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.
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Foodspotting photos
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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 reviews from OpenTable diners
358 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.3
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
95% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
great for outdoor dining (277)special occasion (201)romantic (161)scenic view (159)great for lunch (156)fit for foodies (119)neighborhood gem (90)good for groups (74)great for brunch (69)notable wine list (42)vibrant bar scene (40)kid-friendly (36)hot spot (34)late-night find (27)Show More
  • Good enough if your in the park.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We were headed to a show at the Old Globe and eat there out of convenience. Food was good, but not great. However, it was prices as though the owner thought it was great. Perhaps your paying for the location. The ambiance was dated, but the staff was trying hard. It's convenient; I'll give it that.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Why book a reservation?
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    I love The Prado restaurant, but I found myself very frustrated this time. We made a dinner reservation at 5 pm, but were not seated until 5:25 and several walk-up groups were seated before us and in the same area we were given a table. We were given a pager when we arrived a couple minutes before 5, but it never went off and it wasn't until I went up to the reception desk and asked what was going on that we were finally seated ... and next to two walk-in groups that came in after we got the pager. The whole point being - why bother making a reservation if walk-in's get seated first and reservations are ignored. It put a little damper on our dinner. Food was very good - as was our server ... rest of the service ... not so good.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outdoor dining
    jsbradbury
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Took 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:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lovely Setting in Balboa Park
    JrcinmsVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Our 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:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Beautiful ambiance overpriced food.
    three4diner
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    On 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:
    great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Comfortable and Romantic
    Eagle2serve
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    My 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:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful
    Kaitlyn
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    I 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:
    great for outdoor dining, hot spot, kid-friendly, late-night find, notable wine list, romantic, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Partymgnt
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Very 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:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Completed theatre evening
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Went before theatre at Old Globe. Perfect, wonderful experience, food and ambiance. Recommended to us and we in turn recommend to others!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • JJtheatregoer
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    I 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:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food, great service
    Rarelyreview
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Ordered 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:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Unique and exquisite
    EastVillage
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    There'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:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wonderful except for parking!
    SoCynCyrVIP
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    The 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 for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • great place
    savage3735
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    The 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:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • In the Park
    Greg
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Totally did not expect to find such a nice restaurant in Balboa Park.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wow
    Angelesj888
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Best overall dining experience period. Server was excellent and food was beyond amazing. Even treated us to a celebratory desert selection.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Menu
    Howi
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    There 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:
    great for outdoor dining, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Elise
    CVproud
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Daniel might just be the best server in San Diego! Great cocktails with average food.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • First of many visits
    OpenTable Diner Since 2001
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    We 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:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Romantic Anniversary Rendevoux
    CaliGirl
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    I had requested a special outdoor table for our anniversary and was pleasantly surprised with the perfect location and service.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Food fantastic, staff accommodating
    Snofrost
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    The 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:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding for special occasions
    SusanVIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Service, ambiance and food all outstanding, on the expensive side.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great anniversary dinner
    Mark
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    We 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:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • wanda
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    The 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 restaurants
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • PTJPTJVIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    I 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.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Theater dining
    GloberVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Great for pre-Old Globe dining! Tuesday night is also date night!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great gal's lunch
    OpenTable Diner Since 2000VIP
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    Wonderful lunch during a beautiful day in Balboa Park. The Market Salad was amazing. Would definitely be back!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Beautiful day
    sandyc
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    The perfect way to enjoy a beautiful day with a special friend on the patio.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Pre-Show Dinners
    Marge
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    The 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:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Always enjoy a meal at The Prado. Very top notch.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Prado is a San Diego gem
    SherylCPA
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    A great choice for pre-theatre or just fine dining, the Prado serves consistently great food within the wonderful ambiance of Balboa Park.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    The 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:
    great for outdoor dining, scenic view, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • rkwgolfr
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Although 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:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • What happened to the Prado?
    Carol
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    I 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
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Love The Prado!
    Luna
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    As 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:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always dependably very good!
    FanofPrado
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Service & 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:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consistently good
    mary
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    The Prado is always a good choice. Food is very good and well priced
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Litprof
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Excellent spot right in the middle of Balboa Park.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Worst of the Cohn Restaurant Chain
    VoraciousVVIP
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    Came 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:
    kid-friendly, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Again and again
    Fritz
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    Have 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:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.