|Special to Travel Watch, September
If you’re a history buff, you might
not make it past the back page of the wine list at 22nd St. Landing in
That’s where you’ll be fascinated to read the story
of how Portuguese sailor Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo explored the nearby
shallow waters in 1542… and why the bay was once called "Bahia
de los Fumes…" and how in 1602 Sebastian Vizcaino renamed it
"San Pedro" in honor of St. Peter, the patron saint of fishing…
and about the founding of the Point Fermin Lighthouse following The Great
Snowstorm of 1865… and about the removal of Deadman’s Island and the
eventual development of San Pedro as a World Port.
But as far as I’m concerned, "history" is
what I had for breakfast today. Live for the moment — experience is
everything, I always say.
That’s why the first thing I did at 22nd St. Landing
was dive headfirst into a platter of Fanny Bay oysters, an act not unlike
diving into the ocean itself. Instantly, I was immersed in the bracing,
briny salt taste of the sea, for me the most potent appetite stimulant in
It was the perfect start to a most memorable dinner at
22nd St. Landing, a seafood grill and bar with a panoramic view of the new
Cabrillo Marina located in L.A.’s outer harbor.
Looking out the restaurant’s huge windows, you’ll be
riveted by the comings and goings of one of Southern California’s
largest sportfishing fleets, as well as weatherbeaten commercial
fishermen, lanky scuba divers returning from Catalina and thrill-seekers
checking out the shark cages.
After appetizers, soup or salad, you should have your
momentum going just in time for the main course — and that means
choosing from a dozen fish "so fresh, they talk back to the
Chef!" And a master broiler he is, using a blend of apple and citrus
wood to infuse every filet with an amazing, subtle smokey flavor.
Extra-hungry diners might want to select from The
Fisherman’s Platter that includes shrimp, scallops and fresh swordfish
brochette or Live Maine Lobster, while ‘landlubbers’ have a number of
steak, chicken and fish combinations to choose from, such as the
traditional Surf & Turf, featuring teriyaki beef and swordfish.
I had the fresh Alaskan Salmon, a true revelation when
compared with the drab, boring salmon so often served in many seafood
restaurants these days. This is salmon that makes you remember what real
fish tastes like — moist, tender, melting in your mouth, almost without
having to chew it. The more I ate, the hungrier I became.
Savvy veteran restaurateur Dick Mannila (who developed
the famed Rusty Scupper chain, among others) really knew what he was doing
when he selected this site for what he calls "a super-fresh fish
house modeled after the Tadich Grill in San Francisco."
Though it’s been open since 1989, 22nd St. Landing
feels as if it has been there forever, with dark green leather booths and
wood paneling that creates an ambience of quality and tradition.
22nd St. Landing
141 West 22nd Street
Cabrillo Landing, San Pedro
Restaurant Row Magazine
P.O. Box 13109
Long Beach, CA 90803
- This Article Copyright © 2002 Restaurant Row, Ron Hodges. All
Rights Reserved World Wide. Used with permission.