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 Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach

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MiamiDon

Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 8:03 AM (permalink)
The Blue Marlin Fish House has been at this location in one form or another for decades, but in the past twenty years or so the state built a new park building, with restrooms and a visitor information center.   The entrance is about 250 yards east of South Dixie Highway (US-1) on the south side of State Road 826 (NE 163rd Street).
 
Blue Marlin Fish House Restaurant:

 
The open air interior is very casual, with some light nautical décor:

 
Opposite the parking lot is the Oleta River, a dock, and view of the mangroves:

 
The first time that I visited, I saw this sign, which puzzled me:

 
 
Later on, I found out that many an afternoon, Dale the Biker has a beer while leaning against the counter in that spot.
 
Dale & Sign:

 
Looking out from the kitchen is DJ the owner who leases the space from the state:

 
The old building at this location only sold smoked fish,  and house-smoked fish is still on the menu.  
 
To-go order of marlin, mahi-mahi and grouper, along with tartar, key-lime mustard and chipotle-pepper sauces:

 
I've never had better.  The fish is brined/marinated overnight, with different recipes for each fish.
 
Warren the smoke master in front of the smoker, with some avocado wood:

 
The yellow device is a recorder connected to a thermocouple in one of the slabs of fish.  They also use buttonwood and mango, and other local woods.  There is another smoker which they use for meat.
 
 
Smoked Brisket Sandwich:

 
This was very tender and tasty.  I put the house-made cole slaw on top, covered it with the top of the lightly grilled Kaiser roll, and very much enjoyed it.  It was very tender.
 
Hand-pattied ½-pound burger served on the same roll:

 
I mentioned previously that he cooks these on a commercial sandwich grill, and it wasn’t as crusty as I might have preferred ( I still enjoyed it).  I think that if I had ordered it cooked more (medium-rare to medium) it would have had time to brown more.  The waffle fries, although not house-made, were good.
 
Also grilled on the same appliance is a kosher-style, foot-long hot dog.
 
Naked Foot-long Hot Dog:

This is a good dog, and the usual condiments and relishes are available.  It is also available as a chili dog.
 
Chili-Slaw Dog:

 
The chili is house-made.  I would prefer it without beans on a hot dog, but it is otherwise tasty.  I added the house-made coleslaw.
 
One current drawback for me is that Monday though Thursday  no fried food is available.  The reason is that the state-owned building has no provision for a grease trap and exhaust.  DJ owns a concession and special events trailer which does, but he doesn’t have the staffing to run it during the slow weekdays.
 
DJ’s Trailer:

 
 
These are the bad boys that fry up the food.
 
Triple-Double Friers:

 
DJ expects that to change in June, because of this:

 
Guy Fieri of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives had a shoot here, and the episode is set to air on June 8th!   The owner hopes that Monday through Thursday business will pick up enough to enable him to hire staff so that both kitchens can be manned seven days per week.
 
I hope so, because I really enjoyed the fried grouper sandwich I had one Friday.
 
Grouper Sandwich:

They marinate the fish in beer and Secret Spices overnight, and the result is very juicy and flavorful, with a crispy crust.   It was the best that I have had.
 
On another fry-day, I had some very good conch fritters.
 
Conch Fritters with Key Lime Mustard Sauce:

 
I enjoyed these.  As you can see, there are some peppers in the batter, and there was a mild seasoning that may have included cumin.  The sauce was good, and I also tried some with Cholula, which worked well too.
 
Onion Rings on the Side:
  
  
Although not house-made, these are good, oniony rings.
 
 
A new item on the "Specials" menu is the Lobster Burger, served with lettuce and tomato on a cornmeal-dusted grilled kaiser roll with a side of roasted-red-pepper sauce (other sauces are available).  Think of a crab cake made with lobster instead of crab.   I found it to be quite tasty, with obvious chunks of lobster. 
 
Maine Lobster Burger:

 
 
Maine Lobster Burger Assembled and Split:
 
  
  
  
 
 
Non-fry-days Menu:

 
Fry-Days Supplemental Menu:

 
A Daily Specials Menu:

 
The fried fish and the smoked fish are exceptional here, and many other items are very good.   Most of the prices are typical for Miami these days.  I recommend a visit for those who like smoked or fried fish.  Keep the weather in mind, as it is open-air, and bugs might be an issue after dark. 
  
Blue Marlin Fish House
2500 NE 163rd St
North Miami Bch, FL 33160 

 
Mon   12-5PM
Tue    11-7PM
Wed   1-5PM
Thu-Sun  11-7PM

   
   
   


 
<message edited by MiamiDon on Fri, 04/24/09 12:10 PM>
 
#1
    Pancho

    • Total Posts: 915
    • Joined: 10/20/2004
    • Location: Madison, WI
    Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 8:51 AM (permalink)
    Hi Don...that place looks fantastic! I'm flying into Miami next month...here's my dilemma...should I hit the Blue Marlin before I head to the Keys? I'm renting a convertible at the airport and need a lunch spot....or would you just head south? How far is the BM from the airport? Thanks for the great pics and write-up.
     
    #2
      MiamiDon

      Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 9:42 AM (permalink)
      Pancho:

      It is about 18 miles by road, and in the opposite direction from the Keys.  Mid-day or weekends, it is about 30 minutes.  What day of the week are you arriving, and when does your flight come in?  That would make a difference.
       
      #3
        Pancho

        • Total Posts: 915
        • Joined: 10/20/2004
        • Location: Madison, WI
        Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 10:07 AM (permalink)
        MiamiDon


        Pancho:

        It is about 18 miles by road, and in the opposite direction from the Keys.  Mid-day or weekends, it is about 30 minutes.  What day of the week are you arriving, and when does your flight come in?  That would make a difference.
        Noon on Thursday....now that I think about it I will probably just head south....I had planned to stop at Alabama Jacks anyway.....is that still a good spot? Maybe Blue Marlin on the return before the airport....Thanks for the input!


         
        #4
          MiamiDon

          Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 10:30 AM (permalink)
          As best I know, Alabama Jack's is still worth the slight detour to use Card Sound Road to get to Key Largo, especially if you like their signature dishes like conch fritters, or lima bean soup.  I haven't actually been there in a couple of years, though.
           
          #5
            brittneal

            • Total Posts: 1265
            • Joined: 9/17/2006
            • Location: fairborn, OH
            Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/19/09 3:09 PM (permalink)
            What in the world is a Maine lobster burger?  It could be awesome or scary depending on the interperatation!
             
            #6
              MiamiDon

              Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Tue, 04/21/09 5:39 PM (permalink)
              brittneal:

              I added two photos and a description of the Maine Lobster Burger.
               
              #7
                Pancho

                • Total Posts: 915
                • Joined: 10/20/2004
                • Location: Madison, WI
                Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Tue, 04/21/09 5:47 PM (permalink)
                Don! Please quit it! I'm going to try and make Alabama Jack's and you keep posting all those great food pics! I'm stopping on the way back for sure! Thanks!
                 
                #8
                  sk bob

                  • Total Posts: 1801
                  • Joined: 12/29/2005
                  • Location: South Daytona, FL
                  Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Tue, 04/21/09 8:24 PM (permalink)
                  man everything looks good there Don.
                  looks like you had a feast there.
                  nice report. A+
                   
                  #9
                    MiamiDon

                    Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Fri, 04/24/09 4:13 PM (permalink)
                    sk bob:
                     
                    Thanks.  If you're every riding down to the Keys, it's worth a stop (and give me a call).
                     
                    #10
                      sk bob

                      • Total Posts: 1801
                      • Joined: 12/29/2005
                      • Location: South Daytona, FL
                      Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sun, 04/26/09 12:17 PM (permalink)
                      it will be on the list
                       
                      #11
                        MiamiDon

                        Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Mon, 06/8/09 4:34 PM (permalink)
                        FYI:  This restaurant will be on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives tonight.
                         
                        #12
                          Davydd

                          • Total Posts: 6222
                          • Joined: 4/24/2005
                          • Location: Tonka Bay, MN
                          Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Mon, 06/8/09 4:53 PM (permalink)
                          I was giving serious thought of going down to Florida this coming winter, but seeing this report and how cold it is here in Minnesota today, I might just have to head out right now.
                           
                          #13
                            sk bob

                            • Total Posts: 1801
                            • Joined: 12/29/2005
                            • Location: South Daytona, FL
                            Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Mon, 06/8/09 5:26 PM (permalink)
                            just put a big note on the tv
                             
                            #14
                              MiamiDon

                              Re:Blue Marlin Fish House in North Miami Beach Sat, 07/18/09 1:52 PM (permalink)
                              Bad news.

                              The operator of the Blue Marlin packed up and left town.  I know that the sub-lease renewal was coming due, and I guess the terms were unacceptable.  Or, perhaps the long-term leaseholder thought he could better profit by running it himself now that it was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.

                              Whatever the cause, the menu has changed.  The same fellow is smoking the fish out back, so if that is what you want, it should still be good.  The sauces available may not be the same homemade specialties, though. 

                              Anyway, unless you are in the immediate neighborhood, I cannot unreservedly recommend that you visit.
                               
                              #15
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