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Where to Eat on Christmas (and Christmas Eve)

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We're here to give you ideas about where to take the family out for a celebratory meal on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day; some restaurants will be serving their standard a la carte menus but most are offering special multi-course prix fixes or have added seasonally-themed dishes.

Imagine not having to clean up after a delicious, pants-tightening holiday feast. Here are a dozen San Diego restaurants willing to dirty their kitchens so that you don't have to.

We'll add to the list as the holiday approaches; have a restaurant to add? Send a note to the tipline.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Farm House Cafe

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2121 Adams Ave
San Diego, CA 92116
(619) 269-9662
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Chef Olivier Bioteau's hosting his annual Christmas Eve dinner: four courses for $50. Open seating from 5 to 9 p.m. Gild the lily and add an extra course: six oysters, chicken liver mousse or a cheese plate.

2. George's California Modern

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1250 Prospect Ave
La Jolla, CA 92037
All three levels: California Modern, Ocean Terrace & George's Bar will be open on Christmas. California Modern will be serving their full menu from 2 to 9 p.m., plus a holiday venison special from Chef Trey Foshee and a traditional Buche de Noel for dessert.

3. Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa

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5173 Valencia Circle
Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067
(858) 756-1123
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Chef Eric Bauer is serving a four-course farm to table prix fixe menu for $85 on Christmas Eve (5 to 9 p.m.) and Christmas Day (2 to 7 p.m.) at the resort's signature restaurant, Veladora. They're also offering Christmas Day breakfast and lunch until 12:30 p.m.

4. Alchemy

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1503 30th Street
San Diego, CA 92102
(619) 255-0616
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Call to reserve a table for Chef Ricardo Heredia's Family Style Christmas Eve Dinner, a whole roasted organic chicken with all the fixings: mashed rutabaga, pan gravy, caramelized brussel sprouts with sunflower seeds and bacon and Bread & Cie rolls. $25 per person; minimum 4 people. They'll serve their standard menu too.

5. Cusp Dining & Drinks

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7955 La Jolla Shores Drive
San Diego, CA 92037
Cusp' $48 three course menu is available on Christmas Eve (4 to 8 p.m.) and Christmas Day (12 to 8 p.m.) Chef Donald Lockhart's holiday dishes range from a turkey dinner with polenta and stuffing to salmon with celery root puree and an eggnog trifle.

6. The Shores Restaurant & Bar

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8110 Camino Del Oro
La Jolla, CA 92037
(866) 644-2630
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Chef Amy DiBiase's putting together a coastal Christmas Day buffet (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) with fresh baked pastries, cheese and charcuterie board, bone-in ham, butterfish, cider-glazed turkey, a dessert station and more. $44 adults; $22 children 6 to 12 years.

7. Marina Kitchen

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333 W Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 699-8222
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The San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina's holiday buffet from Chef Aron Schwartz is opening its doors on Christmas Eve (4 to 9 p.m.) and Christmas Day (2 to 9 p.m.) $49 per person; $29 for kids. kids priced at $29; optional wine pairings for $25.

8. Amaya at The Grand Del Mar

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5300 Grand Del Mar Ct
San Diego, CA 92130
(858) 314-2727
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The hotel's Amaya restaurant is hosting a three-course holiday tasting menu on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 4 to 9 p.m. Seasonal specialties include caramelized butternut squash soup, seared squab breast and cranberry-glazed Loch Duart salmon. $75 per adult, $110 with wine and $30 per child.

9. Red Door Restaurant & Wine Bar

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741 W Washington St
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 295-6000
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On Christmas Eve, Chef Miguel Valdez is augmenting the regular menu with a special three-course Mexican holiday dinner; choose from a garden vegetable tamale with goat cheese or a duck confit tamale with port wine sauce. $30

10. KITCHEN 1540

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1540 Camino Del Mar
Del Mar, CA 92014
(858) 793-6460
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Chef Scott Thomas Dolbee's take on Christmas Day dinner, a three course menu for $65, includes rare ahi with blood orange, turkey with local lobster, wild boar in a mole sauce, and a candy cane sundae. Served from 12 to 8 p.m.

11. BO-beau kitchen + bar

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4996 West Point Loma Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92107
(619) 224-2884
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Chef Katherine Humphus is gearing up for her Christmas Day dinner, a three course menu that includes escargot, braised lamb shank and gingerbread cupcakes (add on their famous crispy Brussels sprouts for $9.50). Served from 3 to 8 p.m; $39.95 for adults. There's also a special kids menu for $12.95.

12. Terra American Bistro

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7091 El Cajon Boulevard
San Diego, CA 92115
Chef Jeff Rossman's Christmas Day supper is being served from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. The $39 ($15 for children 12 and under) three course menu includes pumpkin ravioli, pan roasted local fish and egg nog creme brulee.

13. El Take It Easy

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3926 30th St
San Diego, CA 92104
(619) 291-1859
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El Take It Easy's open and serving their contemporary Mexican menu on Christmas. Get jolly with ETIE's egg nog, a blend of mezcal, vanilla and cacao nib infused tequila, bourbon, pastured egg and cow’s milk, local pumpkin and nutmeg.

1. Farm House Cafe

2121 Adams Ave, San Diego, CA 92116
Chef Olivier Bioteau's hosting his annual Christmas Eve dinner: four courses for $50. Open seating from 5 to 9 p.m. Gild the lily and add an extra course: six oysters, chicken liver mousse or a cheese plate.
2121 Adams Ave
San Diego, CA 92116

2. George's California Modern

1250 Prospect Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037
All three levels: California Modern, Ocean Terrace & George's Bar will be open on Christmas. California Modern will be serving their full menu from 2 to 9 p.m., plus a holiday venison special from Chef Trey Foshee and a traditional Buche de Noel for dessert.
1250 Prospect Ave
La Jolla, CA 92037

3. Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa

5173 Valencia Circle, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067
Chef Eric Bauer is serving a four-course farm to table prix fixe menu for $85 on Christmas Eve (5 to 9 p.m.) and Christmas Day (2 to 7 p.m.) at the resort's signature restaurant, Veladora. They're also offering Christmas Day breakfast and lunch until 12:30 p.m.
5173 Valencia Circle
Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067

4. Alchemy

1503 30th Street, San Diego, CA 92102
Call to reserve a table for Chef Ricardo Heredia's Family Style Christmas Eve Dinner, a whole roasted organic chicken with all the fixings: mashed rutabaga, pan gravy, caramelized brussel sprouts with sunflower seeds and bacon and Bread & Cie rolls. $25 per person; minimum 4 people. They'll serve their standard menu too.
1503 30th Street
San Diego, CA 92102

5. Cusp Dining & Drinks

7955 La Jolla Shores Drive, San Diego, CA 92037
Cusp' $48 three course menu is available on Christmas Eve (4 to 8 p.m.) and Christmas Day (12 to 8 p.m.) Chef Donald Lockhart's holiday dishes range from a turkey dinner with polenta and stuffing to salmon with celery root puree and an eggnog trifle.
7955 La Jolla Shores Drive
San Diego, CA 92037

6. The Shores Restaurant & Bar

8110 Camino Del Oro, La Jolla, CA 92037
Chef Amy DiBiase's putting together a coastal Christmas Day buffet (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) with fresh baked pastries, cheese and charcuterie board, bone-in ham, butterfish, cider-glazed turkey, a dessert station and more. $44 adults; $22 children 6 to 12 years.
8110 Camino Del Oro
La Jolla, CA 92037

7. Marina Kitchen

333 W Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
The San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina's holiday buffet from Chef Aron Schwartz is opening its doors on Christmas Eve (4 to 9 p.m.) and Christmas Day (2 to 9 p.m.) $49 per person; $29 for kids. kids priced at $29; optional wine pairings for $25.
333 W Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101

8. Amaya at The Grand Del Mar

5300 Grand Del Mar Ct, San Diego, CA 92130
The hotel's Amaya restaurant is hosting a three-course holiday tasting menu on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 4 to 9 p.m. Seasonal specialties include caramelized butternut squash soup, seared squab breast and cranberry-glazed Loch Duart salmon. $75 per adult, $110 with wine and $30 per child.
5300 Grand Del Mar Ct
San Diego, CA 92130

9. Red Door Restaurant & Wine Bar

741 W Washington St, San Diego, CA 92103
On Christmas Eve, Chef Miguel Valdez is augmenting the regular menu with a special three-course Mexican holiday dinner; choose from a garden vegetable tamale with goat cheese or a duck confit tamale with port wine sauce. $30
741 W Washington St
San Diego, CA 92103

10. KITCHEN 1540

1540 Camino Del Mar, Del Mar, CA 92014
Chef Scott Thomas Dolbee's take on Christmas Day dinner, a three course menu for $65, includes rare ahi with blood orange, turkey with local lobster, wild boar in a mole sauce, and a candy cane sundae. Served from 12 to 8 p.m.
1540 Camino Del Mar
Del Mar, CA 92014

11. BO-beau kitchen + bar

4996 West Point Loma Blvd., San Diego, CA 92107
Chef Katherine Humphus is gearing up for her Christmas Day dinner, a three course menu that includes escargot, braised lamb shank and gingerbread cupcakes (add on their famous crispy Brussels sprouts for $9.50). Served from 3 to 8 p.m; $39.95 for adults. There's also a special kids menu for $12.95.
4996 West Point Loma Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92107

12. Terra American Bistro

7091 El Cajon Boulevard, San Diego, CA 92115
Chef Jeff Rossman's Christmas Day supper is being served from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. The $39 ($15 for children 12 and under) three course menu includes pumpkin ravioli, pan roasted local fish and egg nog creme brulee.
7091 El Cajon Boulevard
San Diego, CA 92115

13. El Take It Easy

3926 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104
El Take It Easy's open and serving their contemporary Mexican menu on Christmas. Get jolly with ETIE's egg nog, a blend of mezcal, vanilla and cacao nib infused tequila, bourbon, pastured egg and cow’s milk, local pumpkin and nutmeg.
3926 30th St
San Diego, CA 92104

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