Monday, November 22, 2010
Phil's Fish Market & Eatery is in Moss Landing, smack dab in the middle of the Monterey Bay crescent, about half way between Santa Cruz and Monterey. In addition to a fish market, they are a restaurant serving everything from the sea. I recently had the opportunity to have a lite bite for lunch with three like-minded souls.
We ordered a variety of items to share, including the fried artichoke hearts (above) and the garlic bread (below). The fried artichoke hearts were nice and crunchy and were dusted with parmesan cheese. The garlic bread was piping hot and somehow soft and crunchy at the same time. They were not shy about putting garlic in the garlic bread; thankfully.
The fish and chips comes in several varieties; we opted for the traditional cod. The batter was light and airy and the fish was served on a pile of lightly salted french fries. With a squeeze of lemon, this dish was a winner, although I am glad we shared as it would have been tough to eat all that fried food by myself.
Another standout were the grilled sardines (below). They were served whole but it was easy to separate the flesh from the tiny bones to enjoy the fish. This was a simple dish done right that exemplifies what Phil's does well. Fish and chips, sardines, cioppino etc are their stock in trade; this is not the spot for seared fish in a delicate broth.
The picture below should give you a sense of our light lunch.
The website has a great webcam of the beach in front of the restaurant. If you get there soon, you can enjoy fresh local Dungeness crab in season. Apparently Phil's was featured in an episode of Bobby Flay's Throwdown focusing on cioppino.
Phil's: 7600 Sandholdt Rd. Moss Landing, CA 95039 Phone: (831) 633-2152. Website: www.philsfishmarket.com