1201 F St Nw
Washington, DC 20004-1217

Oceanaire Seafood Room - DC

Neighborhoods: Downtown
Cuisine: Seafood, Lunch, Raw bar

Offer Available!
14 / 20
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 Pittsburgh, PA

Crab Cake Disappointment

Located in the heart of downtown DC, Oceanaire is always lively, with an eclectic mix of Washington’s finest political folk, tourists looking for a pricey meal, seasoned Washingtonian diners and groups of friends looking for a splurge. Oceanaire is usually packed, and geared towards larger, slightly more ‘rowdy’ groups as opposed to an intimate gathering. I could barely carry on a conversation with my dad…though to be fair, we were really into the food!

We started with the calamari, which was grilled as opposed to fried, with a pineapple-mango salsa accompaniment. Not a huge fan of pineapple, especially in savory dishes, but the calamari was great! Loved the preparation, very well seasoned. Signature sourdough bread and an assortment of pickles, olives, and pickled herring are served as starters as well, so there’s plenty to entertain while waiting for the entrees.

Unfortunately I was very disappointed with my crab cake entree, especially since our waiter guaranteed they were the ‘best in Washington’. Heavily breaded with occasional large chunks of crab meat, but overall tasted fried and the crab meat was lost in a sea of bread crumbs. My dad ordered the grilled salmon and said it was fantastic, so I would suggest going the more ‘generic’ fish route, since it is their specialty!

Sides were excellent, and compensated for the pile of bread crumbs left on my plate. We ordered the hash browns, peas & onions, and spinach. More than enough to share…and we went way overboard, ordering all three side dishes along with full entrees! My favorite was the sauteed peas and onions, which is a relatively new menu item – great garlic flavor, onions and peas were wonderfully cooked with just a bit of crunch. Spinach was well cooked and garlicky.

And…dessert was GREAT, especially since I was still a bit hungry after my entree! We opted for the key lime pie, and my dad estimated we had about a pound of pie on our plate. Incredibly generous serving and could have comfortably fed between 3-4 people! Very creamy with a delicious gingerbread crust. Other desserts looked equally amazing – the table next to us ordered warm cookies with milk, and even my food-coma state I was tempted to take a little crumb off their plate! I’m not a Baked Alaska fan, but it sure was fun to watch the wait staff light the dish on fire as other tables enjoyed their sweet finish.

The fish selections change daily, depending on seasonality and availability, and you can get whatever your heart desires, either grilled or broiled. Raw bar near the entrance of the restaurant offers bar-style seating, and you can see the fresh seafood. Options range from salmon to tuna to mahi mahi. For those not craving fish, there are a range of meat options, such as pork chops, chicken, and steak with a multitude of preparations. One of the more expensive but gorgeous entrées is the grand shellfish platter, including shrimp, crab, lobster, and oysters, which runs about $90 (made for two!)

Extensive wine list and signature cocktails from the bar round out an appealing menu. Oceanaire has many locations throughout the US, including Denver, Boston, Dallas, and Miami, but no fear – no ‘chain’ restaurant vibe here! Would love to go back in the future and try one of the other fish options…just need to be able to finance dinner here first! :)


Served grilled (no breading) and easily some of the best calamari I’ve had. Well cooked, not rubbery, excellent flavors.

Crab cakes

Disappointing. Overly breaded and the crab meat flavoring was overshadowed by all the bread crumbs. Generous size, but not enough crab meat for me! Would not recommend as a main entree, as the other fish options looked much more appealing. Oh well!

Hash browns

Delicious, shredded potatoes baked in the oven and served like a giant pancake. Salty, well seasoned, though they are doused in butter…diner beware! They sure were good, though :)

Sauteed peas & onions

Excellent vegetable side dish. Veggies were well cooked and slightly crunchy, not too oily and great garlic flavor. Great accompaniment to the meal.

Key Lime Pie

Oy, save room for this one! HUGE, generous piece of pie, that could easily feed a small army…it’s a lot to handle even for those self-professed pie aficionados! Creamy and not too sweet, great crumbly but light gingerbread crust. An excellent sweet finish!

Seafood Downtown Happy hour
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Oceanaire Seafood Room - DC  Restaurant Reviews

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Oceanaire Seafood Room - DC is located near the cities of National Harbor, Naval Anacost Annex, Washington D C, Fort Lesley J Mcnair, and Rosslyn.
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