A Little Taste of History (with the Taste of Hillcrest)

by on March 14, 2012

If you’ve never heard of the Taste of Hillcrest we’re guessing that you’re new to the neighborhood. The Taste of Hillcrest is an annual event that celebrates the best food San Diego has to offer.

We’re not sure about you, but we like to think that Hillcrest is indeed the tastiest neighborhood in San Diego.

On the third Saturday of April every year we host a culinary walking tour — San Diegans come near and far to sample our restaurants signature dishes. This historic event in Hillcrest is a fun way for our member businesses to honor the exceptional restaurant community that makes Hillcrest fabulous and promote their individual business at the same time. There is no fee for participating restaurants, and the HBA promotes the event through local print and television media extensively in the weeks leading up to the event. It is one of the HBA’s wonderful event opportunities for our local business members! Save the date for this year’s Taste of Hillcrest — if you’re a business who is interested in participating and hasn’t signed up yet, please contact Lisa@Hillcrestbia.org.

Last year marked our historic 10th year anniversary. We were so busy working hard to make it the most successful year ever that we forgot to take the time to reflect and celebrate ten years of the best neighborhood tasting tour in San Diego. This year we’ve decided to pause for a moment and let the scents, flavors and colors of the last ten years really sink in.

HBA Member businesses like Urban MO's really get into the Taste of Hillcrest spirit! Mo's side walk promotions (above) from the 2008 Taste of Hillcrest.

We dug through our event archives and found the list of participating restaurants from the very first year. Here’s a look back at the 2001 list of participating restaurants…

1. Chez Odette (at check in)
2. Lily Pad – 6th and Pennsylvania
3. David’s Coffee House – 3766 5th
4. La Vache – 420 Robinson
5. Starbuck’s – 3801 5th
6. Moo Time Creamery – 3803 5th
7. Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf – 3865 5th
8. Rocket Wraps – 3882 4th
9. Hamburger Mary’s – 308 University
10. Kemo Sabe – Pizza Nova – 3955 5th
11. Sushi Itto – 441 Washington
12. Bombay Indian Cuisine– 3975 5th
13. Pizza Nova – 3955 Fifth Ave.
14. Nami Sushi – 501 University
15. Khyber Pass Afghanistan food – 523 University
16. Taste of Thai – 527 University
17. The Nose – 530 University
18. City Deli – 535 University
19. Whole Foods – 711 University
20. Taste of Italy – 1013 University
21. Big City Bagel (Ralph’s Shopping Center)
22. La Salsa (Ralph’s Shopping Center)
23. Bachi Italian (Ralph’s Shopping Center)
24. Juice Break (Ralph’s Shopping Center)
25. Terra American Cuisine (Ralph’s Shopping Center)
26. Ono Sushi – 1236 University
27. Ben & Jerry’s – 1254 University
28. Heidi’s Frozen Yogurt– 1290 University
29. Amarin Thai – 3843 Richmond
30. The Living Room – 1417 University

In addition to looking back at our list of fabulous restaurants we also took a trip back in time to our old advertisements and promotional activities, check out this page from the 2007 Recipe Book featuring Amarin Thai’s “Tom Yum Shrimp”.

The 2007 Taste of Hillcrest Recipe Book featuring Amarin Thai's Tom Yum Shrimp

Straight from the horses mouth:

Every summer since 2001, starting first with Urban Mo’s then Baja Betty’s and Gossip Grill- we have opened our doors to visitors from throughout San Diego, for an extraordinary experience at our restaurants during the annual Taste of Hillcrest. The Taste of Hillcrest has always provided our guests with something for EVERYONE- whether it is sipping our cocktails or shopping with our neighbors in Hillcrest’s many boutiques- the highlight of this event has always been our neighborhood. We are proud to be a supporter of the Taste of Hillcrest – the city’s premier neighborhood food tasting event, showcasing the colorful and fabulous diversity of Hillcrest’s dining community.

-Eddie Reynoso, Marketing Director of Urban Mo’s

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