Sea Watch On the Ocean
Name: Patrick McCord
Occupation: Telecommunications Consultant
Lives In: Oakland Park
Restaurant Pick: Sea Watch
Reviewed: Sea Watch on 11/13/12 at 5:30 pm
Considering how much water occupies the coastline of So. Florida, there aren’t many places worthy of the title “waterfront dining.” Waterfront dining, to me, evokes images of sand kissed shorelines caressed by the approaching surf. Of Palm trees fronds languishing in the soothing breeze that the day avails, the sand dunes secreting from view the vast reaches of the oceans domain. Of newlywed couples ensconced in each others loving gaze as they regard eternal matrimonial bliss. Waterfront dining does not for me evoke images of splintered tables sat next to a run off canal, and the barking dogs protesting their imprisonment in the family car. Of a fetid, oil stinking lake enveloped by highways, throughways and traffic lights. Fortunately, Sea Watch satisfied my ideal.
Immediately, the thing that strikes you as you drive into Sea Watch is the size of the property. The sprawling estate houses a car park large enough to host a Grateful Dead concert. - minivans and all There’s room a plenty for all sizes of car and real estate enough to maneuver the largest of Lincoln Town cars in an out of the diagonally spaced spots. Valet parking is available but you can also park yourself. Who would have thought that anyone in FL knew how to park their own car at a restaurant!?!
The building is awe inspiring. I neglected to ask the sq footage of the cavernous arena but it’s got to be in excess of 8,000 sq ft. Certainly large enough to let your kids run amok making a nuisance of them whilst you lose track of them. The area inside is divvied up over two floors with the formal dining area downstairs and the relaxed bar room dining upstairs. The upstairs has a lovely little outside area that, if you get there early enough, avails you a nice seat overlooking the dunes, palm trees, iguanas and the ocean. The outside seating is a bit sticky but can be overlooked on account of the scenery and the breeze blowing in off the briny. The gardens are well manicured if a little sparse in flora. But who needs plants when there’s the sea to watch.
The inside dining room has several “areas” where one can sit depending on your taste. Be it outdoor, indoor, intimate or rowdy, they will discern a seating situation to suit your needs. The décor is nautical themed with lots of wooden beams and wooden paneling. Obviously it’s an old restaurant but it still provides an amiable setting. It certainly didn’t suggest a Disney styled attempt at kitsch nor a garish take on the Spanish galleon idea. It wasn’t distracting by any stretch of the imagination. It’s all rather subtle and unobtrusive. The staff were very courteous, welcoming patrons in as they enter the foyer of the restaurant to sign up for a table. Our waitress was jolly and knowledgeable and availed us enough time to sit, relax, consider the menu, ask questions and then get stuck in to the drinks that we brought down from the bar. The service was prompt, correct and most importantly, the food was served hot.
Should you need to wait to dine, the bar area upstairs is spacious with plenty of bar seating and table seating. There is the obligatory television spewing out the inanities of the sports channels but there was just the one and it was not the size of a shop window nor blatantly off putting. The drink service at the bar was fine and the selection plentiful. They have a liquor license so it’s possible to get a nice cocktail and not just a beer or wine. The bar area provides an environment that is conducive to after work socializing as well as a pre dining slurp or a post dinner cozy up.
The menu is varied offering fresh local seafood: Mahi, Grouper & Swordfish, as well as imported fish: Orange roughly, lobster, salmon, prawns and scallops. They also offer steaks, chicken, pork and pasta. The appetizer menu is extensive and offers all the shellfish that SpongeBob would regard as his friends. The prices cover the gamut and avail a non exclusive opportunity to enjoy the restaurant. There are seasonal specials, daytime specials, lunchtime specials and a bar menu for those not wishing to break the bank. There are also the over top menu items for the profligate and fatuous. Portion sizes were more than adequate and heartily filling. The plate was filled mainly with the feature item and not the accompanying vegetables.
I suggest making a reservation or showing up prior to 5pm because the whole restaurant was full by 6pm. should you choose to avoid the crowd, the lunchtime seating is most agreeable and offers an opportunity to sit on the upstairs, outside balcony and languish in the sea air? The lunch menu, although not as extensive as the evening menu, still avails many flavorful choices from the ocean or the abattoir. I liked it a lot.
Name: Cheryl Lee-Bennett
Lives In: Delray Beach
Restaurant Pick: Gol! the taste of Brazil
Reviewed: Sea Watch on 11/17/2012
EXCELLENT!!!!!!! …Everything! My husband and I are “head-over-heels” in love with Sea Watch. We even registered for the rewards cards and know without any doubt that we will return and bring our family and friends with us.
We arrived at noon and chose the patio over inside dining. The weather and scenery was perfect. The patio area is very comfortable, inviting and has a nice view of the ocean. In spite of waiting 30 minutes for the main courses, which I believe is excessive for lunch serving; I had a great experience. The warm oatmeal and pumpernickel breads and real butter made the wait “ok” with me. I also noticed this delicious, eye-appealing drink “Kick off your sandals sangria” so I ordered it and; again, totally enjoyed it! I ordered the crab tostado (lump crabmeat mounded on a crisp tortilla with avocado, tomato, red onion, cilantro, black beans) and now I am a fan, a future promoter and marketing agent for this delight. This was my first time having this item, ever. The tostado was a bit spicy because of the jalapeno and I could have used more cilantro, but I still place it in my excellent categoryJ. I ate several bites of my husband’s hamburger that was covered with caramelized onions and of course that was tasty too.
The portions were plentiful and the menu prices were manageable and appreciative. The total tab for two was $32.60 (before the tip) which included our drinks.
This restaurant is definitely a “keeper” and well worth the traveling distance of approximately 30 minutes.
Name: Laura Sclafani
Occupation: Medical Recruiter
Lives In: Pompano Beach
Restaurant Pick: La Villetta
Reviewed: Sea Watch on 11/11/2012 at 5:30 pm
Upon arriving to Sea Watch, we were pleasantly surprised with the ample amount of parking in front of the restaurant. The outside of the restaurant is very fisherman rustic looking and provided a great entry point to this little Oceanside treasure. We were greeted by the hostess and quickly seated in the "outdoor" section, which is more like a "Florida room". The oceanfront view was breathtaking and was the perfect backdrop to this seafood house. Our waitress promptly greeted us and explained some of the menu options. She then brought out some bread and took our drink/food orders. Our appetizers and salads were brought out at the perfect serving temperature. The calamari was perfectly fried and the accompanying dips were divine. Our waitress continued checked on us and made sure we were accommodated. Our entrees came out, and the plate presentation was simple and the fish was fresh. Seasoning was minimal, but the taste of the mahi mahi was pure. The pecan square we had for dessert was delicious, even though the extra whipped cream and peanuts took away from the delicate pecan filling. The ambiance was quaint, yet comfortable and the rustic feel made the dining experience more authentic. Kudos to Sea Watch for providing quality food, a warm atmosphere, and an excellent service in a desirable location.
Location: 6002 N. Ocean Dr. Fort Lauderdale FL
Type of Cuisine: American Seafood
Meals Served: Lunch, Dinner and Banquet .
Accommodations for children: Yes