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“Great Wagyu, excellent service”
Review of Animae

Animae
Reserve a table
2
Tue, 11/05
20:00
Ranked #992 of 5,153 Restaurants in San Diego
Description: ANIMAE's eclectic West Coast cuisine, layered with Asian influences, comes to life under James Beard Award Winning Chef Nate Appleman. Applying a California cooking style to ANIMAE'S traditional coal-fired oven and grill, Chef Appleman's menu is as thoughtful as it is refined, elevating local produce and seasonal ingredients to create a lively and progressive culinary program.
Restaurant details
Description: ANIMAE's eclectic West Coast cuisine, layered with Asian influences, comes to life under James Beard Award Winning Chef Nate Appleman. Applying a California cooking style to ANIMAE'S traditional coal-fired oven and grill, Chef Appleman's menu is as thoughtful as it is refined, elevating local produce and seasonal ingredients to create a lively and progressive culinary program.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Enjoyed our evening at Animae in San Diego. Located in a new condo tower, this restaurant is reminiscent of Las Vegas, with beautiful two story surroundings and pounding, pulsating Muzak.
Filled mainly with Yuppies and hipsters, this restaurant has a very good vibe going for it.
Our service, headed by Savannah, was attentive and professional. It was seamless and did not miss a beat.
Food is a bit uneven, but some dishes were outstanding. The Japanese Miyazaki A5 Wagyu was absolutely the best course. Perfectly cooked; melt in your mouth delicious!
Bao Buns, Wontons, Wagyu Carpaccio and a Coconut Cashew Napoleon dessert, were also outstanding. An Ahi Tuna appetizer was a disappointment, with so little Ahi mixed into overly salted Soy Sauce and rice. Not recommended. Wagyu Fried rice was bland and Coal fired Cabbage was a letdown. Would appreciate a Riesling or Gewurztraminer by the glass to match with the cuisine.
We would dine here again, but would try other dishes. Valet parking available.

Date of visit: April 2021
1  Thank donaldh886
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2 - 6 of 15 reviews

Reviewed 6 September 2020 via mobile

Just enjoyed an outside dinner at Animae. The flavors are fantastic. I had the charred corn and lamb ribs. Both had great flavors, the ribs were a bit tough, I’m no chef but I’d say go back to the usual lamb lollipops. Definitely going back to try some other items on the menu.

Date of visit: September 2020
Thank Todd S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2020

Animae was as delightful and unique dinning experience as I have had and I am a long time San Diegan. From the décor of art deco and modern animation design to the staff who were willing participants in providing you the “diner” a clear understanding of the restaurant’s concept and menu. To the menu, which as I had followed Chef Joe (who I loved at Cucina Urbana where he was the executive chef) in his travels earlier in the year up north where he was tasting and building this menu into a one that offers a unique and flavorful selection. All the staff were on board and there when needed without exception. I had an early reservation and having the privilege having owned fine dinning establishments in NYC and LA I witnessed something I rarely if ever see in San Diego. One of the serving staff was measuring a table to ensure the proper placement of all the settings. To me that was of particular delight as it shows the commitment is universal and held to a high standard to make the diner’s evening a memorable experience whether you are in for just the tasting menu or the full approach. The wine list and sake’ selection was great, but I did not partake this time next I will. Kudos to the staff, Chef Joe and of course its purveyor Brian Malarkey. This should set a standard for others if they wish to be in this arena. As for myself I am looking forward to returning soon.

Date of visit: December 2019
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank SurMike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 February 2020

Our visit to Animae began with disappointment. As we always do, we had picked their Happy Hour because of the food offerings listed on the internet. But the actual HH menu had about 25% fewer items on it than the website, and some of them were different.

KEEP YOUR WEBSITE UP TO DATE !

The second, less major disappointment was the bar seating. Since there were four of us we could not comfortably sit at the lively bar and converse, so we sat at one of the sofa groupings. The tables were not big enough for food and drink for four, and the uncomfortable couches needed large pillows (at least for short people).

The drinks were overpriced, both the HH and the regular drinks, but that is to be expected in a celebrity chef restaurant.

Our server was a lot of fun. But we did have to remind her--twice--to bring one of the appetizers we ordered.

But the food--with one exception--was delicious, and very different. The miso butter rolls were incredible. The spring rolls with spinach and mascarpone, ditto. The bulgogi beef skewers, the crispy rice, and the sashimi rice dish were all very good. The one exception was the chicken skewers, which were undercooked (still pink in the center) and made of tough chicken thighs instead of tender breast meat.

Overall, worth going back to, probably for dinner--now we know how to find it !

Date of visit: February 2020
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
3  Thank CoronadoCarol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2020

Had a great evening at Animae! beautiful decor, great drinks, with good food and service. Had Persian cuc salad, crab hand rolls, duck and lamb. All nicely prepared and presented. Hand rolls were a visual highlight. Wanted the pork, but not available. All dishes flavorful, but non an over-the-top knockout. Nonetheless, a solid choice for a great meal and surroundings.

Date of visit: February 2020
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Juan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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