The Prado at Balboa Park

4.5
5353 reviews
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$30 and under
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Californian
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.
Cailifornia 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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Private Dining

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Specials

Valentine's Day Special Menus & More

Chef's prefix menu at $59.95 a person. Reservations will be made for the heated outside TERRACE. For inside reservations contact us. If it rains, we will do our best to accommodate your reservation, possibly a different time and location.
Thank you,

Thursday, February 14, 2019

What 5353 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
4.3
food
4.5
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MH
San Diego
13 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Prado (a Cohen Restaurant in Balboa Park - In the House of Charm) with waiter Eric and Hosted by Jeremy Cohen ( the son of the Owners of the Cohen Group), It was a celebration of two 60th birthday from two former co-workers from UCSD - Scripps Institution of Oceanography . Jennifer Davis (a San Diego Native , Mission Bay High Graduate and UCSD Undergraduate ) her husband Paul Harvey ( a Los Angeles Native, and UCSD Undergraduate ) and myself Mark H Freeman (a San Diego Native , La Jolla High Graduate and UCSD Undergraduate) . All three of us are UCSD Staff Retirees now and Jennifer and I both had our 60th birthdays in December and are celebrating this month and chose The Prado as we both know it and other Cohen Restaurants for the quality and ambiance . The Prado is in a beautiful garden on the south side of the historic House of Charm with a beautiful Patio (open for dining on sunny afternoons and warm evenings) with nearby parking at the Alcazar Garden (one can enter from 6th Avenue) or behind the Spreckles Organ Pavilion or behind the Ruben H Fleet Science Center off Park Blvd .

Jennifer had a Kobe Burger , Paul had the Butternut Squash Risotto and Mark had the Seafood Paella
Paul and Jennifer had a 21st Amendment Blood Orange Ale (s) , Mark had a virgin Guava Martini
two complimentary desserts : Apple Pecan Cheesecake and Guava Flan

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MM
San Diego
30 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely restaurant. Entrees were delicious but the Brussels sprouts and broccoli I were on the over cooked/ mushy side.

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PF
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Perfect ambiance. Food delicious
Easy seating
Very cozy and colorful
Parking is a little difficult
We loved it for special occasions and want to return

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L
Orange County
26 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have eaten here many times, and always enjoy the food and atmosphere. Dining on the patio is particularly enjoyable. Wait staff always make us feel welcome.

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BD
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly staff. Good food. Good specialty drinks. The staff remembered we were celebrating a birthday and gave the birthday boy a complementary dessert

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C
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My husband and I went here for the first time and we received the best service! We were there celebrating our anniversary and I would certainly say this is a great spot for celebrating. Our server Devin was awesome, he answered every question we had and just overall made our first experience the best! We will definitely be back!

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GD
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

Very nice experience- love the family of restaurants but risotto was not at a good temp

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RT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great table. We were short on time but the waitress accommodated our time frame

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DS
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I took my grandchildren to dinner and we were all very pleased with the menu choices and the great service.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great time, one of our lasting favorite spots.

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GR
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Server, Ricky was very Courteous. Mgr. Patty was busy pitching in. We got the table we had asked for.

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g
Chicago
8 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely setting and delicious food. We look forward to coming back.

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T
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

The food was disappointing, but the ambiance and service were wonderful.

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CT
Dallas
8 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 4

We've had 4 star meals there. Not last night. The Caesar Salad was lame; just six whole romaine leaves on a plate with cheese sprinkled and croutons. Caesar must have died. The short rib was dry, the veggies undercooked, and the lavishly described (in the menu) mashed was just plain potato with a little gravy. My wife's meal, salmon and short rib combo, was unseasoned and bland. Overall, the usual good service and remarkably poor food.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a lovely dinner and excellent service!

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LK
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Prado serves up excellent fare at fair prices, in a lovely but low key setting. Excellent staff, plenty of seating and an innovative menu turn the experience from good to great every time.

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BP
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved this place! So happy we finally made it!! Food was delicious - can't wait to go back.

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p
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

We have been there a year ago. .the food was better previously. ..this visit the food was fair. .not very different than any other restaurant. ..the Cohen group needs to revisit this menu

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LC
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Our service was fantastic and pretty patio dining. Lovely experience.Thank you.

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OT
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent!

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KD
Dallas
20 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We had a nice table on the patio. Very much appreciate them allowing us to move to a table closer to the heaters as the kids were cold. Waiter Justin made some great suggestions and helped navigate the kids menu for our picky one. Two of us had the paella, which was loaded with fish, chicken, shrimp, mussels, sausage and calamari. Really good! We also had the shrimp and filet, which was perfectly cooked and a good portion and value. The highlight of the dinner was the apple pecan cheesecake. Another recommendation by Justin, which was absolutely one of the best desserts we've ever had.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 2ambience 5

The food was not worth the price. Our server was excellent but the hostess was completely rude!

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T
Phoenix
22 reviews
Dined on December 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

El Prado restaurant is always a good choice for us when we visit San Diego. The menu is varied and changes seasonally, and we are always impressed with the food quality and presentation. The service staff is excellent, and we always enjoy our evenings there. We will definitely return!

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TC
San Diego
9 reviews
Dined on December 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Annual Christmas dinner with dear friends. We return to the Prado every year. It’s location, ambience and wonderful food never disappoints. Our service was outstanding!!

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LL
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love coming to the Prado for my birthday. Our server (sorry can't remember his name) did an amazing job accommodating my daughter's food allergies. He also brought us a dairy free dessert (sorbet) that was absolutely delicious, and we didn't feel deprived :)

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KK
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was good. Everything. The service, the food, the drinks, the ambiance, the scenery. I have no complaints except that I was on a tight schedule and didn't have more time to devote to enjoying everything. I would and will recommend to anyone that will hear me out, with the side note that is it on the pricey side. But totally worth the cost!

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DD
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Like always the food was terrific. Parking sucked it was the wrong time to go. I should have figured that so close to Christmas. Over all it was terrific like always.

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CA
Tampa
1 review
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

We were disappointed in the limited menu as we were planning a special dinner to celebrate our birthdays and had enjoyed lunch at The Prada on a few prior
visits to San Diego.
Admittedly we chose a busy night just before Christmas but the noise level was high and the food average. Still, Balboa Park is a place one must visit in San Diego and The Prada is a beautiful place.

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OT
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Post matinee at the Globe. We’ve eaten here many times but this was our best experience. The filet and shrimp were delicious and cooked perfectly. The service was at its best.

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OT
Memphis
1 review
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely dinner in a great setting. Staff polite and friendly.

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MW
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 4food 1service 5ambience 5

I ordered the soup and sandwich special, grilled cheese and tomato basil soup. The soup was outstanding but the sandwich was horrible. The bread was grilled but the cheese was only warmed up, not melted. It was unappetizing in appearance and not in the least bit tasty. I sent it back.

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AB
1 review
Dined on December 20, 2018
Overall 3food 1service 5ambience 5

Though I had reservations or four, we were not allowed to sit in the area I wanted. The noise level was too loud where we did get seated, until the mid day crowd thinned out by the end of our meal. I was very disappointed in my El Prado Tortilla Soup with Grilled Chicken. The soup's liquid was more like pudding, the chicken was tough. My Blue Crab & Sea bass Prado Sea Cake, was average. Very oily, and like something out of a supermarket freezer. The best item, was the glass of Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling. Very clean, fruity, and with a crisp sparkle. The waiting service was very nice, though we waited a while for the food. Decor was beautiful.

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l
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Liz was absolutely exceptional, from her incredible wine knowledge to her extensive food

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G
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Never disappoints.....always impresses our visitors.

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PM
Denver
5 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

I experienced a most unpleasant surprise after leaving the restaurant >>> a 3% surcharge “to support increasing costs.”
It is not OK to add a surcharge to unsuspecting diners.
I won’t be back to support this business with unscrupulous practices.

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LM
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent dining establishment, the server Tanner is a highly qualified individual. He made the dining experience a real joy, the food is excellent, an people watching much fun.

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B
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Pre theater delight

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EV
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 5

Our server Micheal was fabulous. We had a great dinner before seeing a show!

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FL
Orlando
28 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner at the Prado is always great. My wife and I had the lamb and the Prado paella. Both were wonderful. The shrimp chili rellano is always our appetizer of choice. Don't miss it.

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SD
San Diego
121 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

We always have dinner at The Prado before a play at The Old Globe, not because we love it so much but because there really isn't another option within Balboa Park. The menu is rather boring - only one pasta and it was ravioli. My friend tried it and said it wasn't anything special. I had the short ribs and they were dry and not very good at all. While our server was very friendly, the only reason we were there was because we had tickets for show that evening. Otherwise, I wouldn't bother with The Prado!

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