Restaurant Review : Blue Water Seafood in Ocean Beach

by on June 18, 2019 · 4 comments

in Ocean Beach

Restaurant Review

Blue Water Seafood Market and Grill
5083 Santa Monica Ave., Suite 1B
Ocean Beach, CA 92107

By Judi Curry

I bet that I have received over 15 calls from neighbors in the past four weeks asking me if I had done a review of the “Blue Water” restaurant yet.  Even though they have been established in another area, I still wanted to wait before trying it out.  Today was the day! I called Candy and Irene and asked them if they wanted to join me and we were there shortly after they opened the doors  at 11:00 am.

I have to start this review by saying that the food was very good; that the service was excellent; and even though there was a big “screw up” we enjoyed everything we had to eat and can’t wait until we go again to try the other things on the menu.

And talking about the menu – it is really extensive – but if you don’t like fish don’t bother going there. The only items on the menu that are not fish based are on the “Kids Menu” – chicken taco, grilled cheese sandwich and chicken strips.

There are seafood cocktails, soups from scratch, raw oysters, “off” – and “on” the grill, sashimi appetizers as well as “regular” appetizers; and a whole slew of specials.  As an example of the specials, there is Ahi or Salmon poke; Beer-battered tacos; Cioppino; Shrimp taco’s; Tuna Melt, etc.

Shrimp Taco. All photos by Judi Curry.

Additionally there is local beer on tap as well as Mexican beer and specialty beers, wines from “Family Estate Wineries,” and regular drinks.

There are several preparation choices – after choosing the type of fish you want, you then choose a marinade and then select the way you want it cooked.  There are sandwiches, salads, plates or tacos.

To make things even more tempting, the “fish market” as you come in the door has a tempting array of fresh fish for sale that gives you a picture of what will be served to you.  The combinations that are available are also unique – under “Beer-Battered Tacos” you have your choice of Lobster, Scallops or Cod.  Under “Fish and Chips” you have your choice of Alaskan Cod or Red Snapper, with the Red Snapper served either grilled or fried, but the Alaskan Cod is only served fried.

Enough about the menu – trust me when I say that there is a huge selection for the fish lover.

Irene only likes white-fleshed fish.  The three of us looked over the menu and I suggested to her that she get the red snapper taco ($5) which is served on a warm corn tortilla with cabbage, tomatoes, onions, cheddar cheese, homemade white sauce and, for 50 cents more, avocado is added.  We also discussed the possibility of having a tuna melt – I had seen her order one of them at a different restaurant. The tuna melt on the menu was described as albacore, with cheddar cheese on a grilled sourdough bread with tomato.  The price was $9 and for $1.00 more, avocado could be ordered.

Clam Chowder

Candy and I were discussing our orders with each other when Irene placed her order at the counter.  We assumed (shame on us) that she ordered the red snapper taco, and, unfortunately, that is what she thought she ordered also.

Candy ordered the three mini beer- battered shrimp tacos, topped with cabbage, tomatoes, onions, white sauce and cheddar cheese served on a corn tortilla with a side of tomatillo sauce for $8.75.

I ordered the Beer-battered scallop taco ($6.50) that was also topped with cabbage, tomatoes, onions, white sauce and cheddar cheese, served on a flour tortilla with a side of tomatillo sauce.  I also ordered a cup of “homemade New England Clam Chowder” for $3.95 and a glass of lemonade for $2.

And then the fun began…..

Irene found us a table in the outside patio and was seated before Candy and I had ordered.  Candy was second to go out and I followed.

Scallop Taco

We were all seated when the first order appeared.  It was, obviously, taco’s, and it was placed in front of Irene.  Candy asked if that was the shrimp taco plate she ordered, but the server did not hear her and since it was placed in front of Irene, and we thought she had ordered the Red Snapper taco, we told her to just go ahead and eat so it didn’t get cold.

In the meantime, the clam chowder was delivered to me and Candy and I wanted to share it.  It was delicious.  Filled with large clams, it was hot enough, tasty enough, and creamy enough  to make us wish that we had ordered a bowl instead of a cup. Meanwhile,  we encouraged Irene to eat her taco while we ate the soup.

Then my order of a scallop taco was delivered and  Candy suggested that I eat it and not wait for her order to arrive.  It was different – had never had a scallop taco before, and although it was very tasty, I think the next time I would just order the scallop plate without the cabbage and tomatoes.  There were 4 scallops, fairly good size, in the taco.

red snapper taco

And then – the server came to the table with a tuna melt and started to put it down in front of Candy.  Candy quickly told her that she did not order a tuna melt; that she ordered the three shrimp taco plate.  The server looked puzzled – I am sure we all did – and said that the tuna melt was on our order, but she would go check it out.  (We later found out that this was her first day on the job and wasn’t quite sure how to handle our problem.)

While waiting for her to check the order, Irene stated that she really didn’t like the red snapper taco; it just didn’t taste right to her.  I looked at it and it began to dawn on me that it didn’t look like red snapper.  In fact, it looked suspiciously like shrimp – like the shrimp that Candy ordered.  I asked Irene to check the receipt that she had, and guess what?  She was charged for a “tuna melt.”  Somewhere between the time that she decided to order the red snapper taco and the time she walked up to the counter, she must have changed her mind and ordered the tuna melt.

In the meantime, the server was back with the tuna melt and didn’t quite know what to do with it.  Candy said not to worry; she liked tuna melts and she would take it.  And then – the manager, Courtney, joined our comedy team and we finally were able to put all the pieces together.  She told Candy that she would be glad to get her another order of the shrimp taco; Candy said she was fine with the tuna melt – which, by the way, turned out to be very tasty.

OB’s fish market

Then Courtney offered Irene anything that she wanted.  Irene said she was okay.  She doesn’t like shrimp, and even though she ate one of the taco’s she was no longer hungry.  However, Courtney prevailed, and, in the long run, fixed a red snapper taco for Irene to take home.  Candy took home half of the tuna melt, and the rest of the shrimp tacos, and we had another fun experience to talk about on the ride home.

It goes without question that the meals were very good. It is nice to have a fresh fish restaurant/ market in the neighborhood.  The service was wonderful; the view was spectacular.  Even the restroom ranked an A+ for cleanliness.  We all stated that we wanted to go back sometime; that there are many things on the menu that are appealing, even to Irene who is not a true aficionado of fish.

Welcome to Ocean Beach, Blue Water.  So glad you are here.


{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

judi curry June 18, 2019 at 12:45 pm

Went back to look at buying some fresh fish but the lobby was so full of people placing orders that it was almost impossible to see the case of fish. Perhaps a slight change of design is necessary.


ZZ June 18, 2019 at 4:24 pm

I’ve been there about five times and liked every bite. The interior seating is my only small complaint: it is too loud between the music and echoing of people’s voices. But the outdoor seating is better anyway!

I also got the impression they are a little disorganized, but that’s to be expected in a new place that is instantly popular. I asked that my fish taco be cooked rare (for a type of fish that is safe completely raw), and that resulted in multiple back-and-forths between me, the server, and the kitchen.

For how good the food and location is, and big portions, the prices are very reasonable. For example, Bay Park Fish Co. has a similar concept, no ocean view, but higher prices.


Carolynn Freitas June 18, 2019 at 7:40 pm

We have throughly enjoyed Blue Water Grill located in
Ocean Beach feet away from the beautiful Pacific Ocean.
As fish aficionados , we have yet to have any dish we haven’t
throughly enjoyed.
Taco Tuesday and Happy Hour are also a very great addition .
Stop by and enjoy a true seafood extravaganza at affordable
John & Carolynn Freitas


Frank Gormlie June 19, 2019 at 11:22 am

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