Ocean Avenue Seafood

Restaurant: Ocean Avenue Seafood

Location: 1401 Ocean Avenue. Santa Monica, CA 90401. 310-394-5669

Date: November 5, 2011

Cuisine: Seafood

Rating: Good, but overpriced


I’ve been going to Ocean Avenue Seafood for probably fifteen years, but while it was once a staple in our rotation it’s been a few years. OAS offers classic American seafood right above the bluffs overlooking the Pacific.

The have both an extensive ocean view covered patio and a clubby inside.

The menu.

Fresh baked sour dough bread.

A green salad.

A sampler of six various Pacific oysters with cocktail sauce, horseradish, and mignonette sauce. Each of these six were different, but all were good.

Their clam chowder. It’s not as goopy creamy thick as I ideally love, but it did have a nice bacony flavor.

Grilled salmon with mash potatoes and asparagus. Pinot noir reduction. My wife is a connoisseur of salmon, and she likes this one.

Lobster roll. The fries and slaw were good. And while this roll had lots of lobster it was somehow lacking in flavor.

Expresso so I can stay up through the movie we are going to see.

Overall Ocean Avenue Seafood has a lot of competition. Both the Blue Plate Oysterette and the Hungry Cat have very similar cuisine and are located nearby (the Blue Plate about a block away). Both are a little less expensive than OAS and a little more “modern.” OAS does have more different types of fresh fish if that’s your thing, they have 7-10 grilled fish at all times. Just depends what you want.

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Quick Eats: Coastal Flats

Restaurant: Coastal Flats

Location: 7860-L Tysons Corner CenterMcLean, VA 22102(703) 356-1440

Date: Nov 30, 2010

Cuisine: Southern Coastal American


This place is part of a small local chain of one-off’s. That is, each restaurant in  the group has a different name and menu. While they’re slightly commercial, they do a good job. Everything is tasty and reliable. Not innovative or fancy, but good. In a world dominated by chains the complete one-off restaurant is dying at the midrange level. In particular, they seem unable to secure leases in these coveted mall-type spaces. Probably the mall authorities are unwilling to take a risk. However, not all chains are totally evil — just most! — you know who you are Olive Garden et all!

The menu. Not so disimilar to the little non-chain Eastern Shore places I remember as a kid, just bigger and more internationalized.

Crab cakes, with cous-cous. I didn’t try the sandwich, but the cous-cous was very tasty, with a slighly sweet flavor.

A grilled salmon sandwich, not on the menu, but they improvised.

The lobster roll. This was GOOD. The corn was very sweet, and the lobster tender and fresh. The fries were excellent too.

The remains of the fried grouper my two-year-old enjoyed. He was particularly partial to the applesauce.

I love tartar and cocktail sauces with my fries. This tartar, i have to say, was one of the best I’ve had. There were capers, and an excellent lemony tang.

The flour-less chocolate waffle is awesome.

The commercial-style decor. Nothing wrong with it, but not a lot of character either. Service is always very good at these places, in that way that tells you they have a formal staff training program.