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“Great off season meal”

Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Bar scene, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Reservations
Description: Sea Ranch Restaurant has been serving South Padre Island visitors for over 35 years, and has established itself as the island’s premier dining destination. If you haven’t spent an evening at the Sea Ranch Restaurant, you haven’t truly experienced South Padre.Our menu is comprised of local seafood that is caught directly from the Gulf of Mexico, and it changes often based on what is in season. Every item is made with high-quality ingredients, from unbeatably fresh seafood to juicy steaks and hearty pastas. Start your meal off with our Ahi Tuna or Escargot appetizers, or try something a little spicier like our Stuffed Jalapeños. For your main course, pick from one of our countless seafood items including fresh fish, crab legs, shrimp, oysters, lobster and scallops. Our house specialty is the Red Snapper, which has become a customer favorite as well. If you aren’t in the mood for seafood, try one of our delicious grilled steak, chicken or pork dishes. We also have decadent pastas, from chicken or seafood Alfredo to Scott’s Shrimp Scampi served over angel hair pasta. No matter what you are in the mood for, we have a tasty, fresh option for you at Sea Ranch Restaurant.Seafood goes perfectly with wine, so we boast an extensive selection of wines. With over 122 choices ranging from $20 all the way to $500, we have the perfect choice to compliment your meal. If you have an event coming up, consider hosting it at the Sea Ranch. We can accommodate up to 77 people for anything from weddings and receptions to birthdays and meetings.
College Station, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
85 reviews
64 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Great off season meal”
Reviewed October 7, 2013

Very quiet Monday evening off season meal. Resturant was about half full, which compared to the rest of the fare along the drive, indicates a huge success this time of year. There is no better advertising for a restaurant than a busy parking lot.

The place is near the end of the mainland bridge, just to the south by the marina. Many of the tables are positioned with a picture window view of the fishing boats, which is nice. Standard deep blue / green decor with artful dim lighting, stuffed fish hanging from the ceiling, fishing art on the walls, and a fish tank by the entrance to keep the headwaiter busy.

Appetizers range from $7 to $15, Entree's from $15 to $35, with most seafood entrees being around $25. We had a red snapper dinner plate special which was $30 and included soup/salad and veggies and shrimp Rockefeller. The fish was very tasty, slightly too big to finish but otherwise excellent. The fish was offered cooked about 7 different ways. We went with broiled.

Waiter was knowledgeable and attentive with helpful suggestions when asked. As the place was not extremely busy he was able to give us a good level of attention which was not overbearing. The wine list is limited and by-the-glass even more so. Likewise, so is the beer menu.

Overall a very nice meal, slightly overpriced for what was served in my opinion, but still very enjoyable. Well worth a visit if you are tired of the fried seafood scene and want something a little more upscale and upmarket.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank 12Aggie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bob F, Owner at Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar, responded to this review, October 8, 2013
Thank you so much for this very thorough and thoughtful review. We're so glad you stopped in for dinner and were able to enjoy the red snapper and a glass of wine (I hope you found one you liked!). It's great to know that you appreciated the atmosphere and had good service, and I will certainly take note of your feedback regarding the beverage limitations and the pricing. I hope we can welcome you back again for dinner or a drink the next time you're in the area.

Best,
Bob Friedman, Owner
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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912 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
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    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Austin, Texas
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Their crab cakes are to die for!”
Reviewed October 5, 2013

There's a lot to comment on so I'll do it in list form :)

1. The hostesses were...hmm I'm searching for the right words. I'll just say, unfriendly.

2. The waiter was pretty rude at first. Not just to us but to other tables too lol Once he realized we weren't the type to be okay with that, his tune changed and he was actually funny and friendly. The guy who came around checking on the tables was ridiculously helpful and nice at least. He noticed me turning to get pictures of the sunset so he pulled up the blinds for us, also he suggested a red wine to me that I ended up loving :p

3. The décor is VERY dated upstairs and it screams early 90's. For the atmosphere and prices, I think they could have at least had nicer chairs and tablecloths. Also get rid of the mirrors on the wall.

4. The food was really good! We were pleasantly surprised. We ordered king crab cakes and they were sooooo delicious!! The tartar sauce was even better. Our filet mignons although flavorful were a tad on the tough side, not enough to wish we hadn't ordered them but it was still noticeable. The steamed vegetables were perfectly steamed and the shrimp were great.

5. Dessert. We ordered the German chocolate cake and shared it. Well shared some of it. It tasted like it had been in the freezer for way too long as the cake was incredibly dry and flavorless. Don't order it.

6. On Yelp this restaurant only has 2 money signs. It should actually be 3. We dropped $117 exactly here and all we got was one app, iced tea, two glasses of wine, two entrees and a dessert with a 20% tip.

All in all, we did enjoy ourselves and when we're in SPI again we plan on eating here for dinner!! We'll just try other entrees.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Erin B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bob F, Owner at Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar, responded to this review, October 7, 2013
We are always looking to improve, Erin, and your feedback is extremely valuable to us. Thanks for taking the time to share the details of your experience, and I'm glad to hear that overall you enjoyed your meals and your visit. I'm sorry for any rudeness you encountered from anyone on staff -- that is absolutely not the norm for us and not acceptable in my book. I'd love to know when you came in so I can look into the details.

I'm very happy to hear how much you liked the crab cakes -- they're a personal favorite of mine -- and the steamed vegetables and shrimp. I also want to assure you that the cake you ordered was never frozen, and I apologize if it was at all dry.

I hope you'll come back again and give us a chance to perfect your experience -- I'm confident we can do so!

Best,
Bob Friedman, Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Billingham, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
80 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Excellent service and great food”
Reviewed October 2, 2013

We were recommended the Sea Ranch by the front desk of our hotel on our last night on SPI. My wife was treating me to a belated birthday meal and we were not disappointed. The service was exceptional, friendly, knowledgable and at just the right pace and the food was outstanding, perfectly presented, well cooked and just the right amount. Only wish I had discovered the place sooner!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Chrisclough
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bob F, Owner at Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar, responded to this review, October 5, 2013
I wish you'd discovered us sooner too, but I'm glad you had a chance to visit us on your final night. And happy belated birthday, by the way! It's wonderful to know that the service and food were so great, and we truly appreciate your recommendation. I hope if you're every in the area again you'll come back to see us!

Best,
Bob Friedman, Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cypress, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
43 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Best Seafood Restaurant overall on South Padre Island”
Reviewed September 25, 2013

Although my wife and I live in Houston and have very good seafood readily available, we ate seafood on every day of our visit to South Padre Island. We had read good reviews of Sea Ranch. It easily had the best ambiance and service that we experienced on our four day stay to SPI. Some of our food was excellent and the other food was good. They served outstanding freshly made bread. We had Tres Leches for dessert and it was excellent. A nearby table was there for a birthday celebration. While this may not have been the best meal we have ever had, it was easily the best meal we had in South Padre Island and it was at a decent price.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank biged00200
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bob F, Owner at Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar, responded to this review, September 27, 2013
This is so excellent to hear! Thanks for the wonderful feedback, and I'm so glad you and your wife had such a delicious meal and loved the atmosphere. I hope you'll come back to see us the next time you're in the area.

Best,
Bob Friedman, Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fredericksburg
Level 6 Contributor
157 reviews
97 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Celebrated my Wife's 50th!”
Reviewed September 25, 2013

What a great location - day or night! We shared a meal and were still full. Great desert and service. You won't be disappointed on the selection of seafood and oh so fresh!

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank CW2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bob F, Owner at Sea Ranch Restaurant-Bar, responded to this review, September 27, 2013
Thank you so much for sharing this thoughtful review. I'm so happy that you came to see us and enjoyed the food and the location. I look forward to having you back again as soon as possible!

Best,
Bob Friedman, Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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