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South Beach Fish Market

3640 South Coast Highway, South Beach, OR - (541) 867-6800
Posted By Michael Stern on 8/27/2008 6:49:00 AM
At this roadside eat-in-the-rough cafe and seafood market you can buy whole tunas (which the management will fillet for $4 each), bring your own fish to be smoked for $2.50 per pound, or order from an oceancentric menu of fried fare that ranges from clam strips to halibut and chips.

It was the halibut that won my affection. While it is normally not a fish I would think of having battered and fried, its creamy white flesh retained supreme juiciness inside its golden coat; and its subtle flavor actually was enhanced by the batter's quiet luxury. The crab cocktail was swell – just a cylinder of shreds and chunks of meat packed into a plastic cup and crowned with a slice of lemon; but the salmon burger was not good. Ground and formed into a patty that was deep fried to a crisp, the meat had lost its oily succulence. There are pulverized crab burgers and shrimp burgers, too, but next time I visit, I am going for nice, whole hunks of fish in that good batter.

South Beach is a supercasual place with a counter and stools where you can eat your meal from throwaway baskets. Its sells great canned tuna – Oregon albacore, packed in its natural juices (nothing added) and cooked in the can. It is dense, rich, and far superior to anything found on supermarket shelves. The tuna as well as other shippable seafoods all are available via mail order.

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Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Halibut & Chips
Chowder
Crab Cocktail
Salmon Candy
Wild Prawns
Tuna Salad Sandwich
Onion Rings
Smoked Fish
Fish and chips
Dungeness Crab Burger
Captain's Platter
Salmon Burger
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

Halibut is a gentle-flavored sort of fish, but it blossoms in South Beach's crisp-fried coat. The meat's moistness is enhanced by that golden crunch.
"Halibut is a gentle-flavored sort of fish, but it blossoms in South Beach's crisp-fried coat. The meat's moistness is enhanced by that golden crunch."
Michael Stern





Inspired by native-American recipes of the Pacific Northwest, South Beach Seafood makes wild Chinook king salmon into 'salmon candy' by glazing nuggets of smoked pink meat with pepper and brown sugar. Each firm, moist piece packs a provocative sweet and savory punch.
"Inspired by native-American recipes of the Pacific Northwest, South Beach Seafood makes wild Chinook king salmon into 'salmon candy' by glazing nuggets of smoked pink meat with pepper and brown sugar. Each firm, moist piece packs a provocative sweet and savory punch."
Michael Stern


South Beach fried seafood, veiled in tempura batter laced with garlic, has few equals anywhere. Jumbo wild prawns offer two levels of crunch: first, the crackle of the crust that surrounds them, then the dense snap of the meat itself.
"South Beach fried seafood, veiled in tempura batter laced with garlic, has few equals anywhere. Jumbo wild prawns offer two levels of crunch: first, the crackle of the crust that surrounds them, then the dense snap of the meat itself."
Michael Stern


The chips are nothing special, but the fish is so fresh-tasting, and has a nice garlic hit from the batter.
"The chips are nothing special, but the fish is so fresh-tasting, and has a nice garlic hit from the batter."
Terry Taylor


While South Beach French fries are fine, we highly recommend paying a few dollars more for onion rings, too. Along with perfect o-ring circles, each basket also contains frail squiggles of batter that are merely onion-flavored and several hoops of onion with hardly any batter: It's all good.
"While South Beach French fries are fine, we highly recommend paying a few dollars more for onion rings, too. Along with perfect o-ring circles, each basket also contains frail squiggles of batter that are merely onion-flavored and several hoops of onion with hardly any batter: It's all good."
Michael Stern


Smoked fish.
"Smoked fish."
Terry Taylor


There's 1/4 pound of crab in this baby!
"There's 1/4 pound of crab in this baby!"
Jim Scheppke


There are lots of choices, but I like the fresh tuna the best.
"There are lots of choices, but I like the fresh tuna the best."
Jim Scheppke


Dungeness crab needs no adornment whatsoever. This cocktail is a fine way to precede a fish-and-chips meal.
"Dungeness crab needs no adornment whatsoever. This cocktail is a fine way to precede a fish-and-chips meal."
Michael Stern


You know the crab is fresh when you walk by the pots on the way in.
"You know the crab is fresh when you walk by the pots on the way in."
Jim Scheppke


Place your order at the counter and watch them fry it up.
"Place your order at the counter and watch them fry it up."
Jim Scheppke


Located just south of the bridge on Highway 101 in Newport, Oregon.
"Located just south of the bridge on Highway 101 in Newport, Oregon."
Terry Taylor


The Captain's Platter is 2 oysters, 2 hunks of halibut, 2 scallops and 2 prawns.
"The Captain's Platter is 2 oysters, 2 hunks of halibut, 2 scallops and 2 prawns."
Michael Stern


Signs along the parking lot fence tell the variety of things available. Not listed: salmon jerky and 'salmon candy,' the latter moist, sweet, and smoky.
"Signs along the parking lot fence tell the variety of things available. Not listed: salmon jerky and 'salmon candy,' the latter moist, sweet, and smoky."
Michael Stern


South Beach boasts that its salmon burger, like the shrimp burger and crab burger, is made on premises. Maybe, but the salmon and chips is so much more salmony and rich, I would always pass on the burger to get the whole pieces of fish.
"South Beach boasts that its salmon burger, like the shrimp burger and crab burger, is made on premises. Maybe, but the salmon and chips is so much more salmony and rich, I would always pass on the burger to get the whole pieces of fish."
Michael Stern


South Beach chowder is a good Pacific Northwest brew: thick and porky, mild-tempered, and well suited for a chilly day along the shore.
"South Beach chowder is a good Pacific Northwest brew: thick and porky, mild-tempered, and well suited for a chilly day along the shore."
Michael Stern


The crab and fried seafood are so good that it is easy to neglect more common-seeming items on the South Beach menu. The tuna salad sandwich is far more delicious than any ordinary lunch-counter tuna. The fish itself is top-quality albacore, mixed just enough to blend with mayo, et. al., but still chunky enough to deliver the meaty pleasure of tuna.
"The crab and fried seafood are so good that it is easy to neglect more common-seeming items on the South Beach menu. The tuna salad sandwich is far more delicious than any ordinary lunch-counter tuna. The fish itself is top-quality albacore, mixed just enough to blend with mayo, et. al., but still chunky enough to deliver the meaty pleasure of tuna."
Michael Stern


South Beach Seafood's excellence is no secret. It is a bustling place throughout the day.
"South Beach Seafood's excellence is no secret. It is a bustling place throughout the day."
Michael Stern


Of the many seafood eateries along Oregon's coast, this humble outfit is among the very best.
"Of the many seafood eateries along Oregon's coast, this humble outfit is among the very best."
Michael Stern


Whatever your needs, you probably can fulfill them here.
"Whatever your needs, you probably can fulfill them here."
Michael Stern



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