Located a block from Petco Park in San Diego’s newly revitalized East Village, The Blind Burro serves up Baja coastal cuisine in an atmosphere to match. They take their name, in part, from the hard-working Mexican burro. Their entrées are created with an unconstrained twist where flavors work hard, but the culinary experience transcends typical Mexican fare to something new and different – hence the Blind Burro. This casual East Village restaurant is a favorite among Padres fans who flock here before and after games, and has been named among San Diego’s 10 Best Cultural Restaurants by The Culture Trip international travel site.
Blind Burro Ambiance
East Village is an edgy mix of reclaimed warehouse chic and ultra-modern new construction. The interior of The Blind Burro mirrors the eclectic neighborhood it calls home. This former warehouse space has been transformed into a modern restaurant with exposed loft-style ceilings painted black, and strings of Edison lights that combine with a heavy use of natural and reclaimed woods on a portion of the ceiling, the floor, and the two bars and tables. Complementary dark wood chairs with taupe seats, a sunny gold and orange color palette on the walls, a wire mesh display of seashells, colorful pendant lighting, and framed black and white or sepia photos complete the urban Mexican coastal décor.
The Blind Burro has two bars; a large u-shaped main bar takes center stage, and a second bar along one wall doubles as a walk up outdoor bar serving the wraparound patio. A large painted mural on the opposite wall shows the Mexican state of Jalisco, a jimador (agave farmer) harvesting agave for Mezcal, sotol, and tequila, and a short primer on tequila. A large Oaxacan quote reads, “Para todo mal, Mezcal, y para todo bien también” – for every ill, Mezcal, and for every good as well! Friday and Saturday nights feature Burro Vida where dinner and drinks are accompanied by live music from local bands.
Blind Burro Food
The Blind Burro is not a traditional Mexican restaurant, so if you’re looking for a fat carne asada burrito, this isn’t the place. Rather, you’ll discover the tastes of Mexican Baja costal cuisine that emphasize local sustainable seafood, fresh locally sourced chiles and produce, and grilled chicken, beef, and pork. Some of the restaurant’s signature menu items are ceviche, carnitas, jicama tacos, carne asada tacos, and shrimp molcajete.
A popular favorite is the Angus skirt steak with traditional quacamole, pico de gallo, and deliciously thick salsa macha. Another can’t miss selection is the chorizo burger made from house ground brisket topped with grilled poblano peppers, house-made choizo, Oaxaca cheese, and cilantro pesto mayo on a torta roll. Diners have also given high praise to the garlic-chile shrimp skewers with Mexican white shrimp and chipotle-jicama slaw.
Tacos and tortas come with a side, but you have to order sides separately with the main entrées. In either case, the consensus is to order the street corn off the cob with Tapatio, lime, and crema, topped with cotija cheese. It always gets two thumbs up on review sites. If you have it in you to keep eating, finish your meal with the churros – deep-fried dough rolled in cinnamon and sugar and served with anglaise sauce.
The Blind Burro serves Fiesta Brunch on the weekends from mid-morning to mid-afternoon. Breakfast tacos, marinated steak plus eggs, house-made chorizo, churro waffles, and more are served with Mexican beers, sangrias, bottomless mimosas or non-alcoholic beverages.
Blind Burro Details
The Blind Burro offers corporate and to-go lunch specials Monday through Friday. Locals and those working in the food and beverage industry can take advantage of discounts with proof of residency or employment. The restaurant offers amigo hour (happy hour) daily from late afternoon to early evening. Taco Tuesday, you’ll enjoy taco and drink specials. The Blind Burro kitchen is open daily from late morning to midnight, even on weekends. Guests may use the Open Table app to make reservations for eight diners or fewer. Be forewarned that the restaurant is a popular hot spot before and after Padres games, and is equally busy on weekend nights.
Blind Burro Neighborhood
East Village is one of the premier shopping destinations in Downtown San Diego. Peruse hip, urban boutique shops like Ma Cherie, Mango, and G-Star Raw Store. PETCO Park, the Padres’ $450 million state-of-the-art baseball stadium, is the unrivaled anchor of this trendy neighborhood. Grab tickets for the ultimate baseball experience, or for an old-time outside-the-fence experience, watch from “Park at the Park” off K Street.
Stroll the sleek, stainless steel Harbor Drive Pedestrian Bridge that at 550 feet is among the longest pedestrian suspension bridges in the world. You’ll find yourself at the San Diego Convention Center on the other end. Visit the new San Diego Central Library on J Street between 11th Avenue and Park Boulevard. Take a docent guided architectural tour, art tour, or general tour that includes the Dr. Seuss-themed children’s library, beach-themed teen Center, 3-D printing lab, and Qualcomm Dome Terrace.
For the optimum East Village experience, why not stay in a local independent hotel? Solamar is located across the street from The Blind Burro at 6th Avenue and K Street. This cool, urban hotel has a rooftop pool and terrace. Another good bet is the hip Hotel Indigo Downtown, an eco-chic boutique hotel at 9th and Island Avenues. Its Level 9 Rooftop Bar and Lounge offers impressive views of San Diego and PETCO Park ball field. For an adult glitz and glam experience, book your stay at Andaz San Diego at 6th Avenue and F Street.