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“Good stop while visiting USC”
Review of Blue Marlin

Blue Marlin
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Ranked #4 of 1,012 Restaurants in Columbia
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$30 - US$30
Cuisines: Seafood
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Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, After-hours, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Reviewed 3 December 2013

Great food great service. Would definately go back if in the Columbia area. Highly recommend the grits.

Thank Judy E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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905 - 909 of 1,200 reviews

Reviewed 24 November 2013

My wife and I took my in-laws to Blue Marlin for their fifty-fifth wedding anniversary. The evening weather made the location perfect for dining outside. The waiter was attentive and appropriately entertaining. He had no problem with an unusual request for dividing an entree for my in-laws. She loves salmon; he loves shrimp and scallops. They wanted a shrimp and scallop covered salmon entree divided according to their likes. Wisely, the waiter suggested a side of additional shrimp to make my father-in-law's dinner portion a better size than the otherwise garnish would have provided. Unfortunately, the evening was marred when a homeless derelict approached asking for money and stating that he'd just been released from federal prison. Because my wife has an art studio around the corner, we knew to call the police immediately. The manager did talk to us a bit later and confirmed the restaurant's efforts to assist the Vista Guild neighborhood in dealing with the situation. I am writing this review in order to encourage others to dial the authorities in similar situations. With data, the city of Columbia will have to take better action to protect the ambiance and safety of downtown businesses. (Please note, we did NOT feel unsafe at any moment ... but we DO want a better, humane city-wide plan for the homeless and the release of prisoners ... something that doesn't impact the businesses in the heart of our city.)

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Thank SCBuckeye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2013 via mobile

Basically, we made reservations for 6 and made them 2 weeks in advance. They called a day before and asked us to change times because they were busy. Kind of the reason for a reservation in the first place but we didn't want to go if the seats or service were going to be sub par so we changed for them.

We showed up at the new time and they put 6 grown men in a booth, shoulder to shoulder. Service was very average. Food was OK for the most part but not great. My friend had several bones in his fish.

Overall it was average at best. If you can't manage a crowd then don't pack the place.

We saw many people in similar situations.

Thank Scot G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2013

This restaurant was recommended by someone in the Columbia area and because we were a party of six I made a reservation two weeks out on Open Table. The day before my reservation the restaurant called me to see if I could move my 7 PM reservation to either 6:15 or 9. I agreed to move to 6:30 to help them out of a jam and to make sure we got a decent table. We were seated in a large booth, but we were a group of six grown men and had to move one of us to a chair at the end of the booth's table - haven't done this since a Denny's back in the 90s. Across the way a group of eight was crammed into a table that would have been nice for six.

Most of the food was good, but two dishes were served with cold scallops on top of cooked salmon - this didn't taste right. My dish, which was the crab stuffed flounder had so many bones in it I couldn't finish it. I was not asked why I didn't finish the meal or if I liked it, and I regret not telling the waiter about it.

Overall I would say that if you are looking for a dinner on a slow night, not for a special occasion, this place would be okay. My friends loved the gumbo and shrimp and grits. The staff blamed the seating and scheduling issues on them being so busy. In my opinion it would have been better to provide some of us with great service rather than try to cash in on all of us with poor service.

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Thank mvannote
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2013

We ate at the Blue Marlin yesterday for brunch - this was our first time at the restaurant. Our service was outstanding; friendly, prompt & courteous. The food was good and nicely seasoned; however the gumbo could stand to have more shrimp in it (had more sausage than shrimp). The she crab soup was delicious and the crab cake was good; however I did not care for the rice served with the crab cake. Overall I would return, but I was not overwhelmed and awed. I was expecting food of the same quality as the Motor Supply Company Bistro, and was disappointed with the Blue Marlin from that perspective.

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Thank lisa b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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