We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“pricey, but good”
Review of Starfish

Starfish
Ranked #19 of 177 Restaurants in Laguna Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $36
Cuisines: Asian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Montage Resort Drive & Pacific Coast Hwy.
Description: The tastefully provocative STARFISH LAGUNA is located directly across from the Montage Resort, home to one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. This gem of a restaurant is located in the heart of the Aliso Creek Shopping Center off Pacific Coast Highway, South Laguna Beach. From the moment you enter STARFISH , you will feel transported to an exotic wonderland of Coastal Fusion. The menu features Asian Fusion cuisine, highlighted with ingredients from Thailand, Vietnam, China, Korea, and Japan. From delectable fish fresh from the sea, to savory and enticing beef, chicken and vegetable dishes, STARFISH has something to excite every palate. Delightfully unpredictable, the menu will pleasure your palate with tastes of Ginger, Lemon Grass, Thai Basil, Jasmine, Daikon, Thai curries and soy sauces. Summer rolls, pho, udon noodles, coconut rice, wok sauté, ribs and other chef's expressions of American renditions of classic Asian cuisine will be served. Equally as enticing as the menu is the ambience. STARFISH is destined to enchant with exciting contrasts of deep, vivid colors of the sea with those of radiant sunset skies. Tufted banquettes in luminous soft turquoise sensuously welcome guests, while sultry black lacquered tables and chairs complement the lush decor. The elegant, horseshoe-shaped STARFISH bar further welcomes you as it takes center stage. Muddled libations flavored with tarragon, ginger, coconut, lemongrass and mango will be prepared as you observe. Asian mojitos, martinis, sakes, craft and imported beers, and boutique wines are served to excite your palate.
Reviewed April 27, 2012

We took our young teenagers here for my husbands birthday dinner in late April on a Friday nite - res booked thru open table @ 7:15. We were seated immediately and greeted with a "happy 'bday" from the hostess. We were seated a high bistro height table right next to and in the bar area, which I think was a weird choice of the restaurant since we were with the kids, but it was okay. Food is ordered family style, but we acted like we had 4 more people with us and ordered way too much food primarily because it all looked so yummy. they have lots of small plates and appetizers so it's easy to order a lot. We had the spring rolls which I would skip next time cuz they were nothing special, the peking pork wraps, chicken lettuce wraps, cucumber salad, shaking beef, garlic noodles and some kind of ribs. Besides the spring rolls, everything was delicious and tasty, with just enough spice. The ribs took forever for some reason, but the waiter gave us the chef's apologies but did not comp them, even tho it was the first item we ordered and it was the last (after we were stuffed ) item to arrive. the service was a little slow for my taste, but good nonetheless. I would have preferred to have been seated away from the noisy bar and everyone and their brother walking by. Next time I will ask for a table away from the bar area. Overall it was good but pretty pricey. I found the cuisine to be similar to Slanted Door in San Fran if you have ever been there...sort of pan asian. I'll go back for lunch next time and order less food! ps....loved the coconut rice!!!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank 949kbunk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (184)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

168 - 172 of 184 reviews

Reviewed April 17, 2012

Very good Asian Fusion. The chilean sea bass was one of the best I have ever had. Perfect portions for family style dining but no leftovers. Left feeling just right and not guilty. I can't wait to go back.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Dsg92688
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2012

The convenient yet ordinary shopping center exterior in no way prepares you for the Incredible interior setting of Starfish. Beautifully designed, this gem of a restaurant is worth visiting for the ambience alone, and yet the asian coastal cuisine is fantastic. From small plates to mains, I have yet to find a dish that is less than superb. And moderately priced with very attentive service. Several signature drinks are worth trying. Across from The Montage Resort in South Laguna Beach, this is definitely worth getting out of the house!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank RushRelax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 27, 2012

Starfish is a wonderful restaurant. It is gourmet Asian cuisine that is affordable. The small plates are so delicious and allow you to try many different dishes. The Kobe beef tacos and fried rice were awesome! The staff is great....and Nancy the owner is wonderful. The outside of the restaurant is deceiving.....once inside the atmosphere is cozy and comfortable. A great place for an intimate dinner or out with friends. The bar scene is nice too....and not too loud. We love it there!:)

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank shrink711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 29, 2012

I had high expectations for Starfish based on my visits to its step-sister restaurant (Tabu Grill) but I wasn't impressed on either of my two visits. I think it's a case of trying too hard to be innovative at the cost of food that isn't very satisfying to eat. The concept is admirable, but the execution isn't really there. Some examples: the crispy spring rolls were greasy and kind of flavorless, the wok thai chicken was tough, and the ahi poke had some strange flavors. The decor is impressive and staff is great, but that doesn't really make for a great dining experience if the food isn't happening. Maybe I didn't order the right stuff, but I don't think I'll be going back.

1  Thank murray9000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Starfish also viewed

Laguna Beach, Orange County
Laguna Beach, Orange County
 
Laguna Beach, Orange County
 

Been to Starfish? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing