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Ironside Fish and Oyster

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I saw a comment on this board about this place but can't find it. Must have been part of another thread? Anyway, I ate here last night and thought it was worth commenting on. The lobster roll was outstanding. Perfectly cooked lobster and plenty of it on a freshly baked roll. Perfect ratio of bread to fish, lightly dressed with great flavor. My husband had the fish and chips. Fish was awesome-- I'm sure of this since I kept stealing bites. Fries were average but the homemade mayo dip was great as was the tartar sauce for the fried fish.
The crudo appetizer was a standout- served with cherries and ramps- perfect balance of spicy, sweet, oil, and the fish was smooth and tender.
Ironside cocktail was really good as well- sweet, tangy, flavors well balanced.
Haven't said this in a long time: service was excellent. Waiter could talk intelligently about the food and drinks and obviously cared about our experience. A manager stopped by at one point to check in as well. Seems to be a point of pride that the customer is happy. Loved it. We eat out at least once a week at this is so rare.
Only downside was the noise. It was Saturday night and my children tell me I'm old (49), but it was too loud for me. Next time I will go earlier or at an off time. The space is definitely cool.

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  1. Food was ok. Noise is what it is.

    But what really turns me off on this place is the garish decor. It's so over the top even the proverbial shark has swam away.

    As they say, "shit happens" ...

    1. I had a great experience there too. Love the space, love the service, love the food! Very happy San Diego is kicking it up a notch with the opening of places like this.

      1. Had lunch there on Saturday. Full house with a short wait for a late lunch at 130pm. Noise level was lively but not overwhelming. Great front of house experience during the wait with young hostesses (who could actually carry on a conversation, promoting the restaurant and menu while we waited to be seated). Great selection of briny oysters, fresh-off-the-boat rock cod (grilled with lemon butter). Love the atmosphere, reminded me of old San Francisco. Couple of minor glitches, but we will be back soon. Loved!

        1 Reply
        1. re: foodiechick

          Love rock cod and back in the day would fish for them off the cliffs of Wind n' Sea...glad to see it on the menu in SD.
          Tadich Grill chica and it will be lovely to have something close to that icon. . .craving me some sand dabs now.

        2. I wonder if Raymond Burr ever ate there.

          1 Reply
          1. This place works fine for me.

            1. A bit off subject, but I see that this group is opening up an "old man Jewish deli" downtown by the ballpark. Curious that they are opening downtown, not in UTC or Carmel Valley, where I think there might be more old Jewish men. I wonder if they are doing that so they won't be held to higher deli standards. Sorta like a Chinese restaurant opening up in an Anglo neighborhood. I am a bit suprised that they chose Langer's as their inspiration, it wouldn't of been my first choice, but I suppose they could of gone with gone with a lot worse, like Jerry's. I also want to see how they can make a deli pretentious. Too bad Greengrass closed in BH.

              13 Replies
              1. re: littlestevie

                If they can make pastrami on the level of Langer's I would be very happy. Also the location will have less to do with where "old Jewish men" live but where they will havr the most business (the areas you are suggesting are pretty much dead after 8pm, downtown is still lively after 11pm) - I doubt the level quality will change depending on location, either they want to make good quality food or not.

                1. re: honkman

                  I am going to respectfully disagree with you. I think of delis as being more family type places, breakfast, lunch and early dinner, at least that was my experience growing up in LA. So yes, I do think a good deli would do well in family neighborhoods. And aren't the old Jewish men asleep by 11pm anyway? I do like Langer's and yes it is way better than anything in SD, it is just that I like Nate n' Al's and Brent's better. Have you been to the Westlake area around 11pm? I sure wouldn't want to venture there. Langer's seems to do well with the breakfast and lunch crowd.

                  1. re: littlestevie

                    I normally don't walk around at MacArthur Park lake around 11pm but I am sure if they would start over with Langer's today they wouldn't place it in the same neighborhood. And just imaging Langer's would be somewhere in Santa Monica or Venice the line would be out the door 24h and they would make a lot more money, same would apply in SD. Lousy pizza or kebab places do really well on 5th Avenue just imaging what a decent deli could do. (Heard very good things about Brent's but Nate n' Al's ? - Tried it once many years ago and it was really bad.)

                2. re: littlestevie

                  I thought all the old Jewish men hang in Lake Murray/San Carlos area. .
                  ; )

                  Downtown=lawyers=Jewish Deli
                  I think it's a good call.

                  Barney Greengrass closed in BH. .wow

                  Look forward to dining at Ironside and giving my seal of approval.

                  1. re: Beach Chick

                    The only good "old man Jewish delis" are in NYC. I know of none here.

                    1. re: DoctorChow

                      And a few in Miami....they opened a Nosh near the Santa Fe Amtrak station a few months ago but I have not been...I do like Brooklyn Bagel very much and at 55 I guess that makes me an old Jewish man though I don't snap my fingers and dance to "If I were a rich man."

                    2. re: Beach Chick

                      Last went to Barney Greengrass about a dozen years ago. They remembered my wife by name- she hadn't been in since she was a teen.

                      Love the fish and the chicken liver.

                      1. re: Beach Chick

                        If it's Old Jewish Men you are thinking about, maybe you need to Take A Walk On The Kosher Side...


                        Music by Gefilte Joe and the Fish

                        1. re: Tripeler

                          LOL. .who doesn't love old Jewish men.

                          That music by Gefilte Joe sounds like Bob Dylan..
                          ; )

                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            There you go, another old Jewish man....

                          2. re: Tripeler

                            there used to be a deli in Fairfax section of LA (Cantor's?) that had a room with a live band on weekend nights.

                            1. re: El Chevere

                              Canter's on Fairfax next to Animal (one of the starting points for Guns'N'Roses) - Food is just OK

                          3. re: Beach Chick

                            Greengrass was really pricey and the quality really didn't match the price point, and they were kinda pricky. Never went to the one in NY, so I can't comment on if it was a Greengrass issue or Barney's in BH issue. There is a restaurant still at the top of Barney's, it is just not associated with Greengrass. Have not been since the change.

                        2. Tried it for lunch yesterday. Had a few oysters and had the lobster roll - nice amount of meat, barely dressed on a nice buttered roll. Excellent. Wife had the fish sandwich - rock cod - that was even better than the lobster roll. French fires were amazing - had a malt powder on them with onions that gave it a wonderful sour cream and onion flavor. I don't really eat french fries and I finished everyone on my plate. Service was attentive and knowledgeable. Although my wife said "they talked too much". Will be back for dinner soon.