Growl Review: Sandbar Waterfront Grill

Category: Growl Review

Julie B.

Sandbar Waterfront Grill

By Julie B.


Hand Breaded Perch Dinner – Image courtesy of Julie B.

The portions were satisfying and I even had leftovers. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeFadeGpawRating-WholeFade
Sandbar offers a relaxing setting with the marina and outdoor patio. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-Whole
Service was extremely slow. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-HalfGpawRating-WholeFadeGpawRating-WholeFadeGpawRating-WholeFade
I’ve been to Sandbar often and the food is never consistent – sometimes really good sometimes not so good – you take a gamble. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeFadeGpawRating-WholeFade
The restaurant was spotless and the bathrooms were clean and tidy. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-Whole

Anytime I’m near water, it puts me in a happy place. That’s why I enjoy Sandbar Waterfront Grill for their relaxing setting with the view of the marina and outdoor patio.


Image courtesy of Julie B.

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Sandbar is located at 930 Old Tecumseh Road in Lakeshore next to Puce Harbour Marina on Lake St. Clair. It’s a comfortable place to unwind with tables lined up against the abundance of windows that overlook the water and marina. The walls are painted with a palette of warm hues. Rich dark wood is noticed throughout the restaurant with nautical furnishings. An inviting fireplace is in the dining room which is something I’ve enjoyed on a cold wintery night. Fine dark wood enhances the welcoming bar area as well as a wood burning stove for pizza.


Image courtesy of Julie B.


Image courtesy of Julie B.

We started our evening indoors for dinner but enjoyed the patio afterwards for drinks and desserts. As for the quality of the food, unfortunately it’s never consistent. Rumour is they change chefs often which could explain why their food is hit or miss. Tonight’s dinner for me was good but in comparison to past experience, I’ve had better meals.

The menu was a selection from sea entrees to steak to wraps. I would like to see more creativity with the menu and adding more types of fish and ways of preparing them. Many items seem to be breaded or battered. They do offer a vegetarian menu if requested.


Vegetarian Wrap – Image courtesy of Kelly W.

I ordered the hand breaded perch dinner with seasonal veggies and rice pilaf with the house salad. The perch was tender and the coating was light and crispy. I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of perch on my plate. The rice pilaf was fluffy and savoury. The seasonal veggie was broccoli, which I’m not a big fan of but was happy to share with others. I did hear someone at the table rave that the broccoli was cooked to perfection.


Starter House Salad – Image courtesy of Julie B.


Hand Breaded Perch Dinner – Image courtesy of Laurel R.

The outside of Sandbar is what makes me come back – I can’t resist being near water and taking in all the lively activities of the marina while admiring all the boats and people with their sun-kissed tans enjoying the good life.


Image courtesy of Julie B.


Image courtesy of Julie B.

The biggest disappointment of the evening was how extremely slow the service was. Although our waitress was friendly and courteous it felt like we were on a boat that was slowly sinking throughout the night. I started to think our waitress had jumped ship, threw us a life preserver, and left us to save ourselves. At one point during the evening we asked the waitress if she could arrange a couple of tables together outside for our group, and then realized that could entail another delay in an already slow night of service. So we took it upon ourselves to take care of it, moving out to the patio and seating ourselves. Unfortunately we then had to wait another 20 minutes or so for a dessert menu and to order drinks.

I feel with only one of few restaurants by the water in the area, the owner relies on the location to bait people in and doesn’t place enough importance on the service and quality of the food. For future I think I will forgo dinner and just enjoy drinks on the patio.

Julie B.‘s Overall Rating
As much as I loved the atmosphere the service was a huge disappointment and the food was good but nothing to rave about. GpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeGpawRating-WholeFadeGpawRating-WholeFade


Comments from fellow Growlers
Laurel R. said: “I tried perch for the first time at Sandbar, and it was delicious! Coming from the West Coast I’d never had this particular fish before, and I really enjoyed it. I’d definitely go back to Sandbar again for the perch. I also loved the waterside environment and upbeat atmosphere. Unfortunately my “California Heat Salad” was, despite the name, rather uninspired, with a scant sprinkling of pumpkin seeds and no sign of the avocados promised on the menu. My dessert of Pralines & Cream Cheesecake was actually cheesecake with a layer of some sort of chocolate dessert on top – no pralines and cream on my serving! So apart from the perch my food selections were rather disappointing. That said, I enjoyed my evening, and would definitely return to Sandbarr and give it another try – this time I’d probably opt for the perch dinner and skip dessert.”


California Heat Salad – Image courtesy of Laurel R.

Lisa M. said: ” I ordered the salmon which was done in an orange glaze. It was very fresh and tangy, quite delicious. The side steamed broccoli was cooked to perfection, and the rice pilaf complimented the salmon well, picking up the flavour from the glaze. I was very impressed with the food, loved sitting by the river during dinner, and moving out to the patio afterwards. Our server accommodated us very well, and overall my only complaint was the snail pace service. Our orders were taken and meals arrived in a timely fashion, however our after dinner conversation was conducted over dirty dishes that took forever to be cleared. The taking of dessert and additional drink orders was quite delayed also. As the restaurant wasn’t overly busy the night we dined, I’m not sure what the hold up was with the wait staff. Despite this flaw, I would definitely return to Sandbar for its pleasant, peaceful locale and delicious food.”


Starter House Salad – Image courtesy of Lisa M.


Orange Glazed Salmon – Image courtesy of Lisa M.

Have YOU visited Sandbar?
Tell us about your experience!

Image (Julie B.‘s user pic) courtesy of dusky /

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