Last year's All-Star Game red carpet parade
Last year’s All-Star Game red carpet parade (courtesy photo)

San Diego hasn’t hosted an MLB All-Star Game since 1992. But on July 12, America’s baseball community will be in America’s Finest City once again. Taking place every July to mark the halfway point of the MLB season, the All-Star Game showcases players from the American League and National League, a roster that’s selected by fans online.

Leading up to the game, All-Star Week kicks off July 7 with several events for fans including FanFest, concerts, yoga, a 5K run, block party, the Home Run Derby and a red carpet parade, among others. FanFest is one of the most popular events, held at the convention center from July 8 through July 12, which includes clinics and seminars, physical activities, baseball artifacts like trophies and awards, team mascots, photo ops and autographs from local baseball favorites, Hall of Famers and Olympians. FanFest is a great alternative for those who didn’t score tickets to the big game… it’s also cheaper. Personally, I’m super excited about the free concert series they’re hosting this year including headliners like Gwen Stefani, OneRepublic and Tori Kelly.

Read my full report on All-Star Week activities in my latest article in the San Diego Downtown News.

For any events taking place at the San Diego Convention Center (like FanFest or Comic-Con), the best place to grab a meal nearby is Lou & Mickey’s for steaks and seafood. It’s a stone’s throw away from the convention center and has been a Gaslamp Quarter mainstay since 2004. It has a classic steakhouse ambiance, with red leather booths and dark wood walls. There’s also a raw bar, cocktail lounge and outdoor patio seating. They have an extensive dinner menu, but since I’m one of those people who believes you should eat steak at a steakhouse, it’s easier to pare down. I highly recommend the dry-aged steaks, like the Prime Kansas City Strip Steak. All the steaks are cooked with seasoned butter, so they’re juicy and full of flavor (and don’t require steak sauce, even though I like steak sauce). I love the char they’re able to get on the outside of the steak, while the inside remains moist and meaty.

Prime Kansas City Strip Steak
Prime Kansas City Strip Steak at Lou & Mickey’s

Start off with the crispy coconut wild jumbo shrimp, baked goat cheese with roasted garlic, or beet and goat cheese salad, and be sure to order a few family-style sides to go with your entree since they’re served a la carte. I love the scalloped potatoes and sautéed spinach, but the macaroni & cheese and sautéed mushrooms also come highly recommended. For those who aren’t beef lovers, remember that Lou & Mickey’s parent company is King’s Seafood Company, so you can expect the seafood to be top-notch quality and super fresh. The Chilean sea bass is a wonderful selection.

Coconut shrimp, beet & goat cheese salad, scalloped potatoes, and roasted garlic
Coconut shrimp, beet & goat cheese salad, scalloped potatoes, and baked goat cheese with roasted garlic

Lou & Mickey’s also has a great wine list, where a few of my favorite wineries are listed. Come for happy hour in the cocktail lounge Monday through Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. for deals on wine, beer, cocktails and lots of bar snacks. Also of note: Lou & Mickey’s has a private dining room and private patio area, which is helpful when you’re rolling in with 40 of your closest friends after a day at the convention center.