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Local Restaurant Writers' Biggest Dining Surprise of 2015

As is tradition at Eater, we close out the year by surveying local food writers on various restaurant-related topics, and we'll be publishing their responses throughout the week. Readers, please feel free to share your thoughts below. We ask: What was your biggest dining surprise of 2015?

Comun Taqueria
Comun Taqueria

Amy T. Granite, Discover SD: When Común Kitchen + Taven shuttered shortly after news broke that its owner, Chad White, would be a contestant on season 13 of Top Chef. It was even more surprising that he left town altogether shortly after closing the restaurant’s doors; the exit was so quick and quiet that I don’t think even Bravo TV knows, because according to his bio on their site, White still lives in San Diego and owns Común, neither of which are true anymore.

Erin Jackson, Thrillist: Michael "Bao" Huynh's departure from Sovereign/Food Shop mere weeks after the restaurant opened. I was really excited about this place, but the quality took a sharp dive after he parted ways with the project.

Barbarella Fokos, San Diego ReaderI’m surprised I haven’t made it to Bracero yet. ;)

Michele Parente, San Diego Union-TribuneChad White closing Común Kitchen & Tavern and announcing he was moving back to Spokane – just as his celebrated stint on "Top Chef" was about to kick off. Did he win and he’s using the prize money to open up the place of his dreams?

Frank Sabatini, Jr., San Diego Community News Network: Stumbling upon Mark’s Bark in Normal Heights was a treat. It’s an unglamourous gem open only on Sundays, but worth the weeklong wait for sinking your teeth into real-deal barbecue.

Darlene Horn, Zagat: Lots of chef shuffles.

Michael Gardiner, San Diego CityBeat: The closure of Común Kitchen, Kitchen 4140, Table 926, Table 10, Toast Enoteca and the collapse of Blush. We’ve lost a frightening amount of kitchen talent in the last two months of the year. The Heavenly Hog Fall Pig Out took place on October 12th at Blush. Of the ten chefs participating in that dinner only three still stand behind the same professional stove they did two months ago.


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