If you find yourself caught between LA and San Francisco, somewhere in the Central Coast of California lies this little jewel of a city called San Luis Obispo. Also referred as SLO, the city boasts of well-preserved Spanish architecture that was reminiscent of earlier times. Not only does it provide the historical ambience, this city also comes with big eats.
From budget friendly restaurants to Wine and Dine, check out our top 10 favorites of SLO to satisfy any palate.
1. Pappy McGregor’s Pub
This restaurant offers a hearty menu and a wide selection of beers and cocktails. The variety of food that you can select from is of hefty serving, that decisions will be difficult. The price is reasonable and you will end your meals with a clear plate and a full stomach. Live music, quiz nights and other fun activities ensure an evening filled with fun and laughter. For great times with friends, Pappy McGregor’s Pub is the place to be.
- Name: Pappy McGregor’s Pub
- Address: 1122 Pine St., Paso Robles, CA 93446
- Opening hour: Sun–Thur 11 am-Midnight, Fri-Sat 11 am-2 am
- Price range: $6-$40
- Website: www.pappymcgregors.com
2. Foremost Wine Company
Foremost Wine Company is a rustic restaurant located in downtown of SLO. One thing that is unique about this restaurant is they get their ingredients from the local food sources. This adventurous attempt to match the right wine and the right food creates an original flavor that one will remember. The open floor plan of the restaurant provides a comfortable space for wining and dining. Food is a bit pricey but worth it. The food presentation alone brings a delightful experience. We recommend this place for a perfect date night.
- Name: Foremost Wine Company
- Address: 57o Higuera St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Tue-Thu 5 pm-9 pm, Fri-Sat 5pm – 10pm, Sun 4 pm-8 pm
- Price range: $15-$60
- Website: www.foremostwineco.com
3. The Naked Fish
The Naked Fish is a haven for sushi lovers. Bringing a taste of Japan in SLO guarantees freshness and quality through the variety of fish and ingredients served. You can watch the chef prepare your order in a relaxed atmosphere with an accompaniment of live music. When ordering, ask for their ‘Specials’ as they are not represented on the menu. Enjoy the imported fine sake list and beers from Japan for an overall oriental twist.
- Name: The Naked Fish
- Address: 857 Higuera St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: 11:30am -10 pm
- Price range: $5-$40
- Website: www.thenakedfish.com
4. Palazzo Giuseppe Contemporary Italian Cuisine
If you fancy Italian cuisine, try Palazzo Giuseppe. The restaurant is a walking distance to other hot spots in the downtown area and it offers a lovely outdoor and indoor dining atmosphere. The service is superb with waiters who are young and upbeat. Palazzo Giuseppe prides itself on their full bar with wine list from different regions, delectable pizzas, fresh vegetables tossed in vinaigrette and their cheese and meat selections among others. Enjoy the gourmet flavors from their lunch, dinner and happy hour menu.
- Name: Palazzo Giuseppe Contemporary Italian Cuisine
- Address: 1010 Court St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Mon-Wed 11:30am-9pm, Thu-Fri 11:30am-9pm, Sat 11:30am-10 pm, Sun 11:30am-9 pm
- Price range: $4-$30
- Website: www.giuseppesrestaurant.com
5. SLO Provisions
SLO Provisions is a favorite local spot. It is best known as a take-out place for specialty sandwiches, family style cooked meals like pumpkin pies and rotisserie chicken and meats. This place is also an expanding café that offers a nook for coffee breaks and pastries. If you need a dinner or a meal on a run and still get the best quality of food and service, SLO Provisions is a practical choice. Their location is close to the San Luis Oriental Market.
- Name: SLO Provisions
- Address: 1255 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Mon-Fri 7 am-7 pm, Sat 10 am-7 pm
- Price range: $6-$25
- Website: www.sloprovisions.com
6. Firestone Grill
The Fire Stone Grill is always packed especially on a Friday night. Considered as SLO’s ‘The Institution’ when it comes to burgers and fries, this is where most college students and sports enthusiasts flock. On Fridays, you may stand in line to get to the restaurant but the line moves quickly. The bar features big TV screens for Sports viewing while their outdoor set-up is perfect for Barbecue lunches. For the young and hip, this place is full of energy!
- Name: Fire Stone Grill
- Address: 1001 Higuera Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Mon-Wed 11 am-10 pm, Tu-Sat 11 am- 11 pm, Sun 11 am-10pm
- Price range: $5-$25
- Website: www.firestonegrill.com
7. Big Sky Café
A favorite among the tourists and the locals, The Big Sky Café has been around for many years. Meals sourced from local produce, selections of sandwiches and burgers, kid’s pancakes to vegetarian meals are available. The restaurant is also a gallery for art exhibits, upcoming events are always something to look forward to if you are into creative arts. Featured in many International magazines, this restaurant is surely a unique addition to SLO’s restaurant and beverage scene.
- Name: The Big Sky Cafe
- Address: 1121 Broad St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401-3506
- Opening hour: Mon-Fri 7 am-10 pm, Sat 8 am -10 pm, Sun 8 am -10 pm
- Price range: $6-$25
- Website: www.bigskycafe.com
8. Luna Red
The homey ambience of Luna Red charms food aficionado who appreciates outdoor dining under the stars or indoor dining by the fire pit. Luna Red is a prominent restaurant near the historic Mission Plaza. Best known for Spanish cuisine, the menu features Spain’s tapas and wines. Choices of small and large platters are offered at a very reasonable price. Late evenings run with lighthearted staff, live music and some dancing. Awarded as ‘Best of SLO County’ each year, Luna Red is a must-try restaurant.
- Name: Luna Red
- Address: 1023 Chorro St. San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: 11:30 am – 9 pm
- Price range: $5-$40
- Website: www.lunaredslo.com
9.Pluto’s Fresh Food for a Hungry Universe
True to its name, Pluto’s Fresh Food for the Hungry Universe restaurant offers generous portions at a good value. It is an easy, no hassle place to eat or take-out food from. A welcoming treat for every customer is your individual food station where you can order food, select ingredients on your own and oversee its preparation. Among the best sellers are sandwiches, salads and meats. For fresh and wholesome dining experience, Pluto’s is truly out-of-this-world!
- Name: Pluto’s Fresh Food for a Hungry Universe
- Address: 1122 Chorro St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Mon-Sun 11 am -10 pm
- Price range: $6-$20
- Website: www.plutosfreshfood.com
10. Koberl At Blue
Come dressed to impress when dining at the Koberl at Blue. For a day or evening of elegance, the restaurant is also perfect for anniversaries, birthdays and special occasions. Picturesque spots spells classic in this well-designed restaurant with its brick walls and high ceilings. It is expected that the price is a bit higher at this venue. Great appetizers and delicious servings of entrees, from freshly iced oysters served with red chili mignonette to fillet mignon of beef or lamb chops are just few of the specials. Wine is an absolute choice for every meal offered. This is an American classic wine country cuisine.
- Name: Koberl At Blue
- Address: 998 Monterey St. San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
- Opening hour: Available upon request call +1 805-783-1135
- Price range: $15-$50
- Website: www.epkoberl.com
San Luis Obispo is a college town with many tourists around. With its location, this place is accessible for a short drive or a respite from the hustle and bustle of the big cities. The city is praised for its eclectic mix of restaurants and history. Come travel the world through SLO’s diverse mix of culture and flavors.
Have a good trip and travel!