Restaurant Review: Point Break Cafe on Shelter Island

by on July 16, 2013 · 12 comments

in Ocean Beach, The Widder Curry

Point Break Cafe jc 01Point Break Cafe
2743 Shelter Island Dr
San Diego, CA 92106
(619) 758-9870

 “Doesn’t Anyone Use REAL Ham Anymore?”

Years ago our family patronized this restaurant site when it was the Boll Weevil. It was a favorite of ours, not because of the décor but because of the hamburgers and accompanying condiments on the table. After it closed down, we had several meals at the “Point Break” but it looked rather dingy to us and we were told that it was going to be remodeled. I have not been back for at least 4 years, but I heard that the Pt. Loma Democrats go there after their monthly Sunday meetings. Now that I have renewed my membership in the club I decided if it was good enough for them, it must be good enough for me. I asked my neighbor Jim and his friend Marilyn to join me and they were eager to try it out.

It could have been an omen, but when we walked in and seated ourselves, we were in front of one of the many televisions in the small restaurant. And you will never guess what channel was playing: Yep, FOX News. I sat with my back to it but both Jim and Marilyn got to watch it, even if they didn’t want to. (I will have to have a little talk with Susan, the President of the Pt. Loma Dems shortly!)

Point Break Cafe jc 02The next thing that caught our attention was a menu on the table entitled, “April’s Special Drinks.” Wait a minute – this was July 3rd. When our delightful waiter/owner (Kevin) came to the table we asked about April’s drinks and were relieved to find out that “April” is his girlfriend and it wasn’t an old menu!

There were several specials being offered – a Mexican Omelet – ham and cheese with a “homemade” Ranchero sauce; a special crepe, as well as two other offerings. The regular menu is very extensive with many different choices. Breakfast items start at $5.85 and the most expensive item on the menu was steak and eggs and $12.95. Although it was noon when we arrived, we all elected to have breakfast items.

Jim had the “Point Breakfast” at $7.45, which included “farm fresh eggs, (did not say how many); a choice of Hickory Smoked Bacon, Italian Breakfast Sausage, Louisiana Sausage or ham with grilled potatoes, hash browns, black beans, or refried beans and choice of toast.

Marilyn had the “Fun Breakfast” ($7.25) that consisted of eggs, bacon, and pancakes. Upon the recommendation of Kevin, I had the Mexican Omelet special over the Crepes. He said the Crepes were sweet, and he liked a more hearty breakfast. We passed up other omelets, griddle selections, Benedict’s, etc.

Point Break Cafe jc 03I wish I could say more positive things about the restaurant and food. Jim was disappointed because his “ham” was not a ham steak; rather it was ham that you would put in a sandwich. He said if he had known that he would have ordered a different meat. He said that everything was just average, including the potatoes that came with his order.

Marilyn was pleased with the way the bacon was cooked; crisp but not burned. She said that she wished the pancake syrup was warm, because putting the cold syrup on her pancakes turned everything cold. The continual refill of her decaf coffee was nice and she said the coffee was good.

I like Mexican food. This “Mexican” omelet was different than any other Mexican omelet I have ever tried. It was made with ham and cheese, and had a ranchero sauce on it. It was served with my choice of beans or potatoes; corn or flour tortillas. I chose the potatoes, and Kevin suggested the grilled potatoes rather than the hash browns. And, like Jim, I was disappointed with my meal too. It was not as hot as I would have liked it to be; the ham inside the omelet was sandwich ham rather than ham steak, and the ranchero sauce left something to be desired. It needed a little more spice to make it taste “Mexican.”

I turned down extra sauce when I was served, because I do not like to add things to my food when I am critiquing a restaurant. I should have asked for some later during the meal. I would have to say that the omelet was average, and that is stretching it a bit.

Point Break Cafe jc 04Kevin spent some time with us telling about the renovations he had done to the restaurant. He changed out the electrical wiring; put in a solar tube; painted both the inside and out, and yet, in my mind, it still looked like the Boll Weevil. He was unhappy that I didn’t see all of the rehabbing he did, and I am sure that he spent a fortune getting it up to code. Marilyn remarked to me that it smelled “smoky” – not cigarette smoky, but grilling smoky. It could have been unpleasant for some with a more sensitive nose.

There is something to be said about cleanliness. Marilyn went into the bathroom and came out telling me that she wished she had never gone into it at all. The bathroom floor where the commode is was filthy, or least it gave that appearance. There was tissue on the floor; the floor looked stained, etc. I think a new coat of paint – or new tiles could have eliminated it.

Point Break Cafe jc 05The sink was plugged up and water did not drain. I went in to check it out and concurred with her assessment. As we were leaving I took Kevin aside and told him of my concern. He said he would get on it immediately, and I believe him. He has at least three females working at the restaurant, and unless they have separate facilities from the customers they should have been aware of the conditions and reported it to Kevin.

I wish I could be more positive in this critique. I think if one is looking for an “average” meal, this place meets that requirement. If the Pt. Loma Dems meet there frequently, and have been doing so for awhile, there must be something more to offer than what I saw. They do have a bar; maybe that is the saving grace. (By the way – the pool table from Boll Weevil days is gone.) Will Jim and Marilyn return for a meal? They say “no”. If the Pt. Loma Dems are going for a drink I might join them, if for no other reason to check and see if the restroom is clean. I was truly disappointed today.

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar John Loughlin July 16, 2013 at 8:11 pm

I’ve had better luck with the breakfast menu, but I’ve never visited the restroom (and I’m not sure I will, now that I read this review). I’ve been there for Happy Hour on Sundays after the Point Loma Democratic Club meetings when the Arrogant Bastard pints are only $3. The staff are super friendly and they happily changed the TV channel to 60 Minutes the Sunday Hillary and Obama were featured! There’s an outside deck that is dog friendly, and the decor is suitably edgy for talking politics with craft beer.

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avatar Susie July 17, 2013 at 12:41 am

HI JUDI,
Well, So sorry you went there. I went there once, only once in 2009. OMG. Never again. So filthy. It was so unbelievable. I couldn’t fathom he would open like that. Every where needed a good cleaning. Dirt every where. Bathrooms looked like they should be condemed. There was 4 of us and all 4 of us have never been back. Yuk. And the food was tasting all the same. So, if it is now “improved,” you can just imagine. And all the tv’s were way too loud. Service was scetchy too. I wonder what the kitchen looks like.

I wonder what “grade” he has. (that picture of the bathroom made me ill to look at it) You can paint a floor and unclog the sink, hint hint, to the owner of the building.
When he was in business up on Scott st. ( i think)the food was passable. But @ the old weevil, it is just creepy. The place needs a good steam cleaning and muscle from a maid service.
Idea….before you go anywhere again, put it in the rag where you may go, several ideas, and then get input before you go. That way you will be forwarned! And possibly not get ill.
I got a severe case of food poisoning from a local salad place last summer and was in the hospital x 4 days. Very ill. It took 3 weeks to recover. I will never go there again. When I told them about my ordeal, they offered me a free coupon to return. HA. No thank you. I almost died from there. Restaurant Review may be hazardous to ones health !

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avatar judi curry July 17, 2013 at 10:02 am

Wow Susie! What a horrible experience you had at the Salad place. Did you report it to the Health Department? Do you know what you ate that caused the problem.

I really liked Kevin, the owner of the Pt. Break. I think the potential of being a good restaurant is there, but not there yet. The Pt. Loma Dems has a meeting scheduled in 2 weeks, and I have been asked to join a group going there after the meeting. I will be going – not as a “reviewer” but as an “interested party” and probably will only have a drink. I will report my findings as an addendum to this article.

Any place you would like to have reviewed – with me? Judi

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avatar Susie July 18, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Hey, I have a few ideas. Real busy now & trying to not eat out too much.
I’ll let you know .
Yes, I did report to Health Dept. Gave copies of my MR.
(medical record w/ all labs. I don’t know what happened.
I lost 14 lbs in 10 days. I almost…….(died)

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avatar judi curry July 18, 2013 at 2:31 pm

Let me know when you are ready!

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avatar Debbie July 20, 2013 at 9:04 am

Did you review Wonderland (the old Quiggs) yet? Just wondering if it’s a bar or restaurant and who it caters to.

Thanks for your RAG articles!

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avatar judi curry July 20, 2013 at 9:57 am

Thanks Debbie. Wonderland was just recommended to me last week. I will check it out in the next few weeks.

Judi

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avatar OB Dude July 17, 2013 at 7:33 pm

The bathrooms are a reflection of the kitchen and how the owners feels about their business. No towels, no soap…the cook and servers aren’t washing their hands!

Check the restroom before you sit down and if it’s dirty leave and let management know why. Maybe they will get the message….maybe.

How about bathroom reviews :-)

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avatar judi curry July 17, 2013 at 7:57 pm

Checking out the bathrooms first isn’t all that bad idea. Did you see my review of Miguel’s in Old Town in SanDiegoFreePress.org. That was a problem too. Thanks for the idea.

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avatar TC July 18, 2013 at 1:04 pm

I have lunch here pretty much once a week. The food is good and the prices are fair. I like the local vibe and April and Kevin are very cool and easy to talk to. Yeah the restrooms are a disaster, I’ll give you that. I don’t care what’s on the TV, I am there for the chow and good company.

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avatar Susan Peinado July 23, 2013 at 6:01 am

Judi, The Point Break was chosen to give members of our club a chance to discuss issues and events that are important to Democrats after our monthly meetings. We wanted a locally owned, small business, something that did not feel elite or off-putting, that younger people and those on fixed incomes could afford. The Point Break is close to our Talbot Street meeting location and has an authentic, friendly feel about it.

As for Fox news being on when you were there, it’s on everywhere, the tire store, the car dealership wait room, the airport lounges. Point Break has a scruffy male clientele base for sure, but most bars do. It’s our goal as Democrats to educate even the Fox crowd as to the importance of voting in their best interests, not Mr. Moneybags’ interest. The staff and owners have done their best to accomodate us with whatever we asked, as to the TV channel.

Another club member and I stopped in this past Sunday for lunch. I checked the bathroom and did not find it unclean. The women’s room was cute. The floor looks like a nonslip boating type surface, which April has assured me has been scrubbed and scrubbed with bleach and cannot get any better. They have plans to repaint it soon. It is too uneven for tile. The bathroom sink was clean and free flowing.

I order the crab cakes after the Sunday meeting and have found them delicious. It pains me to think that I have exposed a decent ownership team to criticism which is not warranted, and could actually hurt their business.

I do not personally like the sterility of a yuppified environment. Other club members differ. They prefer the standardization of chains or places that do not serve alcohol. It was just an experiment that we started very recently and that we may decide to discontinue.

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avatar judi curry July 23, 2013 at 6:40 am

Wow Susan! Did you think I went to the Point Break with a vendetta? I went with two other people and reported the situation as we saw it. I am happy to hear that the bathroom has been cleaned up. Kevin said he was going to get on it right away, and apparently the sink is now working. As for the floor – when we were there there was no way you could call it “cute”. It was, to put it bluntly, dirty. The floor was littered with toilet paper.

You have not “exposed a decent ownership team to criticism”. My role as a restaurant reviewer is to objectively report what I see. That is why I bring others with me. I, also, do not like chains, and prefer to patronize locally owned establishments, But I do not compromise my standards because I like an owner or want him to do well. What I write is what I see AT THAT TIME. That is why I am thankful for readers like you that will tell me that they see something different when I was there.

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