Solare Ristorante Lounge

4.5
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1329 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Voted 2018 Best Italian Restaurant ... and 2018 Best Service and 2018 Best Wine List ... by San Diego Magazine! The setting, service, decor and ambiance in this historic Liberty Station location is like no other. Family-owned and operated, Randy Smerik and his team work hard to offer an amazing dining experience for you. We believe in the use of local fresh organic produce, natural meat and wild seafood and we are a "Sustainable Green Restaurant". Each dish is prepared from scratch with love and passion to satisfy our customer's heart and soul. Housed in the filming location for Top Gun, Solare helps to sustain the historical landmarks of San Diego's NTC Promenade.
What 1329 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
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very nice waitress and service.We were celebrating my vegan son’s birthday and they “comped” his sorbet dessert as he could not have the normal tiramisu.

CS
1 review
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Homemade pasta at its best! Our second time here and we were not disappointed.

A
1 review
Dined on March 12, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Went in for an early dinner and happy hour. The staff was kind and attentive and knowledgeable. The cocktails were well made , the food was good and the dessert divine. Can’t wait to go back

SB
1 review
Dined on March 11, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food is always good service is professional and the menu is sufficiently varied to make it interesting.

OT
New Orleans
9 reviews
Dined on February 26, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were greeted warmly and given a choice of tables. We were immediately served drinks and the signature focaccia. My friend was only moderately hungry and our server helped us select from the happy hour and regular menus. Our food was well prepared and delicious. We left well-fed and happy. We shall return.

f
1 review
Dined on February 26, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

thk u solare for remembering our 50 th anniv with the tiramisu and the private seating. made me cry.

H
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Fine but not exceptional.

MC
San Diego
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Never disappointed at Solare. Service is excellent and the Chateaubriand was great.

SD
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Beautiful meal. Excellent service. The food was delectable. We sat outside (no room inside) but the heaters made the area surprisingly warm and comfortable. The only issue with outside is the occasional airplanes taking off which requires a pause in conversation. Otherwise everything was marvelous!

P
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We went to Dinner here this past Saturday night and had a great dinner experience,the drinks were very good(cosmos’s)and our dinner(my wife had the Lasagna and I had a seafood spaghetti marinara) we’d I’ll be back!

LT
San Diego
17 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Had to be the busyness of Valentine’s Day resulting in a so so service. We were seated an hour after our reservation, a few server mix ups and long wait in between courses. But the seafood main dishes and desserts were delicious.

M
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience5

Maybe a try once for the experience but that is it

SS
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The service is superb and the quality of the food is amazing.

OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and excellent service. If you love authentic Italian food, you will love this restaurant!

KM
San Diego
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall4food4service2ambience3

Despite the poky service, the beverage options were good and the focaccia bread that came complimentary was scrumptious! I would like to try their happy hour in the future.

OT
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience3

I booked a group to eat here after an all day workshop, and I was very excited to try this restaurant due to it being recognized by the Michelin folks. However, I found it to be just OK and frankly nothing to write home about. For some reason, they could not see our group indoors despite the appearance of there being plenty of room inside. To be fair, I did add 2 people to our reservation, so I was asking for
the moon and should feel lucky they were willing to seat us at all I suppose. Our server was less than apologetic about the several broken heat lamps and several of our party were freezing the whole time. Half our table got drinks while the other half weren’t even asked which was weird. The food all sounded great on the menus, and was priced such that I expected to be at least mildly impressed. Instead of being impressed, or even satisfied, I have to say I was disappointed. $30 for 4 small scallops atop a risotto of over cooked rice whose sauce had dried to form a sort of crust on top as if it had been sitting at the pass for too long. It tasted fine, but had the worst texture. Not creamy and decadent, but dry and grainy and stodgy. I should have sent it back, but I was cold and really hungry after being on my feet all day, so I just ate it, all the while wondering what on earth the Michelin guide recognized this place for. Dessert was good, but not great or different than any other good Italian place in little Italy. I’d rather go to Bencotto. This place was a disappointment. On a positive note I was happily surprised that my cocktail was hot, like a hot toddy. That helped with the cold.

C
Tahoe
17 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Solare never disappoints us, service, food , people

TL
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I’d never had pizza here before and it was amazing. All the other dishes were full of flavor as well. I especially liked our Octopus starter.

BE
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

After an incredible first experience at Solare our first visit and a somewhat disappointing visit service-wise on our second, Solare went above and beyond to make our third visit unforgettable. We were warmly greeted and placed at a romantic table, and immediately met by our server who gave friendly recommendations with a great attitude. THE FOOD IS INCREDIBLE. You can taste the freshness in the pastas and sauces, even down to the fresh focaccia bread that begins the meal. The atmosphere is warm and fun, and we cannot wait to return. 5 stars for Solare!

D
San Diego
53 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Celebration

Report
r
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cocktails were okay, but everything else was fantastic. I really enjoyed our overall dining experience at Solare. Our server was on it! And I was pleasantly surprised by everything we ordered, since I had heard mixed reviews. I will definitely go again.

JD
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great dining experience. The food was very good and the service was excellent. Dined with someone with dietary restrictions so she had to special order her meal. The executive chef came to the table to discuss / understand her needs and was happy to accommodate her requests. Will definitely go back.

OT
San Diego
42 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Wonderful place for very good Italian food and Liberty Station is a great place to take a walk before or after dinner.

A
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Food was delicious however I was not impressed when I was charged extra $5.00 for gluten free bread while the other diners received their bread free. Yes, it may cost more to make however it should still be offered as an alternative without charging the customer. The gluten free pizza crust was good however it was too much light the bread as opposed to being light and fluffy.

C
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on January 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Extraordinary in every way. Magnificent good, service and ambiance.

h
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent food. Third time there. It was quite noisy, but food was delicious as usual!

OT
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall2food5service1ambience3

This was my 1st time at this restaurant. I picked it from the restaurant week website.
The food was good but a bit rich. I had the lamb. My date had the lasagna.
The only disappointing issues was the lack of attention from the wait staff. My date had to ask 2 different waiters to help us. We only talked to our waiter 2 times. When he got our drink and food order.
The other odd thing is that the restroom is outside of the restaurant....odd?

Overall it was ok, not great.
The drinks were Delicious! Oh and the bread was warm.
Something I do have to mention is that our reservation was at 6:30pm and I was called to ask me if we would change it to 6:45pm so we did.
I asked the young lady why? She replied “so we could give you good service”
Maybe I should have moved it to another day or just cancel?

I was expecting a great meal but it was ok.

P
San Diego
19 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Next to loud party group. Food was very good. I didn’t like the grilled Caesar salad, but my wife did.

s
Central Coast
10 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall2food4service1ambience4

Was looking forward to going to this restaurant due to the good reviews. Service was horrible. The manager ended up waiting our table. Although the company I was with was very enjoyable, the experience took over an hour longer than it should have due to the non responsive service. Aside from an "I apologize" the manager should have offered a free corkage or after dinner drink. Too much money for such a bad experience. Will not return.

NL
San Diego
21 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We dined at Solare during Restaurant Week and had an outstanding experience. Our party of five was seated in the back room, where it was much quieter and permitted easy conversation. Our waiter was excellent and even gave us a bonus appetizer that the kitchen had made by mistake. All the foods we tried were delicious and beautifully presented. We were particularly impressed by the fettuccini wrapped in a thin slice of zucchini. We have not been to Solare in several years, but this experience will remind us to dine there more often.

JO
San Diego
30 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience2

Comparing restaurant week prices to regular menu prices showed that this was not as advertised.
The bar area, where there are dinner tables, is extremely noisy.

RL
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Unique Restaurant Week lunch menu. Excellent preparation

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P
San Diego
28 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

The food was delicious Modern Italian. Everything was light and fresh. We loved it!

MI
San Diego
18 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Decided to try during SD Restaurant Week and very glad we did! Lovely atmosphere, excellent service, extensive wine list. The lasagna was delicious and unlike any I’ve tasted. The lamb chops were crispy and perfectly cooked that I couldn’t help but to eat some right off the bone! Definitely worthy of a visit and many returns.

s
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience3

After seeing the reviews I was exciting to try this place. Sad to say I didn't enjoy it. It took 45 min. to get our dinners and all we ordered was pasta. We only saw our server twice and we constantly had to flag him done. I would stick to little italy for Italian food.

RI
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I visited for the Restaurant Week dinner. I had an octopus appetizer that was spectacular. It was a very generous portion of octopus, slow poached in olive oil and then briefly fried to slightly crisp the outside. It was served with a tomato, caper, and olive sauce that complemented the super-tender and well seasoned flesh. The entree was a tasty piece of ono with a pistachio crust, atop roast fingerling potatoes and some greens. And the panna cotta dessert was delicious, with a bittersweet chocolate ganache smear.

OT
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience5

It was a dinner for my son’s birthday and it was nice. I did have to return my first entree of fish since it was not what was described by server and was over cooked anyway. The server was pleasant and offered to change my order which I accepted. The lasagna was very good and the fish entree cost was removed from our bill. Overall it was a very delightful experience and we would return for another visit.

LS
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

A birthday party!

DH
Seattle
8 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Nice wine recommendation from the waiter. Pappardelle with Cinghiale was very good

RS
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service was outstanding. They made our birthday dinner something special.