Sea-worthyFeb 01, 2022 ● By Lisa Sciortino
Sea Breeze Fish Market & Grill in Plano has been on my radar since I transplanted to North Texas from the West Coast several years ago. An admitted seafood junkie, I’m constantly on the hunt for restaurants that serve the sort of ultra-fresh fish dishes that are ubiquitous when you live a short drive from the ocean. However, in my experience, those aren’t always easy to come by around these parts.
Nevertheless, it wasn’t until recently that I finally made it through Sea Breeze’s door – and I’ve been kicking myself ever since for having waited so long to enjoy a meal here.
Tucked into an expansive shopping center off Preston Road, south of Spring Creek Parkway, Sea Breeze is surrounded by other eateries. I took it as a good sign that even the small tables it had stationed on the walkway outside were occupied by diners on a Friday evening. Inside, the dining room was also mostly filled, which made me glad to have secured a reservation in advance.
A friendly hostess promptly led us to a table adjacent to the bustling kitchen, where we were quickly greeted by a member of the wait staff who filled our water glasses. He also brought a tall glass bottle of chilled water to the table from which refills were poured throughout our meal.
Our server, Tone, appeared and proved especially knowledgeable as we quizzed her about the menu offerings, especially Sea Breeze’s lobster entrees that include Whole Maine Lobster, a New England Lobster Roll, Connecticut Style Hot Lobster and a Lobster Grilled Cheese (all market price).
She also helped us select our drinks: My friend chose a glass of Riesling and I went with the Black Cherry Prosecco Spritz. Served in a champagne coupe glass, the latter features a sweet, slightly bubbly blend of prosecco, Hanson Meyer lemon vodka and a black cherry puree. Light and refreshing, it was a perfect way to cap the work week.
We also asked Tone about the Smoked Salmon Dip appetizer that caught our eye, and she assured that it was a tasty choice. Served chilled alongside a pile of crispy tortilla chips, the log-shaped, creamy dip is filled with chunks of flaky salmon, slivers of red onion and delicate dill leaves. Its smokey flavor comes through in a big way. This one’s a winner, and we weren’t about to leave a morsel of it on the plate: She kindly brought us second, smaller serving of chips and we cleaned the plate prior to ordering entrees.
The menu’s Chef Specials (which change every couple of weeks) are served with a choice of two of Sea Breeze’s specialty sides. I selected the Blackened Grouper with Brussel Sprouts and Au Gratin Potatoes while my friend opted for the Baked Crabmeat Stuffed Shrimp with Acorn Squash and a house salad.
While waiting for our entrees to arrive, I perused the bustling dining room with its soft blue hues and seaside-themed décor. A large mural of a ship-filled seaport inhabits a wall near the host stand, lending to the place’s East Coast-nautical theme (the large white “Lobster” flag hanging in the window also helps). Blue-and-white-swirled glass pendant lights illuminate the long bar, behind which a sizeable selection of wine bottles is housed. More bottles line a high shelf on the opposite side of the room, above the brightly lit refrigerated case in which an assortment of fresh fish and shellfish (available for purchase by the pound) is displayed.
Before long, a plate with a half-dozen large, butterflied shrimp – plump with crabmeat stuffing and garnished with a lemon wedge – arrived at our table. On the side was the tender-roasted acorn squash made with amaretto brown butter and lightly dusted with vanilla wafer cookie crumbs that provided a sweet juxtaposition to the entrée. The house salad, featuring a mix of spring greens, tomatoes and slivers of crunchy purple cabbage, was crisp and refreshing as expected.
The oh-so-flaky grouper filet was lightly dusted with a coating of spices that played well with the creamy, garlicky goat cheese sauce that covered most of the fish. This was one of the freshest, most flavorful pieces of fish I’ve enjoyed in quite some time. Meanwhile, the Brussel sprouts, blended with caramelized onions and a balsamic glaze, retained a slight, pleasant crunch and paired nicely with the layered au gratin potatoes that boasted a thick, hearty crumb topping.
Blame it on the coastal vibes that Sea Breeze successfully puts down, but by meal’s end, one thing was certain: A piece of key lime pie was in order. Tone promptly brought us the next best thing – a Key Lime Tart – to share. Small but mighty, the tartness of its yellow custard was undeniable, which was a very good thing. Encased in a thick, crumbly graham cracker crust and topped with a pile of fluffy swirled meringue and thin strawberry slices, it reminded me of the fare at a quirky Key West pie shop I visited a few years ago, and definitely hit the spot after our filling dinner.
It was uber-fresh seafood I was after and that is precisely what I got – along with excellent service – at Sea Breeze Fish Market & Grill. It may have taken a while to make my way there, but after this terrific meal, I intend to make a return visit soon.
Frisco STYLE Magazine dining reviews are not scheduled with or paid for by the featured restaurant. All reviews are completed for the purpose of helping readers learn about and enjoy local dining options. Is there an area restaurant that you’d like us to review? Email us at [email protected].
Lisa Sciortino is managing editor of Frisco STYLE Magazine.