Advertisement

The Gossiping Gourmet: Rock'N Fish new to the dining scene

January 12, 2011|By Elle Harrow and Terry Markowitz
  • Oak-grilled artichoke at Rock'N Fish in Laguna.
Oak-grilled artichoke at Rock'N Fish in Laguna. (HB Independent )

Stepping into Rock'N Fish is like stepping into a time warp with the décor reminiscent of an old San Francisco saloon: red brick walls, dark woods, leather booths, elaborate deco-like light fixtures, wrought-iron grilles on the windows and the requisite picture of a reclining nude, which in this case is a huge mosaic of a recumbent mermaid along one wall. Red velvet draperies pulled back with sashes separate the dining areas. Painted signage in the bar area advertises beer and the men's room. We hope we won't be accused of sexism if we label the character of the space as masculine.

The menu is a bit of a time warp as well. The food is classic regional American fare with the emphasis on grilled fish, steaks and iceberg lettuce. Starters include shrimp cocktail and oysters on the half-shell. Soup is clam chowder and your wedge of iceberg comes with blue cheese dressing. Seafood specialties include beer battered fish'n chips and a ¾ lb lobster tail. And of course there are the steaks: top sirloin, New York and filet.

Advertisement

Venturing into more adventurous waters, there is food from the American South like seafood jambalaya, Memphis-style barbecued ribs, and shrimp and sausage gumbo. Pacific Rim influences are represented by hibachi teriyaki chicken, macadamia crusted mahi-mahi, Kapalua rib eye and sesame seared ahi tuna.

Two very plump, lump crab cakes were all meat, moistened with mayo and lightly crusted with breadcrumbs. The generous amount of mildly flavored crab had no particular seasoning but the two house-made sauces were terrific. The creamy remoulade (mayonnaise-based with mustard, herbs and spices) had a real kick and a great balance of sweet, sour and salty flavors. It was so good we saved it to put on whatever might come next. Equally good and completely different was a light tartar sauce.

On a more contemporary note was the Napa Sonoma salad, which comes as a side salad or as an entrée. Baby greens are combined with an almost equal amount of sun-dried tomatoes as well as red onion, cucumbers and pine nuts in a nice balsamic vinaigrette. The only off note was a chunk of fresh mozzarella that was very watery and had no discernible taste. (Note: The starter salad was so large that we were afraid to dig in before confirming that it was indeed the "small" one.)

Huntington Beach Independent Articles Huntington Beach Independent Articles
|
|
|