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Worthy seafood in or near Dana Point/San Clemente?

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While I've done a bit of exploring around the new neighborhood in San Clemente, I can't say I've found (or looked that hard) for great seafood. I have some friends in town who are craving good seafood and wondering if anyone has recommendations? Anywhere in the scale is OK (from shack to quite upscale).

I've eyed the seafood place on the Pier in San Clemente, but if it's like most places of that ilk, the view is probably good, while the food suffers. But perhaps I shouldn't judge? Or what about Harbor House, the diner in Dana Point? I once heard someone say they had good seafood? Is that true? And I also saw a recommendation on here a while ago for the Surfin' Cowboy sports bar, that they had good calamari? I've driven past it, and while it hadn't previously been much of a thought, maybe it is worth a try?

But surely there must be other places, other than just Raya at the Ritz, right?

BTW, I have been to quite a few places in Laguna and Newport, which were quite good, but for this thread, I'm really trying to find stuff south of Laguna, and close to the water, hence Dana Point, Capo Beach and San Clemente...

Many thanks...

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  1. I'd be inclined to try the Harbor Grill http://www.harborgrill.com/ in Dana Point. As much as I enjoy Harbor House for breakfast I would not think of them for what you are seeking.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Servorg

      hah. I actually think the person talking to me was probably recommending Harbor Grill, not Harbor House. I just assumed it was Harbor House since that's the one I had heard of before. Good clarification!

    2. If San Juan works, I like the seafood at El Adobe. Especially, the lobster fajitas. Have also had a really good calamari steak there as well. Stay away from the non seafood items though.

      1. One other suggestion. Sol Del Sur http://soldelsurbistro.wordpress.com/ if you want something totally unique to this area (and probably in a 1% class in the greater LA area as well).

        It's a small place, and while reservations aren't required I'd make one to ensure you don't get turned away if they are booked solid.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          The menu sounds very eclectic to me. Yeah, it would unique in LA too from the sounds of it.

          Did you ever actually try it ?

          1. re: kevin

            Got taken by friends who live in SJC part of the year and in Mexico the other part.

        2. I would second the Harbor Grill. I always have had an excellent dinner there. Piano player adds to the experience. Solid service.