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Aug 13, 2013 07:54 AM

Blue Plate Oysterette

Needed to kill some time, so decided to give this place a whirl. Uncomfortable chairs, a little cramped, why do they need to play music outside? Service was excellent.

Prices were VERY high...$15 for two fish tacos, no sides. $19 for fish sandwich. I just got back from Hawaii - these are poolside prices at the Four Seasons...a semi-divey seafood shack on the wrong side of Ocean Avenue. At least from the Lobster you can see the beach and ocean!

Taco's were excellent (they use tilapia - the cheapest of fishes!), but for nearly $20 with tax&tip, I don't think I'll be returning.

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  1. No self respecting fish shack should ever use tilapia, disgusting.

    4 Replies
    1. re: trojans

      What's wrong with Tilapia? As long as you get it domestically, what's disgusting about it? It's low in mercury, mild flavor (e.g., good protein for tacos), not endangered, relatively responsibly farmed (domestically).

      1. re: Robert Thornton

        Agreed. I was listening to this interview with a groundbreaking oceanographer Sylvia Earle ( and she recommends people eat it for the reasons you list.

        There may be "better" fish to eat, but not necessarily more ecologically sound.

      2. re: trojans

        I agree. Tilapia has that mealy, freshwater fish taste. The fish itself thrives in muddy, low oxygen environments and boy does it taste like it.

        Yes, oceanographers endorse it but that's for reasons other than taste!

        1. re: JeMange

          " The fish itself thrives in muddy, low oxygen environments and boy does it taste like it."

          So do catfish and I love southern or Cajun catfish dishes.

      3. The place is packed every afternoon at lunchtime, they seem to do alright charging four seasons poolside prices......the work crowd plus the tourists in the area keep the place busy.

        Plus, I don't ind paying $18 for fresh whole Ipswich clams flown in from Mass. as I won't find a better substitute anywhere around here. But that's just me.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Dirtywextraolives

          Our delicious fried whole belly clams and fried oysters from Matunuck Oyster Bar (RI) today.*ducks*

            1. re: PeterCC

              Aw, you're killing me, Peter!! Enjoy a few for me!

            2. Yeah, it's very hit or miss. Tilapia is of course pathetic. One of the "crudo" dishes was more like a poke (drenched in a soy sauce), the fries are often stale because they die in the window while the kitchen lets orders pile up.

              Other things on the menu are better, though. Shucked oysters, red curry mussels, lobster roll (esp if you hold the mayo), and usually at least one of the specials are all good. And despite it being on the "wrong" side of Ocean, I like the sunny atmosphere. Overall I like the place, but you do have to avoid the landmines.

              1 Reply
              1. I wouldn't call it semi-divey. Casual.

                Rent for that location is considerable and the prices reflect that.

                A similar, more downscale and less expensive place (where the rent is merely high, not sky-high) is the Seasalt Fish Grill on Santa Monica Blvd and 5th.

                1. just don't have the patience nor the money to enjoy this sort of place anymore.
                  high prices with a lot of "land mine" dishes on the menu.
                  parking hassel
                  small portions

                  if i want tilapia, i'd rather go to Coni'Seafood and get a mojarra frita for $13 that actually gets served to me moments after it's been cooked.

                  for oysters, there are plenty of lovely places that serve good oysters as part of their happy hour menu (e.g. the lobby bar at casa del mar), so this is not a rare thing worth a special trip in my mind.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: westsidegal

                    I agree with you WG. I tried blue plate and didn't see what all the fuss was about. Not a comfortable place. We get our $1 oysters at Enterprise Seafood at happy hour. Plenty of parking too. The traffic in the heart of Santa Monica is so depressing.