Enable JavaScript to run this app.
Skip to Main Content
OpenTable logo
  1. Home
  2. United States
  3. San Diego
  4. San Diego
  5. Hillcrest
Ortega's  A Mexican Bistro, San Diego, CA

Ortega's A Mexican Bistro

4.5
4.5
838 Reviews
$30 and under
Mexican
Ortega’s Mexican Bistro features the authentic flavors of Puerto Nuevo. Experience Baja style lobster and table side guacamole while sipping one of our classic fresh squeezed margaritas. Enjoy dining in our restaurant or for a more energized evening, dine in our bar - La Cantina. Additional flavors include Banana Crusted Huachinango, Flat Iron Steak Burrito, Chicken Mole. The design captures the festive traditions and tasteful flavors of Puerto Nuevo and Baja California.

Make a reservation

2 people

8:00 PM


Booked 9 times today

Additional information

  • Dining style

    Casual Elegant

  • Cuisines

    Mexican, Mexican / Southwestern

  • Hours of operation

    Mon–Thu 12:00 pm–8:30 pm Fri, Sat 12:00 pm–9:30 pm Sun 11:00 am–8:30 pm

  • Phone number

    (619) 692-4200

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Contactless Payment, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Owned/operated by

    Asian and Pacific Islander, Latinx or Hispanic, LGBTQ+

  • Private party facilities

    Contact restaurant for Private Events at 619-692-4200 or via email at info@ortegas.com

  • Neighborhood

    Hillcrest

  • Cross street

    3rd Avenue

  • Parking details

    Private Lot

  • Additional

    Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Delivery, Full Bar, Gender Neutral Restroom, Gluten-free Options, Happy Hour, Indoor Fireplace, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Vegan, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Popular dishes

What 838 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

4.5
4.5 based on recent ratings
  • 4.5Food
  • 4.6Service
  • 4.5Ambience
  • 4.4Value

NoiseModerate

Sort by

Filters

  1. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined 2 days ago

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The staff was exceptional this day. Lobsters were on the smaller size so in order to compensate we each received an extra lobster tail!
  2. J

    Jag22

    San Diego

    28 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    28 reviews

    Dined on September 11, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Best Baja Mexican restaurant
  3. MJ

    MiaJ

    San Diego

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on September 9, 2022

    overall3food2service4ambience4
    The best part of my meat were the chips. The mango marg was so sweet even after I added ice to water it down. I ordered the shrimp ceviche. The tostadas were stale, not crisp in the center. The ceviche was lacking in flavor. We also ordered a quesadilla to go and were charged almost $20 for a tiny one. They later adjusted the price to $9. Service was good.
  4. LD

    LuvDiningOut

    Los Angeles

    380 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    380 reviews

    Dined on September 4, 2022

    overall4food5service5ambience4
    A very charming, artful and cozy authentic Mexican restaurant with amazing flavors, seasoning, preparation and presentation. Always a sumptuous experience.
  5. NG

    NancyG

    San Diego

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on September 3, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    All I can say is sooo good!
  6. H

    Hien

    Palm Springs

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on September 3, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Birthday fun!
  7. TN

    ThomasN

    Orange County

    16 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    16 reviews

    Dined on August 29, 2022

    overall4food4service3ambience4
    I hadn't had Puerto Nuevo lobster since I was actually there in Mexico 15 years ago and I was looking for a restaurant in San Diego that I could have some. Reviews were very good for Ortega's so I chose to enjoy a Sunday dinner there with my wife. We enjoyed our meals and the Puerto Nuevo style lobster hit the spot. Our server was very friendly, but I think he was new or had more tables than he could handle. We had to get his attention a couple times for drink refills and to get our check, but the food was good so we'll be back.
  8. CS

    ChrisS

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on August 28, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Everything was great. We sat at a table outside in the evening and everything looked beautiful. Service was quick and friendly and the food was delicious. Looking forward to my next visit to this awesome restaurant.
  9. AS

    AnitaS

    New England

    8 reviews

    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on August 23, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The food was delicious. My daughter and I had the plantain-encrusted fish and my husband and our son in law had the crab enchiladas. Everyone loved their meal. We had a variety of margaritas and they were all tasty.
  10. SD

    SDLocal

    San Diego

    7 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on August 15, 2022

    overall3food3service3ambience4
    Service was slow. We waited a long time to get our drinks. Server said bar was backed up but the table next to us got their drinks before us and they had arrived after us. Requested water 3 times before they brought it. Food was just okay except for the guacamole which was excellent. Ensenada fish tacos had more batter than fish in them and were very dry. When we asked for a cup of the white sauce, we were charged extra. Wasn’t an awful experience but not good enough to want to return.
  11. RC

    RonaldC

    San Diego

    3 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on August 14, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Out of town guests
  12. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New York Area

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on August 14, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Just the right relaxed atmosphere for a family meal. Food was excellent
  13. TS

    ToddS

    San Diego

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on August 13, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Great service, excellent food.
  14. BM

    BillM

    San Diego

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on August 1, 2022

    overall5food5service4ambience5
    I've been going to Ortega's since they opened years ago and while the menu and decor may change over time, their food is top-notch.
  15. MS

    MatthewS

    Seattle

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on July 31, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great authentic food. Outdoor seating was a perk. Hibiscus mezcal margarita! Yummm
  16. MD

    MarkD

    Houston

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on July 24, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Very good food and large portions.
  17. MB

    MichaelB

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on July 23, 2022

    overall5food4service5ambience4
    Lobster combinations were good, although the lobster meat was a little chewy. Drinks were excellent, as was our server Javier. Great place if you like Mexican style lobster and seafood.
  18. DG

    DennisG

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on July 21, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great neighborhood place for dinner. Waitress was outstanding with recommendations and things to see and do.
  19. m

    melissa

    San Francisco

    8 reviews

    vip
    1.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on July 8, 2022

    overall1food1service1ambience2
    The service was very slow Despite an empty restaurant and the food was terribly over cooked. The drinks were also terrible
  20. C

    Curt

    Dallas

    52 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    52 reviews

    Dined on July 7, 2022

    overall4food3service5ambience5
    Cute place and nice wait staff, but thought some of the food was mediocre.
  21. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on July 4, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    always amazing, food, drinks, service. LOVE Ortega’s
  22. NA

    NAAAA

    San Diego

    2 reviews

    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on June 26, 2022

    overall3food3service5ambience3
    Great service. Food quality and taste was moderate. We sat outside and did not experience the ambiance. The ambiance is very nice inside. It has Mexican feel.
  23. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    6 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on June 26, 2022

    overall2food2service2ambience1
    Service was slow and food wasn’t even mediocre! Restaurant was not crowded, so no excuses!
  24. TS

    TracyS

    San Diego

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on June 11, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Always great food and friendly service.
  25. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    7 reviews

    2.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on May 31, 2022

    overall2food1service2ambience3
    Experience was terrible, my family was the only ones inside the restaurant and from the time we ordered til the time we received our food the wait was 45 minutes! My food was only warm, both my wife and I’s steak and lobster was overcooked, they brought one of my kids the wrong order and just to remind you no one else was sitting inside the restaurant. The food didn’t have much flavor, the manager did remove the charge for the steak but I only ate mine because I was hungry.
  26. BS

    BSFS

    San Diego

    2 reviews

    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on May 22, 2022

    overall3food2service3ambience4
    We were regulars for many years before Covid and just returned on Sunday for the first time. My chilaquiles were mediocre, my over medium eggs were fried hard. The carnitas hash was more vegetables than carnitas. The flour tortilla was still good, though. With these two entrees and two iced teas the bill before tip was $50. We were so disappointed since we were really looking forward to being regulars again. With so many other restaurants to choose from in the area, we probably will not return.
  27. RT

    RaymondT

    San Diego

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 21, 2022

    overall2food2service2ambience4
    This is now our second time we have had a bad experience. We have been going to Ortega's for year's but these past two times the quality of service & the food has been VERY dissapointing. Sad to say farewell to this place but will not be going back here anymore with my family.
  28. L

    Linda

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 14, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Salsa, chips, beans and rice were fabulous and authentic. Generous shrimp tacos and terrific guacamole. Service by David was friendly and efficient. Totally recommend
  29. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 10, 2022

    overall3food5service2ambience5
    Great food but only had one waiter had to wait really long do simple things like refills and condiments...
  30. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    33 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    33 reviews

    Dined on May 8, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Celebrated Mother’s Day at one of my favorite places and even with the craziness of the day it was wonderful looking forward to next time love this place
  31. RB

    RoyalB

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 8, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    My new favorite mexican food restaurant! Service and food are amazing, and the margaritas are awesome.
  32. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    4 reviews

    3.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on May 7, 2022

    overall3food2service4ambience3
    Food was bland and table near us was super loud. Service was attentive but we were just disappointed with the flavor for how much everything cost.
  33. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New England

    1 review

    vip
    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 6, 2022

    overall4food5service2ambience4
    Went on Cinco de Mayo, food was awesome as were drinks. Waiter was disorganized and didn’t come to our table for 30 min. Would go back for food
  34. C

    Chris

    San Diego

    9 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on May 6, 2022

    overall4food4service4ambience4
    Seated quickly despite Cinco de Mayo crowd. Nice table among the activity. Service was good. My chicken mole super delicious! The salsa was unique and tastely - not the usual chopped onion and tomato. Now one of my favorites --tangy but nto hot - just right for my gringo mouth. I will be back.
  35. KK

    KevinK

    San Diego

    17 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    17 reviews

    Dined on May 6, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    I have been eating at Ortega's restaurants since the early 80's in Puerto Nuevo and the Food is the same if not better but similar at Ortega's in Hillcrest. Without the Travel time and Border wait! The Best Lobster and all of the Sides in the U.S. Juan Carlos, John and Crew are so Amazing! A Must go to in San Diego for Authentic Baja Mexican Cuisine.
  36. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on May 1, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Fantastic from start to finish! Wonderful host, gracious waitress, friendly busser. Amazing food! Lobster and shrimp was is tasty, beans were off the charts, guacamole and chips addicting!any thanks to Ortegas staff for an awesome dining experience. I will be back!!!
  37. T

    Tahoediner

    San Diego

    31 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    31 reviews

    Dined on May 1, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The real thing for Puerto Nueva lobster. Great drinks and other dishes too.
  38. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Chicago

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on May 1, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Lovely weekend dinner 🥰 Enjoyed everything!
  39. j

    jeffh

    San Diego

    8 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on April 30, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Amazing food!
  40. M

    Mgkern1950

    San Diego

    26 reviews

    4.0

    26 reviews

    Dined on April 27, 2022

    overall4food5service4ambience4
    Great lobster. Food all delicious. Service a bit slow. Soup brought out after lobster was served. Very nice and polite waiter.

Safety precautions

  • Cleaning & sanitizing

    • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
    • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
    • Common areas deep-cleaned daily
    • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
    • Contactless payment available
  • Physical distancing

    • Limited number of seated diners
    • Distancing maintained in common areas
    • Extra space between tables
  • Screening

    • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
    • Staff temperature check required

FAQs

Ortega's A Mexican Bistro offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (619) 692-4200.

Ortega's A Mexican Bistro is rated 4.5 stars by 838 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a reservation

2 people

8:00 PM


Booked 9 times today
Google Map for Ortega's  A Mexican Bistro

141 University Ave #4, San Diego, CA 92103

Additional information

  • Cross street

    3rd Avenue

  • Neighborhood

    Hillcrest

  • Hours of operation

    Mon–Thu 12:00 pm–8:30 pm Fri, Sat 12:00 pm–9:30 pm Sun 11:00 am–8:30 pm

  • Cuisines

    Mexican, Mexican / Southwestern

  • Dining style

    Casual Elegant

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Parking details

    Private Lot

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Contactless Payment, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Owned/operated by

    Asian and Pacific Islander, Latinx or Hispanic, LGBTQ+

  • Additional

    Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Delivery, Full Bar, Gender Neutral Restroom, Gluten-free Options, Happy Hour, Indoor Fireplace, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Vegan, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

  • Phone number

    (619) 692-4200

  • Private party facilities

    Contact restaurant for Private Events at 619-692-4200 or via email at info@ortegas.com

Copyright © 2022 OpenTable, Inc. 1 Montgomery St Ste 700, San Francisco CA 94104 - All rights reserved.
OpenTable is part of Booking Holdings, the world leader in online travel and related services.
Booking LogoPriceline LogoKAYAK LogoAgoda LogoRentalcars LogoOpenTable Logo