Town and Country

Taking in all of San Diego County

The 5 is a freeway we'd prefer to spend as little time on as possible.

Which is why we take trips to San Diego County rather than only the city itself (click here to see our itinerary).

San Diego is long on craft-beer-centric restaurants, but many of those beers are brewed in the northern part of the county; that area is home to San Diego's best farmland, too.

So jumping off the freeway just past Camp Pendleton can not only help alleviate road rage; it will allow you a taste of malty Schwarzbier and the ability to buy some of the most coveted strawberries in the state–which you'll likely devour before hitting the San Diego city limits.

Upscale beer-and-sausage joints have proliferated in San Diego proper since long before Los Angeles became obsessed with that dining approach. And those extra years of stuffing meat into casings shows in the texture of the numerous links, both fresh and cured, that we tried on a recent visit. We ate one of the best chicken sausages–never our link of choice–we've ever had at a North Park spot, and picked up San Diego County salumi and wines from a locally minded market.