Off the Beaten Path: Ocean Grill in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Off the Beaten Path: Ocean Grill in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Ocean Grill in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico_09
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Off the Beaten Path: Ocean Grill in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

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It’s a widely known fact: the harder you work out before a meal, the better food tastes. Everyone knows the guilt-free sensation of pigging out after a strenuous session at the gym. With that in mind, the idea of visiting the Ocean Grill, located along the coast of the Bay of Banderas just south of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, was instantly appealing. You see, there are only 2 ways to get there…by foot or by water taxi. The “by foot” option is a 45 minute hike that starts at the small fishing village of Boca de Tomatlan and ends at a picturesque, secluded cove complete with a gourmet restaurant. Since we were planning on a decadent lunch with a few adult beverages, the exercise-free water taxi wasn’t an option.

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On the morning of our adventure, we parked at the base of the river mouth in Boca that runs down from the Sierra Madres and meets the Pacific Ocean. After locating a small, concrete pedestrian bridge that took us over the river, we just followed the path south and prayed that we were heading the right way.

The first part of the journey took us past some beautiful villas on the coast that are accessible only by boat or foot. Many local residents were hanging out on their front porches, cheering us along with shouts of encouragement or advice us to drink lots of water. We felt like we were running a marathon with our supporters on the sidelines instead of just heading to lunch.

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Eventually the homes started to peter out and we found ourselves surrounded by lush jungle with the occasional peek-a-boo views to the ocean beyond.

Just around the time when I was starting to daydream about a cool swim and an even colder beer, the path started to descend towards the ocean and opened up to an incredible, golden sand beach at the base of a jungle lined cove which would be the setting for our lunch reservation at Ocean Grill.

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Upon entering the restaurant, we were promptly greeted with cold towels and seated beneath the cool shade of the palapa. Cervezas were quickly ordered so that they would be waiting for us upon our return from the most important task at hand: jumping off the deck into the cool ocean below.

Properly refreshed, it was time to get down to the business at hand: eating. The menu at Ocean Grill is comprised of what you would expect from a tropical grill restaurant on the ocean in Mexico: fish ceviche, grilled oysters, catch of the day, fresh lobster.

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We started out with an order of smoked marlin tosadas: a crunchy, round toasted corn tortilla topped shredded, smoked marlin along with fresh avocado, red onion and cilantro and an order of grilled clams in garlic butter and lime. Perfect!

This was followed by grilled octopus with a black olive tapenade, grilled prawns with a tomato and mango salsa, and baby back pork ribs with the chef’s homemade BBQ sauce.

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Everything was super fresh and completely delicious, just as you’d expect from a restaurant where you can dip your toes in the ocean below.

Since we weren’t in much of a hurry to leave and the staff seemed content to let us stay, we decided to spend the afternoon lounging about on their deck, drinking margaritas, exploring the beach below and swimming to the ocean raft (complete with palm tree and sun bed).

When it eventually was decided that perhaps we should get back to reality (and by reality I mean head back to gorgeous Puerto Vallarta), we jumped on the Ocean Grill water taxi and were swiftly returned to our starting point in Boca de Tomatlan.

Great company, good food, unique experience, beautiful scenery…is there any better way to spend a day?

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Larissa Magee lives in Puerto Vallarta and works for Agave Villas Mexico, a luxury villa rental company. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Google+

 

All the photos provided by Mattock Imagery.

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