Kristine Xu is a journalism freshman and Mustang News food columnist.
When I first moved to San Luis Obispo, Splash Café was repeatedly recommended to me. So naturally, a friend and I visited downtown over the weekend to see what we could eat there.
One of Splash Café’s locations is a beachfront restaurant on Pismo Beach, with a line stretching out of the door on some of its busiest days. Its other locations are in San Luis Obispo with Splash Café and Artisan Bakery on Monterey Street and Splash Café Seafood and Grill on Higuera Street.
We stepped into the Higuera Street location and sought shelter from the windy weather, ready to finally get a taste of the famous clam chowder. The beach-inspired decor and sunny yellow tables gave the restaurant a cheerful atmosphere that was refreshing to the bleak and cloudy weather outside. In addition, the delicious aromas that wafted from the open kitchen and into the dining area left me eager for the meal.
I decided to order a small cup of clam chowder minus the bread bowl so I could fully appreciate the soup without the daunting feat of overloading on carbohydrates. I borrowed a couple slices of bread from the large sourdough loaf that my friend bought to pair with the chowder and began my meal.
I tore open the small plastic package of oyster crackers and threw them on top of the soup before stirring it in. What makes soup one of my favorite foods is how versatile a meal it can be, as well as the various textures soup often has. In this case, the slight chewiness of the clam mixed well with the crunch of the crackers and creaminess of the soup.
Photo by Kristine Xu
I broke off a piece of bread and dipped it into the thick chowder, enjoying the softness of the bread after it was coated in soup. The soup had a pleasant garlic taste to it, and was just the right temperature. In addition, the chopped up pieces of potato cooked into the soup was paired with fresh herbs to compliment the seafood flavor. I scraped the bottom of the bowl clean and popped the rest of the bread into my mouth as I finished up the soup.
As an afterthought, I decided to buy a hazelnut cupcake because I was not full yet and wanted to try a dessert from the bakery display. After the cashier rang me up and handed me a small bakers box, I returned to my table and sampled the cupcake. The white buttercream frosting was sprinkled with chopped hazelnuts and slightly chilled. I broke off a piece of icing with my teeth, which melted immediately on my tongue and left a sweet hazelnut taste.
Photo by Kristine Xu
Although there are salads available, the food at Splash Café is not ideal for building healthy eating habits. It is a place to stop by with friends for an inexpensive meal. Whether looking for a delicious bread bowl or a simple baked treat, Splash Café offers the perfect comfort food anyone can enjoy year round.