Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The New Killer Shrimp at Hermosa Beach, CA

by: guest blogger @btsunoda

I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t been to Killer Shrimp in a long time. In fact, I visited them a couple of times in their original location on Washington Blvd in Marina Del Rey. Back then they had the following menu items:

Killer shrimp with rice
Killer shrimp with pasta
Killer shrimp with bread

I received an invitation to check out their new location on Pier Avenue in Hermosa Beach, just steps from the Hermosa Beach Strand.
The longtime resident of that location was Cantina Real and the present owners retained the front patio. The inside, however, has been beautifully transformed. Large windows were installed, two skylights were cleared and the restaurant is filled with a lot of natural light. In addition, Killer Shrimp also offers unobstructed views of the Hermosa Beach Pier and the ocean.

Killer Shrimp has an interesting history. Owner Kevin Michael’s father is musician Lee Michaels. Growing up in Venice, Lee perfected the sauce which later became their “Killer Shrimp’. They served their shrimp dish to friends and neighbors who thought that they had something special. Lee’s sons were soon seen peppering the neighborhood with flyers and were delivering up to 40 meals per evening.
Encouraged by their success, they decided to open the first Killer Shrimp in Marina Del Rey. It was located on the second floor of a nondescript mini mall. I was there a couple of times, but got wary due to the lack of variety on their menu. Since that time Killer Shrimp underwent major changes. They relocated their small Marina Del Rey location to a larger space nearby and opened up an additional location in Santa Barbara.

When we were dining, the Lee Michael’s tune “Do you know what I mean” played over the sound system. Coincidence?  Probably not. Overall the 70’s music was upbeat and lively.

Mixologist Marcos Tello has designed the cocktails and he was there to give us a recap of each drink. He described the origin and history of each cocktail and is probably best described as an entertaining audio version of wikipedia. He created an entire line-up of craft cocktails for Killer Shrimp and I’d have to say that he succeeded in his endeavor.

Tello reinvented the Mojito by using Flor de Cana Rum Grand Reserve rum. This amber hued rum is aged 7 years and is extremely smooth. The drink wasn’t overpowered with mint which I happened to favor. What made this drink unique was the fact that it included two different bitters.

The popular Eastside cocktail was upgraded using Plymouth gin, fresh cucumber, mint, sugar and lime. This is the perfect drink for a hot summer day.

Pieces of Eight tiki drink: made with muddled fresh pineapple, Cruzan aged rum, housemade passion fruit syrup and lime. I drifted off thinking about my upcoming vacation in Maui later this year. 

Here's the namesake item: the Killed Shrimp (with bread)
My wife and I both loved the spicy sauce. The bread is good for mopping up the sauce.
Good sauces are usually the result of flavors slowly blending together over time. We learned that despite the reddish hue, the sauce does not contain any trace of tomatoes. Killer Shrimp’s sauce recipe is probably as closely guarded as KFC’s fried chicken recipe.

I’m glad that the menu has a lot of offerings and can please diners that have varied preferences. While the restaurant is named Killer Shrimp, they offer steaks, burgers, tacos, soups, roasted vegetables, salads, and appetizers.
The sweet potato pecan pie with Chantilly whipped creme was absolutely delicious.

On Monday, they feature “Original Monday” where they offer Killer Shrimp for the original throwback price of $9.95.  Happy Hour is from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m..

Killer Shrimp also features the only private parking lot on Pier Avenue and The Strand.

Killer Shrimp
19 Pier Avenue
Hermosa Beach, Ca 90254
(310) 372-7071
Killer Shrimp on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: This event was hosted.


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