Bali Hai

We went to Bali Hai for restaurant week and there were options galore on their pre-fixe menus! Due to our group size, we were also able to try out many of the items on the menu! There were 6 appetizers, 8 entrees, and 3 desserts to choose from (compared to most places with about half the selection)! The cost is $35/person for dinner.

I thought the decor was very beautiful inside and I liked the candles on the table. There was also a lovely view outside the windows of the restaurant since it was right by the ocean.

While waiting for the food, some of my dining buddies sipped on their Mai Tai drinks ($7.95) which contains NO JUICE! These are really strong and have a strong rum taste! Those friends were not planning to drive later...

I ordered the Baby Kale Salad to try to be a little healthy. The chicken sausage was different than what I expected because it was ground and crumbly. There was also a really strong citrus dressing on it. Afterwards I wondered why I ordered a salad when there were many other options that I can't actually make at home...

One friend ordered the Local Greens Salad, which was twice the size of my salad! The dressing on this one was a little plain for me, especially compared to my own salad. I liked the goat cheese and nuts on it though. This one seems best to share too because of the size.

Another friend ordered the Albacore Poke appetizer which was stacked high with yummy scraps of albacore tuna. The chips carried this tasty appetizer to my mouth and was my favorite appetizer. I wish I had ordered this one instead of salad.

Another one had the Crispy Calamari appetizer which was a good sharing size with light breading and sweet and sour sauce. I also recommend this one as an appetizer.

Another one ordered the Kalua Pork Ravioli which was in a pho-like broth, an interesting concept to me. The ravioli itself was more like a wonton or dumpling due to the thinner rice wrapping around the pork. It was decent but small for the price so I prefer the other appetizers.

For the entrees, I ordered the Spicy Miso Black Cod. This fish was delicious and flaked off perfectly with a fork. I liked the sauce too because it had a touch of mustard without being too strong. The green beans were pan crispy cooked and added to the beautiful presentation of the dish.

A friend had the Mongolian Lamb which was cooked like stir fry noodles and vegetables. Pad thai noodles were listed on the menu but I think we were picturing leg of lamb or something similar when ordering. Nevertheless, it was a tasty and filling entree. Another friend enjoyed the Shortrib Yakisoba but dug in before I could get a picture. We googled a 1-hour egg, which was a part of that dish!

For dessert, I had the Chocolate Tart which was amazing! The outside of the tart was a harder chocolate shell while the inside was more of a moist brownie cake texture. The hazelnut ice cream was creamy and cold though already melting slightly when it got to the table. It was so delicious and has been branded as one of my favorite desserts.

My friend had the Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta. I am not too familiar with this dessert but it is like a cross between flan and creme brulee. The flavor was very mild and not too sweet so I thought it was too plain for me. She liked hers best and I liked mine best.

Another friend had the Carmelized Rum Roasted Pineapple dessert. I did not try this one.

Overall, Bali Hai is a beautiful location for a dinner out with friends! The views from the large glass windows show the city nightscape and the occasional watercraft drifting by. We were delighted with most of the menu here so I would definitely recommend giving this place a try!

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Bali Hai
2230 Shelter Island Dr
San Diego CA 92106
(619) 222-1181

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Comments

Lizthechef's picture
Submitted by Lizthechef (not verified) on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 12:17pm

I have some friends flying in next month and they are staying at Humphries, so just across the street. I heard the restaurant was very noisy in one area - did you notice that? Thanks.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 12:35pm

On the night we went (Wednesday), it was only half full so the noise level didn't really catch my attention. Our party of 7 could hear each other fine, but I do remember thinking the other tables were too close. I also ate here 1-2 years ago for book club and I believe it was packed and noisier. Both times we sat in the main circular area around the center bar. There is also a smaller section behind the hostess stand that is possibly quieter.

Barbara's picture
Submitted by Barbara (not verified) on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 12:45pm

I rather liked this restaurant too. I didn't like the mai tai, however. It was way too strong. I agree with you on the appetizer, the poke is the way to go!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 12:55pm

Yes to the poke haha! Plus I'd much rather make the delicious squash and kale salad from your website! It's pinned to my favorites!

Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence's picture
Submitted by Brandon @ Kitch... (not verified) on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 1:00pm

Looks like you had such a tasty evening! I'd be all over that Spicy Miso Black Cod. YUM!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Mon, 02/03/2014 - 1:48pm

If I had also ordered the albacore poke, it would have been a perfect dinner with the cod and chocolate tart!

Mary's picture
Submitted by Mary (not verified) on Tue, 02/04/2014 - 8:04am

I would want to horde that chocolate tart all for myself! It looks really good with the chocolate shell and hazelnut ice cream - yum! Hazelnut anything makes me pretty happy.

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Wed, 02/05/2014 - 10:01am

I'm so happy when I find a really good dessert! There are only a few that stick in my head and this is now one of them!

Faye's picture
Submitted by Faye (not verified) on Wed, 02/05/2014 - 9:52am

Oh this meal looks great. The cod looks amazing - how was the portion size? I've always heard of this restaurant but always thought it was too 'old school'. Does it have an actual ocean view?

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Wed, 02/05/2014 - 10:07am

It's an average+ portion of fish for the nicer type restaurants but for bigger eaters, you'd definitely want to pair it with a heartier appetizer (ie not a salad) and some dessert... or take a few bites of your dining companion's noodle dish haha!

Even when you are driving to the restaurant, you can see the shoreline next to the road and the restaurant. The other San Diego shorelines are visible across the waters and we even saw a small boat floating by below our window. I bet it's even lovelier during daytime when you can see more clearly!

Kelly Kurcina's picture
Submitted by Kelly Kurcina (not verified) on Mon, 07/31/2017 - 4:12pm

LOVE that they have a green menu with vegan options!!

lynn's picture
Submitted by lynn on Sun, 08/06/2017 - 9:32am

... which means they can serve more people! hooray!

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