By By Brandon Hernández
Photos by Brevin Blach
T?he Windy City’s got pizza, the City of Brotherly Love’s got cheese steaks, and America’s Finest City has the world’s best tacos de pescado.
In search of the best representation of our city’s claim to culinary fame, PacificSD cast our line online, hoping to reel in reader recommendations on the best place to hook this hometown specialty.
While a few responders harpooned others as being one taco short of a combination plate, the hands-down winner was O.B.'s South Beach Bar & Grille. Catch and release? No way!
South Beach Bar & Grille
5059 Newport Avenue, #104, Ocean Beach
An Ocean Beach institution for nearly 20 years, South Beach serves about a dozen varieties of fresh fish tacos and has received props from Bon Appetit magazine and the Food Network.
The restaurant’s most popular variety is the Mahi Taco, packed with fish that’s been marinated overnight in teriyaki sauce and pineapple juice. This out-of-the-box preparation is key to South Beach’s supremacy, as is the freshness of the fixins.
“We bring in 200 pounds of fresh fish a day,” says South Beach manager, Kristina Goulart. “Each taco is made to order fresh every time. Nothing is pre-prepared about it, and our salsa isn’t from some salsa company.”
Adding to South Beach’s allure is its casual atmosphere and sweeping views of the Pacific, both of which have doubled since a second-story dining area opened last fall.
“It’s just comfortable. You can sit here all day, eating, drinking and looking out at the water,” Goulart says. “The ambience is great. It’s not classy, it’s not too divey. It’s just right.”
P.B. Shore Club
4343 Ocean Boulevard, Pacific Beach
Also favored by PacificSD‘s Facebook fans, oceanfront party pad P.B. Shore Club won First Place in the 2010 BeachFest’s Best of the Beach Fish Taco Challenge.
As is the case at South Beach, the mahi mahi is the biggest seller here. The lobster, shrimp and calamari tacos are also in high demand.
Shore Club buzzes with a beach-bar vibe that ranges from chill to raucous. In addition to killer fish tacos, the boardwalk hotspot boasts beachfront views that inspired its slogan, “sunsets served daily.”
Honorable mentions from our Facebook family
“Mitch’s Seafood in Point Loma is a hidden gem. Fres h fish from local fisherman.”
“TJ Oyster Bar. It’s tiny and in Bonita, but has the bes t authentic Me xican fish tacos hands down.”
“Saritas (Me xican Food) in East County! Everything is fresh and homemade, even the sauce!”
“I’ve tried ‘em all, and somehow Rubio’s does it best.”
-Vaness a M.