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Best Places For Seafood Towers In Los Angeles

seafood tower 610 baltaire
(credit: Arianna Armstrong)

Los Angeles offers a myriad of seafood towers from some of the top restaurants in the city. These are the best!

(credit: Arianna Armstrong)

BOA Steakhouse
9200 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(310) 278-2050

This expense-account worthy restaurant is always worth the splurge, and the Seafood Platter Balboas ($85 for 2-3 people, $160 for 4-5) are no exception. Three impeccable tiers of oceanic delights are topped off with a bowl of the day's special seafood poke, ceviche or salad. In addition to the plentitude of oysters, saffron-marinated shrimp, steamed mussels and ceviches (based on the day's catch), BOA tops the tower with a whole 1 ½ pound lobster (on the large platter) and King crab, which they partially deshell for extra-easy access.

Baltaire - Shellfish Plateau - Photo Credit Kristin Teig
(credit: Baltaire)

11647 San Vicente Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90049
(424) 273-1660

The magic of Baltaire's seafood plateau is that it is fully customizable. Not in a "we'll swap out clams for oysters" or "you can get an extra shrimp for a surcharge." At $33 per person, the standard presentation is a bit of King crab, ¼ Maine Chick lobster (de-shelled claw, knuckle and tail), an oyster, and a massively jumbo shrimp. But for the same price, patrons can opt for only lobster, or can pick-and-choose a combination of shrimp and crab. It's the same price, no matter what's ordered, making Baltaire the best choice for anyone who has their mind set on a specific kind of shellfish.

(credit: Arianna Armstrong)

Chaya Downtown
525 S Flower St
Los Angeles, CA 90071
(213) 236-9577

One of the best things about Chaya Downtown is they're constantly coming up with new ways to indulge their loyal customers. The latest is their Kaisen ("seafood") Market. Two times a week, Chaya gets a "mystery box" of 5 - 15 of the best sea creatures from the Kyushu Prefecture and Tskiji Fish Market, in Japan. Some of this ends up on their Grand ($75) and Chaya ($125) seafood towers, packed with plump shrimp, succulent lobster, scallops, oysters and an assortment of seafood salads. Guests are also encouraged to also try the whole fish, most of them fresh from the Japanese markets, which can be prepared several different ways, to the customer's taste (i.e., ½ sashimi and ½ grilled, or baked in sea salt, or deep fried, etc.)

(credit: EMC Seafood)

EMC Seafood & Raw Bar
3500 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90020
(213) 351-9988

EMC Seafood & Raw Bar, unsurprisingly, does seafood really well, and nowhere is that more apparent than in their abundant tower. $95 serves two or more, and features two whole lobsters, fresh uni, mussels, Littleneck clams, cocktail shrimp and ½ dozen premium oysters.

(credit: Arianna Armstrong)

3801 Highland Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
(310) 796-0200

FishBar has only been around for a few years, and it's already a local institution. Their seafood platter is an incredible steal (and was our own family favorite) at only $49. They say the assortment of shrimp, crab, oysters and additional seafood feeds two, but we ended up with leftovers and plans to return as soon as possible.

hungry cat
(credit: Arianna Armstrong)

The Hungry Cat
1535 Vine St
Hollywood, CA 90028
(323) 462-2155

The Hungry Cat practically invented what Los Angeles thinks of, when they think of heaping platters of raw bar goodness. Here, chef David Lentz doesn't skimp when it comes to his carefully prepared sea delicacies. The seafood plateaus come in three sizes, at $55, $100 and $155, with greater additions of oysters, clams, marinated mussels, peeled shrimp, and snow crab legs and lobster in each size. The medium adds ½ ounce of golden trout roe. The large adds an ounce of roe. Uni can be substituted or added, and is worth the splurge.

(credit: credit: Mastro's Ocean Club)

Mastro's Ocean Club
18412 Pacific Coast Hwy
Malibu, CA 90265
(310) 454-4357

Mastro's is known as much for its celebrity clientele and white glove service as for its great steak and seafood. The seafood tower at Mastro's Ocean Club is worthy of its own fame. Fully tailored to the guest, it starts with Dungeness crab, crab legs, lobster, shrimp, and oysters, and just gets better with the customer's own creative customization. The Mastro's seafood tower starts at approximately $35 - $40 per person.

vertical wine bistro
(credit: credit: Charlie F./Yelp)

Vertical Wine Bistro
70 N Raymond Ave
Pasadena, CA 91103
(626) 795-3999

Vertical Wine Bistro might not be the first place that comes to mind for one of Los Angeles' best seafood towers, but it is resoundingly one of the ultimate seafood towers around. Available only on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, chef Laurent Quenioux has absolutely outdone himself. Not only are the three overflowing platters stocked with the freshest shellfish and sea critters, and include unique surprises like whelk; before the platter even arrives, the table receives plates of chocolate and bloody clams, Santa Barbara Spot Prawns. Clams, oysters, lobster, uni… The Vertical Wine Bar seafood tower is a virtual cornucopia of the sea. Prices range from $50 for the small, to $85 for the medium, and $150 for the large, which also makes this one of the most jaw-dropping deals in town.

water grill
(credit: Water Grill)

Water Grill
544 S Grand Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90071
(213) 891-0900

No list of the best seafood towers in L.A. would be complete without mentioning Water Grill. Their chilled seafood platter comes in sizes to feed from 1-2 to 5-7, and includes an increasingly decadent array of delectable delicacies. The Grand features four oysters, two Littleneck clams, two scallops, six shrimp, six mussels, and half of a lobster. The King is their largest plateau and adds an entire local Red Rock crab, lobster and sea urchin, in addition to additional heaps of shellfish. Whichever tower you choose is a classic.

Article by Arianna Armstrong.

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