Sunday, July 26, 2009

Barra Azul Ensenada - Fresh Fish In The City

I’ve been meaning to check out barra azul for quite some time now. Baja Breeze Editor-In-Chief Carla White had suggested I try the Tempura Oysters and that’s all the motivation I needed. Barra Azul feels far removed from the restaurants that line the vibrant tourist zone along Lopez Mateos and provides the perfect setting for a nice relaxing dinner. You can’t really miss the place when you’re passing by with its bright azul paint.

 Barra Azul Ensenada

Barra azul specializes in shellfish and fish of the region prepared in a variety of ways. After scanning through the menu my wife and I were undecided on what to try so we left the ordering up to Chef Luis. While we waited for our first course I ordered the tempura oysters Carla had been raving about. The batter carried the perfect amount of crispness while the fresh oysters had a generous yield. The addition of the serrano based salsa and lime was sublime.

Tempura Oysters

Tempura Oysters

What followed the tempura oysters were 5 well-crafted dishes

Ceviche de Camaron
Tuna Tartare
Scallops with orange glaze sesame
Swordfish with sun dried tomatoes, basil and mushrooms
Chocolate Brownie

I love the way the Shrimp Ceviche was prepared in layers, little pillows of shrimp sitting on top of onions, tomato, and avocado with hints of spice.

Shrimp Ceviche

Another favorite of mine was the Scallops with sesame orange glaze and chili arbol, the bed of arroz con azafran was a nice complement. My wife could not pick a favorite but was oohing and ahhing over the Tuna Tartare. This one had many flavor elements packed into it. Tuna in a honey mustard glaze with layers of strawberries, mango, apple and avocado.

Baby Masa was also very satisfied with simple pasta from the kids menu. It’s so funny because she kept saying “take a picture daddy” ahhhh the life of a food blogger. Most of my favorite restaurants I have reported on in Ensenada serve local seafood but they all have their own unique identities and qualities. Barra azul without question has some unique qualities that will have me coming back for more.

Next week barra azul owner Alain Genchi has an exciting new restaurant opening near 1st and Ruiz called Ultramarino, I believe they will be specializing in Tapas and Botanas so be sure to check it out.

Barra Azul
Calle Once #1090
Entre Espinoza y Puente Centro
Ensenada, B.C. Mex
Closed Tuesdays
Open Fridays and Saturdays 1:30pm to 1130pm
Open Monday Wednesdays Thursdays and Sundays 1:30pm to 10:00pm
(646) 178-4846

Barra Azul Map


Dennis K. said...

The tempura oysters look fantastic!! The presentation is excellent.

KirkK said...

Looks great it sounds like you're raising another generation of food bloggers!

Masa Assassin said...

Yeah Dennis they were great! The presentation on some other dishes was awesome but when I uploaded the pictures they had a weird color hue I could not fix, I wish they would have come out because they were really special.

Hi Kirk I think you would really love the ceviche...... Yeah I just wish baby masa was a little more adventurous :P

Side Note: I posted this on July 30with no draft but it shows a post date of four days earlier July 26 hmmmmmmm *scratches head*

Kathleen said...

Last night we experienced Barra Azul for the first was fantastic. Chef Luis is the brother of our other favorite chef, Chema, who is now at Villa del Valle (in the Guadalupe Valley). We never looked at the menu, other than the wine list and just asked Luis to prepare us a 5 course meal. starting with the oysters tempura...every dish was better than the one before and coconut-curry risotto was to die for. They carry lots of the "boutique" wines from the valley and have a decent bar list of liquors as well. A little off the beaten path...but well worth finding!

Unknown said...

A footnote to the previous comment: while preparing a meal that would compete favorably with most offerings from Laja, Chef Luis also performed the roles of waiter, bartender, sommalier and gracious host. Granted, it was a slow night, but there were still around a dozen people in the room. I understand on busier nights he does get some help. He must be incredible when he has the time to concentrate.

Masa Assassin said...

Hi Katleen and Vince glad to see you had a great experience. We do the same thing never look at the menu and just asked Luis to prepare us a 5 course meal. Degustation is the way to go.