Restaurant Review: Ocean Prime

Last week, Justin and I celebrated 6 months of marriage…and experienced one of the best dinners of our lives.

We received a very generous gift card to Ocean Prime for our wedding, and we thought that this was the perfect occasion for a fancy night out!

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From 4-6pm on Mondays-Fridays, Ocean Prime offers a “Prime Hour” menu at their bar/lounge. Select wines, cocktails, and appetizers are available at a special price. We walked into their beautiful, low lit lounge area and took a seat at the bar. We were promptly presented with two glasses of water, filled with perfectly crushed ice.

Both of us were in the mood for white wine, so Justin ordered a glass of the Mezzacorona Pinot Grigio, and I had a glass of the Kunde Sauvignon Blanc (which was absolutely delicious: fruity, crisp, and clean..with notes of grapefruit). We decided to order an appetizer to enjoy at the bar as well; the Point Judith Calamari, served with sweet chili sauce, candied cashews, red pepper, carrots and bean sprouts.

The calamari could not have been cooked more perfectly. As someone who doesn’t usually order calamari, I was hooked by the blend of seafood with the vegetables. Also, the chili sauce was incredibly delicious; it had the perfect combination of sweet and spice. If they would have let me bottle up a jar of it, I would have taken it home with me. But I digress…

One very unique aspect of Ocean Prime is that their bar is a completely fresh fruit bar. They make their own juices and purees in house, and you can constantly see the bartenders slicing fruit to add to the drinks. None of the juices are from concentrate…nothing is processed. Amazing! And, the bar area is gorgeous to boot!

After a few glasses of wine and our yummy appetizer, we moved on to our real table for dinner.

We pondered the menu for a while; there were so many options that sounded intriguing. Thankfully, a basket of deliciously chewy sourdough bread arrived at our table to tide us over as we deliberated.

In the end, Justin decided on the blackened snapper with wilted spinach…

It was perfectly seasoned; the spices were strong enough to give it a kick, but not enough to overpower the snapper. And just look at that spinach; it is gorgeous…

I selected the crab crusted tilapia with french green beans and fingerling potatoes.

Let me tell you, they certainly did not skimp on the crab going into the “crab crust.” My tilapia was covered in a very generous portion of crab meat that was crisped to perfection. The tilapia itself was flaky and melted in my mouth. I’m going to throw it out there: it was probably the best seafood dish I have ever eaten. I’m going to be dreaming about it for a long time.

When we ordered our meals, our waitress informed us that the side dishes that accompanied our main course were more of a garnish, and suggested that we order an additional side dish to share between us. In retrospect, we definitely did not need to order anything extra, as my green beans/fingerling potatoes and Justin’s spinach were more than sufficient. However, we didn’t know this at the time…so we ordered the roasted garlic mashed potatoes.

So creamy…full of garlic! I especially loved the extra slices of roasted garlic that they sprinkled on top; it really made you appreciate the different flavors that garlic can take on.

After joining the clean plate club, Justin and I sat back for a moment to chat and enjoy each other’s company. Our waitress inquired if we would be having dessert that evening, and we told her that we thought we were too full. So, we sat back, enjoyed the ambiance, and sipped the rest of our wine…

And then…our waitress reappeared with a plate of the most beautiful looking dessert I’d ever seen. It was perfect. She said it was for us, since we were celebrating. Well, I guess we couldn’t say no to that…

Chocolate peanut butter mousse pie. With the most perfect, ruffly whipped cream (because, as you know…I like ruffles…).

The crust was crushed peanut butter and Oreos, the filling consisted of an incredibly light yet decadent peanut butter mousse. All of this was covered by a rich chocolate ganache. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. We managed to consume half of the pie…

…and then we may or may not have polished off the second half when we returned home that evening. It was that irresistible.

So, if you haven’t managed to figure it out by now, I would highly recommend a trip to Ocean Prime. It is a perfect location for a special occasion, and the food, drinks, atmosphere, and service are phenomenal. Honestly, I wish that Justin and I were able to afford a trip there on a frequent basis, but with a slightly higher price point than average, we will be saving this outing for select times only! However, the cost was completely worth it, as our meal was far and away one of the best we’ve ever experienced!

Ocean Prime

2205 N. West Shore Boulevard, Tampa, FL 33607
(813) 490-5288

You can also visit their website for more location information!

Ocean Prime on Urbanspoon


  1. Wendy says

    Ocean Prime definitely is yummy! Went there last night and everything was delicious. Make sure to have a Cucumber Lime Gimlet!


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