It seems like more than a bit over two years ago that the Missus and I had a meal at Oscar's Mexican Seafood. While the meal was decent, we didn't find it especially great, at least in comparison with other Mariscos restaurants and trucks we eat at. I think the major draw was the location; there was nothing quite like it in the area. Since then, Oscar's has expanded. To PB and Hillcrest. I'd always been meaning to return and revisit, but having a location in Hillcrest is pretty easy since I'm in the area quite often for work.
One really great thing is that they open at 8am. I often have meetings at odd hours and the early opening was a big plus for getting me here....also, the parking here can be a nightmare during prime time.
I decided on the Smoked Fish Taco (Taco de Marlyn - $4.25) and the Fresh Fish of the Day ($4.50) which was Yellowtail....actually I ordered a Battered Fish Taco ($1.99), but they just rang up the grilled fish....which I probably should have ordered anyway.
There was much to like about the Smoked Fish Taco, loved the way the queso was melted onto the tortilla (very routine mass-produced) to prevent breakage and add a mild milky edge. The fish was a bit too mild in terms of smokey flavor and even salt....I consider this "bacon of the sea". On the good side; it was less fishy than some versions I've had recently. I do think the portion was pretty small.....
I also thought these tacos were a bit under-dressed, though I do understand wanting to make the rather mild yellowtail the star of the show. The fish was a bit overcooked for me.....yellowtail can dry out pretty quickly. I also thought it needed to be seasoned a bit more. This was on the bland side and really needed more....also, there wasn't enough onion or anything else to give it some textural contrast.
A quick word about the salsas...the Chipotle is nice and mild....I thought that white salsa was crema...but whoa, I believe it's habanero based, which I really thought added a nice kick.
In total, not bad, perhaps priced on the high side....but of course, there's the location.
I had an odd hour meeting and another scheduled over lunch so I headed back to Oscar's before traveling back to the office. This time I did order the Battered Fish Taco ($1.99).
The batter was light, but could have been a bit more crisp it got soggy fairly quickly. The fish was moist, though the whole thing lacked flavor. Still, definitely worth a buck ninety-nine.
Curious about both the shrimp and non-seafood items, I ordered the Surf and Turf Taco ($4.50). This was a nice two-fisted taco.
The shrimp was well seasoned, cooked to the edge of being overcooked, but didn't go over that line. The skirt steak was too tough and chewy, which I don't mind if there some nice assertive flavors to obscure the texture, but that wasn't the case here. Overall, a decent taco.
I'll probably return to Oscar's because of the location and hours. I think I'll go with some shrimp tacos and maybe the Cucarachas which we enjoyed last time, but is now like $11.
Oscar’s Mexican Seafood
646 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92103
Sun - Thurs 8am - 9pm
Fri - Sat 8am - 10pm