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South Bay Fish & Grill


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The carving station is one of the culinary
highlights of this relaxing brunch

South Bay Fish & Grill
570 Marina Parkway
Chula Vista, CA 91910
(619) 420-7234

South Bay Fish & Grill, on the Chula Vista marina, is kid-friendly with scrumptious fare, and their Sunday Champagne “Jazz” Brunch is especially suited for the whole family.

My happy daughter overlooks the seafood delicacies

The South Bay Fish & Grill is actually only about 15 to 20 minutes from central San Diego. The special combination of cool jazz, delicious seafood and homemade desserts, bay views, and a casual, local ambiance makes this a first-rate choice for families with young children. I loved the warm atmosphere that embraced us as when we walked through the door, the people dressed unpretentiously and the laughter dancing in the background. The nautical theme that ran throughout, including a boat hanging from the ceiling, is perfect for kids. If you are seeking good food, local people, and don’t want to primp and polish the kids for a brunch, this is your place.

My four kids, ages 8, 7, and 5 year old twins, all enjoyed the food selection: a carving station, omelet bar, fresh made seafood, steak, and chicken dishes including tilapia oreganada, sweet & sour chicken, and Asian barbeque beef. There was a made-to-order hash station featuring spiced chorizo, braised beef and rosemary chicken hash. A center table near the jazz musicians featured a delicious array of desserts (see photo), and I was impressed that all of the desserts are designed and cooked on the premises by their own special baker. The seafood looked so inviting that my seven-year old daughter actually ate some of the mussels and enjoyed them! Those of us with young children know, this is no small feat. All of the seafood was fresh and delectable and I especially enjoyed the smoked salmon with fresh ginger.

Parents are well aware of the challenge in keeping youngsters seated during a brunch. I found that here, my four kids “chilled” as they listened and watched the jazz players near their table while sampling exciting new foods as well as old favorites like French toast and bacon. The restaurant sits idyllically on the marina, surrounded by yachts and a walking path for strolling after the meal. Between the live jazz players and the sweeping bay views, the kids were occupied and my husband and I were sublimely relaxed. The cost for adults for the brunch is $21.95, and kids are $9.95.

Besides the brunch, this cozy seafood restaurant runs several promotions and fun activities during the week:

--Big Burger Wednesdays: Enjoy a half-pound burger & fries in the grill & patio for $4.95.

--Live Maine Lobster Tuesdays: Order lobster specials including fresh live Maine Lobster, corn on the cob, and red potatoes, starting from $13.95.

--Happy Hour: Daily 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm, offering appetizers like house steamed mussels, popcorn shrimp, and fish tacos. On Friday and Saturday nights, enjoy the large screen TV.

Locals relax and enjoy the rare harbor view

--Banquets & parties: South Bay Fish & Grill’s newly remodeled banquet room would be a fun place for a kid’s party (or a larger event) because of the awesome views and food. This private banquet room seats 20-300, depending on the occasion.

Don’t let the driving distance to the south bay stop you from visiting this restaurant if you are in central or northern San Diego or in Riverside or Orange counties. This restaurant is worth the drive, not only for a delicious meal, but also for an experience that seems reminiscent of an easier, more casual era imbued with local flare.

Take a soothing harbor-front stroll after the meal

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