California / San Diego

Bonnie Jean’s Soul Food {San Diego}

Location.  Sketch much?  Location is kind of scary.  I came around 5pm, so it was still light outside, and therefore, likely not dangerous; however, if I came any later, I think I’d be scared. It’s right next to a liquor store, as you can see, so there are liquor store loiterers. The parking is also atrocious. There are only about 5 parking spaces out front, and they are very tight.

Ambiance.  The interior is thankfully a different story and I love the decor here!  The place is painted RED and there is Black History memorabilia all over the walls. There is also a big chess set and a rack of board games. At each table, there is a glass bottle with a flower. In the front, there is a big picnic table for large parties.

Service.  Yes, service is sort of slow, but only in the best way.  I genuinely believe that the time was being used to make fresh food injected with love and care!  Be patient and you will be rewarded.  I’ve heard Sundays are their busiest day, so if you hate to wait, try to avoid Sundays.  The ladies were really sweet – I asked about the pecan glaze and was humming and hawing trying to decide.  She offered to throw in a free side of the glaze!  They also gave me some water while I waited for my to-go order (a thoughtful gesture).  I do have one complaint though; we didn’t know how much to order for 7 adults and asked for a recommendation.  They undersold us, we needed more food!

How much to order.  I recommend 1.5 pieces of chicken per person, 2 pieces of cornbread per person, and at least 0.5 sides per person (2 sides for 4 people; 4 sides for 8 people).

Food.  Ok, their food is PHENOMENAL or heart stoppingly good, if you prefer 😉

Their fried mac and cheese appetizer is totally yummy!  Its creamy and cheesy, but with a surprise – jalapenos bits 😉  One order consists of 3 fried mac and cheese balls.

Fried chicken is PERFECT!  Perfectly moist, perfectly crisp, perfectly seasoned.  We ordered the original fried chicken, but (as stated above) got a side of “Pecan honey glaze.”  The glaze was too sweet for me, FYI, so I’m really glad I got it on the side.

Ok, the cornbread is also phenom.  I made the mistake of only ordering one piece per person – I needed at least two!  The cornbread had pieces of corn and jalapeno hidden inside, which made it extra special.

The sides – mashed potato and slaw- were also great.  I am hard to please when it comes to coleslaw, and this one was great!  Not too mayo-y, a teensy bit sweet, very refreshing.

Conclusion.  This place comes highly recommended by me.  I haven’t found anything comparable in Los Angeles yet.  I only wish Bonnie Jean’s was closer to me.  😀


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