fbpx

The Grand Prix San Jose Dining Guide

There are many questions surrounding a Magic event:

  • What will the metagame look like?
  • What do I want to play?
  • How much time do I have to invest in practicing for the event?
  • If I have little time, should I just pick a deck and/or do I need to practice at all?

The list goes on, and on. With so many details to pick over, it can be easy to forget what actually matters: Where and what are we eating?!

I spend more time deciding on where to eat on any given trip than most people—I strive for good food and good company. Satisfying everyone is tough, so knowing what the options are before an event will make finding a suitable place on Saturday night a smooth process. My guide will help you with that. A group of 1 minor, 1 vegetarian, 1 person who was sheltered just a bit too much as a child, and 3 other indecisive souls, you say? No problem!

Most meals surrounding a Grand Prix are of categories: breakfast and dinner. How restrictive each one is usually depends on how well you and your friends are doing in the tournament, assuming the main attraction for you is the Grand Prix itself. If it’s not, and you’re showing up to hang out with friends and thus have a more flexible schedule, you may find yourself food exploring more than anything else.

Distance and time are your two main factors: How much time and how far are you willing to go for a food adventure? To add to this, GP San Jose presents a particularly broad culinary swath, offering everything from tacos to chaat and green papaya salad, to chicken and waffles. This list gives you good options, but it doesn’t give you all of them. It’s like a good spoon to eat chili with: It was whittled down from an even larger one. If you don’t see anything you like, there are certainly more options, and all that is required is Google (they are right down the street too).

And if you are just crushing the tournament and won’t be able to get out and about, there are a ton of meal delivery services available in the area. Consider using one of the following:

The Basics

The San Jose Convention Center is located in the heart of downtown, and there are many good dining options nearby. The list of restaurants is categorized based on distance from the venue:

  • Walking Distance (up to 0.7 miles or 5-15 minutes)
  • Short Drive (1-5 miles, 15 minutes)
  • Long Drive (5-11 miles, 20 minutes)

Driving times will range greatly depending on the local traffic. Use traffic and map apps to gauge driving times when you are close to departing and plan accordingly. All restaurants are in San Jose unless specified otherwise.

Walking Distance (5-15 minutes by foot)

  • Caffe Frascati

    315 S 1st St
    (408) 287-0400
    Fri 7 am–12 am
    Sat 8 am–12 am
    Sun 8 am–9 pm
    Mon 7 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Philz Coffee

    118 Paseo De San Antonio Walk
    (408) 971-4212
    Fri 6:30 am–10 pm
    Sun-Sun 7 am–9 pm
    Mon 6:30 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Social Policy Café

    200 S 1st St
    Fri 7 am–5 pm
    Sat-Sun 8 am–5 pm
    Mon 7 am–5 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Thirst Tea (Bubble/milk tea)

    150 S 1st St, #118
    Fri-Sat 11 am–11 pm
    Sun 12 pm–10 pm
    Mon 11 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Bijan Bakery and Café

    170 S Market St, #110
    (408) 971-8000
    Fri 6:30 am–11 pm
    Sat 7:30 am–11 pm
    Sun 8:30 am–9:30 pm
    Mon 6:30 am–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

  • Good Karma Vegan Café (Gastropub/craft beer/vegan food)

    37 S 1st St
    (408) 294-2694
    Mon–Sat 11 am–9 pm
    Sun 12 pm–7 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Original Gravity Public House (Gastropub/craft beer/sausages/grilled cheese/poutine)

    66 S 1st St
    Fri–Sat 11:30 am–12 am
    Sun-Mon 11:30 am–10:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Paper Plane (Cocktail bar/appetizers)

    72 S 1st St
    (408) 713-2625
    Fri–Sat 4:30 pm–2 am
    Sun–Mon 4:30 pm–12 am
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Cafe Stritch (American/comfort food/music venue)

    374 S 1st St
    (408) 280-6161
    Fri-Sat 4 pm–2 am
    Sun 4 pm–12 am
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)
    Fried chicken and waffles available on Friday and Saturday—it’s supposed to be delicious.

  • Ike’s Love & Sandwiches (Duh, love and some sandwiches, obviously)

    75 E Santa Clara St, #130
    (408) 294-2802
    Mon-Sun 10:30 am–7 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-17)

  • The City Fish (Fish ‘n’ Chips)

    30 E Santa Clara St, #140
    (408) 293-3474
    Fri-Sat 9 am–10 pm
    Sun 9 am–9 pm
    Mon 9 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Smoke Eaters (Wings)

    29 S 3rd St
    (408) 293-9976
    Mon-Sun 11 am–12 am
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $10-$17)

  • Pizza Bocca Lupo

    87 N San Pedro St, #133
    (408) 289-1775
    Fri-Sat 11 am–11 pm
    Sun 11 am–9 pm
    Mon 11 am–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Taurinus Brazilian Steak House

    167 W San Fernando St
    (408) 294-0110
    Fri 11:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Sat 12 pm–3 pm, 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Sun 12 pm–3, 5 pm–9 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $$$$
    Lunch: salad bar: $20, full buffet: $25
    Dinner: salad bar: $35, full buffet: $50

  • Back A Yard (Caribbean)

    80 N Market St
    (408) 294-8626
    Fri 11 am–9 pm
    Sat 12 pm–9 pm
    Sun Closed
    Mon 11 am–2:30 pm, 4:30 pm–8:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $10-$17)

  • Hawaiian Poke Bowl

    387 S 1st St
    (408) 564-8393
    Fri 11:30 am–9 pm
    Sat 11:30 am–10 pm
    Sun 11:30 am–7 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $10-$17)

  • Dakao (Vietnamese)

    98 E San Salvador St
    (408) 286-7260
    Fri–Sat 7 am–9 pm
    Sun 7 am–8 pm
    Mon 7 am–9 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)
    My go-to destination in downtown San Jose for bahn mi sandwiches for over ten years. Maybe I’ve only been to this one place, and maybe not.

  • IPOH Garden Malaysian Cuisine

    150 S 1st St, #111
    (408) 297-2930
    Mon-Sun 11 am–3 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $10-$17)

  • SA-By Thai Cuisine

    404 S 2nd St
    (408) 292-3900
    Fri 11 am–3 pm, 5 pm–11 pm
    Sat-Sun 12 pm–4 pm, 5 pm–11 pm
    Mon 11 am–3 pm, 5 pm–11 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • HoM Korean Kitchen

    76 E Santa Clara St
    (408) 703-4777
    Fri–Sat 10:30 am–2:30 am
    Sun 10:30 am–10 pm
    Mon 10:30 am–11 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-17)

  • Fuji Sushi

    56 W Santa Clara St
    (408) 298-3854
    Fri 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Sat 5 pm–10 pm
    Sun 5:30 pm–9:30 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-17)

  • Mudai Ethiopian Restaurant

    503 W San Carlos St
    (408) 292-2282
    Fri–Sat 11 am–11:30 pm
    Sun–Mon 11 am–11 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-17)

  • La Victoria Taqueria (Multiple locations)

    131 W Santa Clara St
    (408) 993-8230
    Friday 6 am–3 am
    Saturday 6 am–3 am
    Sunday 6 am–12 am
    Monday 6 am–12 am

    140 E San Carlos St
    (408) 298-5335
    Friday-Monday 7 am–3 am
    [Editor’s note: two words—orange sauce.]

  • Bakery Mexico #2 (Panaderia)

    87 E Santa Clara St
    (408) 920-2518
    Fri 6 am–10 pm
    Sat 6 am–2 am
    Sun-Mon 6 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Mezcal (Upscale Mexican)

    25 W San Fernando St
    Ph: (408) 283-9595
    Fri 11:30 am–11:30 pm
    Sat 4 pm–11:30 pm
    Sun 4 pm–9 pm
    Mon 11:30am–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Cafe Eden (Greek)

    2 N 1st St
    (408) 753-1139
    Mon-Sat 10 am–9 pm
    Sun Closed
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Nemea Greek Taverna (Upscale Greek)

    96 S 1st St
    (408) 279-4225
    Fri 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5:30 pm–11 pm
    Sat 5:00 pm–11 pm
    Sun 5:00 pm–9 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5:30 pm–10 pm
    Price Range: $$$ (Entrees $18-$30)

  • Milk & Wood (Ice cream)

    387 S 1st St
    (408) 320-4047
    Fri-Sat 12 pm–10 pm
    Sun-Mon 12 pm–8 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

  • Treatbot (Ice cream and karaoke, how bad could it be?)

    100 N Almaden Ave
    (408) 548-7328
    Fri–Sat 11:30 am–11 pm
    Sun–Mon 11 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

Short Drive (10-15 minutes by car)

  • Bill’s Cafe (American breakfast, multiple locations)

    1115 Willow St
    (408) 294-1125
    Hours: Mon–Sun 7 am–3 pm

    2089 The Alameda
    (408) 244-9085
    Mon-Sun 6:30 am–3 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)
    Classic brunch options, and quite a popular destination. There’s almost always a ~30-minute wait at peak times, but it goes by quickly.

  • The Table (New American)

    1110 Willow St
    (408) 638-7911
    Fri 9 am–2 pm, 4 pm–12 am
    Sat 8:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–12 am
    Sun 8:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–9 pm
    Mon 4–10 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Bibo’s NY Pizza

    1431 Bird Ave
    (408) 217-9084
    Fri–Sat 11 am–10 pm
    Sun–Mon 11 am–8 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

  • Smoking Pig BBQ Company

    1144 N 4th St
    (408) 380-4784
    Fri–Sat 11 am–10 pm
    Sun–Mon 11 am–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • LB Steak

    334 Santana Row, #1000
    (408) 244-1180
    Mon–Sat 11:30 am–10 pm
    Sun 11 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $$$$ (Entrees $20-100)

  • Tacolicious

    300 Santana Row
    Mon-Sun 11:30 am–11:00 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)
    Delicious tacos, good drinks/cocktails, great for vegetarians too!

  • Punjab Café (North Indian)

    322 E Santa Clara St
    (408) 295-5470
    Fri 11 am–3 pm, 5 pm–10:30 pm
    Sat 12 pm–4 pm, 5 pm–10:30 pm
    Sun 12 pm–4 pm, 5 pm–10:30 pm
    Mon 11 am–3 pm, 5 pm–10:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)
    Small restaurant, but they also deliver/order to-go.

  • Swaad Indian Cuisine (North Indian)

    498 N 13th St
    (408) 947-2030
    Fri 11:30 am–3 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Sat 11:30 am–3 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Sun 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–3 pm, 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Falafel’s Drive-In (Middle Eastern)

    2301 Stevens Creek Blvd
    (408) 294-7886
    Mon–Sat 10 am–8 pm
    Sun 10 am–6 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

  • Tee Nee Thai

    1423 The Alameda
    (408) 947-7927
    Fri 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Sat 5 pm–10 pm
    Sun 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–2:30 pm, 5–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Com Ga Nam An (Vietnamese)

    348 E Santa Clara St
    (408) 297-3402
    Mon-Sun 10 am–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-17)
    Hainanese chicken is their specialty.

  • Pho Cong Ly (Vietnamese)

    460 E William St
    (408) 610-9849
    Mon–Sun 9 am–10 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10)

  • SJ Omogari Korean Restaurant

    154 Jackson St
    (408) 288-8134
    Fri 11:30 am–3 pm, 5 pm–9 pm
    Sat 11:30 am–9 pm
    Sun Closed
    Mon 11:30 am–3 pm, 5 pm–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Yuki Sushi

    1140 Lincoln Ave, #8
    (408) 287-9854
    Fri 11:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–10 pm
    Sat 11:30 am–10 pm
    Sun 5 pm–9 pm
    Mon 11:30 am–2 pm, 5 pm–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Shuei-do Manju Shop (Japanese desserts/mochi)

    217 Jackson St
    (408) 294-4148
    Fri 9 am–5 pm
    Sat 9 am–5 pm
    Sun 10 am–4 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees under $10) CASH ONLY
    Excellent mocha/manju.

  • Teske’s Germania (German)

    255 N 1st St
    (408) 292-0291
    Fri 11 am–2 pm, 5pm–9:30pm
    Sat 5 pm–9:30 pm
    Sun–Mon Closed
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

Long Drive

All of these destinations require you to go on an adventure, and they won’t disappoint.
Plan ahead as lines and traffic are certain to be a factor.

  • Dosateria (South Indian)

    20955 Stevens Creek Blvd, Cupertino
    Mon-Sun 10 am–9 pm
    Price Range: $
    Bonus: It’s inside a Whole Foods, in case you need anything else.

  • Ocean Delight (Dim sum)

    5400 Monterey Highway, San Jose
    (408) 281-3838
    Friday 10:30 am–9:30 pm
    Saturday 9 am–10 pm
    Sunday 9 am–9:30 pm
    Monday 10:30 am–9:30 pm
    Price Range: $ (Entrees $10 and under)

  • Orenchi Ramen

    3540 Homestead Rd, Santa Clara
    (408) 246-2955
    Fri-Sat 11:30 am–1:30 pm, 6 pm–9:30 pm
    Sun 11:30 am–1:30 pm, 5 pm–8:30 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • Kotetsu Ramen

    2089 El Camino Real, Santa Clara
    (408) 557-0822
    Mon-Sat 11:30 am–1:30 pm, 6 pm–9:30 pm
    Sun 11:30 am–2pm, 6 pm–9 pm
    Price Range: $$ (Entrees $11-$17)

  • To Bang (Korean BBQ)

    1052 Kiely Blvd, Santa Clara
    (408) 615-7540
    Mon–Fri 5:30 pm–11 pm
    Sat–Sun 4:30 pm–11 pm
    Price Range: $$$ (Entrees more than $25)

Discussion

Scroll to Top