Doing a little Christmas shopping yesterday, my friend and I decided to try the new Oceans 33. Up until now, I've not found a restaurant in the Shops at Mission Viejo that I really liked, so when I heard that Oceans 33 was owned by the same owners as Oysters in Corona del Mar, my tastebuds perked up.
The place has a jazzy bistro feel, with dark woods, ochre walls with black and stone accents. Nice bar area with tall tables to enjoy their raw bar, which includes a good selection of fresh oysters. Also, live jazz in the evenings.
We chose a booth along the wall. I started with a cup of their Seafood Gumbo, a spicy, delicious soup with pieces of crab, shrimp and a good chunk of salmon. ($5)Served with a crisped, flavored baguette slice, which when dunked into the soup, melted in the mouth with a subtle crunch. My friend had the clam chowder, which was, imo, "real" chowder, (not the floury paste that so many places serve) with tender clams, cream and a smoky flavor (bacon?)($4)
Next, we had the Roasted Pear, Chevre and Walnut salad with honey-mustard vinaigrette on baby greens. Flavors were good throughout, but the pears were firm, not softened like I expected, more like barely broiled, however, they tasted good. ($9)
Along with the salads, we enjoyed a small Wild Mushroom, Chevre and Truffle Oil pizza. Good toppings, but we couldn't taste the truffle oil. The very thin crust was cracker-like, but not too crisp, perfect imo.
($9) We both had a tasty glass of Qupe Syrah. ($7)
We split a Fallen Chocolate Souffle topped with White Chocolate & Raspberry Ice Cream, which was good. ($7) Overall, we were very pleased with our meal and felt it was quite a good value. I almost look forward to returning a Chrsitmas gift, as an excuse to check out this place again.
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