(Sonoma Goat Cheese Ravioli with Golden Oak Mushrooms)
Ocean Prime is an upscale dining destination specializing in prime seafood and steaks. I was invited to taste their Happy Hour menu this past week including appetizers, small plates, and cocktail specials. With an emphasis on presentation and detail, Ocean Prime sets to create remarkable dining experiences. Their “smoking” displays (getting creative with dry ice) really exhibit the dedication and passion to wow their guests. Ocean Prime offers a menu featuring American dishes done with modern, sophisticated execution including White Truffle Cavier Deviled Eggs and Duroc Pork Chops.
Berries and Bubbles: Belvedere Citrus, Crème de Cassis, House made sour, Domaine Chandon Brut, Grand Marnier marinated berries. A little sour meets slight fruity fizz. Pretty cool! This drink is made with dry ice which gave it a smoky, bubbling effect.
Tuna Tartare: Ahi tuna, chilled, diced, and tossed in soy sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, stacked as a tower with avocado tossed in lime juice, wasabi drizzle, and fried wontons in ginger ponzu sauce. Garnished with sour cream, pickled ginger, toasted sesame seeds, scallions. Light, refreshing, with a touch of heat. With each bite, you got a nuttiness from the sesame seeds and a crunch from the fried wontons. The sweet, citrus ponzu sauce was a nice addition and the tuna melted in your mouth.
Somerset Roll: (Pictured on left). Tempura Shrimp, Cream Cheese, Scallion, Beef Carpaccio (pounded thin and served raw). The beef carpaccio was a unique twist and it worked. The cream cheese added a slight tang that went well with the sweet sauce.
Tuna Roll (Pictured on right). Spicy tuna, avocado, cucumber. I was a little disappointed there wasn’t more to this roll. I liked that the tuna was on top, but it was pretty basic. I can get a spicy tuna roll like this anywhere.
Shrimp Saute: Jumbo shrimp sautéed in white wine garlic sauce, Tabasco, & grape tomatoes. Served with sourdough crostini with aged Swiss and Provolone cheeses gratineed on top and garnished with minced chives. I am not sure I understood the idea behind this dish and how the ingredients fit together. The Tabasco cream sauce was tasty with subtle heat, and the shrimp was fresh and succulent. However, the crostini was so soggy from the cheese and sauce, that when I first tried it, I thought it was just a piece of fried cheese. It tasted good, but the cheese was heavy and it was hard to distinguish what it was until we asked our server. It would have been better with a more substantial piece of bread like a baguette with a light dusting of cheese added right before it was served.
Point Judith Calamari: Fried and tossed with hoison, soy, and sweet Thai chili sauces with carrots, red peppers, bean sprouts, candied cashews, snap peas and scallions. The sauce was sweet, slightly spicy, thick, and tacky, and really adhered to the lightly fried calamari. The calamari was still crispy despite being dressed with a generous amount of sauce. The garnish of veggies and candied cashews added a fresh, crunchy texture.
Lamb Lollipops: Teriyaki marinated Australian lamb rib chops. Frenched (exposed ribs), roasted, seared, and glazed with Teriyaki marinade reduction on a bed of soy butter sauce. The lamb was heavily seasoned which was appreciated, but it was overcooked (served well done) and a little dry. I liked the soy butter sauce. It was salty, rich, with a nice sweetness to finish it off.
Butter Cake: House-made warm, golden butter cake, with fresh berries, vanilla ice cream, served with a house-made raspberry sauce. This dessert took me back to my childhood when I used to eat butter cookies with my grandma. It was warm, simple, yet complex with the different layers of flavor. First, you tasted the warm, sweet, cake, then the fresh berries, creamy cool vanilla ice cream, and it was completed with a tart raspberry sauce. In one spoonful, I scored a crispy, crunchy edge of the cake which almost had a caramelized element to it.
The “smoking” presentation included in dishes such as the Shellfish Tower, Shrimp Cocktail and the Berries and Bubbles cocktail is creative and theatrical. Overall, you can taste the quality and feel the effort put forth in each dish at Ocean Prime. Service was above average and the staff knows their stuff when it comes to the menu and recommendations. Be sure to take advantage of Ocean Prime’s Happy Hour happening weekdays from 4-7 PM which includes $5 off cocktails and sushi rolls, and specially priced appetizers and small plates.
- Join Ocean Prime for an Easter Brunch Sunday, April 16th beginning at 11 AM featuring Blood Orange Mimosa, Smoked Salmon, Crab & Eggs, Braised Short Rib Surf and Turf, and more!
- Surf & Turf Sundays: 2 courses featuring an 8 oz filet with your choice of Sea Scallops, Crab Cakes, or Shrimp Scampi for $55/person. Select bottles of wine for half priced.