Let’s get real about San Diego restaurants: they can be a pain. If you’re feelin’ fancy enough to try a nicer place: a man in suspenders hands you a chalkboard with that day’s seasonal, hyper-local rabbit food options, and it ends up costing you an arm and a leg. If you don’t feel like going bankrupt for artisanal cabbage, your other options are greasy, hole-in-the-wall Mexican joints. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love a good burrito, but when it’s date night, you don’t want the morning after to require Pepto Bismol.

Instead, I took a date to East Village Tavern+Bowl on Friday night. They had a great menu – tons of options for you and your little lady. Stuff like healthier green salads and seared snapper and hearty, real man food like nachos, burgers, tots and more. I started the night strong with apps on apps on apps! A hefty platter of wings and a warm, jumbo Tavern Pretzel that came with an unbelievable beer-cheese sauce. I may have been a little too into the beer-cheese sauce.

Let’s talk ambiance. Some people like candlelight, but I prefer the comforting glow of Sportscenter. Luckily for me, Tavern+Bowl has a massive wall of TVs you can see from practically every spot in the restaurant. Ordering a brew at the bar? Check the game. Enjoying a meal with your babe in a booth? Sneak a peek at the score. Now, I’m not saying my date was boring, but sometimes you need to multi-task, and what better time than when she’s unloading about her diet while she’s chowing down on a Steakhouse Bacon Burger?

Everything was great, except maybe the actual date. Although that was probably my bad, maybe you’re not supposed to suggest a lighter beer. You can probably have a good night anywhere if you avoid calling your date fat. Since I was super stuffed from all the appetizers and a Grilled Meatloaf Stack sandwich, we didn’t end up bowling and I paid and sent her on her way. Did I mention the prices? No stress about breaking the bank. Next weekend maybe I’ll try again and treat her to some sweet, sugar-coated Tavern Balls.