One of my favorite Food Network shows is Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives (Triple D), and after seeing Hodads on the show, I knew it was a restaurant that I had to try. Since my brother shares my love of food, we took a road trip and ate there when he came to town this past weekend.
Hodads appears to be an institution in the sleepy little town of Ocean Beach, CA. It’s near Sea World so I’m sure a fair number of tourists stop by, although it seems quite popular with the locals too. I thought it wouldn’t be crazy busy since we arrived mid-afternoon. I was wrong.
Of course, the question you ask yourself, as you’re standing in line freezing your tush off, is whether it’s going to be worth it. There were loads of other restaurants nearby that had immediate seating and looked just as nice. But we were here with a single purpose in mind – to eat at Hodads. So we stood in line. And shivered. And sighed with relief when the sun burst through the clouds. And agreed to sit at the window bar because we were hungry and cold.
So was it worth it? Yeah, it was for me. And I think it was for my brother too. He ordered a strawberry milkshake that was unbelievably good. One of the best I’ve had in a long time. We shared an order of frings (onion rings and fries) that were also rather tasty. The potato wedges were seasoned perfectly, and the onion rings were thickly cut and had a nice, crunchy crust.
My brother ordered the Guido Burger (burger with pastrami) that Guy Fieri created when he showcased the restaurant for Triple D. My brother really liked it, and I thought it was good, although I’m not a huge pastrami fan. I had the Blue Jay Burger, which was a hamburger topped with blue cheese and grilled onions. The blue cheese was creamy and not too strong. I really liked it, but my brother preferred the Guido Burger.
- Right by the beach
- Fabulous milkshakes
- Overall great food. It’s a small menu, but they do it well.
- Limited seating. Be prepared to wait in line.
- Limited parking but mostly free, which was a nice surprise.
- Service was okay. It was by no means terrible, but they were slow to clean tables when they had a long line of people waiting outside.
Would I go back there? Absolutely. But preferably on a warmer and less windy day so that I could take my order to go and have a little picnic on the beach. It seemed like the perfect spot to enjoy a leisurely lunch and soak up the sun.
The neighborhood is quite charming, and there were some interesting shops to explore. It’s definitely worth a visit. Just make sure you have time to wait in line.
5010 Newport Ave.
Ocean Beach CA 92107
If you have a restaurant recommendation for me, please send me an email or leave a comment. I’m always on the lookout for new restaurants to try.