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Galley at the Marina setting sail on 20th anniversary Phillip Brents | Tue, Jan 21 2014 02:12 PM

Veronica Hayter has been serving customers at Galley at the Marina for 19 years. The casual Chula Vista waterfront eatery is set to celebrate its 20th anniversary this September.

“Veronica knows just about everything there is to know about the restaurant,” general manager Casilda Duenas said.
So, what has made the restaurant a customer favorite, especially for its outdoor dining?

 “It’s a hidden jewel, it’s like you’re on vacation — something about the area does it for me, especially with all the boats docked at the marina,” Hayter explained. “We have great views, great food and great service.”

Both women agreed that consistency has been the No. 1 reason for the restaurant’s ongoing popularity. That includes service, affordable prices and delicious culinary fare.

“We get business from three areas — the nearby RV park, people who live at the marina and the general public,” Hayter said. “We have a lot of locals, a lot of regulars.”

Besides the food — the restaurant’s all-you-can-eat spaghetti and meatballs special on Monday evenings and all-you-can-eat fish and chips special on Thursday evenings have become the stuff of legend — Duenas noted that live music (with no cover charge) has been a draw for customers, adding to that “vacation” feeling, even for locals.

The all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner ($7.99 with beverage purchase) and fish and chips dinner ($8.99 with beverage purchase) are offered from 5 to 9 p.m. On Taco Tuesday, for $7.99 with a beverage purchase, guests may order three tacos, either chicken, beef or fish, served with salsa and black beans.

The fish and chips meal can also be ordered for lunch ($9.99) and for dinner ($12.99) when not on special. The lunchtime meal comes with three crispy beer-battered cod filets, french fries, tartar sauce and cole slaw. The dinner meal comes with a side salad and grilled Parmesan sourdough bread.

The cole slaw features bits of pineapple chunks — don’t be surprised once you take your first bite if you finish the cole slaw first.

Live music is from 5 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday and Saturday and 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Diners shouldn’t limit themselves just to the nightly specials. The menu is loaded with savory and healthy dining options alike, ranging from starters, soups and entrée salads to burgers and specialty sandwiches, from the grill and skillet, pasta, seafood, desserts and a children’s menu.

During our recent visit, the soup of the day was chicken tortilla. The soup’s bold southwestern flavor was complemented by the two-cheese and crispy tortilla strip topping.

Another highly recommended soup is the tomato basil.

The breaded grilled calamari served at the Chula Vista bayfront eatery is another enticing menu item or, rather, items. The crispy calamari can be served either on top of a Caesar salad, in a sandwich or as an appetizer.

As winter flows into spring and summer, the very berry salad increases in rank. But even on a mild January day, the generous slices of grilled chicken, strawberries, along with blackberries, raspberries, candied walnuts, bleu cheese crumbles, mixed with baby greens and romaine lettuce and a raspberry vinaigrette dressing is simply as satisfying as it is amazing.

The whole salad ($14.99) is a meal in itself.

Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily from 8 a.m., the restaurant is ideal for its leisurely dining, business lunches, happy hour gatherings and marvelous sunset dinners.

Galley at the Marina is located at 550 Marina Parkway. Call 422-5714 or visit the website at www.thegalleyatthemarina.com for more information.

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