Tom Ham’s Lighthouse

You’ll be hard pressed to find a more beautiful San Diego Bay view than the one Tom Ham’s Lighthouse enjoys.  Situated at the North end of Harbor Island (across from the SD Airport), Tom Ham’s is perched serenely against the San Diego Bay with breathtaking 270 degree waterfront views.  I’ve been here a couple times before for Sunday brunch a few years ago (which I have great memories of), but today’s lunch invitation was certainly one to be remembered.IMG_4219


I got to the restaurant 15 minutes early before meeting Darren here, so I decided to take a quick stroll and soak in the perfect day (73 degrees with a slight breeze).



We met with Andy (GM & Grandson to the Late Tom Ham) who gave us a firsthand tour and history of the family run property.  Tom Ham’s was opened in 1971 and incorporates an actual nautical lighthouse within the building.  The restaurant recently went under a multi-million dollar renovation which included updated decor, a relocated bar, and a gorgeous water facing deck (which you’ll see soon).


This was a cool ship downstairs in the lobby.


The relocated bar now faces the waterfront directly.


Here is their new deck… stunning!



This table literally feels like you’re dining on top of the water.

The lunch menu offers numerous fresh selections.  They specialize in seafood, but have a few alternative options (like steak) if that’s not your thing.  They have a simple, but great selection of drinks and 90% of their beers on tap are from local SD breweries.  They have a full seafood platter menu that serves up only the freshest seafood (crab, oysters, clams, mussels, etc.).


I forget what this was called, but loved it… was a thin crusty flat bread dusted with herbs and served with a tomato based oil.  I actually kept eating it throughout the entire meal.


Fresh seafood platter filled with oysters, clams, mussels, shrimp, and scallops!


Corn and shrimp fritters.


Crudo – Fresh sashimi and citrus on top of a Himalayan salt plate.

IMG_4253Seared Ahi salad with pickled eggs.


Crab Louie Salad – Loaded with tons of crab + avocado = Heaven!


Lobster roll with fresh hot french fries.  I won’t go out on a limb to say it was comparable to the best I’ve found in Maine, but it was certainly respectable.  I loved the fries!


Seafood Cioppino – A rich tomato broth infused with squid, mussels, scallops, and clams.  My favorite were the scallops which were super tender.


Ribeye Cap Steak next to some fresh arugula and poached egg… excellent.  The steak was cooked perfectly medium rare and the reduction was rich in flavor.



We were so stuffed we actually had to pass up a traditional dessert (trust me, that takes a lot!).  But, Chef was kind enough to send us out some fresh pear and champagne sorbets to finish off the meal perfectly.

Finally, if you are getting married in SD anytime soon, you may want to check them out as a venue.  They have a beautiful space to host weddings and other special events.  As you can see, the spectacular view is one you or your guests would never forget.

All in all, we had a very memorable lunch.  Great food coupled with impeccable views and excellent service left us very satisfied.  They did a fantastic job with the remodel and I’d highly recommend coming by to check them out.  In fact, I need to make it back now for brunch again sometime soon.  Thanks to Andy and team for the experience!

Tom Ham’s Lighthouse
2150 Harbor Island Drive
San Diego, CA 92101 

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About Michael

I couldn't be luckier to call San Diego my home the past couple decades. America's "Finest City" is bursting with delicious eats in nearly every corner. Whether you want savory or sweet, fancy or rustic, you can have it all! I have the awesome job of uncovering some of these gems, and sharing them with you. When I'm not chowing down, I also write about $$$ at Thanks for stopping by!

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2 Comments on “Tom Ham’s Lighthouse”

  1. Wow! I was scrolling through all the food pics and starting thinking OMG did those two really eat all that! Surely a good sample! That salt plate is super cool! Beautiful location! I think brunch or lunch sounds like a WONDERFUL idea…

    1. Lynn, we could have used your help! It was a massive amount. The salt plate was neat. The longer the fish sits on the plate, the more salt it absorbed. So best not to leave them on there too long. 🙂 Cannot beat the views!

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