Bali Hai (Point Loma)


I has been at least three years since I’ve been to Bali Hai so it was about time we were reacquainted with each other. They are known for their Pacific Rim cuisine and amazing views, being nestled on the Northern tip of Shelter Island. Another fun fact is Tom Ham of Tom Ham’s Lighthouse opened Bali Hai in 1955. They must have won the lottery for best properties on the water with a view.

Bali Hai CollageWarm bread is served for those of you who just can’t wait until everything else comes out.
DSC_0187  We chose the Ali’I Tasting for Two(coconut shrimp, Hawaiian tuna poke, autumn roll, spicy ponzu edamame) to kick us off. The tuna poke was okay. It didn’t pop or remind me of the fresh ahi poke in Hawaii we crave for.
Bali Hai Collage 2

The best of the tasting had to be the coconut shrimp. It came with a ginger lime dressing. They were juicy and breaded nicely. The vegetarian autumn roll and edamame were a little bland and the edamame lacked the spice I was hoping for.

Bali Hai Collage 4

One thing we never shy away from is more food. While I believe we ordered quite a bit, they supplemented our meal with even more items for us to try. The first of those were the Linguica Steamed Buns(linguica sausage, caramelized onions, steam bun sauce). Out of all the appetizers, this was my favorite. It had a piping hot center and soft, but bouncy exterior. The linguica had a smoky, porky goodness to it.

There were also a few side dishes that caught our eye. The Thai Brussel Sprouts with Chinese Sausage was one of them. Not overly oily nor salty, it had a nice balance and flavor. I actually prefer the Chinese sausage over bacon believe it or not.


Ah and our other must have side was none other than Kimchee Fried Rice with Spam. Even with the spam and kimchee this could have used a little more seasoning and spice. But given the other bold flavors we were being served, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
Bali Hai Collage 6

The main dishes we were presented next all had strong flavor profiles. The Salt and Pepper Pork Chop(white bean cassoulet, Japanese curry sauce) had the right amount of curry flavor, but the salt and pepper part came up a little short. I was picturing the same seasoning on a spicy salt squid dish or even a pepper steak. While the curry stealing the spotlight certainly isn’t a bad thing for me, I was expecting something a little different. You can’t tell from the picture but the portion of pork is huge!

One of my favorite entrees of the evening was the 14 oz. Wok Fried Bass(Covina seabass, ponzu Szechuan style vegetables). I thought the pork was huge…this was even bigger! Fried just right and packing a ton of flavor, the fish fell apart and melted in our mouths.

Bali Hai Collage 5

Here are another two of the dishes they added on top of what we ordered. I don’t remember seeing this salmon panini on the menu. In any case, I am not a huge salmon fan and on my salmon scale it was average.

However, the Braised Swordfish(grilled orange, forbidden rice, black pepper sauce) was another one of my favorites. Actually, this was probably the best dish of the evening for me. The fish again was cooked nicely, and the dense meat held up to the strong but tasty black pepper sauce. I found myself dipping away every chance I got.

Bali Hai Collage 7

Our waiter brought out two desserts for us to try. While we waited, Michael and I guessed which ones they were going to bring. Between the two of us we’d be a killer game show team as we guessed right. The Apple Crumble(baked apples, streusel, vanilla ice cream) was what you’d expect out of a really nice apple crumble pie. It was warm on the inside, with gooey sweet apples, fresh berries, and a nice vanilla ice cream to complement it all.

The Strawberries and Cream(cream cheese Bavarian, vanilla cake, fresh strawberries) although containing flavors we’ve had before, how it was presented was unique. The cake and cream cheese were smooth like silk and had a strong strawberry flavor. Being very light, it was a perfect way to end our meal.

Bali Hai Collage 8

Bali Hai Collage 3 Their fish entrees will be remembered and noted for our next visit. I thoroughly enjoyed them. But not to be discounted is the spectacular views at Bali Hai. Here are some before and after pictures of the restaurant interior and of downtown San Diego I took as we started our meal and as we ended it. There are not many places you can get a similar view while enjoying a nice meal, and this is one of them. Thanks for having us Bali Hai, and we look forward to our next adventure in the future! 
Bali Hai Collage 9

Bali Hai Collage 10

Bali Hai
2230 Shelter Island Dr.
San Diego, CA 92106
Bali Hai on Urbanspoon
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About Darren

Fooood! I love it if you can't tell already. I love everything about it. The taste, the smell, the look, the feel, the satisfaction, the gratification, and ultimately: the fun! I've been in San Diego for about 10 years now and it amazes me that there are still places to uncover. Traveling, eating, and taking pictures of food has always been a hobby of mine. So naturally Michael and I thought it made sense to share what we found with all of you. I tend to side with the savory but never shy away from a knock out dessert. If you have a place you think we haven't tried let us know! We're always on the lookout...

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