Hello Stonefire Grill Torrance!

Stonefire Grill is all about community and family. First started by sisters Mary and Maureen Harrigan in 2000, this fast-casual dining concept quickly grew to nine Southern California restaurants and now it’s opening up its 10th location in Torrance, California.

I recently had a chance to check out the newest location and quickly became a fan. It is the perfect restaurant to enjoy good eats and good times with family and friends.

Stonefire Grill has quite an extensive menu that has items every one in the family can enjoy. They’ve got pizza, sandwiches, pasta, signature salads, grill items and more. There is some thing for every taste bud.

I started my meal here with their chicken tortilla soup.

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The chicken tortilla soup is garnished with jack cheese, cilantro, avocado and tortilla chips. The small is a pretty fulfilling bowl that is sure to warm your heart and your tummy. They’ve also got a large that is perfect for sharing.

Speaking of sharing, perfect sharables are items from their grill section. From chicken to meat and seafood, Stonefire Grill’s grill items are slowly cooked overnight and finished over a live mesquite fire for their sauces. Each item is made to order and comes with a salad (Garden Caesar, Cartwheel or Greek), a small side item and 2 freshly baked breadsticks.

The breadsticks are Stonefire Grill’s signature item and is one that should not be missed when coming here.

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Breadsticks are freshly made and come out so soft and warm. Marinara sauce and buttermilk ranch are available as dipping sauces. I tried it with buttermilk ranch and instantly fell in love.

It was hard not to be full after the soup and breadsticks but I just had to save room for their grill items. My personal favorite from the Grill menu was their boneless chicken breast and tri-tip.

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The chicken can be garnished with mesquite bbq or lemon garlic. I chose to get my dish with lemon garlic. It was one of the tastiest chicken dishes I have ever had. The chicken  was perfectly tender and I loved the lemon zest it was flavored with. There were also small chunks of garlic on top that added a nice but subtle garlic flavor.

As for the tri-tip, one can get it with mesquite bbq or pepper garlic topped with gorgonzola butter. I chose to get it with mesquite bbq. Just like the chicken breast, the tri-tip was a winner. The beef cut was lean and every thing about the meat was on point. It was flavored perfectly and matched well with my side of garlic mashed potatoes.

The grill menu is not just about meat however because one can also enjoy some items from the sea. The Meditteraean sea bass is a Stonefire Grill favorite.

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It comes with sustainably farmed Branzino with fresh lemon, olive oil and red chili flakes and is served with a bed of farro salad. It’s a beautiful, healthy plate.

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The Farro Salad comes with farro, caramelized onions, basil, parsley, green onion, walnuts, parmesan, lemon and olive oil. I liked the mixture of ingredients. Each truly stuck out and enhanced the farro fabulously.

It doesn’t end with the savory items here however because Stonefire Grill has some awesome sweets as well!

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Their desserts are made from family recipes and are prepared every morning. They’ve got their signature carrot cake, cheesecake, fudge brownies and cookies. Each item can be served as a half or as a full.

The carrot cake was my personal favorite.  It was so moist and complete with walnuts and creamy cream cheese frosting. The heavenly cheesecake was indeed heavenly and nicely topped with fresh blueberry sauce. The fudge brownies were also great. Soft and chewy, it was chocolate bliss.

The food is something everyone can enjoy and it’s a great place to share some good meals. I also noticed that everyone at Stonefire Grill was pleasant and willing to give a hand; just like family. In fact when I came, tip proceeds went to the Pediatric Therapy Network. This place truly is about the community.

Stonefire Grill has it’s grand opening in Torrance tomorrow, February 6.

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on Stonefire Grill Torrance.

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Hello VIP “Passport to Redondo Beach” Party at Bluewater Grill!

At the beginning of this week, I had the pleasure of attending the VIP “Passport to Redondo Beach” at Bluewater Grill. This event was the official launch of Bluewater Grill’s new waterfront dining patio and lounge.

The party had a very unique them to it. All guests were given a passport.

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This passport was the access to the VIP tour. There were six spots in the tour and each of us guests were to collect stamps at six special stations that Bluewater Grill set up.

The first station was where we each picked up our passports. This was Bluewater Grill’s Fireplace lounge.

The next station was the Waterfront Patio. This new patio is one of the largest waterfront dining spaces in the South Bay and overlooks the King Harbor marina. It includes a fire pit and lounge like couches for guests to enjoy Bluewater Grill’s delicious eats.  During the party, we got to feast on a yummy cheese and cracker platter that was paired with Bluewater Grill’s select fine wines.

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Station #3 was Bluewater Grill’s bar. Here VIP guests were treated to a Pilikia Margarita. This refreshing concoction consisted of Sauza Hornitos tequila, Cointreau, fresh lime juice, fresh orange juice and a splash of lemon. The bartender also had a Virgin version available.

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The fourth stop of this fun party was dining room. Here guests could enjoy Fanny Boy oyster shooters. The oyster shooters could be enjoyed with or without absolute pepper vodka! Bluewater Grill doesn’t mess around with their oysters and anyone who enjoys the seafood delight would be pleased.

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Next stop of the tour was the Captain’s cabin. The Captain’s cabin is one of the dining areas at Bluewater Grill where guests can have a private party. It can seat 20-60 guests. I can personally say that this really is a beautiful area for a party.  I once had the pleasure of dining here for an event celebrating Bluewater Grill’s launch of the New England lobster and clambake.

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At the Captain’s cabin, all of us guests got to try Bluewater Grill’s delicious crab cakes.

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Our last stop for the VIP party was the upstairs Avalon room. This is Bluewater Grill’s exclusive banquet room. Since this was the last stop of this very special night, we were treated to a variety of special appetizers.

There were jumbo shrimp and “sea bon bon” sashimi sea scallops.

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Those seafood starters were just the beginning of the treats at the Avalon room because soon after the waiters kept bringing out more dining delights.

One of the very first offerings brought out turned out to be my favorite of the night; Bluewater Grill’s Caribbean clam chowder. I loved the hint of coconut in this soup. It brought a unique tropical twist to clam chowder

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Next up was a refreshing and healthy treat. They served Bluewater Grill’s lobster mango salad. The mango was a special touch that brought a little bit of sweetness to this appetizer.

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Bluewater Grill is not purely seafood because they have some meat options as well for meat eaters like myself. They have a great duck appetizer that is served on top of a crisp wonton. I found the duck so savory and tender. How innovative too that they would pair this with a wonton! I love the combo!

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Definitely not lacking was the sweet dessert offerings! It sure was a sweet feast that included vanilla cake, chocolate cake, eclairs, cream puffs, lemon bars, fruit tarts and walnut bars.

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It was so hard to choose which dessert to get! Every thing I did try was simply amazing.

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The dessert treats were a perfect pairing with coffee. Hmm this seemed like a passport to bliss.

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It was truly one amazing night and a wonderful tour of the world of Bluewater Grill.

Congratulations Bluewater Grill on your new waterfront patio. This Hello Kitty Foodie cannot wait to be back!

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Hello Hermosa Beach Fish Shop!

Picture perfect Friday in the city of Hermosa Beach, the city of beach side bliss. With sunny skies, fresh air, the cool ocean breeze coming towards me, today I was at the heart of Hermosa Beach at Pier Avenue. Pier Avenue for me is where beach side happiness starts because it’s down this street that you find the cute boutiques, fun beach shops and delicious eateries. It’s the street of beach smiles. Now right at the start of Pier Avenue, there’s another reason to smile because of newly opened Hermosa Beach Fish Shop!

The original fish shop restaurant is from my other favorite beach side bliss city, San Diego, via Pacific Beach Fish Shop. It’s sister restaurant is now in Hermosa Beach as the Hermosa Beach Fish Shop! The Hermosa restaurant has only been open for a couple months and plenty of people on their way to the pier are already flocking to this new beach eatery. I was super flattered and honored when I recently received an invite to dine at Hermosa Beach Fish Shop as a media guest.

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I dined at Hermosa Beach Fish Shop today and the very first thing I noticed was their menu. The menu is perfect for any Seafood fan! Folks dining here have the choice of selecting which seafood and marinade they want and whether to have it as a taco, salad, sandwich or plate! The menu also has plenty of sea options such as chowder, ceviche, oyster shooters.

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I came here with my mom because she is a big seafood fan. We started off our meal here with a cup of Fish Shop Chowder. It’s clam chowder with a twist because it’s clam chowder with smoked andouille sausage. I really enjoyed this soup! I liked the thick, creamy broth and I was such a fan of the smoked andouille sausage. I thought this touch was great. The chunks of sausage brought extra depth and flavor to the soup!

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Our other starter for this meal was the lobster lumpia. This was also a nice little appetizer! Little crispy fried egg rolls are filled with shredded lobster! It was served with jasmine rice and sesame sweet chili dipping sauce.

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My mom chose to make her own fish entree. Her customized dish consisted of sea bass with garlic butter marinade and sides of six grain rice and seasonal vegetables. It was a very healthy dish with the grilled sea bass. I got to try the six grain rice and found it be well seasoned and flavorful.

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I got the crab cake sandwich with a side of house cut onion rings. The crab cake sandwich was filled with a big crab cake, caramelized onion and a horseradish remoulade. I was impressed with this crab cake sandwich. The crab cake itself had a crisp crust on the outside and a creamy filling on the inside. The caramelized onion and horseradish remoulade made for a nice relish. The onion rings were a great side! The onion rings here are made fresh to order and so they come out nice and crispy. They hand batter each. The batter has a nice, buttery like flavor to it. I am a fan of these onion rings!

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Hermosa Beach Fish Shop is a nice addition to happy little Pier Avenue in Hermosa Beach. I truly enjoyed this sunny Friday today because of my lunch here. Thank you to Hermosa Beach Fish Shop for inviting me to try out your restaurant. My mom and I both left with big smiles on our faces. This place is sure to bring even more smiles to the street of beach smiles, Pier Avenue, in the city of beach side bliss, Hermosa Beach. 🙂

For more smiles, please see my recent Yelp review on Hermosa Beach Fish Shop.