A couple months ago, I wrote a post lamenting the lack of quality fish fries in the Twin Cities year-round. But during Lent, there is some good stuff out there. In five weeks, I’ve tasted five fish fries. But you’d better act fast—these guys are about to set sail.
Week 1: Cafe Twenty Eight
On my original post, many people extolled the virtues of the Cafe Twenty Eight fish fry in Linden Hills, and they were all right. It’s a perfectly deep-fried Canadian Walleye in a beer batter. The fish wasn’t heavy and oily like some fish fries are… it was just delicious. The french fries and cole slaw also stood out. Co-owner Linda Haug grew up in Northern Wisconsin, she knows her fried fish, and it shows. $14, Friday dinner only. Drink a Surly beer here, the co-owner Todd Haug is the brewmaster.
Week 2: Most Holy Trinity Church, St. Louis Park
This was a trip. We showed up at 4:30, a half-hour before the fish fry started, because that’s happy hour. They serve wine and beer at half price, so it was like $2 for a beer. The fish was better than the average church fare—two pieces of crispy cod, with a nice flaky inside. They had baked tater tots (mine were a little overcooked) and a dessert table, with all sorts of homemade goodies from the church members. How awesome is that? I’ll definitely be back next year. Adults: $9.50, and it’s all-you-can-eat.
Week 3: Red Stag Supper Club, Minneapolis
The Red Stag Friday night fish fry was absolutely top notch. The night we were there, they served blue gill, cod, walleye and crappie! I had the crappie. It was perfect. The malt vinegar comes in a personal serving spray bottle, which was great for the very cool fried potato chips that come with the fish. The fish ranges from $11-$13 for one piece, $15-$19 for a double. I highly recommend the cornmeal breaded calamari, with a harissa aioli. It was $10, and the cornmeal was such a perfect texture. Loved it.
Week 4: Henry’s Cafe, Maple Grove
I live in Maple Grove and had never been to Henry’s Cafe. I went with the Twin Cities Fish Fry Club: This place is only open for breakfast, except during Lent when it opens for an all-you-can-eat fish fry. For $9 you get beer-battered Alaskan pollack, soup or salad, cole slaw or homemade bread, and choice of potato. $9. It was delicious, too, although the tartar sauce was really sweet, which I don’t care for. Henry was in the kitchen, battering and frying the fish himself. It’s a small restaurant, which was a bit overwhelmed when 14 of us showed up, but we really had a great time. It’s open for two more Friday nights, so get out to see Henry!
Week 5: The Local, Minneapolis
I was anchoring the WCCO-TV news last Friday night, and Amelia decided she would buy dinner. She went to The Local and got takeout fish and chips. I didn’t have high hopes, but I gotta tell you, it was quite nice. Battered cod that was perfectly crisp without being burnt, delicious and abundant french fries for $12. I’m glad this is around all year, because I’ll certainly be ordering it again. No offense to Brit’s, but The Local’s fish and chips are far superior.
I have two weeks left. Where do you think I should go for fish?