Have you heard? Old Fisherman's Wharf staple, Rappa's Seafood Restaurant has recently changed ownership! New management is making a splash with increased quality to menu items and projects are in the works to further renovate for a whole new fresh look; there are even plans to paint the exterior a spick-and-span white!

The setting and prime anchor location at Rappa's truly differentiates itself from its other competitors on the wharf. Its impeccable 360 degree vistas of the Monterey Bay, upstairs viewing deck and playful sea life just below can simply not be beat.

It's obvious that Rappa's is fully aware of its spectacular surroundings. The open floor plan and simple interior décor lend the focus point to what's outside its countless windows giving every seat in the house a unique view of the harbor.

Enough about the views, let's talk about the food! The recently revamped lunch, dinner and dessert menus are mouthwatering to say the least. On a recent visit I had the opportunity to sample just a few of their current menu items.

A visit to Old Fisherman's Wharf just wouldn't be complete without some fried Monterey Bay calamari. Rappa's doesn't skimp when it comes to this Monterey favorite which offered a light and crispy panko breading on tender calamari. I didn't even need the squid boat crew outside the window to tell me this dish was fresh!

The favorite appetizer of the meal seemed to be their brand new bang-bang shrimp. Lightly fried and juicy shrimp were lathered in an irresistible creamy and spicy sauce which almost had us ordering seconds.

The baked oysters were a close second with their unusual yet welcome addition of artichoke hearts and crab gratin; this dish has a diverse mix of textures that definitely pleases the palate!

Sticking to the seafood theme we had Rappa's special of the day which to my delight was the seafood paella. Generous hunks of fresh fish, prawns, mussels, scallops, chicken and spicy sausage sat over perfectly seasoned saffron rice. The mussels were particularly satisfying and overall the dish was not too salty, as some paellas tend to be.

Just when we thought we thought we had met our stomach's capacity the desserts arrived. The crème brulee was classic and simply melt-in-your-mouth . It had just enough delicate burnt caramel topping for the soothing custard beneath. The chocolate mousse was exactly what I wanted it to be- creamy, rich and whipped to perfection!

Rappa's is also a great place to just grab a drink or dessert, although it will be hard to resist from other tantalizing items. During Happy Hour margaritas, mimosas and draft beers are available for $3 and desserts are an affordable $7.95 a piece.