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deep fried whole fish?

  • Prav Dec 16, 2006 05:31 AM
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I am a HUGE fan of the deep fried "sweet and sour" fish at an ordinary-but-chowishly-delicious little restaurant in NYC called Saigon Grill. It is amazing - an entire snapper (?) comes perfectly fried such that the skin provides a wonderful crispiness, and the flesh remains moist though not oily. It is lightly battered and smothered with a light brown sauce (and various vegetables) which is tangy, though not anything like the pink sweet-n-sour glop you get at Americanized places. The meat pulls off with just a slight pluck of chopsticks. No overcooked toughness.

Anyone know where I can find a close approximation in Boston?

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  1. Jumbo Seafood has a fried flounder that might be similar -- except that the sauce is light and not brown.

    3 Replies
    1. re: limster

      But that can't be an entire flounder (as in "entire snapper" above)?

      1. re: Sam Fujisaka

        It is a whole flounder.

        1. re: limster

          Nice!

    2. Kingfish Hall has a whole fried fish that is actually pretty authentic. It is a more Latin style deep fried fish, but it is equally as succulent and every bit as good. One of the only times I would ever reccomend a Todd English place, actually the only time.

      1. The most recent I've had was at Sichuan Gourmet in Framingham. They offer seceral whole fish options.The fish was great. The one I tried was a little too sweet for my taste.
        I used to get a great one at the restaurant on the VFW pkwy in West Roxbury. Long time ago so...

        1. I miss the Saigon Grill too. No place is Boston compares but if you are looking for sweet and sour fish check out the little hole in the wall in Cambridge called Zoe's. It's on Beacon near the intersection with Sacaramento (towards Porter Sq). Absolutely awesome hidden jewel of an authentic chinese place better than any place I've been to in Chinatown. They do a good friend fish as well as other authentic Chinese food (think 1000 yr old Tofu, jelly fish, hollow green vegetable, super spicy beef etc). It's no Saigon grill in that obviuosly it is a chinese place but... the plastic tables, yummy food and little glasses of water will make you feel like you're back in NY.

          1. Try the pla rad prik at Kao Sarn in Brookline, great version of sweet and spicy whole fried fish.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Zatan

              I'd vote for that as well -- it's great, and despite being Thai rather than Vietnamese, it sounds a lot like what the OP is looking for.

            2. "Spice" thai restaurant in harvard sq. has a decent whole fried sea bass in a tamarind & chili sauce too. it's deep fried with a ood crisp exterior, tangily sweet, spicy and sour.

              1. I had a whole fried black bass at Peach Farm in Chinatown a while back that was very good. It wasnt cheap, but it was also very big. They had some other whole fried fish options on the menu with different sauces if I remember correctly.

                1. Crispy butter fish at Wang's.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Luther

                    Is that the one that you eat whole? I loved that the last time I went to Wang's!