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NEIGHBORHOOD EATERY

Ocean Food Not Only Fish in Maxwell's Sea

March 12, 1992|JON NALICK

Nestled at the foot of the Huntington Beach Pier, Maxwell's by the Sea boasts a wide variety of seafood plus a number of other dishes that the restaurant's name and ocean-side location might not suggest.

In a cozy open dining room adorned with hanging plants and saltwater-fish tanks, customers can sit down to meals of pasta, steak, salad and stir-fried vegetables as well the swordfish, snapper and lobster dinners for which the restaurant is best known.

Steaming brown popovers accompany every meal, and the menu of daily dinner specials (which run from $10.95 to $21.95) includes fish and other seafood. For appetizers, Maxwell's serves good, hot clam chowder ($3.95) with a peppery taste, jumbo shrimp cocktails ($9.95) and an especially tasty gooey, golden brown fried cheese with marinara sauce ($5.95).

The broiled swordfish ($19.95) and sea bass ($17.95) are both excellent, but if you're really hungry, get the tangy combination of filet mignon and Australian lobster tail ($34.95) served with hot butter and lemon. Other good diner choices include angel hair pasta ($8.95), seafood fettuccine made with shrimp, scallops and lobster ($17.95), and the Caesar salad ($6.95).

The vast wine collection will please any palate. Wines by the bottle run from $10 to $150 and wines by the glass run $3.50 to $6.

Reservations aren't required but are recommended, especially on Fridays and Saturdays, when jazz musicians play at 8, 9:30 and 11 p.m. and on Sundays at 2, 3:30 and 5 p.m.

Maxwell's by the Sea, 317 Pacific Coast Highway, Huntington Beach. 536-2555.

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