photo credit: Neptune’s Net via Pre-K-Gourmet B. on Yelp
If your kids think fish only comes in stick form, it’s time to broaden their horizons. Lucky for you, LA is now home to some of the tastiest seafood spots in the country. So whether your little ones are craving fried clams by the beach or salmon grilled to the peak of perfection, we’ve reeled in the freshest fish joints that serve up the bounty of the sea in a kid-pleasing way.
For over 50 years, Neptune’s Net (or “The Net” as it’s lovingly called by locals) has been serving up fantastic and affordable seafood by the sea. Known for some of the freshest catches in Malibu and breathtaking views of the Pacific, it screams “lazy beach day” with your pint-sized surf crew. Tikes will devour fabulous fish and chips, killer crab cakes and savory shrimp followed by (if mom and dad give the a-okay) a towering swirl of chocolate and vanilla frozen yogurt. After you’ve finished dining, tots will love checking out the long parade of motorcycles lined up in front of the restaurant as a devoted following of bikers regularly stop by for a bite and a brew.
Tip: There is no kid’s menu and regular portions are rather large, so order up several dishes to sample and share – that’s one great way to get them to try new things!
42505 Pacific Coast Highway
photo credit: Neptune’s Net via Lawrence S. on Yelp
Connie and Ted’s
Connie and Ted’s is so incredibly delicious, you’ll want to drop by with your hungry brood every single night of the week. (No cooking for Mom!) This cheerful seafoodery is helmed by famed LA chef, Michael Cimarusti (owner of Providence), so you know you’re in for a drool-worthy sustainable seafood meal. Kids will love starting of with a piping hot cup of some of the best New England clam chowder on the planet. There is no kid-specific menu available, but best bets for tots include the fried clams, lobster roll, mac and cheese and for more adventurous pallets, an unbelievable selection of fresh oysters. There’s plenty of seating inside, but a table on the patio is pure perfection on a lovely fall evening.
Tip: Due to the restaurant’s crazy popularity, we highly recommend advanced reservations. But if you get there early or still have a wait, order up a lemonade and while away the time sitting and sipping in the bar patio’s rocking chairs.
8171 Santa Monica Blvd.
photo credit: Connie and Ted’s via Facebook
The original Water Grill downtown has always been a delicious mainstay for Angelenos, but we love the newer beachside location in Santa Monica for dining with the kiddos. Right across the street from the ocean, little ones will dig the lively East Coast atmosphere and can choose from a delicious offering of items. From the appetizer menu, we recommend the Wild Atlantic True Cod Fish Tacos and from the kid’s menu – fish and chips or grilled Atlantic salmon with a side of Yukon Gold mashed potatoes. If there’s any room left for dessert, you can’t go wrong with the Banana Chocolate Sundae sprinkled with chocolate covered corn flakes.
Tip: Skip the valet prices and take advantage of free parking available two blocks away at the public lots on 2nd Street. And take advantage of the proximity to Tongva Park for a family play date to either work up an appetite or work off that banana split.
1401 Ocean Ave.
photo credit: the Water Grill via Facebook
If the Lobster’s idyllic location at end of the Santa Monica Pier doesn’t jolt your kid’s excitement meter, the ah-mah-zing seafood dishes will. Request a table near the window so your tikes can take in picturesque views of the iconic Ferris wheel while chowing down on some of the tastiest grub near the shore. Kiddos do cartwheels over the Barramundi Fish and Chips, Dungeness Crab Enchiladas and truffle Parmesan fries (and they’re all things you’ll be sneaking bites of, too). After you’ve finished eating, hit up the pier for a friendly showdown at the Playland Arcade followed by a hair raising ride on the Sea Dragon. Loads of fun – done and done.
Tip: This is where we bring the out-of-towners for dinner and a view. You get fine dining, and the pier proximity makes a handy bribe for kids who sit still for supper.
1602 Ocean Ave.
photo credit: The Lobster via Facebook
Captain Kidd’s Fish Market & Restaurant
When your mateys are soaking up sun in the South Bay, be sure to swing by Captain Kidd’s in Redondo Beach for an outstanding seafood lunch by the water. With three patios, there’s ample seating and the family pup is even welcome to join in the fun. Little ones will love seeing the live lobsters and crabs and get to order any fresh fish or shellfish on the menu just the way they like it, along with two sides. Good choices for pint-sized pirates include popcorn shrimp, clam strips, hush puppies or a fish sandwich made-to-order. A “Mini Pirates” menu is available as well, but prices are so affordable on the regular menu, tots may wish to branch out a bit.
209 N. Harbor Dr.
photo credit: Captain Kidd’s Fish Market & Restaurant via Facebook
Where does your family get their fishy fix? Let us know in the comments below!