Kirbie's Cravings


Oceanaire Seafood Room
400 J St
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 858-2277

After a dismal experience at 1500 Ocean for restaurant week, Boyfriend and I looked forward to Oceanaire to redeem our faith in restaurant week.  Oceanaire is a favorite of ours.  My previous post on Oceanaire can be found here.  We actually discovered it before restaurant week was launched, but the way Oceanaire embraces restaurant week make us love Oceanaire even more.

We like to go to Oceanaire for restaurant week because we get the same excellent service, the same well proportioned entrees, the same quality food, and all for a much cheaper bill.

The one tiny complaint/criticism I have about Oceanaire during restaurant week is that they are always running behind.  I don't think I've ever been there and been seated right away.  There is always about a 15-20 minute wait from my reservation time.  But everything that happens after we are seated more than makes up for it.

Our visit to Oceanaire this time did not disappoint. After we were seated, we were presented the menu.  Most restaurants offer about 3 choices for restaurant week.  Not Oceanaire.  Everything that is in bold is part of restaurant week choices.  This includes about 7 appetizer choices (including their famous and pricey crabcake), 12 different entrees, and all their desserts.  To my despair, I forgot to bring my camera! So I had to rely on Boyfriend's iphone. I wish I had my camera to better capture the delicious and beautiful food that was presented to us.

The waiter gladly explained the restaurant week menu to us and told us that they are extending restaurant week an extra week (till the 25th for anyone who wants to go but didnt get a chance to this week). They do this every time, another thing I love.

Dinner started off with warm sour dough bread and this plate of vegetables and pickled herring.

Soon after we ordered, our appetizer arrived.  Oceanaire is famous for their crabcakes as I previously went into detail about.  Boyfriend and I love the crabcake so much that we never have been able to try any other appetizer.  At $15.95 for a single crabcake, it is quite expensive.  I love that Oceanaire offers it as part of their restaurant week menu.

The crabcake was as good as usual.  Oceanaire uses large lumps of the best parts of a crab, and doesn't use tons of bread crumbs and other fillings.  The sauce that accompanies the crab cake is delicious as well. 

Every time we have gone to Oceanaire, we have gotten consistently good service.  Despite being busy for restaurant week, service was still excellent.  The water glasses at Oceanaire are quite small, but they are constantly refilled.  It only takes a few gulps to finish a glass, but as Boyfriend pointed out that evening, his glass was never more than half empty. And it isn't just the attention, it is just the overall treatment.  Have you ever experience not so great service because you didn't order expensive wines and appetizers and stuff to go with your meal?  At Oceanaire, Boyfriend and I have always gotten great service no matter how much or how little we order.  Even when the table next to us might have ordered a hundred dollar bottle of wine, we still get equal treatment.  I love this about Oceanaire.

After we finished our crabcakes, we had barely waited more than ten minutes when our waitress appeared with bowls of clam chowder.  She explained that she was giving it to us because the entrees were going to take a few more minutes.  We were pleasantly surprised.  We hadn't even waited that long.  1500 Ocean didn't once check on us during our waits for our entree and dessert, much less give us something while we were waiting. 

I had never tried the clam chowder.  I thought there wasn't enough clam taste.  It had way too much bacon.  While I didn't enjoy it as much as the crab cakes, I did enjoy the very nice gesture and since it was free there was nothing much to complain about. 

As soon as we finished our soups, our entrees arrived!  I ordered the Kid Dynamite.  Which is a Mahi Mahi with a screaming rooster sauce.

The dish was so pretty.  I loved the orange and green sauces at the bottom.  The portions are also very generous.  Fish is very filling.  Every time I go, I can barely finish my entree after eating the crabcake, bread and vegetables.  The waiters always ask if we want a side dish.  We've tried some of the side dishes and enjoyed them but now we don't order them because we can never finish them.

I really enjoyed my entree.  The fish was very moist.  The outside was crispy.  The rooster sauce is spicy and tasty.

Boyfriend got the Seared Tombo Tuna.

We both liked the tuna but didn't enjoy the accompanying beans and other vegetables as much.

For dessert, I ordered the apple crisp.

Boyfriend got the espresso mousse.

We enjoyed both desserts.

At the end of the meal, our waitress again reminded us that they are extending restaurant week.  She also pointed out that their menu changes daily, so that you can have different choices on a second visit during restaurant week.  With so many different entree options and their daily changing menu, I guess you could technically go everyday for two weeks and get something different.  Pretty cool.

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2 comments on “Oceanaire”

  1. Hi Joanh- the desserts we had weren’t actually that huge. They were normal sized but good! I have had some desserts there that a huge; I guess it depends on the dessert you choose.

  2. that’s definitely great service.. you forgot to say how HUGE their desserts are! we were in awe