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San Diego Restaurants

Café Japengo

Updated 05/16/2014

Fodor's Review

Shiny black surfaces and bamboo trees accent the interior of this Pacific Rim restaurant that serves Asian-inspired cuisine with many North and South American touches. The grilled beef yakitori and the char siu duck salad are guaranteed to wake up your taste buds. There's also a selection of grilled, wood-roasted, and wok-fried entrées—try the braised short ribs with risotto or the miso butterfish. The sushi is always fresh, and many regard this as the liveliest

sushi bar in town. Service can be slow, but the pace in the bar, crowded with young locals on the make, is fast and energetic. If you savor quiet, avoid weekend evenings.

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Restaurant Information


Aventine Center, 8960 University Center La., San Diego, California, 92122, USA

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Restaurant Details:

  • Credit cards accepted
  • No lunch weekends

Updated 05/16/2014


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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating

By Alice

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

May 29, 2003

Never had a bad meal

I love this place - It is my favorite sushi place in SD. It's very consistent, all of the food is good, and there is usually a fun lively crowd (avoid Thursdays though unless you are looking for a singles scene!) It is definitely expensive, so not an every day place, but great for an evening out or a date.

By Kevin

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Jun 5, 2002

Cafe Japengo Rocks

Sushi was excellent. Fantastic presentation and unusual combinations. Decor - very cool. Service was great. We may have benefitted from dining early (6pm) on a Saturday night. Value was good as prices are somewhat high for the amount of food you get.

By Kim

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Apr 20, 2001

Best sushi I ever had!

Have only been there for drinks and sushi. Sushi is the best I've ever had, tastes great with terrific presentation. Good, strong vodka martinis. Service lacking. Decor is great. Bar stools have no backs - which can suck after sitting at a desk all day. Also, be aware that Thursdays in the bar are a "meat market".

By Dee

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Jan 26, 2001


It could be better, no doubt. Of course I only ate there once for lunch, but an $80 lunch for two with only 2 glasses on wine? Truly for the jet setters we guess.... PS, we were almost still hungry after leaving....

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