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“Great for Happy Hour” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Rockin' Baja Oceanside Harbor

Rockin' Baja Oceanside Harbor
258 Harbor Drive S., Oceanside, CA 92054
(760) 967-6199
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Ranked #34 of 317 Restaurants in Oceanside
Price range: $9 - $34
Cuisines: Mexican, Seafood
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Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Bar scene
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Find the lighthouse!
Redmond, Washington
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Great for Happy Hour”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2013

We were staying at the nearby Worldmark Wyndham and ate here twice. The first time was for a late lunch/happy hour. The setting at the harbor under a lighthouse was kind of touristy but cute. Margaritas were great as were the bar food apps. Try the calamari. Served with two dipping sauces - a great sweet chili and a ranch-type one. They have an all you can eat free chips/salsa bar. The mango salsa was to die for. We came back for dinner at around 9:00 another night. The place had mostly cleared out and we sat outside. There was an NFL football game blaring on the speakers which ruined the atmosphere. Why don't they keep the sound loud inside in the bar where people are actually watching the game and turn it down outside? It was Thursday night, so not like Sunday or Monday night when you'd expect a football crowd. Dinner food was pretty good and prices were great because it was late night happy hour. I had grilled mahi mahi tacos. Service was freindly and attentive.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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162 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    47
    64
    32
    11
    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Good food but watch your bill!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013 via mobile

We've eaten here several times. The food is always good & the service prompt. The problems are very weak drinks and you HAVE to watch your bill for up-charging of them. The server will tell that a specific tequila is a special for $3 a shot/drink, but when you get your bill, it's $7.50 each!

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Mexico
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“fun place,more than decent food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2013

maybe if you have been coming here for years, as some of the reviews mention, you would be disappointed by the food and prices. for us, our fist time there as a vacationer in Oceanside, we were pleased with the relaxed harborside atmosphere on a Friday night of Labor Day weekend. we had to wait for a table but it wasn't too long, and no longer than they had anticipated. They texted us when our table was ready so we had the freedom to wander the docks and watch the sunset where we were comfortable.

We shared a lobster & shrimp bucket for 2, which was way more food than the 2 of us could eat. the lobster was a bit disappointing, only because they considered a half tail as "1" lobster when I had asked how many it contained,. So we got 6 "halves" which were delicious! the shrimp was abundant, very large, and perfectly seasoned and cooked. Again, way too many for the 2 of us.

Okay, the wine list is terrible, but this isn't the place to go for wine (there is a wine bar next door, I believe). so they took my glass back and replaced it with a GREAT! shaker margarita. The price was right on the beer and margaritas.

the service was somewhat uninspired, and I had to wait forever to get a glass of water during my meal. They had never brought it earlier, nor asked if we wanted it. Indeed, my husband finally got up to get me a glass when I could wait no longer. so we took their insipid service into account, of course, in our tip; which is the positive side of a tipping culture. I would not pan the restaurant for their service (though they should perhaps train them better or hire more). But the service staff was pleasant enough, even with their negligence on water and some follow-up.

the salsas at the chips and salsa bar - included!!!- was WONDERFUL! and might be the reason we could not finish our bucket:-) they have a great corn salsa I have never had elsewhere ( and I am from Arizona New Mexico, and lived several years in Mexico). and the others were all delicious, ranging from mild to very hot. what a treat!!!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Henderson, Nevada
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Just OK”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2013

We ate here the first night of our vacation and walked to the Harbor from North Coast Village. The place was busy but we did get a table outside. It was a bit late for dinner so we ended up ordering a few appetizers. We had the Lobster bites, they were just average, couldn't really taste much lobster because of all the batter, the sauce served with them was very good, sort of a Chipotle remoulade. We also had the Crab stuffed Chilis and they were not very good, the Chili was hard as a rock and the filling was okay but really didn't taste any crab. We shared a bowl of the Lobster Corn Chowder which was also okay, nothing wrong with it but nothing great about it either. It's possible we ordered the wrong thing, they are known for their "buckets" which we saw a lot people order and they looked good but they are pretty pricey. My overall impression of this place is that it's a tourist place that serves mediocre food that's a bit overpriced. Probably would not go back.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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San Diego, California
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“End of a Long Tradition!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2013

I just returned from a trip to Carlsbad to see family. I'm originally from the area but relocated 8 years ago due to my career. My wife, kids and I visit usually twice a year and every time we go we always meet old friends for dinner at Rockin Baja. I'm afraid this past visit will prolly be the last. Out of our group of 10 most of us were disappointed. My wife and I split the Big Baja Bucket and the shrimp were okay but the lobster tails, which I pay a price for, were terrible. I remember a day when those tails would come pre-slit and a big chunk of meat attached just waiting for some butter. I damn near ripped my fingers up fighting to get the meat out and for what? A tiny chunk of something? What happened? The chicken was fatty not like the usual big chunk of white we've always gotten before.
I'm not sure what happened here but it appears the quality has gone down but the price sure hasn't!
I'm giving my rating of Poor only because of the food. The staff were great as usual and they shouldn't have to suffer but I'm sorry to say I think the next time were in town and we meet our group of friends for dinner its going to be someplace else.
Goodbye Ol RB. We had a good run!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
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