Restaurant News & Reviews

New restaurant with ‘dynamite fish and chips’ opens in Pismo Beach — and it has local ties

See the new SLO County restaurants, shops and businesses that opened in 2019

New restaurants, shops and businesses that opened in San Luis Obispo County, in 2019 include Sprouts Farmers Market and La Quinta Inn in San Luis Obispo, California Coast Beer Co. in Paso Robles and SLO Donut Co. in Atascadero.
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New restaurants, shops and businesses that opened in San Luis Obispo County, in 2019 include Sprouts Farmers Market and La Quinta Inn in San Luis Obispo, California Coast Beer Co. in Paso Robles and SLO Donut Co. in Atascadero.

Pismo Beach has a new restaurant — and this one’s for locals.

Ada’s Fish House is a “no gimmicks” seafood restaurant run by the MacMillan family, which also owns Pismo Beach mainstay Rosa’s Italian Restaurant.

In the words of co-owner and executive chef Douglas MacMillan, it’s all about the food and people getting a good meal.

“Pismo needs a fish house like this, geared toward locals and regulars,” MacMillan said.

Ada’s Fish House opened in early July at 558 Price St. in the former home of Mattie’s Bar & Eatery. That restaurant, previously located in Paso Robles and Morro Bay, closed its doors in Pismo Beach in August 2018.

Since opening, MacMillan said Ada’s Fish House have been cooking 150 to 200 fresh, live lobsters a week.

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Co-owner and executive chef Douglas MacMillan poses for a picture with a live lobster at Ada’s Fish House in Pismo Beach. The seafood restaurant opened in early July 2019. Courtesy of Ada's Fish House

Popular menu items include lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, fish and chips with beer-battered cod and grilled artichoke with housemade lemon aioli and drawn butter.

“Our fish sandwich is off the hook. We have dynamite fish and chips,” MacMillan said. “And the menu’s not complete yet. (We’re) introducing new things in weeks to come.”

MacMillan is a familiar figure to local foodies. He is the executive chef of Rosa’s, which was started by his parents in 1988 and is located just across the street from Ada’s Fish House.

“Rosa’s says ‘No tank tops,’ but here (at Ada’s) ... tank tops and flip flops are welcome,” MacMillan said. “It’s laid back, easy, fun.”

Ada’s Fish House is named after his mother, Ada Rosa MacMillan.

“My dad originates from Boston, so the it’s an East Coast meets West Coast style,” MacMillan said.

Douglas McMillan handles the food at Ada’s Fish House, while his wife, Shannon, handles everything behind the scenes. Visitors will also likely see their children, Cal Poly wine and viticulture sophomore Brianna and high school student Nicholas, helping out.

Entrees range from $13 to $28. There’s a full bar and a daily happy hour from 3 to 6 p.m.

The restaurant is open 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For more information, call 805-556-3077 or visit adasfishhouse.com.

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