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A voyage for great Westside seafood

One of the best things about living in Los Angeles is being able to eat fresh and delicious seafood. Our food contributor Josh Fried went on a voyage to find some of the best seafood spots around L.A., from shacks to Michelin-rated eateries. Some are more expensive than others, but these five are worth casting a net for.

Malibu Seafood
Head up north on the Pacific Coast Highway towards Malibu and past Pepperdine University and on the righthand side, you’ll come up to a structure and a sign with a lobster on it. Malibu Seafood is a fresh fish market and patio cafe that is always packed for a reason: it’s a haven for the freshest fish in the city.

The menu consists of simple crowd pleasers: fresh fish like halibut and salmon; shellfish like shrimp, crab legs and lobster. All dinners come with sides, like rice pilaf and award-winning cole slaw. Go for the fish and chips, which are perfectly crisp and not greasy. And order a side of their famous thick clam chowder whether it’s chilly out or not. If you get there early enough to beat the lines, you’ll find seating on three different levels and a get a grand view of the sunset.

Tip: Tables are all outside so bring your own tablecloth, fun napkins, and plastic glasses for a picnic. Adults, BWOW (wine) as they don’t serve alcohol.

Malibu Seafood is located at 25653 Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu




Santa Monica Seafood
This one-time wholesaler, with 75 years of seafood experience, turned into one of Santa Monica’s best casual restaurants. They do the classics right. This open and airy Santa Monica restaurant serves a killer Cioppino, a seafood stew is light and delicious. Want to feel like you’re on a dock in Maine looking at a lighthouse? Then order the Lobster Roll. The succulent and sweet lobster is tossed in a light mayo and lemon juice. The traditional New England split top roll is toasted to perfection and sweet and chewy with every bite. This treat is accompanied by a perfectly balanced coleslaw and french fries that are crispy with just the right amount of salt. There are not many non-seafood dishes, but you can get pasta and chicken tenders for the little ones.

Tip: If you’re not lucky enough to stay and enjoy the atmosphere, you can always get some beautifully fresh fish to cook at home. If you are dining in, get there early because seating is limited and they don’t take reservations.
Santa Monica Seafood is located at 1000 Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica.

Playa Provisions
This bright and beachy hot spot comes from the team behind its wildly popular neighbor The Tripel.


The food has an East Coast  flavor with a twist from “Top Chef” runner-up Brooke Williamson. For starters, order the shrimp cocktail and you will be rewarded with juicy shrimp accompanied by three different cocktail sauces to mix and match flavors.

Continue with Williamson’s take on the Lobster Roll, which is tossed in Old Bay spiced mayo, and then dressed with fresh potato chips, spicy mustard seeds, and celery salt. It is love at first bite with this creative take on a classic fish sandwich.



Land lovers should go for the classic patty melt: An Angus beef patty, perfectly toasted marble rye, white cheddar, and the mustard aioli.






Make room for dessert because they have their own ice cream parlor! My favorite is the homemade bubblegum ice cream, which is worth taking the plunge for.
 Tip: During the week Playa Provisions is only open for dinner but you can get all-day takeout at the counter called King Beach, conveniently located on the same property.
Playa Provisions is located at 119 Culver Boulevard in Playa Del Rey


Santa Monica Yacht Club
A little down the coast in sunny Santa Monica, you’ll see four yacht flags adorn wooden walls. The flags are S M Y C, short for Santa Monica Yacht Club. This Santa Monica seafood restaurant is the new sister to Tar & Roses.
Try the grilled octopus with banana raita for an unbelievable taste explosion in your mouth. Land lovers can try perfectly cooked and crisp lamb with carrot harissa, which is like a flavor trip to New Delhi. There are two desserts that change nightly, but the one standard is the deconstructed Key Lime pie with lime curd, graham cracker crumbled in the middle, and topped with toasted lime marshmallow. My mouth is watering just writing this.
Tip: SMYC’s general manager Jeff Swarthout is lovely and accommodating. Ask him anything and he will do his very best to satisfy your needs.
Santa Monica Yacht Club is located at 620 Santa Monica Boulevard in the old Labotte space.

On a sleepy corner of Melrose lies this tranquil, marine oasis. This one’s not exactly on the westside but deserves to be on any L.A. seafood list. Providence is often considered the best restaurant in the city, and has two highly-coveted Michelin stars. What was once Joachim Splichal’s famed Patina restaruant is now adorned with ceramic sea shells and fishing netted light fixtures.The space is relaxing with beautiful lighting and comfortable plush seating. The service is friendly yet professional. The owner, Donato Poto is a lovely entertainer, and often seen plating succulent spot prawns tableside. Chef Michael Cimarusti is a culinary wizard. Dishes are seasonal and focused on the freshest seafood the country has to offer.
Wonderful Naked Cowboy Oysters are served with a consume of cocktail sauce, which is slight and refreshing.
Wild King Salmon is served over a bed of almonds, morels, and fava.
The Santa Barbara Spot Prawns are succulent and juicy, served with tomato and bronzed fennel. This is place is pricey but completely worth it.

Providence is located at 5955 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles

Article Name
A voyage for great Westside seafood
Our food writer goes on a voyage to find five remarkable restaurants for seafood lovers, from shacks to Michelin-starred.

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