Miguel’s Cocina is one of San Diego’s most popular Mexican restaurants, winning “best of” awards year after year. The hometown favorite has seven locations – Coronado Island, Point Loma, Old Town, and four locations outside the city. What better place to enjoy their award-winning entrées and famous margaritas than on enchanting Coronado Island? Miguel’s has earned the attention of USA Today, LA Times, San Diego Union Tribune, San Diego Magazine, and other publications. They’ve won over 15 awards just in the last few years. The family-friendly Mexican restaurant is a great choice for a casual meal on your island visit.
Miguel’s Cocina Ambiance
In a word, Miguel’s Cocina can be described as casual. The colorful restaurant serving Mexican fare can be accessed through the street-side Cantina’s main entrance, or a walkway around the corner leading to the Cocina’s main entrance. A large covered courtyard with red tiled floors encircled by a decorative black wrought iron fence serves as patio dining. Comfortable rattan chairs surround brick red café-style tables with colorful rolled silverware on top. Strings of tiny white lights wrap around palm trees that exit through the beamed ceiling, lush green potted plants dot the patio, and heat lamps hang overhead.
Inside, the dining room has stone and brick walls, and a seascape wall mural. Booths in tones of brown and blue line one wall; café-style sturdy dark wood tables with tile inlay and rattan chairs fill the rest of the dining room. Lantern-style pendant lights hang above booths from a geometrically patterned ceiling with recessed lighting. The patio-facing wall is bright gold with large tile-framed paned windows. The doorway to the patio is a bold green framed with with blue and gold tiles. Both indoor and outdoor dining spaces are bright and festive in décor.
Miguel’s Cocina Food
One of the best characteristics of the food at Miguel’s Cocina is that everything is house-made from scratch…everything. In fact, Miguel’s jalapeño white sauce was included in a San Diego Magazine article titled, “The Ultimate Condiment Bar” with only 12 selections from across the city. Customers continuously rave about it on review sites. Try the jumbo shrimp enchiladas for a taste of the white sauce. They’re also a fan favorite. Camarones Jalisco – jumbo cheese-stuffed shrimp wrapped in bacon and grilled, then topped with jalapeño white sauce is a similar good choice.
Miguel’s signature fajitas are always a hit. Your choice of chicken, skirt steak, Portobello mushroom, shrimp, or a combination is sautéed with bell pepper, onion, tomato, and mushrooms. It’s served sizzling hot with guacamole, salsa fresca, rice, beans, and warm tortillas. Miguel’s nine taco plates are popular too. Try the grilled Sonoran-spiced swordfish fillets with red cabbage, shredded cheese, salsa fresca, and ranch dressing in two warm corn tortillas. Whatever you choose, start your meal with house-made chips and tasty cheesy salsa, and end with Mexican chocolate cheesecake or fried ice cream. You’ll leave stuffed!
Miguel’s Cocina Details
Miguel’s Cocina is open mid-morning to late evening for lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday. They host a Sunday brunch from mid-morning to mid-afternoon, then switch to a regular menu mid-afternoon into late evening. Pre-dinner Happy Hours are Monday through Friday. Taco Tuesdays are a San Diego culinary tradition, and this is a great place to indulge. Miguel’s recommends reservations for parties of six, or more. Private, street, and bike parking are available. Gift cards from $25 to $200 can be purchased online.
Miguel’s Cocina Neighborhood
Miguel’s Cocina on Orange Avenue is steps away from Little Sam’s Island & Beach, a fun boutique renting bikes and beach equipment and selling casual beach attire and accessories. What better way to work off a big lunch than cruise the island by bike? There are a few boutique stores near Miguel’s including Moe’s Bosun Locker that sells delicate seashells, fossils, jewelry, and jewelry boxes; and Treasures from the Heart that sells beach and island-themed tchotchkes and souvenirs, and children’s toys and books.
Just over a block from Miguel’s, you’ll find the island jewel Mother Nature adorned Coronado Island with – the vast ocean-facing Central Beach. It’s San Diego’s only truly sugar white sand beach thanks to the glittering mica reflecting the sun. Orange Avenue is lined with independent shops selling everything from beach apparel to souvenirs. It’s also a hub for boutiques, community theaters, art galleries, and restaurants. It’s the perfect place for a leisurely stroll or bike ride.
The restaurant is located in the 1902 Spanish-style El Cordova Hotel on Orange Street, an excellent choice if you plan to stay on the island for more than a day. It’s also about a block away from two luxury hotels – the historic Glorietta Bay Inn and the iconic Hotel Del Coronado. The Glorietta Bay Inn is in the old Spreckel’s mansion and faces Glorietta Bay, the island’s water sports hot spot. Hotel Del, on one end of Central Beach, is a Victorian island legend with a remarkable and storied past. El Rancho Motel on the opposite end of the island offers affordable accommodations, and camping at Silver Strand State Beach is another possibility.