Last weekend I went to Dingbats and had their crispy fish sandwich for $6.79. There’s also a jumbo crispy fish sandwich on the menu (for $1 more), but I was told it was twice as much fish so I chose the more modist option. I also had the option of beer batter or something else that didn’t sound as good, so of course, I chose the beer batter.
The sandwich is served on a kaiser roll and measures in at about 7 or 8 inches long and 2 or 3 inches wide. It’s served with tartar sauce and coleslaw, as well as french fries. I asked for lettuce and tomato. It’s a big sandwich, and to tell you the truth, as I ate it it got kind of grossly mushy. It was too moist and tender, I guess! (Or maybe I put too much tartar sauce on it.)
anyway. It’s a good sandwich. a little expensive, but it was tasty. I wouldn’t want to take it home and reheat it, though, because it was kind of soggy at the end of the meal.
Last night I went to St. Charles Lwanga in Homewood for their $4.50 fish sandwich. I had to buzz to get into Holy Rosary School, and then I waited for about 5 minutes while they made me my sandwich. They offered me ketsup, hot sauce, and tartar but of course, I took tartar.
Driving away I noticed that this fish sandwich smelled a lot differently than others had! it had a very spicy smell to it. I unwrapped the corner at a stop light to take a nibble … and I saw a piece of fish fin. ! I was v. surprised, but had a nibble next to the fin, and the breading was fantastic, spicy, and cornmealy.
When I got home I unwrapped the whole thing. The top of the large, square fillet (it was probably about 5 inches square) looked like a normal fish sandwich. When I flipped it over, though, I saw bones. It was the boniest fish fillet I’ve ever seen! I was able to salvage it by deboning with my finger along the spine. I did lose some of that great breading, but I was nervous about eating fish bones.
The sandwich was good. A little more work than most, and for the first time I questioned my tartar sauce addiction — it would have been great with hot sauce. I enjoyed it, and I hope that my bony fish patty was just a fluke. It was totally worth it.
In case there are any PGH readers who are dying to get on the Catholic Church Fish Sandwich Bonanza that is LENT, I found these fantastic resources:
Pittsburgh Catholic Articles, Parts 1 and 2.
And here is the article that reminded me of this wonderful tradition in the first place.
I HEART FISH SANDWICHES.
I’m going to try to hit the St. Charles Lwanga dinner in Homewood today. YUM.
Last night I ordered the fish sandwich from The Sharp Edge Beer Emporium. It’s hard for me to write The Sharp Edge, because since before I moved to pittsburgh I have been calling it the sharper image for fun. Because it IS fun.
Anyway. Last night the fish sandwich was the simple choice to make. It came on a toasted kaiser roll, no lettuce or tomato or sides (like fries), and my choice of cocktail or tartar sauce. As if there were a choice! Fish sandwiches are really just a great mechanism to get tartar sauce into my body. Sort of like bagels and cream cheese. The price is $6.50. There were two fish patties with a nondescript crispyish breading. Each patty was about 4 inches wide and 4 inches long but triangular, and about 1/2 an inch thick. I stuck both onto the roll, loaded up with tartar sauce (I had to request more), smashed the whole thing together, and dug in.
The sandwich was good, but not superfantastico. The breading was a nice texture added to the fish but it really wasn’t a match for the fish itself. I was really surprised at how flakey the patty was and the breading didn’t do much to hold it together. It was good, but kind of messy. At one p0int I got fish flakes down the sleeve of my sweater.
This is a solid middle of the road fish sandwich choice, but by no means the best I’ve had. It rates better than “not gross” but I wouldn’t say it is so great that it precludes trying one of the other sandwiches at the sharper image. I mean Sharp Edge. Right.
Yesterday during my long drive home I stopped to get some coke and decided to also try the McDonald’s Fillet-o-Fish Value Meal. I’ve never had one, and thought I might as well. Fish blog, you know? it’s a great incentivizer!
The sandwich comes on a regular hamburger bun, with cheese and tartar sauce. The box says it’s whitefish and there’s a picture of a scuba-diving girl on the top. The patty is not crispy at all, but I couldn’t tell what the breading was made of (cardboard? maybe.) And, it’s square, on a round bun, which reminds me of wendy’s. The patty is about 4 inches square. There’s a lot of tartar sauce (which is a plus), and it seemed extra pickley to me.
The sandwich is not bad, really. It’s not fantastic, but if you’re strapped for fish sandwiches you won’t be too upset. I really would have liked it a lot more if it was crispy. But the lenten season promo cost of $2.99 for the entire meal really can’t be beat.
As it is, the verdict on the Fillet-o-Fish is “Not Gross.” I think that sums up the experience particularly well.
Last night the Lovely Michelle and I went to The Squirrel Hill Cafe, aka The Squirrel Cage, on the corner of Forbes Avenue and Murray. On the menu were TWO fish sandwiches: the Extra Large Sandwich (or something like that) at $3.95 and the Jumbo Fish priced at $4.95. I asked the waitress what the difference was and she told me the Extra Large Sandwich was breaded, and the Jumbo Fish was in a beer batter. So the Lovely Michelle and I both picked the Jumbo Fish.
The piece of fish is about 9 inches long, and triangularly shaped, with a 3-4 inch butt going to a 1 inch point on the other end. My sandwich was served with a cup of tartar sauce, lettuce, and tomato (I asked for these), and was on a hoagie roll cut neatly in half. It came with chips. They also offered me cocktail sauce, but they DON’T have malt vinegar at the Squirrel Cage.
The beer batter was good, but I have to admit, by the time I got to the end of the sandwich it had gotten a little gummy on the bottom. I’m not sure how well this would reheat if you didn’t finish it all in one sitting. But I would totally recommend this sandwich: the price is right, the size is big, and they’re generous with the trimmings (the tomato was the reddest I’d seen in quite some time!).
I was thinking last night: should I have some kind of cheesy rating system? like, 2 fins up, or something? the whale spout of approval? Ha! Now, THAT would be something.
I have missed the boat! If I had been a little more forthcoming and a little less good intentions, I could have posted a link to information in the fish sandwich blog here. Well, I won’t let this get me down. I heart fish sandwiches for THEMSELVES, and I’m glad to know others do too.
I DO keep meaning to have a fish sandwich blog. Pittsburgh has got a lot of fish sandwiches, and I love them. There’s 2 best ways to eat fish, as far as I’m concerned: fried, or raw. I plan to carry a ruler with me and order and eat fish sandwiches in a methodical and scientific manner.
So far I have missed plenty of opportunities!
I have eaten fish sandwiches at:
The Union Grill
Fuel and Fuddle
And passed up fish sandwiches at any NUMBER of places.
Hopefully this will be a better way to get reviewing.