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LouLou's Griddle in the Middle Cafe | Wharf #2 - Monterey

Melanie Wong | May 13, 201604:51 PM     1

Long time since anyone has talked about LouLou's Griddle in the Middle, the small diner on Monterey's commercial wharf.

Since then, Triple D's exposed LouLou's to the outside world,

Last week, we headed over for an early lunch and were lucky to snag one of four small tables inside.. At 11:30am, the menu had already shifted from breakfast to lunch service. We could see the remains of pancake platters with too much food to finish in front of stuffed and satisfied breakfast customers.

I asked our server what "the fresh catch of the hour" might be. Sole, among others, and that's what I ordered as the lunch special, $16.95. This turned out to be a pile of fillets dusted very lightly and griddled, probably the equivalent of two small rex or gray sole. Cooked to a tee, this short order prep did not dry out the delicate white fleshed fish nor obscure their natural sweetness. The fillets were stacked on the salad tropicalé, a big plate of baby salad greens (mostly more sturdy mustard types) with a colorful fruit salsa of pineapple, papaya, mango and jicama, plus cucumbers, red onion, tomato, carrot and strawberries with a fruity vinaigrette. The saucing was billed as chimichurri, but was more like a thick tartar sauce with some extra greenery.

William had the sand dabs, $15.95, that usually comes with fries. He paid the $2.75 upgrade to substitute a small salad and a ladle of clam chowder instead. The white chowder's wonderful, made in what I call Monterey Italian fisherman style, packed with herbs and garlic to highlight the sweet clams. The milky base was creamy and rich but not overly thick. The sand dab fillets had a bit heavier coating that seemed like an egg wash to protect this even more fragile flat fish. And again, cooked just right to seal in the sweet freshness. The accompanying LouLou's tartar sauce was great, sort of a cross between regular tartar sauce and ranch dressing.

We were very happy with our meal, and not able to finish everything. LouLou's delivers on freshness, quality of execution and value.

More photos at LouLou's:

LouLou's Griddle in the Middle
Municipal Wharf No. 2
Monterey, CA 93940
(831) 372-0568

N.B.: No restrooms on site. Closest facilities are at the entrance to the wharf.

LouLou's Griddle in the Middle Restaurant & Cafe | Monterey, California

Loulou's Griddle In the Middle
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