THE OYSTER LOFT  Pismo Beach:  Oh wow, rarely has a restaurant been so excitedly anticipated and taken so long to be realized.  I went to this resty probably 4 months ago for a special BUBBLY FEST event and have been waiting patiently for it to open to the public ever since.  Rumors of soft-openings began drifting around a month or so ago and I decided it was high time to give it a commercial shot.  It is reservation ONLY,  keep that in mind–although I called at 5PM on a Friday
and got in an hour later.  The whole place has a sort of unfinished/halting feel to it, and the service was awkward, annoyingly attentive, and decided not to be too hard on it at this juncture, while Compass Health feels out its wings on this hi-end sorta thing smack in the center of the tourist-drag.  I think these are waiters sucked over from Custom House or Ventana, so you can’t be too hard on them.  I saw girls destroying capsules and fighting with corks, and our waiter poured the wine in the wrong order.  At a distant table I saw another waiter pouring

Champagne in a way I would have probably spoken out against–holding one glass at a time, pouring like beer–so, yeah, at MINIMUM, wine-service needs someone to come in and coach for a couple hours.  The rest of the time, I was fighting off staff like flies–CONSTANTLY coming over and wanting to service our table.  Please just go away.  Clearly, service needs some ironing out, but the food.  OMG the food.   Let’s just talk about the food!

When we were at the Bubbly Fest party, the Octopus was served as one of the courses and I verbalized at the time it was the best Octopus in town.  I was thrilled to see it on the full-time menu and wasted no time ordering it.  Sous-vide, creamy and crispy, served with roasted tomatoes, it is indeed everything I remembered.  Do NOT miss this dish.

The scallops were perfect buttery puffs in grilled corn, pork-belly and gratin.

Fresh-water fish always catches my eye on any menu so the Great Lakes whitefish was an absolute must-have.  Delicate and nuanced, over crispy fingerlings and greens, I have no complaints.  I don’t order fish *out* very often, and a dish like this makes the whole visit worthwhile.

POKE TOWER needs no introduction.  This was ‘dessert’!
The Brussels Sprouts Salad was also ordered as dessert. 
Both were far above average.  Bottom-line: The Oyster Loft is an absolute MUST-VISIT.  The setting and view are STUNNING.  And the food…  The food is really REALLY good.  The service will work itself into a *flow* of clientele and price-point and this will be the star in Compass’ crown.  It already is.  RESERVATION ONLY!!!

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