Top Fish – Week Four: Harding’s

Harding’s is a place we have accidentally neglected.  It’s close to work, has plenty of free parking and serves breakfast all day.  We finally made it there to review their Golden Fish Fillet Sandwich. 

The sandwich is made up of a piece of breaded fried fish, lettuce, tartar sauce, and cheese on a toasted hoagie roll with fries on the side for $6.99.  Let’s see how they scored:

Daniel’s Comments:

The Harding fish sandwich is a cross between a fast food and a sit down restaurant sandwich.  It is served on a hoagie bun which is a nice upgrade from the standard burger bun, but the fish appears to be pieces parts pressed together and breaded. The fish to bun ratio favors the bread. Cheese is added as a standard topping a la Mickie Dees along with leaf lettuce and a tangy tarter sauce.

I like this sandwich, but I wish there was more of it.  I think it’s time the Fork You crew rolls down to the Anchor and gets a Kingfish sandwich….

Misty’s Comments:

It was a pretty big sandwich and I really liked the hoagie style bun that was lightly toasted.  I thought the cheese gave it a little different taste than the rest of the fish sandwiches we have reviewed.

The fish was crispy but was a lot smaller than the bun.  There was probably an 1″ to 1 ½” on each side of the bun that didn’t have fish.  I couldn’t really tell if it was an actual filet of fish…but I am guessing “no” since all of our pieces were similarly shaped.

This fish sandwich was ok.  Not great, not bad, certainly edible.  But for the price, I think there are much better fish sandwiches around.

Phil’s Comments:

That sound is everyone picking themselves off the ground after falling out of their chairs!  (Since I usually don’t comment.)

My sandwich was okay at best.  It didn’t have a particularly fish-y taste.  Actually I couldn’t taste much other than the bread.  The tartar sauce was equally plain.  Mine was very average, at best.  The size of the sandwich was better than average, I just couldn’t taste any fish.

Susan’s Comments:

This sandwich looked promising when it arrived at our table.  Wait!  Oh no!!!  Not another pickly pickle!!    I went into emergency mode, clearing all the fries from my plate onto the paper placemat and dabbing the pickle juice with my napkin as quickly as possible.  I only lost one fry in the process and was able to obtain additional napkins quickly.  Whew!  That was a close one.

The bun was a hoagie-style bun and lightly toasted.  Butter could have improved it even more.  The breading on the fish was fried to a golden crisp.  Harding’s has a deep-fryer and they certainly know how to use it!  Not only was the fish crispy, the fries were very crispy.  Some of the best pre-fab frozen fries I’ve had around town.  They literally begged me to eat them. 

We enjoyed discussing whether or not we thought the fish was an actual fillet of fish or fish pieces mashed together to form a fishy shape.  Obviously no one was in back breading fresh fillets so we knew they were trucked in frozen, but was it a whole fillet or not?  I am going with “fish pieces mashed together to form a fishy shape” since you could see bits of “dark meat”, as Phil called it, here and there throughout the sandwich.  The flavor was mild and pleasant, however.

Overall, I thought it was an enjoyable fish sandwich at a reasonable price.  When I get back on my diet, I figure Misty & I can split one of these lunches the next time we’re here.  It’s all about cutting back where you can.

If you go –

Harding’s Family Restaurant
2772 Pennsylvania Avenue
Charleston, WV 25302-4911
(304) 344-5044

6 responses to “Top Fish – Week Four: Harding’s

  1. demosthenes.or.locke

    This pickle thing is beginning to become unintentionally funny, like the soda price obsession we saw early in this blog. Hardings is great for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it gets you out of downtown Charleston, even if only for a minute.

  2. In contrast to D.O.L. I hold a different opinion.

    Harding’s is not a place you accidentally neglect. Rather, it is a place one actively avoids. All of the deep-fried culinary quality of Ryan’s or Shoney’s with the style of a cut-rate Cracker Barrel.

    “Harding’s has a deep-fryer and they certainly know how to use it!” Yes. Yes they do. And that sums Harding’s up nicely.

    Go across the street to Barone Brothers Pizza instead.

  3. Rob –
    I am not a fan of “country cookin'” so I am not stoked about the idea of putting Hardings into the regular rotation as Daniel suggested during that fateful lunch. However, at least there is breakfast all day and a deep fryer.

    those damned pickles are a serious threat to culinary enjoyment the world over. The juice is so pervasive…

  4. demosthenes.or.locke

    I can’t really assess Hardings from a culinary point of view since all I ever get there is breakfast food, hot dogs, and club sandwiches. I go there so I can have lunch without bumping into anyone I don’t want to bump into. Its an antisocial dream full of people I don’t know.

  5. Alas, I cannot even enjoy anonymity there, as family and high school acquaintances frequent the joint.

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