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“Excellent Seafood in a stylish location”

Water Grill Santa Monica
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Ranked #7 of 696 Restaurants in Santa Monica
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $40
Cuisines: Seafood
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, 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
Reviewed July 19, 2014

There are few 'excellent' restaurants in Santa Monica. The Water Grill stands out for 3 reasons - excellent food, great location on Ocean Ave with sunset views and a stylish interior. Yes, this is a fairly large restaurant so it can be a little noisy and busy but this has never affected either the standard of food served or the service itself. The menu has regular specials and very seasonal fish choices. We choose to sit at the back of the restaurant along side the glassed in kitchen where we can choose to see the action going on in there or look out to the rest of the restaurant. The prime tables are towards the front of the restaurant where you can be seated alongside huge window that open up to views of the Ocean. Word if warning - yes the sunset can be amazing but it can also shine directly into your eyes over a 30 minute period as it starts to set!

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1  Thank Smelltheroses61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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654 - 658 of 919 reviews

Reviewed July 6, 2014

We were excited to be in Santa Monica finally and looked forward to a great meal out near the beach area. My husband had heard about Water Grill so we opted to dine here as a party of three and hoped/asked for a table with a view of some kind. We were told the empty ones by the front of the restaurant were being held for resos and that would be at least a one hour wait. So we took "whatever."

My husband ended up with a huge wooden post in front of him with a tall man to his right shoulder and a tall man to his left shoulder so that all three seemed boxed in. ( I would not have seated that set up as a host team. ) Kelly was busy at the time we were seated so it took a while to get things in motion, but once she did attend to us she was spot on with her service.

We enjoyed a half dozen of their sampler selection of oysters (Kelly's recommendations). The wedge salad was exceptional - all three of us sampled from this delightful combination of cold iceberg lettuce, blue goat cheese, and applewood bacon pieces. The bread that accompanies all dinners was fantastic - an asiago baked biscuit and a salt-topped pretzel bread with soft butter.

Unfortunately the cook time for our dinner - a shrimp ravioli and a cioppino - took an exceptionally long time (I guess about 35 minutes). So much that a manager ran it out to us as a proactive measure I believe. The shrimp on the ravioli was ok but a lot of work with the heads on them. The cioppino had the same thing - the prawns I know were in special from "somewhere" but I feel guests paying this much like to have the prawns without the eyes and soft head.

Overall - an okay experience for our usually easy to please group. Being sat in the back by the big pole with the worry of other patrons being bumped by you or backing into you kind of took away from some of the great things Kelly did as a server and the kitchen did with some of the food.

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1  Thank Beth B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 1, 2014

If you're looking for a quiet dinner, this isn't it. But the seafood is fresh & delicious, staff are attentive and helpful. Being across the street from the ocean means it gets crowded on nights/weekends, but its easy to make a reservation. Anywhere that serves good, fresh oysters and Pimm's Cup wins in my book.

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Thank Jimin Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2014

My wife and I had dinner here the other night. We wanted seafood and the menu looked good so we gave it a shot. One of the best impromptu travel dinner decisions we've ever made. Their crab cake appetizer was incredible. The best I've ever had. I had their halibut steak that was about 3" thick and about 10 oz. it was cooked to perfection and with a corn side that was excellent. My wife had their shrimp and thought it was also great. This restaurant has open windows and is right on Ocean avenue so you have a great view of the water and the pier. We're coming back here next time in L.A.

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Thank DJR1250
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 24, 2014

We came upon this restaurant by chance and glad we did. Food was great my husbands lobster roll was packed with lobster and my halibut was a lovely thick steak? Good service It was quite expensive but it was a nice treat to end our holiday on .

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

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