After reading the interesting write-up in the Daily Mail and receiving a favorable report from a colleague, the Five walk down Capitol Street to try out the latest addition to East End eating.
The overall appearance wasn’t much better inside than out. I can’t believe they have been working on this place for months and this is all they came up with. No landscaping, no artwork on the walls. The chairs were cool, though.
I ordered the catfish po’ boy, homemade onion rings, and a Diet Coke. The soda was in cans which was a disappointment. The wait on the food wasn’t bad. The large Kaiser-style bun felt like it had come out of the refrigerator. How hard is it to toast a bun, or at least warm it in the nuker? On it was two small pieces of breaded, fried catfish. I asked for lettuce instead of cabbage and it was the iceberg kind that comes out of a sack. The onion rings were 95% breading, 5% onion.
My sandwich really needed three pieces of the fish, minimum. Tricky Fish’s sister restaurant, The Bluegrass Kitchen, serves really nice spring greens on their sandwiches – why don’t they bring some across the street for the fish sandwich? A cup for the canned soda would have been nice to help eliminate the aluminum taste, but a fountain soda is what I expect if my lunch is going to cost ten bucks.
The food tasted pretty good but I couldn’t believe the price for the amount and quality of the items I ordered. My total was $11.40. It gave me heartburn. I rate the Tricky Fish—2 forks.
I am going to have to give this place one more chance. I have to say that I have never been impressed by the service at the fish’s sister restaurant – Bluegrass Kitchen. Although the menu usually made up for it, but that is another review. When a place is called the Tricky Fish my expectation is that they have a great fish sandwich. The Fish doesn’t even have a traditional fish sandwich on the menu. In addition, the only fish they serve is catfish. (They do serve other shellfish…more on that in a minute.) Ok, that’s fine. This place serves po-boy’s ala New Orleans. Again my expectations get the better of me. When I think po’boy this is what I think – Po’Boy. I also think it should be a big sandwich for a samll cost. I ordered a oyster po’boy at the $7.95 price point. I am fine with that price if I get a sandwich to match. What I got was four fried oysters in a homemade hot dog bun with three iceberg lettuce leaves and two half slices of tomato – no sauce. I guess they forgot the “fresh tartar sauce”. I ordered some onion rings, which where over fried and lacking onion.
I mentioned service earlier. I can kinda of cut them a break, but the place has been open for about a week and the counter staff should know the menu and options.
What would make the tricky fish better. I think some research would be a start. I was so disappointed that I had to have a CODZILLA sandwich at C.J. Maggie’s over the weekend. Now that is a fish sandwich.
We don’t have a half fork rating at this time so I give the Tricky Fish – ZERO FORKS.
I will revise my rating with a future visit in a month or so.
After walking in the door and reading the menu board, I decided on the Fish Taco- soft shell, a soda, and persuaded another co-worker to split an order of onion rings with me. I discussed what was on the fish taco with the cashier and decided to make some adjustments: No tartar sauce and change the cabbage to lettuce. They were very accommodating to my special requests. We found a table, sat, and waited on our food.
Fish Taco- $3.75- All the adjustments I made to my taco were correct. This makes me happy. But, then, I noticed the shell was cold. It was not even room temperature. The fish was fried, hot and tasted good. However, there was only one piece of fish that was slightly bigger than a fish stick. The amount of lettuce, cheese, etc. was acceptable. In all, the fish taco was not great, but not bad.
Onion Rings- $2.25- Order included only 5 onion rings. So, my co-worker took the 2 larger onion rings and I had the 3 smaller ones. I have to say, the more I ate, they better they got. The first one, burnt. The second one, very crispy- not much onion. The third one, just the right amount of crispiness and the right amount of onion. But, a disappointment at $.45/per ring.
Soda- $1.25- Another disappointment- a can of soda was my only choice. At least there were straws.
Based on the food quantity, quality and price, I rate the tricky fish 2 forks.
Phil’s Review (sorry for the late posting!)
I was the anomaly in the group, perhaps protected by that un-risky and conservative behavior of ordering what I know I like. (Here’s the dig for all the criticism I take from Daniel for not being adventurous enough in my food tastes). I am adventurous, just not in restaurants; mostly around bridges, underwater or in caves. But I digress . . .
I ordered the pulled pork sandwich and was rewarded for sticking to my plan. My sandwich was one of the few which was served warm, as a large portion and quite tasty. The portion was so big I was forced to eat some of it with a fork so I didn’t end up wearing it on my suit. It was not overly saucy, but still had a good taste. However, it wasn’t a totally dry rub either.
I took the two large onion rings from the pregnant lady (sorry Misty, I’ll buy next time). They were okay, but nothing to brag about. They did seem to fall apart with each bite, so the fork again came in handy, since I’m a ketcup dipper.
Other than feeling a little guilty for enjoying a good meal while everyone else was less than impressed (boy talk about a bunch of complainers!)–I had a good experience. The decor and the drinks could use a lot of help. Also, the service was a little slow, but I attribute that to the fact that the place was very busy and still in its first week or two of opening day.
My rating would be a three forks meal.
1600 Washington St East
Charleston, WV 25311