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Party Size
For 2
Date
Sat, 4/21
Time
7:30 PM
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Booked 17 times today

Cafe Secret

4.5
268 reviews
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$30 and under
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Peruvian
Top Tags:
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Casual
  • Neighborhood Gem
Located in the heart of downtown Del Mar, Cafe Secret offers authentic traditional Peruvian cuisine from recipes passed down for generations from the owner's family. Cafe Secret prides itself on serving dishes made with only the freshest ingredients, provided by local purveyors. Voted best Seafood by San Diego Magazine!
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Peruvian, Seafood, Latin American
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Hours of operation
Breakfast: Monday-Saturday 8am-11am;
Lunch: Monday - Friday; 11:00 am- 4:00 pm;
Dinner: Monday - Saturday; 5:30 pm- 9:00 pm;
Sunday Brunch: 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
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Phone number
(858) 792-0821
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Catering
Visit our website for our full catering menu. We have a fantastic selection of delicious Peruvian dishes available for pick up or delivery.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
11th Street
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Special events & promotions
Our romantic patio is the perfect location for your next special event.
Additional
Beer, BYO Liquor, BYO Wine, Cafe, Corkage Fee, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 268 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.2
service
4.3
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Quiet
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
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4.0Dined on April 11, 2018

What a nice night for all fresco dining. Started with complementary corn puffs and a tarp appetizer.Followed by tasty fish and lamb entrees. Quatro lèche dessert was great and value priced Tamprinello

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5.0Dined on April 7, 2018

We shared vegetarian dishes: poblano chili, Del Mar salad and Spinach ravioli. Beer and Tempranillo to accompany and everything was very tasty. It was our first visit and I would recommend and I will return!

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5.0Dined on March 25, 2018

Second time. The food is delicious! I had the "Macho" last week...fresh fish and shrimp on rice. The flavors were delicious!

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5.0Dined on March 25, 2018

The food was amazing and reasonably priced. The place is very small and the service was surprisingly slow especially given how small the restaurant is and the fact that people were waiting for tables. I'm sure we could have sped it up more if we were really concerned about it and in some ways it is nice to not feel rushed.

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5.0Dined on March 18, 2018

Very charming
Back patio downstairs was private & cute
Server, Savanna was great

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4.0Dined on February 25, 2018

Have never had Peruvian food. I had the Blackened pan seared mahi, avocado, aji aioli, greens, ciabatta & salsa criolla. Served with canchita, plantain chips & house green salad; and the woman I was with had the Broiled Peruvian scallops with Parmesan & lime juice. Both were very good. There are a lot of things on the menu I want to come back and try.

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4.0Dined on February 15, 2018

Cafe Secret is one of my favorite restaurants! I dream about the ceviche and tiradito and it’s always a treat to eat here.
The service is outstanding, the servers always make you feel spoiled and it feels like you are in their home!
I love this place. I want it to stay my little secret.

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5.0Dined on February 14, 2018

Excellent meal at an excellent restaurant! One of our favorites!

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5.0Dined on February 13, 2018

we have eaten at all of the high end restaurants in north san diego, and the food here was spectacular!
don't miss this restaurant

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2.0Dined on February 13, 2018

TERRIBLE service and mediocre, overpriced food. Will not return

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4.0Dined on February 3, 2018

consistently excellent Peruvian fare. Not as much spice as I remember, but still delicious. Dog-friendly patio makes the experience that much better.

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5.0Dined on January 24, 2018

Birthday lunch

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4.0Dined on January 14, 2018

The service was a little bit slow due to only one guy taking on all the tables but then backup help came and saved the day. The food was delicious! The organic quinoa tamales was nothing to rave about but the steak and rice dish was really good and also the chicken curry like dish was really good for lunch. I'd love to go back for the empanadas!

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3.0Dined on December 16, 2017

The conchitas were good, although very salty. The Parihuela soup was okay, but one mussel, on clam and one undercooked shrimp weren’t enough. The chicken dish was mediocre and my wife left 80% of it on her plate. The positive ratings are inexplicable.

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5.0Dined on December 7, 2017

Outstanding find. A little gem

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5.0Dined on December 6, 2017

Excellent as usual! Fish sudado with quinoa is fabulous, as is the filet mignon. Truly feels like you're in a foreign country!

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5.0Dined on December 3, 2017

Our party of four enjoyed a leisurely Sunday lunch with the chicken aguadito, lomito saltado, and fish plates. We topped it off with desserts of alfajores and chocolate bread pudding. Everyone left happy!

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5.0Dined on November 18, 2017

From the name, I wasn't at first interested. I read separate reviews and saw 4 to 5 stars consistently. We went with an open mind and the food was fantastic. I see why it is rated so high. My wife and I don't normally finish everything, but the two dishes we had were so unique and tasty that I almost licked the plates clean. 100% recommend!

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4.0Dined on November 15, 2017

I took my boyfriend to Cafe Secret for his birthday as he loves Peruvian ceviche. Let me tell you, it was worth the drive up! We had the ceviche, the lamb and the mussels for lunch. I had their limeade to drink and an alfajore for dessert. Everything was delicious!!! The service was sub-par (we got there around 12:45-1; there were three tables at the end of their meals and we had to ask for plates to be cleared and water refilled). There was only one member of the waitstaff working, which I get that she has responsibility for everyone, but it wasn't exactly a fast-paced time of day (lunch on a Wednesday). The restaurant itself is pretty neat - tucked away under a flowing canopy of bouganvilla and has a distinct South American flavor to it.
Overall, highly recommend for coffee, lunch with friends, a date, and possibly business meetings (but it was a little loud on the patio). Will be back for the delicious food!

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4.0Dined on November 11, 2017

This restaurant features Peruvian food, so fun if you're looking for something different

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5.0Dined on November 8, 2017

Everything was amazing!! The Mixo ceviche was on point!! The Macho was fabulous. Everything prepared to perfection, quite possibly one of the best meals I've had.

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5.0Dined on October 4, 2017

Been st Cafe Secret many times, always excellent food and enjoyable ambiance

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5.0Dined on September 29, 2017

It was our very first time to dine in this restaurant. We were pleasantly surprised with the authenticity of the food. The service was dodo excellent. We will definitely return.

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5.0Dined on September 27, 2017

I've now had everything on the menu. It's all good!

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5.0Dined on September 16, 2017

Best-kept Secret for Peruvian food in Del Mar; best we've had stateside since our tryst with Astrid y Gascon in Lima several years ago.

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5.0Dined on September 14, 2017

Great service. Small restaurant with few tables. Be sure to make a reservation

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

Always a perfect place to go. Whether it's a romantic dinner, lunch with friends, always perfect!

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3.0Dined on August 31, 2017

My wife is from Peru and we have been to several times. The restaurant is casual and seating is all outside. The seco with lamb was very good, the other four dishes were not what I would call traditional Peruvain in taste but not bad. We ordered the ceviche classico dinner, the portion was very small, not even appetizer size. Maybe we were there on a bad day, but won't go back.

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4.0Dined on August 29, 2017

Great live music. Food is not cheap.

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5.0Dined on August 26, 2017

Cafe Secret has a magical outdoor setting at night. The food is fresh, unusual and delicious. The staff are friendly and it has both the feeling of a casual neighborhood restaurant and a special place for a date. Peruvian food is accessible but uncommon and this place is a great find!

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5.0Dined on August 26, 2017

It was fast service and great ambience. The food was absolutely delicious!

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5.0Dined on August 25, 2017

What a great place the food was excellent and so was the service. Definitely going back.

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4.0Dined on August 18, 2017

Been here three times now. I love the ambiance of the outdoor seating area. The food is always good. Service is a little lacking but always busy when I visit.

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5.0Dined on August 12, 2017

Cafe Secret is a MUST! Amazing cuisine and full of flavor! Every single thing we ordered was divine.

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3.0Dined on August 11, 2017

We had an 8:30 reservation on a Friday evening. We arrived early at 8:15, but despite our having a reservation, they seated two walk-in couples that had arrived 5 minutes before we did at their only two open tables. Then we stood around waiting for a table for 20 minutes until 8:35. Once seated, it took more than 5 minutes to have someone come by, then we had to ask her to bring some water. The atmosphere seemed cute, though it is entire on a front patio next to parked cars and the street. The food was very good (seafood special and the raviolis verdes), but service was lacking. We finished our meal around 9:30 and our server asked if we wanted to see the dessert menu, to which we said yes, but instead of bringing the menu, a guy just brought us our bill (server never returned). We took the hint and paid, including our Passport card, and when the guy brought back the ran copy of the bill, the deduction and tip calculations and total was all wrong and there was no copy showing what math they used to derive the new total. It was simply a single charged amount customer copy with a signature line. We sat there for several minutes waiting for someone to return to explain the error, but we'd been abandoned. So we just signed and left, but we will not return. The service leaves too much to be desired.

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5.0Dined on August 11, 2017

The ambiance was charming. We were welcomed warmly and offered a seat outside while waiting for our table. The service was attentive and efficient. Food was excellent: true representative of Peruvian cuisine. The menu was interesting and limited, indicating the focus on freshness as well. We will definitely eat at Secret Cafe again.

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5.0Dined on August 8, 2017

Enjoyed the outdoor seating beneath mature trees on a warm summer day.

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5.0Dined on August 7, 2017

Wonderful meal!The flavors were exquisite! The scallop appetizer was served in the shell with melted parmesan cheese and a tangy lemon flavor.

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4.0Dined on August 5, 2017

Delicious seafood, beautifully prepared. Authentic and innovative. Consistently wonderful. Cozy setting.

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5.0Dined on August 1, 2017

The best, as usual. I eat here all the he time and am never disappointed. The steak was fabulous last night (think the dish is called lomito saltado). Guitar playing is nice touch

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