, the beef short ribs and the chocolate bar for dessert and the food was excellent. It was a reasonable value for $35 per person but not great. When you add in the cost of the expensive bottle of wine our friends ordered and add in tax and tip, it became expensive. We've eaten there several times in the past and it's always good. It's a great place to go for lunch and it's a better value than dinner. But overall, I highly recommend it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • carmel
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    The bread was stale and the soup (delicious) initially wasn't hot, even though we asked for it to be very hot. The second time around it was perfect. Otherwise, the meal was superb.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Birthday dinner
    3moms
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We took our friend to dinner at the Prado for her birthday and we shared several dishes that were flavorful and delicious. Service A+
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dined during restaurant week
    Anonymous
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    I wanted to see how lunch would be during restaurant week and I was not disappointed. The Caesar salad was pretty good but the mussels were outstanding. The Bartender makes a great Bellini which was refreshing on the warm day. Very enjoyable experience
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • We will be back!
    Yumtotheeeeee
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    I have only great things about this restaurant. From the moment you walk in the service was great. My husband had the Kobe burger and I ordered the skirt steak panini from the Restaurant Week menu. We were celebrating our wedding anniversary so our server brought us the Cheesecake Flan. Best flan I've ever had. Food, service, and ambiance makes this restaurant a wonderful find.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious
    Amp2
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    Food and service were great. Their calamari appetizer was the best I have ever had. The short ribs we tender and delicious. Our server was great.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good experience!
    Erer
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    Food and ambience was just great!! We loved the terrace and the ribs were just awesome! Service was not bad but neither good the waitress just dis her job bu bringin our food, the buzz boy was very very kind! He deserced the tip better than the waitress.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Pleasant dining experience
    Chini
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    We have eaten at the Prado a number of times, along with many of the other Cohen restaurants, and have never been disappointed. So classy yet so friendly. To have waiters so attentive yet so personable consistently is rather unusual. My wife is quite a cook and perfectionist and just raves about the food and its presentation. She is "arty" as is the presentation. Delicious. One can tell that the cook is always searching for other tasty dishes. Thank you for making a dining experience truly a dining experience that leaves the diner contented for the entire experience. Our waitress was top-notch ( I am trying to recall her name........Brenda comes to mind but that is probably wrong......a short redhead, probably middle-aged).
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Restaurant week
    JENVL
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    Menu was good I had the mussels they were very good I really liked the piece of bread that came with it the steak panini was also delicious with the taro root chips my fav:)
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Delicious food
    Romance
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    The staff was great and the service was on point, always like going back because of the food and specially the service provided.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • WONDERFUL!!!
    bdnng63
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    Went here with a little push from Restaurant Week/SD...thank goodness. Loved it. Food was great, service was great, drinks were great. Did I mention how great it was.. LOL..would definitely go back, can't wait to return..Nothing was a miss
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We always love coming here
    Drew
    Dined on 9/22/2014
    For cocktails, lunch, or dinner - definitely a beautiful destination for locals and visitors alike
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Prado during Restaurant Week
    Luv2dineout
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    We dined during "Restaurant Week" and the menu was eclectic and the food was tasty. The service was also very, very good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Main course was disappointing
    Eihuggett
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    Appetizer, salad and dessert were all excellent in flavor, creativity and presentation. The main entre (shrimp and filet) was disappointing. The filet, which I requested to be cooked medium was cooked well. The inside was well done and the outside was charred. We were so hungry we ate it because as we had show tickets we didn't have time to wait for a new entre, and didn't want to go hungry during the show. I don't think the entre should have gone out of the kitchen as it was visibly charred on the outside.
    Special Features:
    romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate