Whiskey Girl - Home of the Whiskey Burger

March 29, 2012

Since moving here over two years ago, I've been a big fan of Whiskey Girl.  The bar had a laid back feel.  Happy hour was long, often and worthwhile.  Catchy old music videos played alongside sports. Cold, local craft beer was served on tap, and the food was, well, the food was consistently satisfying.  It was one of my customary starting points for a day or evening in downtown SD.  When I learned that Whiskey was moving uptown one block into a new, renovated location for 2012, I became nervous.

Change often brings an initial bout of discomfort, and such a notion sums up my first impression of the new Whiskey Girl. The lighting was subdued, but at the same time bright, with visual stimuli pulling your attention in all directions: flat screens galore (and an enormous entertainment center control center to match), promotions projected above the bar, a somewhat blinding neon “Whiskey Girl” sign, a karaoke booth, a corner stage, servers dressed in bright pink, two fully stocked bars, the new 80's-esque comic book style menus – OH MY! Sensory overload!

WG's servers are
known for their....service
Fortunately, my server reined me in with an ice-cold Stone IPA draft and pointed out that the new menu still offered most of my favorite menu items. I wet my whistle and I was open and ready to move past the old and onto the new.

With the fresh location comes an updated menu, and as before, Whiskey Girl is overstocked with options. They have a wide array of appetizers, salads, pizzas, sandwiches, tacos, burgers, entrees, pasta, a kids’ menu, and breakfast options served all day.

For starters, we went with the popcorn shrimp ($10), served over a bed of cabbage and with a choice of cocktail, chipotle, or Thai spicy sauce. While the batter was crisp and the shrimp tasty, the two aspects of the dish had a hard time staying together, with most of the breading flaking off. Not cool.

The chicken Caprese sandwich ($11.50) was of the quality I remembered from Whiskey Girl. The sandwich was loaded with spring greens, tomatoes, fresh melted mozzarella, roasted peppers and pesto, all atop a perfectly grilled chicken breast, served on a rosemary ciabatta roll (which of course had the patented “WG” branded on top). The sandwich was full of flavor and served with a choice of sides, of which we chose the sweet potato tots which, although inventive and unique, were undercooked and gritty.

Guided by our hosts, we went “all mammal” and sampled the Whiskey Girl Burger ($16), only served to those 21 and up. This was no ordinary burger, as the patty is basted in whiskey and topped with cheddar and thick cut applewood bacon. For the kicker, this burger comes piled high with Philly sirloin steak, sautéed onions, and mozzarella – a cheesesteak atop a bacon cheeseburger. Oh, and it's served with a shot of Jack Daniels. I thought that this burger would be a sloppy mess, but it was extremely manageable and absolutely delicious. Combined with Whiskey's garlic parmesan fries, (which I believe may be the best fries in San Diego) and the digestif of Jack, the dish was a success and a value at $16.

Although the décor is somewhat in your face, Whiskey Girl stays true to old form with great spirits, well prepared food, and a friendly atmosphere. Happy hour is Monday through Friday from 4pm to 8pm with reduced priced food and beverage options. Food is served until 11 p.m. daily for dine in or take out. 

702 5th Avenue, Gaslamp (North Corner of 5th & G)
(619) 236-1616

11 a.m. – 2 a.m. Daily
Happy Hour from 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. Monday through Friday
Food served until 11 p.m.

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