You'd think Southern California would be stuffed with bars like this: easy, beachfront, where sandy patrons can kick off their thongs, nibble on seafood and sip a cool one.
Well, at least there's the Fisherman's.
Most of Orange County's waterfront bars are tucked inside upscale restaurants, making them inaccessible to those enjoying a lazy beach day or a T-shirt and jeans kind of evening. But at the Fisherman's--anchored at the base of the San Clemente pier--bare feet and bathing suits are apropos for day, denim and high tops just right for night.
Also just right: the Trestle, a popular, frosty Midori-and-coconut concoction that's among several of the bar's cocktails named after a local surfing spot. Cottons, made with rum, Triple Sec, pineapple and orange juice, is another best seller. ("Nixon would have loved it," the menu reads.)
Maybe it's the view, though, that makes the drinks taste so good. Weekend days are great on the sunny patio, where deck-shoed yuppies, off-duty Marines and salty-haired teens look out on the shoreline that stretches to the cliffs at Dana Point.