san diego home cooking – cafe 56 / rancho pensaquitos – san diego, ca

I live in Mira Mesa and Rancho Pensaquitos is basically just up the road – but I go there for very few occasions. One occasion is that the Rancho Pensaquitos Pet Store is the only pet store near me that carries the dog food that my picky dog eats (she’s spoiled). On a recent adventure to acquire said dog food, I spotted this cafe smack dab in the middle of the shopping center where the pet store is. I’m not sure how recent this place is, but I hadn’t noticed it the last time I was here a few months ago.

It was around lunchtime for me, so I decided on the fly to stop in and visit. San Diego Home Cooking (which is I believe the “actual” name) is a locally owned small chains of restaurants. They also have locations in Escondido, Lakeside and La Mesa and each location has a name that’s related to the area they’re in. For instance, the La Mesa location is called “Lake Murray Cafe” and is on Lake Murray Rd. Cafe 56 is within spitting distance of the 56 freeway, hence its name.

Upon being seated, I was presented with a basket of fresh, handmade bread rolls. They had a light, delicate flavor and you could tell it was freshly made (it even had that “yeasty” smell to it). These rolls are near and dear to their heart as it’s mentioned in their little story that’s printed in the menu. I do concur, they were pretty good.

I ordered the “Avocado, Bacon & Cheese Chicken Burger” ($9.49) with onion rings for an additional $.49 cents. The lunch specialties don’t come with side orders – you can get fries, onion rings, fruit or cottage cheese for $.49 cents or add soup or salad for $1.49.

My “Chicken Burger” is really just a grilled chicken sandwich with all the regular fixings of a burger and is on a hamburger bun (though my waitress asked me if I preferred to have it on a different type of bread). The chicken was tender and I loved that they put on pure, creamy avocado slices – and plenty of it – onto my sandwich.

The onion rings were also very good – crisp and tasty and cooked just right (they tasted like they were probably beer battered).

In addition to the lunch offerings, they serve breakfast and dinner. They also have early dinner specials (2:30p-5:30p) and manager’s specials for each day of the week. They also have some Hungarian specials, such as Goulash and Cabbage Rolls, if you’re looking for something a little different. Their menu is wide and varied – check out their site for their whole menu.

The only negative I have to say is that my service was a little slow. My waitress didn’t notice or ask when I needed anything and I had to flag her down to get my check. Pretty minor – it’s not like I had to wait an obscenely long time to be taken care of so it otherwise a good experience.

Home cooking is definitely worth it when you can get it!

San Diego Home Cooking
Cafe 56
13211 Black Mountain Rd.
San Diego, CA 92129
(858) 484-5789

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