SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – If you’re hungry or thirsty after a tour of all that Comic-Con 2023 has to offer, some of San Diego’s best restaurants and bars will have food and drink specials inspired by this year’s pop culture celebration.
Most of the spots on this list are near the convention center, in the Gaslamp Quarter, but there are some other places around town getting into the spirit of the Con.
AC Hotel at the Downtown Gaslamp Quarter
743 Fifth Ave.
-- The hotel’s bars have created cocktails that honor two unsung comic book heroes. First, the Blue Beetle Margarita is a drink at the AC Lounge that pays homage to the upcoming DC movie “Blue Beetle.” Then, at the rooftop bar/restaurant Techo Beso, you will find a Hawkeye-inspired purple cocktail.
600 Fifth Ave.
-- The Gaslamp Quarter staple will see its bartenders and servers cosplaying as anime villains and heroes, respectively, and will serve up a special meal combo just for Comic-Con.
With barleymash’s Chef Rose’s Barley Bento Box, customers can choose crispy chicken katsu with steamed rice, cucumber salad, and bulgogi green beans for $22, or the spicy tuna with steamed rice, cucumber salad, and bulgogi green beans for $24.
3146 Mission Blvd.
-- Although it’s at Mission Beach and a good distance away from downtown San Diego, Belmont Park’s restaurants will have some alcoholic concoctions for Comic-Con fans.
You can get the Big Smash Margarita at Beach House, Cannonball, and Draft; Malibu Sangria is available at Cannonball and Draft; get a taste of the Guardians of the Guava-xy drink at Cannonball and Draft; and Lasso of Trush, only at Beach House.
Non-alcoholic goodies include the Captain Cookie (at Beach Treats) or superhero-themed sweets at Sweet Shoppe.
639 J St.
-- Inspired by the upcoming “Barbie” movie, customers can order the $22 Barbie’s Dream Marg, which is served in a goblet with a pink sugar rim and includes yours-to-keep pair of pink heart sunglasses. Add the “… and Ken” shot for $9!
On Thursday, July 20, customers who dress in Barbie cosplay will get 10% off their bill.
Butcher’s Cut Steakhouse
644 5th Ave.
-- This Gaslamp Quarter steakhouse has a three-course meal special at $50 per person for the week of Comic-Con (July 20-23).
322 Fifth Ave.
-- Cerveza Jack’s is going to A Galaxy Far, Far Away with Star Wars-themed cocktails, such as the Yoda’s Tears and Deathstar Old Fashioned.
The eatery/bar will also have a special “Grogu Menu” for the younglings.
The Deck at Moonshine Flats
335 Sixth Ave.
-- Retro video games are the inspiration for The Deck’s Comic-Con week cocktails. Get the Sub Zero (named after the Mortal Kombat character), the Master Sword (for the Zelda fans), and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-themed “Cowabunga, dude!”
1827 India St. (Little Italy)
-- Get $1 off a slice of pizza when you show your Comic-Con badge.
Lola 55 Tacos + Cocktails
1290 F St.
-- The East Village restaurant is featuring comic book/sci-fi characters every day during the convention.
Customers can get a Hulk Taco on Tuesday; Darth Vader Taco on Wednesday; the Aquaman Aguachile on Thursday; and Captain Marvel Tostada on Friday. For Saturday, Lola 55 will bring back the week’s best seller and Sunday will feature the Fantastic 4 Flight Special.
699 Park Blvd.
-- Customers who show their Comic-Con 2023 badge will get 20% off their purchase.
Sonic the Hedgehog Speed Café
910 J St., Space 2
-- A pop-up restaurant in the East Village dedicated to all things Sonic the Hedgehog (and other characters in the Sonic universe) will have unique eats and cool exclusive merchandise from now through Aug. 20. The eatery is temporarily filling in for Chick’nCone.
Spill the Beans
529 Market St. (Gaslamp location) & 813 W. Harbor Dr., Unit C (Seaport Village)
-- The Gaslamp Quarter and Seaport Village locations will be celebrating all things Mario, such as Mario Party Pizza Cream Cheese or Donkey Kong’s Banana Cream Cheese to spread on your bagels.
The Smoking Gun
555 Market St.
-- The Smoking Gun is taking customers back to the days of the arcade, with special dishes and cocktails to fit the theme.
Enjoy the Waka Waka Waka Wings, the Sonic Burger, the Player One Frito Pie, and other offerings, and then pair the food with the Space Invaders cocktail.
In addition to the food and drink, the Smoking Gun has an arcade and table-top games such as air hockey and skee ball.