A good friend can name dive bars in any neighborhood in San Diego. I can name delis and donut shops.

And this is my favorite: VG Donut and Bakery in Cardiff-by-the-Sea. It’s one reason I put the Coast Highway chapter, Quintessential California in Joyrides Around San Diego.

I met an old friend there a couple of weeks ago and I can tell you it’s just as good today as it was when I first went there sometime around 1980. I was a just-out-of-college reporter at the now-defunct Del Mar News Press and our staff of four would head up the coast from the office (of course, next to the racetrack) to sample the local cuisine that we could afford on weekly newspaper salaries.

Over the years, I’ve dropped into VG’s all too infrequently. While Cardiff has gone upscale, the dumpy center where the shop is located is still, well, as dumpy as it was back in the day. Some things, like great donuts, never change.

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Explore San Diego County's backroads, beaches, mountains and deserts with Joyride Guru® and award-winning author Jack Brandais. Make them your San Diego day trip.
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