Weekend Part 3: Santa Cruz Restaurant Week

For dinner Sunday, Mr. K & I had made reservations at Aquarius, a seafood restaurant located on Monterrey Bay in Santa Cruz.  While it would normally be out of my graduate school budget, this week happened to be Santa Cruz Restaurant Week! 

What does this glorious name mean?!  Prie Fix Menus of an appetizer, entree & dessert for $25!!!  Unfortunately in the end, I couldn’t order off the menu because none of the items were un-dairyable (yes, this is now a word), but we still had a wonderful, and relatively inexpensive dinner.

We started off with drinks.  I indulged in the Cranberry Caipirinha and Mr. K had a Manhattan.

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(Mine was the PINK one)

Then, Mr. K ordered off the Prie Fix menu, while I (had to) order off the regular menu.

I started off with the calamari with a lemon aioli dipping sauce with capers.  Surprisingly the calamari also came with fried broccoli, cauliflower, green beans and asparagus.  It was an amazingly welcome surprise – and it was delicious.

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The calamari was some of the best I have had, granted I only had calamari I liked one other time…and it to was from a restaurant along the beach in California…but LA style.  The portion was huge…so I shared with Mr. K.

Then I had the roasted halibut for my entree.

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The halibut was cooked perfectly, but it was such a thick piece of halibut, that the majority of the fish was rather bland.  I seasoned with salt and pepper, and the taste improved immensely.  The roasted zucchini and yellow squash were quite the delight.

While I indulged in the halibut, Mr. K dove into some muscles.

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I mean mussels :)  He said they were delightful – some of the best he’s had.

1-up to California for having super fresh seafood!

Then for dessert, Mr. K had some icecream sandwiches, and then we shared Lemon cotton candy, courtesy of the chef.

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It may have been ALL sugar, but man was it delicious.

Overall, I had a good experience at Aquarius.  It wasn’t the best service-wise (we waited a really long time for our appetizers and then even looonger for our main dishes), but I might contribute that a bit to restaurant week.  The food was definitely worth the trip though (especially at restaurant week prices), though I’d like to try something more…”daring” seafood next time I visit.  And yes, there hopefully will be a next time.

After that, we headed back to my apartment, where Mr. K packed up to head home in the weeeeee hours of the morning, and we watched a few episodes of “How I Met Your Mother.”  (Great show, fyi).

Where is your favorite place to get seafood?  What is your favorite dish?!  Mine isn’t really ‘seafood’, its more ‘freshwater-food,’ but its a freshly caught walleye, coated in flour and grilled in a skillet over an open fire.  The restaurant I get it at?  Its called ‘the open-fire grill we made while up in the BWCA.’ 

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