Los Angeles has always been known for its varied and delicious cuisine and Killer Shrimp only adds to that reputation.
Seafood lovers only have until March 15 to participate in the restaurant’s annual festival showcasing 13 new dishes that are not normally featured on their menu and let management know which creations they can’t live without. In business for 30 years, the Killer Shrimp family has two beautiful locations in Hermosa Beach and another in Marina Del Rey alongside a 24-hour cafe, both which give Marina Del Rey visitors a scenic ocean backdrop to their meals.
I was lucky enough to enjoy such a backdrop as I attempted to conquer the festival menu, as well as test a few of the restaurant’s tried and true dishes. While I do not have the endurance or stomach capacity to get through everything, I was able to sample enough to hopefully point any new visitors to Killer Shrimp in the right direction.
For my alcohol on a weeknight is a rarity, a glass of wine perhaps if it’s been that kind of day, however at Killer Shrimp I could not be happier that I made an exception. Their mixes, juices, and grenadine are all made in-house and the quality comes through in every delicious sip. Being a gin lover, The Westside was the perfect way to start out the meal, but if you enjoy a hint of spice to begin your meal then the Passion Killer is another top choice. If neither gin nor tequila tickles your fancy, have no fear; there are plenty of other options, as well as a decent wine list.
While Killer Shrimp has an extensive menu that can be enjoyed year round, this was the time to focus (for the most part) on the Seafood Festival. We started with vegetarian hot wings, Ahi Tuna Poke Tacos, Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl, Lobster Dynamite, and Killer Crab Claws.
While all dishes are beautifully presented, the vegetarian hot wings and Killer Crab Claws would be standouts at any establishment. The hot wings (cauliflower) are lightly fried without being greasy and would make anyone, vegetarian or otherwise, about ever ordering real chicken again. The Killer Crab Claws more than earn their name. Baked in the family-secret, spice rub; the crab claws were so flavorful and decadent that I could’ve enjoyed an entire meal only consisting of them.
After ordering a second round of drinks it was time to tackle the entrées, in which I encountered the one thing that might counter my love of the Killer Crab Claws, Lobster & Shrimp enchiladas. If you go to the festival and someone in your party doesn’t order these, you will be decidedly missing out. Perfectly seasoned, generous portions, and served with traditional black beans and rice, I will be sorely disappointed if I visit their establishment again and this dish has not found a permanent home on their menu.
Also sampled was the Miso Glazed Black Cod paired on a bed of wilted spinach and sweet potato puree, a perfectly respectable dish if one is in the mood for something well cooked and light.
And if your concern of visiting Killer Shrimp lies in that one family member or friend that’s not a “fish person” fear not, the restaurant gives land lovers plenty of options including the savory Grilled Hangar Steak which will meet any carnivore’s cravings.
For a sweet ending our table opted into the Sweet Potato Pecan Pie and Freshly Baked Chocolate Chip Cookie served with a giant helping of vanilla bean ice cream. The pie tastes exactly how it sounds, as though Thanksgiving had a strangely delicious baby. And the chocolate chip cookie arrives at the table via cast iron skillet, warm and scrumptious.
You might feel full just from reading about all of the dishes (or maybe you’re starving and ready to try the plates out for yourself). However, there’s no need to squeeze everything you want to try into one visit. The only thing that matches the quality of food is that of their staff that you’ll enjoy interacting with as much as you will digging into what they bring you. Friendly and attentive, there’s little doubt that one visit to a Killer Shrimp location will set it as one of your favorite places to treat yourself to a night out.
Look at the entire Seafood Festival menu here.