The Oceanaire

August 20, 2010 § 8 Comments

The Oceanaire is one of our favorite restaurants, especially for celebrations. For our anniversary dinner, we started off with some oysters on the half shell. The Oceanaire usually has a good variety of oysters, at least we’ve always enjoyed them. We’re no experts on oysters but we sure can put them back, well maybe not at the caliber of Kirk and his Missus.  It was really hard for me to choose from the 12 different ones on the menu but our wonderful waiter, Eugene, asked if he could pick 6 of them for us. I gladly agreed with one condition that one of them be the Kumamoto. Here’s what he brought us. I’ll try my best to describe their flavor.

Starting from the top right (there’s two of each): Fanny Bay (creamy, a little sweet, not very briny), Blackberry (very meaty, most briny of the bunch, slight metallic taste), Blondes (creamy, slightly briny), Buckley Bay (comparable to Fanny Bay, a little more briny and metallicy), Luna (these were also on the creamy side, not as sweet as FB), Kumamoto (sweet, creamy, clean tasting).  Eugene also paired a Pinot Grigio Pighin Friuli to go with our meal and the oysters. It did a nice job of cleaning the palates between oysters. What was really nice about the selection was that none of them had a muddy taste, which I don’t care for. All had fairly clean taste, some more than others, such as the Kumamotos. Eugene explained that he picked a few that were a bit more briny to give the palate a variety of flavors, some subtle. We thought he did an excellent job and ordered another dozen. In truth, I probably could have had even another dozen after that. We enjoyed these so much that we’re still talking about it.

Surprising our waiter as to how fast we inhaled both plates of oysters, he asked if he should take our dinner order. Sure, we could eat! He gave us several recommendations. One recommendation was the “Kid Dynamite” Blue Crab Crusted Alaskan Ling Cod with Sake and Soy Poached Bok Choy with Screaming Rooster Sauce.  I decided to get this and wooboy was this good!

The cod was tender and the edges were a bit crispy, giving a nice texture contrast. And that blue crab topping was to die for, really good with the cod. The Rooster Sauce wasn’t screaming but it had a nice flavor with the mildest of heat. I thoroughly enjoyed this.

Eugene’s other recommendation was the “Black and Bleu” Fijian Opah Moonfish ”Dirty” with Caramelized Onions and Blue Cheese Butter but he recommended the wild Coho Salmon instead of the moonfish. The Mister decided to go with this recommendation.

I tried a little bit of this and I don’t know how it would have tasted with the moonfish but it was fantastic with the salmon. The slightly sweet reduction really enhanced the sweetness of the Coho salmon. And that blue cheese butter was so good. The Mister ate the whole thing.

As for the sides, we decided to get just one since we had wanted to save a little room for dessert. I chose my favorite, the cream corn. Oceanaire makes the best cream corn I’ve ever had. Love love love it.

Since we were there for a special occasion, we got the complimentary dessert, the Baked Alaska, as part of our meal. We had seen it being brought to another table while we were having our oysters and I mentioned to the Mister that I had wanted to try one since I’m a big fan of flambe desserts. I’m sorry to say that I didn’t get a chance to take a picture of it before it was sliced in half and served to us and it wasn’t until we were half way through that I realized it. Who wants to see a messy half eaten Baked Alaska. Oceanaire’s version had a mix of liqueur but Chambord was the only one I remembered. Probably because I like Chambord. The ice cream was vanilla with what seemed to be little bits of chocolate. It was really good with the meringue. A nice finish to a great meal. The Mister said this was one of the best meals we’ve had in a long time and Eugene certainly played a big part. Thanks Eugene and Oceanaire for a very memorable dinner.

Hope everyone has a great weekend. It’s going to stay hot here in San Diego.

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§ 8 Responses to The Oceanaire

  • mike says:

    Looks like a great dinner – happy anniversary!

  • Kirk says:

    Say what…. only a dozen???!! ;o) I recently tried something called “endless summer”, which was really good! Happy anniversary!

    • CAB says:

      Thanks Kirk! I know, kind of whimpy. But we wanted to make sure we were still hungry for our entries. I even only had one slice of bread just in case. Was it locally that you had endless summer?

  • sawyer says:

    lol at kirk’s comment. happy anniversary to you two! nice to see another person’s take on the place, and man i could really go for some oysters right now….do you like them briny or more mild/creamy?

    • CAB says:

      Haha, I know. I usually can eat about 2-3 dozen with no problem, maybe more if that’s all I’m eating. I typically prefer creamy, clean tasting oysters. Briny is okay but not if it’s briny and very metallicy. I like Kirk’s description of a clean cucumber steak taste. It’s a good thing we’re going again soon for the Mister’s b-day.

  • dennis says:

    Super useful descriptions of all the oysters CAB! Oh, and happy anniversary! I’ve been wanting to visit Oceanaire for a long time and never got the chance. Typical fried food me, I heard their crab cakes were good..

    • CAB says:

      Thanks Dennis! The Mister loves the crab cakes at Oceanaire. He says it’s the best he’s ever had, just enough filler to bind but mostly crab. They have happy hour and a bar menu too. We’ve always wanted to pop down there on a week night to eat at the oyster bar but it’s tough getting down there before it ends.

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