Anything new in Catalina?
there hasn't been a post about catalina in a while. Im wondering if there's anything new and/or unmentioned that I should taste. Or any recs in general ( I take it from the posts over the years, hounds don't really like catalina)
Im not looking for anything fancy, I'm a simple person:
I would love a rec for FISH - cooked, or sushi style, or anything in between.
Meat, Veggies, Salads, cocktails, any "ethnic" foods too
My husband and I speant a weekend there last month (first visit in 15 yrs) and were still disappointed by the quality of the restaurants. We had a b-day dinner at Villa Portofino. Waited 30 minutes for our reserved table. Terrible olive garden style fod in a kitschy yet pretentious space. Weird. Also ordered crab cakes at The Landing and was served deep fried Krab balls. I won't digress on a tirade about the disengenousness of selling fish as crab-(why isn't that illegal?).
We had decent oysters and a flat, like a pancake crab cake -atleast it was real crab and the seafood place on the water (name escapes me but very "famous").
finally, befoe we decided to cook the reminder of our meals (pasta with clam sauce-delicious!)) in our rented condo, we had a GREAT lunch at the Golf Club. I had an open faced lobster roll wth sweet potato fries and he an ahi tuna sandwich. The coktails were great too-margaraita with lime juice and a great bloody mary.I could not believe the place was empty and other spots in town were packed. There is a place that purports to serve sushi (along with karaoke)-again name escapes me but it is across the street from the Vons. It does seem strange that an Island does not have even a decent (if not great) place to eat fresh fish.
In March last year four of us went on a three day fishing trip, 26 miles across the sea to Santa Catalina, the island of romance – not food! My son was the captain and as a life-long fishermen he finds it hard to eat fish anyplace but his home after a fishing trip – freshness is the issue. The only place on Catalina he would eat at is Armstrongs. On two nights we took a table outside next to the water. The server was a young women who impressed my son. She could tell that we four men were on the island to go fishing and asked him what we were hoping to catch. My son told her we wanted White Sea Bass. She told him that no White Sea Bass were caught yet around the island. My boy knew the latest fishing reports already but then they began talking about every fishing hole around the island and we could tell she knew loved fishing. She told us that the chef is also a fishermen. My son then asked her what we should have. She said, tonight begin with a calamari appetizer and then order the swordfish. We all followed her advice and were very happy with the freshness. The next night we followed her advice again and had fresh Alaskan Halibut. I guess what I am saying is that when it comes to ordering fish it might help to start with pillow talk to create a relationship with the server and then ask what is fresh. It worked for us.
just got back from a quick overnight... and I didn't get most of this info until I got back.
But - I can respond with my own experiences:
Armstrong's Seafood - we were told it was the Best place to go for fish and chips - so, my SO couldn't resist... it was "good' I thought the crinkle-cut fries were very good. i ordered the Bay shrimp Cocktail and thought it was just "ok" but I did like the clam chowder.
Antonio's Caberet - following a hounder's review saying it was some of the best Pizza they ever had. I perfer pasta, so i got the Mamma Mia's Day old Spagetti - it was just ok, if that - and very dry. My SO got the Calzone Special and he was licking his plate clean - loved every drop of it. We both had fun frozen drinks - I had a rum runner, and it was very tasty, he had the Bahama Mama and wondered if there was any alcohol in it.... bu it still tasted like a smoothie, Yum!
Last stop meal on the Island we went to The Cottage, formerly the pancake cottage. and Wow! that was a good breakfast, although too much food! and good coffee too.
Speaking of coffee, we went to the coffee and cookie shop at the Metropole Courtyard, and we also enjoyed a cup at CC Gallaghers - I prefer the later, I oogled at the desserts, but didn't have the nerve to order it.