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“Excellent experience”

Water Grill Santa Monica
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Ranked #9 of 691 Restaurants in Santa Monica
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $40
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Breakfast, Reservations
Neighborhood: Santa Monica
Description: For over 20 years, Water Grill has sated the palates of fish lovers. From the moment it opened, this flagship downtown restaurant from King's Seafood Company has satisfied the need for a world-class fish eatery in Los Angeles. Hailed as "the best seafood in Southern California" by the internationally recognized Zagat Guide, Water Grill has consistently offered dazzling fish preparations of superior quality and freshness
Airdrie, Alberta
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Excellent experience”
Reviewed March 29, 2014

On a recent trip to Santa Monica we found ourselves looking for a place to eat along Ocean Ave.
Tired from a long flight and hungry for something that was better than average, we found ourselves at the Water Grill.
We were greeted promptly as we entered. We asked to view the menu and the gentleman at the door was eager to explain the vaious selections on the menu.
That was what prompted us to ask for a table.
We were seated immediately and from that point on everything was superb.
The food, drinks and service were exceptional. So much so that we went back again the two days later for dinner again.
Considering the nubmer of restaurants in the area and the fact we were only in Santa Monica for three nights, that says something.

On the first visit my wife had the Fijian Albacore Tuna Nicoise Salad, and I had Wild Pacific Swordfish.
The next visit was clams, mussells, and oysters. You can never eat too many fresh oysters.
The oysters were outstanding and our waiter took the time to explain the different varieties available.

If you do not visit this restaurant while in Santa Monica, you are going to be missing out on a real treat.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank pdmcgoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
New York, NY
Level 6 Contributor
427 reviews
276 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 214 helpful votes
“great food and service; wonderful place”
Reviewed March 25, 2014

We ate in Santa Monica at the Water Grill, and our waiter, Adam, was helpful and efficient.
The food was spectacular. We started with a couple of the salads and a uni on toast, and for mains my wife had cioppino with shrimps, crab and lobster and a wonderful tomato based sauce and I had the best black cod with miso ever. Dessert was a pear financier that was the best ending to a meal we have ever had. The bread was wonderful, especially a second serving that had cheese baked into it. A wonderful experience.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank annbury
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level 5 Contributor
84 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“A bit more like a bar than a restaurant”
Reviewed March 23, 2014

We were a bit disappointed to be honest.

I haven't been to the Downtown version and was advised that we would get a sea view at this restaurant so travelled quite a distance. When we arrived for dinner we couldn't see the ocean at all There is no formal dining room, it's more like a bar surrounded by tables. I asked to be seated upstairs in the dining room and found that the open plan ground floor was it, there is no upstairs and no view. Servers were wearing jeans, I felt like a bit of fool dressed for dinner.

However, if you're looking for a lively bar with a great wine list then I can highly recommend this spot.

Service was very nice, no complaints on that front and the servers were helpful in explaining the menu and checking on our table.

On to the dinner. I ordered fish, which was kind of bland and forgettable. Triple cooked chips were burnt, when I pointed this out to the server the said they were supposed to look that was and were triple cooked for crispiness. Honestly they just tasted burnt and I sent them back. Maybe just cook them twice? Three times seems a bit unnecessary.

My friends ordered shellfish platters which were much much better. The oysters were delicious and came with a great selection of sauces, we tried sea urchin which we haven't had before. The lobster was a little chewy but was tasty.

If I was staying in Santa Monica I might drop by for a couple of drinks and a light dinner one night but it's not really somewhere to go for a special occasion.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Esme99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
99 reviews
72 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“A little Dissapointed”
Reviewed March 20, 2014

Our first time here after having dined at the original downtown outpost on several occasions.
We came for lunch and while most things were OK it did not live up to a higher expectation that I had as world class type of rest. which can be said of the L.A. location.
I found the layout odd as it did not utilize the ocean views to its advantage. The window banquettes were against the inner wall thus the view was into the rest. rather than towards the ocean. Staff were nice but maybe a little less than crisp.
As for food: Oysters very, very, good. Chilled shrimp-average. Manilla clams-not good, thick cream and bacon sauce rather than a traditional broth base. Sea bass and Halibut very, nice as was the coleslaw, fries looked better than they tasted.
Good wine list plus no corkage fee!!
Desserts of cheesecake and bread pudding were good and in particular the salty caramel ice-cream which accompanied one of them.
Overall as stated good, particularly if in the area, however, would not make it a destination but would definitely give it a second chance.
BTW, after we ate we strolled around the area and then when returning for the car, ($8 valet w/ validation) stopped back in to use the restroom when our server saw me and advised we left our credit card behind. Since they have our phone #, why not call upon first learning?

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank alwyscllct
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Energetic Delight”
Reviewed March 17, 2014

The food was fantastic with outstanding culinary preparation options. We completely enjoyed the wait staff---they were WONDERUL! It is located right next door to THE GEORGIAN HOTEL-where we stayed! Awesome!

Visited March 2014
Thank TampaFamily5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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