Tony P’s Dockside Grill

IMG_2961After college, I had a friend who lived in Marina Del Rey that I visited often. We used to go to the popular Red Onion, Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse and Warehouse restaurants to meet friends after work. All were located along the waterfront with boats of all sizes in the background.

When Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse closed down in 1996, Tony Palermo and Dan Ringwood saw an opportunity to open their dream restaurant; Tony P’s Dockside Grill. After major renovations, they opened on Super Bowl Sunday in 1997.

Since Tony serves on the Marina del Rey Convention and Visitors Bureau and is an Executive Board member, he has a vested interest in the success of the community.

Tony and Danny have received a multitude of awards throughout the years for sponsoring youth athletic teams, the annual Fourth of July Parade in Westchester and the yearly Santa Claus tour of the neighborhood and local schools. Tony P’s Dockside Grill fundraisers have raised more than $360,000 for area schools and organizations.

Last week I met a group of friends at Tony P’s to meet the owners and experience the cuisine.

The restaurant was packed with locals celebrating the graduation of a son or daughter with a festive dinner.IMG_2955

We started with creative Ahi sliders served on square crisp wontons. The seared tuna rested on slightly spicy vegetables and topped with a mild wasabi aioli. Next to the plate was a colorful bowl of ceviche filled with chopped Florida rock shrimp, blue crab meat, pico de gallo, chopped avocado and a squeeze of lime on top. It was accompanied with tortilla chips for dipping.

Next, I had Tony’s special salad with baby mesculine lettuce, crumbled blue cheese, sweetly glazed pecans, sliced red onions and dressed lightly with a balsamic vinaigrette.

Tony came out of the kitchen to introduce himself to us. He is a jovial man who knows how to make his customers feel special. He and Dan have worked in the restaurant industry for over 40 years. He recommended a few entrée choices for our group, including a spicy Louisiana seafood Creole, flat iron steak with garlic shrimp or a house-smoked salmon. I chose the healthier option of fresh salmon topped with a citrus beurre blanc sauce. It was served with a jazzy rice pilaf and sautéed vegetables.

Tony P’s offers those delightful mini desserts in shot glasses to satisfy your sweet tooth and not expand your waistband too much. We had a choice of triple berry or apple cobbler with a tiny scoop of vanilla ice cream. The mini hot fudge sundae and tuxedo truffle chocolate mousse appealed to the chocolate lovers at our table.

A fun way to experience Tony P’s is on June 22. Join the LAX Coastal Young Professionals for Marina del Rey’s first Craft Beer IMG_2957Festival aboard the Hornblower’s 550-passenger yacht, “The Entertainer.”

Tony P’s is one of the sponsors and is selling tickets. Each guest will receive a pretzel necklace and sample some of the finest Craft Beer available from over 40 different breweries.

Boarding starts at 12 p.m. The ship sails at 12:30 p.m. for a tour around the waterways in Marina del Rey. Guests will disembark between 3:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., just in time for an early dinner at Tony P’s to watch the sunset. Tickets are $50 a person. Purchase your tickets today at www.laxcoastal.com.

Tony P’s is open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week. Breakfast is served on Sat. and Sun. at 9 a.m. $$ 4445 Admiralty Way, Marina Del Rey (310)823-4534.

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