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San Francisco Mission District Dining Guide

October 25, 2018

“There is no better food neighborhood in America than San Francisco’s Mission District.” -Paolo Lucchesi, San Francisco Chronicle  

San Francisco’s Mission District is known for its restaurants, art, shops, culture, and Latino/Latina history. If you live in the Bay Area, then a trip to the Mission District isn’t just a one-time experience: it’s something you do again and again! Try the dishes on this list, which includes new favorites and old classics.

Mission District Dining Guide

Mission District Dining Guide

Classic Mission District Dishes

Try these classic Mission District dishes; these are all from restaurants that have been in the Mission District for many years:

Latino/a Mission District Dishes

The Mission District is known for its Latino/a culture and history, so it’s no surprise that it is also where the Mission Burrito (a classic California burrito) was created. Read our article about Northern California vs. Southern California burritos to learn more about this! You can always get a burrito in the Mission District, but don’t forget that you can also find delicious foods from many Latino/a cultures: the area has Mexican, Salvadoran, Nicaraguan, and Peruvian restaurants that serve delicious and traditional cuisine:

Mission District Dining Guide

Mission District Street Vendor Dishes

Street vendors are an important part of the Mission District culture. Here are some of their specialties:

 

Dining Featured San Diego

Best Burritos in San Diego

August 7, 2018

Best Burritos in San Diego

If you come to San Diego and don’t eat a burrito, did you really experience San Diego? The city is famous for its Mexican food and has some of the most delicious burritos.

Best Burritos in San Diego

Best California Burrito:

The California burrito is probably the most famous burrito in Southern California. A California burrito has carne asada (beef), guacamole, cheese, and potatoes or French fries. It’s difficult to find a “bad” California burrito, but some restaurants provide the perfect ratio of meat, cheese, potatoes, and guacamole.

Winner: Nico’s California Burrito. This burrito was ranked the #2 Burrito in the United States by The Daily Meal and #1 Burrito in San Diego in a poll of local surfers.

via GIPHY

Nico’s
4918 Newport Avenue
Ocean Beach
No website
Note: Nico’s is cash only!

 

Best Breakfast Burrito:

The breakfast burrito is not just a breakfast staple: it can be enjoyed all day! A classic breakfast burrito has scrambled eggs, potatoes, cheese, and either bacon, sausage or, chorizo.

Winner: Roberto’s Hashbrown Breakfast Burrito

via GIPHY

Roberto’s Taco Shop
Locations throughout San Diego
No website

 

Best Seafood Burrito:

San Diego has delicious seafood, so it makes sense that there are seafood burritos throughout the city. Try a shrimp burrito or a fish burrito: if you’re really fancy, try a lobster burrito. Most often, these burritos come with a “white sauce” that is light and not too spicy. It’s delicious and very “San Diego.”

Winner: Lucha Libre’s Taco Shop’s Surfin’ California Burrito combines carne asada and shrimp with house-made French fries, avocado, cheese, pico de gallo, sliced avocado, and a secret chipotle sauce. It’s delicious, smoky, and a perfect “surf and turf” combination.  

via GIPHY

Lucha Libre Taco Shop
1810 W. Washington Street (Mission Hills)
3016 University Avenue (North Park)

 

Best Healthy Burrito:

Yes, burritos can be healthy . . . when they are made from lighter tortillas and fresh sauces. In fact, in San Diego you will probably see burritos on many restaurant menus! There are now gluten-free burrito options and even vegan options for those who choose to eat vegan or gluten free (or who need to for health reasons).

Winner: Cafe Gratitude’s SF Mission Burrito has mushroom carnitas, adobo sauce, cashew nacho cheese, black beans, brown rice, pico de gallo, guacamole, and tortilla chips for crunch. Delicious . . . and vegan!

via GIPHY

Cafe Gratitude
980 Kettner Blvd
Little Italy

 

Best Fusion Burrito:

Fusion dishes combine the flavors or food styles of two different cuisines: check out our article on fusion food for a description of this cooking style. Burritos are an easy food to make into a fusion dish: in San Diego, the burrito/sushi combination is quite popular.

Winner: Pokirrito serves the Maui Sunrise: glazed teriyaki chicken with fried ginger, iceberg lettuce, cubed avocado, red bell pepper, lotus chips, tempura flakes, sweet chili sauce. Yum!

via GIPHY

Pokirrito
2254 India Street
San Diego, CA 92101

 

Featured Student Life Vocabulary

Casual English for Conversation

June 12, 2018

Casual English for Conversation

“Conversation is food for the soul.” -Proverb

Conversation is an art and can be difficult in any language. When learning English, it can be even more difficult if you do not have the right vocabulary words to ask the right questions! The next time you have a conversation in English, try using some of these questions and phrases. They will help you to have a casual conversation in English, which will allow you to get to know someone a little better.

Casual English for Conversation

Use these questions to begin a conversation with someone that you know.

What’s new? OR What have you been up to lately/recently?

Use these questions to ask what is new in a person’s life.

  • What’s new?
  • Not much, what’s new with you?
  • OR
  • What have you been up to lately?
  • Just working and life. What about you?

Casual English for Conversation

What’s new in your world?

This is another question to ask about a person’s life and what is new.

  • What’s new in your world?
  • Not much, to be honest. Just working and studying. How about you?
  • OR
  • What’s new in your world?
  • A lot of work lately! And we are getting ready to go on vacation. And you?

Casual English for Conversation

How have you been?

This general question is to ask how a person has been since you last saw him or her.

  • How have you been?
  • Good! And you?
  • OR
  • How have you been?
  • I’ve been good! What about you?

Casual English for Conversation

How are things?

This casual conversation question is just to ask, in general, how the person’s life is going.

  • How are things?
  • Fantastic. I’ve just started a new job. You?
  • OR
  • How are things?
  • Things are great. A little busy lately but good. What about you? How are things?

Casual English for Conversation

It’s been forever!

When you have not seen a person in a long time, this is a great phrase to use. Usually it is followed by a question about how the person has been doing.

 

  • It’s been forever! How are you?
  • OR
  • It’s been forever! How have you been?

 

Casual English for Conversation

How’s _____ treating you?

When you want to ask about the person’s job, project, or relationship, use this question.

 

  • How’s life treating you?
  • How’s the new job treating you?
  • How’s married life treating you?
  • How’s life in San Diego treating you?

 

Casual English for Conversation

What’s up with _____?

This question is a good way to ask about the status of something in the person’s life. Usually you knew something about this topic but have not had an update recently.

  • What’s up with that job promotion? Did you get it?
  • What’s up with your neighbor? Did he move?
  • What’s up with your sister? Is she still dating that guy?

 

California Life CISL San Diego Executive English Featured Idioms and expressions San Diego San Diego Travel Tips Suggested student activities Vocabulary

Golf Expressions in English

April 9, 2018

Golf Expressions in English

Do you love to golf? This sport is incredibly popular in English, so it is not surprising that there are many golf expressions in English. How many of these have you heard?

English also uses many expressions from other sports: read our Sports Related Idioms for more information!

Golf Expressions in English

Above/below par

Golf definition: “Par” is the number of attempts a player should make before putting the ball in the hole. (It can also be used for  many rounds of golf or for entire tournaments.) To be “above par” means that it took the player more attempts than “normal”; to be “below par” is the opposite.

English definition: Better or worse than average.

Example: Your writing and vocabulary skills are above par, but we need to work on your pronunciation.

Not up to par

English definition: Not as good as something should be; below average.

Example: I’m worried that my skiing is not up to par with my friends. We will see this weekend when we go to Big Bear!

Hole in one

Golf definition: Hitting the ball into the hole in one attempt. 

English definition: A successful attempt at something.

Example: Your presentation was a hole in one. Excellent job.

On par with

English definition: To be at the same level as something or someone else.

Example: My running isn’t on par with Silvia’s, so it’s difficult to exercise with her.

Par for the course

English definition: Typical.

Example: Spending 2-3 hours on social media each day is par for the course these days.

Tee up

Golf definition: To get ready to hit the ball; to put the ball on the tee (the small wooden piece that goes into the ground).

English definition: Prepare something; make detailed arrangements.

Example: The children are teeing up for their annual spring concert.

Golf Expressions in English

CISL San Diego organizes private or group golf lessons for students upon request. The lessons, which are either 30 minutes or one hour, are organized at one of the four beautiful golf courses in San Diego (La Jolla, Coronado, Balboa Park, or Fashion Valley). The lessons include equipment. For more information, contact the CISL Activities Coordinator at sdactivities (at) cisl (dot) edu.

Business English Career English Featured San Diego Student Life Voices of CISL

CISL Career English Student Tatiane Learns Marketing with an Event Planning Company

March 23, 2018

Tatiane spent time with Gaslamp Event Management, in Downtown San Diego’s hip and historic neighborhood called the Gaslamp District.

With CISL’s Career English program, students practice their English in the CISL classroom and then spend time at an American company. At their host company, students practice English in the office, in meetings, and through writing emails and creating documents. The CISL Career English program is the perfect way to gain important language skills for your career!

Career English student Tatiane recently wrote a report about her experience working with Gaslamp Event Management, a successful event planning company located in Downtown San Diego. We are impressed with her experience and with how good her writing skills are!

Here are some of the highlights of Tatiane’s report.

Why Tatiane chose CISL’s Career English Program  

My main objective when I chose the program was the opportunity to volunteer in an American company and then add it to my curriculum as a international experience with higher relevance.

What the Career English Program consisted of

In order to start the program, I completed 6 weeks of English classes and went through preparation for interview. GEM was my second interview and I feel confident to make it. With Grace, the program coordinator, help and support I corrected all mistakes regarding my resume and I learned how to create cover letter.

In general, the program meets my expectations. In addition, I would recommend CE for potential students who aim curriculum enrichment and an alternative international experience.

About her experience with Gaslamp Event Management

In GEM, I worked with Sin Bosier, the owner and CEO of the company. When I first started, it was close to Halloween Holiday and the company was hosting a event called San Diego Zombie Crawl. I worked during this event, taking care of the social media and also helping to organize the final details. I also worked in the two days of the event, checking in people and making live videos to post on Instagram.

After the event I focused on Downtown Dolls, which is a division of GEM. My main tasks were:

1 – Responsible for the social media for Downtown Dolls (IG + Facebook).

2 – Develop and launch the new Website for Downtown Dolls, by working with the web developers to make all the changes necessary and also all the site design. So, basically, I needed to identify problems and come up with solutions for them to change on the website.

3 – Talent managing in Downtown Dolls –  select the models that applied and schedule the interviews. Fill data base and point out models who fits the Downtown Dolls profile.

4 – Support if it’s necessary the others with tasks – proposal to clients, quotations, follow up and recap of the events.

Her final thoughts on the Career English Program

My experience at GEM helped me to feel more confident with the use of my English and I can tell for sure that I was not treated like a foreign or a outsider. Sin always pushed me to work as I was native and helped me with all I needed. What I enjoyed the most was the fact the I could really see what is like a company in another country and also the trust that was confided in me.

We are so pleased that you enjoyed your experience, Tatiane! Best of luck to you in Brazil!