It was a boon to the neighborhood when casual, reasonable, fresh Spike’s Fish House opened in Rancho Santa Margarita. Then, not long after (as mentioned last October in Taste of Orange County), Laguna Niguel got its own Spike’s. Both restaurants replace Pasta Bravo outlets, an earlier, carb-loading concept from the same owners. Pasta, we can get elsewhere—fresh fish, not so much.
Both Spike’s locations debuted a new happy hour—a 3 to 5 p.m. weekday window of opportunity to grab something quick and low-calorie, like the $2.95 basa (a type of catfish) lettuce wraps. With fewer than 150 calories, they come with pico de gallo and Spike’s special sauce supplying a ton of flavor. Or, linger a while, with a $5 deal that pairs a cold beer with any item from the happy hour menu. In addition to the lettuce wrap, choose from basa nachos ($3.95), a salmon slider ($2.95), or basa hard-shell taco ($2.75), the latter two Cajun-spiced.
On the regular menu, a new $6.99 from-the-fryer shrimp basket is a fun trip back in time, sweet butterflied shrimp fried to a golden crunch and served with a horseradish-y cocktail sauce. Nice to share—a way to indulge and not undo the benefits of that 150-calorie lettuce wrap.
Spike’s Fish House, 27020 Alicia Pkwy., Laguna Niguel, 949-448-8488; 30465 Avenida de las Flores, Rancho Santa Margarita, 949-766-3382.