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Fearless Critic restaurant review
San Antonio
Mexican, Seafood
Casual restaurant

Sun–Thu 11:00am–8:00pm
Fri–Sat 11:00am–11:00pm

Features Live music
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Not accepted

West Side
3831 W. Commerce St.
San Antonio, TX
(210) 436-6056
El Siete Mares
Coastal Mexico comes to the West Side—it’s all best with beer

Siete Mares, all painted up in aqueous shades and studded with superscale sea shells, is frankly best at night—especially when the Mexican trios are involved in a kind of quasi-competition. It’s then that a cold Pacifico and a plate of charales (tiny, crisply fried smelt) evoke the perfect, low-rent shack on the beach somewhere south of Ensenada. A beachy cóctel de camarón y pulpo, shrimp and octopus in a soda glass with a tomatoey ketchup sauce, and chunks of avocado, only reinforces the illusion.

Plates such as the shrimp aguachile with cucumber and lime invite more scrutiny; there are better versions in town but this pugnacious rendition will do nicely now that we’re here. We have dutifully sampled the fried foods (you’re welcome), and don’t feel obliged to do so again, though the shrimp and oysters are also perfectly reasonable companions to cerveza. The “Filete Borracho,” fish in a beer sauce, is way better than it sounds, too What we think you really should try, however, is one of the kitchen-sink seafood soups—especially the brimming “Caldo Siete Mares” or the “Vuelve a la Vida,” an alleged “return to life” hangover cure. We make no claims, of course.

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