Fish Fanatics Need to Try These Seafood Restaurants in LA

Whether you want flown-in or local, raw or cooked, these are the places to go for the best fish in town.

Given its prime coastal location, it’s no surprise that Los Angeles serves up some of the best seafood in the nation. The city is home to a plethora of seafood restaurants, all specializing in their own unique take on fish, shellfish, and crustaceans. While fresh seafood is typically enjoyed at high-end, upscale eateries, some of the freshest ceviches and crudos are available in casual food trucks scattered throughout LA.

That said, the city certainly has its fair share of fancy restaurants that serve buttery lobster tails and grandiose seafood towers if that’s more your thing. No matter what kind of price point, setting, or style of seafood you’re looking for, there really is something for every type of fish fanatic. From casual beachside joints in Malibu to fine dining establishments in Hollywood, don’t miss out on these 20 essential seafood restaurants in LA for everything from tinned seafood to omakase sushi.

Angler Los Angeles

Beverly Center
$$$$

After a brief interim, Angler LA has reopened and returned better than ever. The innovative yet approachable menu encourages diners to step out of their comfort zone and try something new. The menu is divided into several sections, including cold dishes, hot dishes, and meats and veggies cooked over embers. Some highlights from the cold section include the bluefin tuna with buttermilk bread and the cockles. When it comes to the hot dishes, don’t miss out on the sea snails or savory seaweed rice with an egg yolk and trout roe. The swordfish al pastor has a flaky and delicate texture, which isn’t typical with swordfish, and the Murray cod is flavorful.
How to book: Reservations are available online.

Available for Reservations

Crudo e Nudo

Various locations
$$$$

What started as a pop-up during the pandemic has since transformed into one of the Westside's most beloved seafood spots. Located on Main Street, Crudo e Nudo blends casual dining with the highest quality seafood to create a charming experience in the heart of Ocean Park. Co-owners Leena Culhane and chef Brian Bornemann emphasize the importance of sustainability both in the food menu and wine program. The ever-changing wine list features plenty of low-intervention vino, while the crudos continuously change based on seasonality and availability. However, some consistent favorites include the Tuna Tartare Toast, the Caviar Nachos, and the furikake-covered vegan Caesar.
How to book: Reservations are available online.

Available for Reservations

Saltie Girl

Various locations
$$$$

Saltie Girl is bringing a taste of the Boston seafood scene to Los Angeles. Though you can order everything from seafood towers to spicy lobster spaghetti, the massive list of tinned fish is the highlight of Saltie Girl’s food menu. Start with olive oil-soaked sardines and grilled bread while you sip a glass of sparkling wine on the Sunset Boulevard patio. The shareable Lobster Frites is an eye-catching dish worth splurging on, but if you’re in the mood for something a bit lighter, the French Dover sole is cooked in lemon butter sauce that is worthy of slurping. Of course, you can’t go wrong with the warm signature Saltie Girl lobster roll.
How to book: Reservations are available online.

Available for Reservations

Neptune's Net

Various locations
$$$$

If you’re making a trek to the northernmost end of Malibu, stop by Neptune’s Net for an ice-cold beer and some fried scallops. The notorious biker spot actually has two different ordering options within the restaurant. The main counter serves everything from fried shrimp baskets to bloody marys and mimosas, while the other side serves up fresh seafood like King crab, clams, and oysters. Get a little something from each counter for the full experience before posting up at one of the outdoor picnic tables. It gets super crowded on the weekends, but if you can snag a spot before they’re all taken, the ocean views are killer.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Dudley Market

Venice
$$$$

If you picture the au-courant fish house in your mind, the sort of place where a recent transplant would take a skeptical visitor to say, “See, LA isn’t so bad,” you’d end up with something very much like Dudley Market. So there are tinned conservas and natural wine, wild-caught fish by the pound to take home, a menu that changes too much to be listed online but always includes a fresh crudo, dim lighting, and a thumping soundtrack and extremely cool merch. But don’t be intimidated by the obvious hipness. The energy is chill, and the fish is perfect, sourced as well as they claim and prepared with a deft hand and a clever touch.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Mel's Fish Shack

West Adams
$$$$

Even if you weren’t thinking about a po’boy when you turned onto Jefferson, it’s hard to trek between Crenshaw and La Brea without stopping for one at Mel’s Fish Shack. The Cajun-style seafood institution has existed since 1982, and Georgette Powell’s restaurant is still firing on all cylinders. They knock out battered and fried fish plates using fresh seafood, including wild-caught options like sand dabs, snapper, and sole with some excellent Southern sides. You can also get your fish grilled over salad or wrapped in a warm wheat tortilla.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Providence
Photo by John Troxell, courtesy of Providence

Providence

Hollywood
$$$$

It is no coincidence that one of the best fine dining restaurants in LA—and one of the best restaurants, period—is intensely focused on seafood. And not just any seafood, but sustainable, ethical, wild-caught seafood sourced from both local waters and abroad. Chef Michael Cimarusti and his team treat their fish with sophisticated techniques and elevated presentations that highlight the quality product instead of obscuring it, showcasing those beautiful sea creatures throughout the vaunted two Michelin-starred tasting menu. The sustainable ethos doesn’t end at the edge of the water. They have also introduced zero-waste programs in pastry chef Mac Daniel Dimla’s chocolate desserts and behind the bar in bar director Kim Stodel’s wild collection of shrubs, infusions, and garnishes made from kitchen leftovers.
How to book: Reservations are available online.

Available for Reservations

Holbox

Downtown
$$$$

Holbox is a top-tier mariscos stand, but it fits this category in particular because of chef Gilberto Cetina Jr.’s meticulous sourcing. When you walk up to the counter in Mercado La Paloma, there will be an array of sea creatures splayed on ice under the glass. There may be Hawaiian kanpachi; scallops from Baja; or local rockfish ready to be diced into ceviche, sliced into aguachile, or fileted and fried into classic fish tacos at any moment. The sauce work is bright and punchy, and preparations are on point, a perfect complement to the pristine fish.
How to book: Reservations are available via Tock.

Yui Restaurant

Sierra Madre
$$$$

Any sushi chef worth their knives can source and slice quality seafood, but not all can discuss it as chef Katsu Hisanaga does at Yui. The tiny sushi bar in the charming town of Sierra Madre flies a little below the radar in LA’s excellent sushi landscape, but it’s hard to beat on the quality-price-variety matrix. A quick scroll through the restaurant’s Instagram reveals an endless stream of fishphotos listing the specials, their place of origin, and a charming little tidbit, a description or fact or personal remembrance about the fish. Maybe you will eat a beltfish so long it spills off of chef’s cutting board, or discover the three edible kinds of sea cucumber (they have red ones, the sashimi grade kind), or learn what skipjack can tell you about the weather (when they get fat, it’s almost fall), or maybe you’ll catch Hisanaga playing a 1953 Telecaster guitar. Whatever it is, it’s worth the drive out the 210 and up into the foothills.
How to book: Call 626-325-3840 for reservations.

Jus' Poke

Redondo Beach
$$$$

Sometimes a seafood craving is best sated by a white tablecloth meal, with white wine, white linen pants, and white sails bobbing in a nearby harbor. And sometimes you just want a heaping pile of fish, chopped and seasoned and scooped into a takeout tray that you can eat on a picnic table or a blanket or in the front seat of your car. The Redondo Beach takeout counter Jus’ Poke is an essential spot for the latter seafood experience, offering a classic take on the Hawaiian dish that hews close to the traditional island version. Co-owner Stefanie Honda is a South Bay native, but her father and grandfather moved here from Maui, and she’s continuing their fishing tradition with their straightforward, high-quality poke. The Original and Shoyu pokes are perfect renditions of the Hawaiian icons, and the Hawaiian Chili Peppah brings in a slap of heat thanks to sharp Bird’s Eye chiles.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Broad Street Oyster Co.
Photo by Asteryx, courtesy of Broad Street Oyster Co.

Broad Street Oyster Co.

Various locations
$$$$

Christopher Tompkins’s seafood spot has exploded from a mobile raw bar into a bicoastal fish party with various locations, including three stationary restaurants in Malibu, Grand Central Market, and Santa Barbara, a regular pop-up at Smorgasburg DTLA, and one coming soon to San Francisco at Ghirardelli Square. Each is a rowdy good time with fresh fish sliced into crudos, stacked into magnificent towers, or cooked into Cioppino, paired with a funky fun wine list and crisp local beers. It’s hard to beat the fresh ocean breeze at the Malibu location right off the lagoon, but a pop into GCM downtown is another damn good way to get your fish fix. While everything on the menu tends to be a hit, the lobster roll topped with caviar is the true crème de la crème.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Little Fish

Various locations
$$$$

This pandemic pop-up grew a loyal following, selling boxes of fish and chips with veggies and cold Coors before skyrocketing to celebrity status when they switched the format to a fish sandwich. Little Fish started out offering pickups from an Echo Park bungalow, then expanded to Smorgasburg DTLA, and now the La-favorite has taken over a procession of restaurants around town. There was the long-running pop-up at Highland Park’s Checker Hall, and the pop-up has also bounced around spots like Crudo e Nudo, Dudley Market, Chainsaw, and Ojai’s Pinyon. Lately, McCall’s Meat & Fish Co. in Santa Monica has been a popular spot for Little Fish. Wherever Little Fish goes, founders Anna Sonenshein, Forrest Florsheim, and Niki Vahle bring their immaculate menu of smoked fish dip, fried seafood, and delicious veggies with them.
How to book: Check Instagram for dinner date announcements.

Santa Monica Seafood

Santa Monica
$$$$

Santa Monica Seafood is a fish market that supplies sea creatures to many local restaurants, but it’s also a full-service cafe and restaurant with some of the freshest seafood in town. Grab a seat at the oyster bar and throw a few back, then go for a bowl of the excellent Cioppino or maybe a Grilled Swordfish Sandwich. They’ve also got a fantastic selection of mostly California wines to pair with your fish, and on your way out, you can stop by the seafood case to pick up fresh fish for the week.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

The Water Grill
Photo courtesy of Water Grill

Water Grill

Santa Monica
$$$$

Water Grill is an institution in this category, a longstanding bastion of luxury seafood cooking that is about to open its seventh location, which includes locations in Santa Monica and Downtown. In all those years, their kitchens haven’t lost a step, staying up to date with lovely seasonal cooking that relies on impeccable sourcing and creative preparations. The raw bar is legendary, with oysters from both coasts and a wide selection of other shellfish. The charcoal-grilled whole fish is always a good choice, whether there are seabass, sole, or anything else on the menu that day.
How to book: Reservations can be made online.

Available for Reservations

The Reel Inn

Malibu
$$$$

The Reel Inn is a rugged fish shack right off of PCH, a refreshing antidote to the shimmering excess of much of the rest of the Malibu coastline. The menu is expansive, an entire aquarium, with most of it under $22. Choose your fish from among halibut, seabass, ahi tuna, trout, mahi-mahi, and more, then choose whether you want the fish grilled, sauteed, or blackened and what you want for your two sides. Portions are generous, as are the wine pours and the pricing on pitchers of decent craft beer.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Connie and Ted's Seafood
Photo courtesy of Connie & Ted’s

Connie & Ted’s

West Hollywood
$$$$

This West Hollywood spot is a New England seafood shack with a modern California twist, with a raw bar, three different styles of New England chowder, and a real focus on shellfish. There’s a lobster roll, peel-and-eat shrimp, clams served a half-dozen ways, and whole lobsters priced by the pound. There’s plenty of other seafood, too, from a Portuguese Stew to Fish and Chips and more, all served in an airy space with an open kitchen and lots of al fresco dining that faces Santa Monica Boulevard. A view of LA traffic might not replace the coast of Maine, but if you close your eyes and ears, the food will take you most of the way there.
How to book: Reservations can be made online.

Available for Reservations

Ceviche Project

Silver Lake
$$$$

Blink, and you might miss this tiny ceviche outpost from lawyer-turned-restaurateur Octavio Olivas, who hails from Mexico City. But that also means everyone in the small space is afforded a front-row seat as Olivas chops up fresh seafood and garnishes it with everything from lime and cilantro to yuzu gelée, serrano oil, trout roe, seaweed, and borage flowers—with daily rotating specials. There are a few sidewalk tables for those who prefer an al fresco experience.
How to book: Reservations can be made online.

Available for Reservations

Mariscos Jalisco

Various locations
$$$$

With four locations across the city, it’s safe to say that Mariscos Jalisco has taken over the Los Angeles seafood scene. This renowned food truck is the definition of a no-frills but manages to serve some of the freshest and most coveted sea-centric dishes in the city. Don’t be surprised if you run into a pretty intimidating line, but just know it’ll be well worth the wait. While the cold oysters are lovely on their own, Marisco Jalisco takes things up a notch by topping them with shrimp and grilled octopus. The crispy shrimp taco is legendary, but the menu consists primarily of seafood tostadas topped with everything from red aguachile to fish ceviche. If you want to beat the heat on a warm summer day, order the shrimp cocktail to-go.
How to book: Dining is pickup only.

Found Oyster
Photo courtesy of Found Oyster

Found Oyster

East Hollywood
$$$$

Don’t be fooled by the unassuming exterior of this 26-seat hole in the wall adjacent to a convenience store. It’s what’s inside that counts. The cozy bar and raised outdoor deck are a love letter to East Coast seafood shacks and traditional seaside bites, but most people come here for one thing: the oysters. They’re straight from general manager Joe Laraja’s family oyster farm in Massachusetts, but the short menu also pays homage to seasonal West Coast produce in items like the scallop tostada, wedge salad, and bar steak. And if you’re feeling extra fancy, they also have some of the finest Ossetra caviar on the menu. A complete list of seafood-appropriate wines, from sparkling to skin contact and chilled red, are also available.
How to book: Dining is walk-in only.

Fishing With Dynamite

Manhattan Beach
$$$$

After his initial success with M.B. Post, chef David LeFevre opened his 32-seat oyster bar and seafood restaurant just a few doors down. Fishing with Dynamite is more casual than its South Bay sister restaurants, including The Arthur J, but the food served in this small, light-filled space is nothing less than fantastic. Raw dishes are the main attraction, so expect oyster platters, Peruvian scallops, shrimp cocktail, and hamachi sashimi. In addition to the Lobstah Roll, the Blue Crab Roll and Shrimp Roll are served on a toasted milk bun alongside a house-brined dill pickle.
How to book: Reservations are available online.

Available for Reservations
Allie Lebos is a contributor for Thrillist.