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MSP Lenten Friday Fish Fries

Orange Julius Feb 21, 2007 06:41 AM

It's Lent again, and for some of us, that means the return of meatless Fridays. I'd like suggestions for you favorite restaurants for fish. Any kind of fish suggestions welcome, but Bonus points for:

1. Fried Fish
2. All you can eat fish
3. Price point below $10
4. St. Paul or Minneapolis location
5. Beer also available.


Ps. It's okay if the restaurant does not normally serve fish. Actually, that makes it more fun.

  1. k
    karykat Mar 8, 2008 12:52 PM

    We tried to get in to Groveland Tap again yesterday and again it was too busy when we got there. Being nightowls, we thought we were getting there early at 5:30 pm, but guess not. The wait was going to be long. So we ended up with pizza and spaghetti at Pizza Luce again. I am getting resigned to deferring my Friday fish until after Easter. Although maybe we will give St. Albert's a try.

    1. r
      reannd Feb 23, 2008 04:27 AM

      Do any of these have pan-fried, or are they all battered?

      9 Replies
      1. re: reannd
        The Dairy Queen Feb 23, 2008 06:22 AM

        All of the ones I've been to offer battered, but I've been to some that also offer what I understand is oven-baked, such as George's on Plato and St. Matt's. Does that help at all?


        1. re: reannd
          KTFoley Feb 23, 2008 06:49 AM

          St. Albert's has baked as well as fried.

          1. re: KTFoley
            reannd Feb 23, 2008 07:30 AM

            Yes! Thanks to both of ya for letting me know =) I was assuming fish fry was 99% fried in batter, but wasn't sure as I've never been to one !

            1. re: reannd
              The Dairy Queen Feb 23, 2008 07:40 AM

              Yes, the standard IS fried in batter, and, of course, that's the good part! But, seriously, I know there are times where one doesn't want all that delicious fat...and I opt for the oven baked on those occasions...


              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                reannd Mar 7, 2008 08:08 PM

                Okay, thanks to all of you, my friends & I headed to St. Albert's this evening to take advantage of their menu.

                It was a hoot! Crazy busy, all you can eat, and damn tasty. It was a totally insane Midwest church basement extravaganza.

                People wearing crazy clothes, serving you: baked fish, fried fish, mashed potatoes, potato cakes (like triangle has browns), spaghetti, red sauce, and cole slaw. All the "church basement ladies" brought in home-made cakes, bars, & cookies (between the 6 of us I think we tried all two dozen+ flavors of 'em). Lemonade, coffee, and water. All for $10.

                Lots of raffles (every 50 tickets they draw a new winner.. tickets are a buck) of things you don't need (quilts, giant candy bars, etc), and announcements going on all night. (I learned that White Castle is giving away free burgers during daylight savings hours I guess? - pretty hilarious).

                Bingo upstairs - and you can bring your chow up there if you want =)

                Kinda want to go again next week, but we'll be at the CP wine tasting. If that's not Minnesota, I'm not sure what is.. all in the heart of Minneapolis (just down the block from Town Talk Diner).

                1. re: reannd
                  The Dairy Queen Mar 8, 2008 03:28 AM

                  Oh, that sounds so fun! Thank you for the detailed report. I haven't been to St. Albert's (we always go to St. Matt's), but now I'm inspired. And they have baked fish, which fits in my eating plan right now!

                  Do they have beer or wine?


                  1. re: The Dairy Queen
                    Dragon Mar 8, 2008 03:35 AM

                    TDQ - Don't you love a site where you can get an instant answer, even at 6:30am on a Saturday morning?! No beer or wine at St. Albert's, but the fish is outstanding! Particularly the baked fish. Make your plans now, though...next week is the last one and it gets pretty crowded. Serving starts at 4:30pm....

                    1. re: Dragon
                      The Dairy Queen Mar 8, 2008 03:38 AM

                      HA! Hi Dragon! I was going to post a question about healthy food in Dinkytown but thought it was too early. Maybe I'll post now.

                      It's sounds like St. Albert's is the happening spot!


                      1. re: The Dairy Queen
                        reannd Mar 8, 2008 02:35 PM

                        We got there last night at 6 and didn't have to wait in line.. but we did hear some of the best desserts were gone by then (I still thoroughly enjoyed my pumpkin bar, lemon bar, oatmeal raising cookie.. the list goes on!) =)

                        .. and yes, the baked fish was nice =)

                        No beer or wine (even soda was 75cents), but you don't need it to enjoy the place. Plus, it gets done at 7:30, so you can always hit memory lanes or TTD after.. (not that you'll need any more calories)

        2. k
          kaje62 Feb 22, 2008 12:37 PM

          here is one more that we have attended and really liked

          Fish Fry
          During Lent, fish frys are held on Feb 29 and March 14. Parish volunteers unite to prepare and serve an All You Can Eat dinner of English Pub Batterd Cod, baked potato & sour cream, rolls & butter, coleslaw, dessert, coffee & milk. The desserts are the crowning glory of the dinner, made by many parishioners they are worth saving room for.

          Feb 29 and March 14

          Most Holy Trinity
          4017 Utica Avenue South
          St. Louis Park, MN 55416

          1. w
            WaiterEater Feb 10, 2008 01:24 PM

            Blackbird in Minneapolis does a fantastic fried Salmon and fries everynight. Its 14.95 but really enough to share and they have great beer list. My new favorite fish.

            1. s
              soupkitten Feb 8, 2008 10:12 AM

              i have heard an unsubstantiated rumor that the kc hall in richfield does a very nice fish fry special on fridays. they certainly have beer/full bar & cheap prices.

              4 Replies
              1. re: soupkitten
                Gastron Feb 8, 2008 10:58 AM

                My girls will be accompanying Grandpa and Grandma to the PAC again tonight (Polish American Club-1000 Arcade Ave in St Paul) A few weeks ago they had a 16 oz. dark Polish beer that was very tasty...

                1. re: soupkitten
                  happysnacker Feb 8, 2008 12:05 PM

                  The Knights of Columbus in Bloomington (not Richfield, but close) DOES have a Friday fish fry during Lent. All you can (care to) eat / $10.95 / open to the public and runs from 5pm-9pm. Karaoke starts at 7:30 :)

                  1114 American Blvd West

                  ETA: The VFW in Richfield at 66th and Lyndale has one, too. Runs for 5-8:30 but I don't know how much it costs.

                  1. re: happysnacker
                    soupkitten Feb 8, 2008 12:16 PM

                    drat. you're right, happysnacker that's where i meant!!!

                    "can (care to) eat"--- am i reading too much into your post? is it any good? er-- the fish fry, not the karaoke! :)

                    1. re: soupkitten
                      happysnacker Feb 10, 2008 12:00 PM

                      This was not to be a comment on the food quality; just trying to be "PC" or something in describing how a person would approach unending food...:) I have not been to either place but hubby and I plan to hit the KC this upcoming Friday. AYCE fish fry, good beverages AND Karaoke? What could be more fun!

                2. k
                  KTFoley Feb 7, 2008 08:24 PM

                  Just bumping up this thread because Lent has begun and tomorrow is Friday.

                  Any updates on available frish fries? Any raves or disappointments from last year?

                  I know St. Albert's has its posters up.

                  1. Gastron Mar 8, 2007 09:27 AM

                    The Polish American Club on 1000 Arcade in St Paul has one.I went for the first time 2 weeks ago,and ended up full while becoming a member! They have a different group "host" the fry each week,and you have a choice of batter fried or plain (in butter?) You can dish up your own veggie or beans,bread and fixins' They have a dessert table with a hand lettered sign that said
                    .50 apiece for homemade goodies.Very quaint-I guess they used to have a line out the door in the old days.8 bucks for adults-$4.00 for kids.

                    And yes-a full bar.I had a Zwyiec beer from Poland.They also have a Hamms moving water sign behind the bar.Now if THAT isn't Minnesotan,what is?

                    (I'll be there Friday night with my 2 girls.Because this time we're gonna' POLKA afterwards)

                    1. u
                      Uncle Ira Mar 8, 2007 06:36 AM

                      Thanks for posting the link TDQ. I don’t think I would have seen it otherwise...

                      Has anyone tried the fish fry at the Capitol View? (I think they spelled it wrong on that list....) I’ve only had breakfast food there, but always loved that.

                      And am I the only one who thinks it’s kind of amusing that the Catfish Saloon uses cod??

                      Uncle Ira

                      1. The Dairy Queen Mar 8, 2007 04:06 AM

                        Today's Pioneer Press has a nice inventory of restaurant-based AYCE fish fries, what fish they use, price, accompanyments, what the fish is battered in, and whether they are available year-round or for Lent only. Unfortunately, they don't say which ones are the good ones. Also, they missed a couple we caught, like Obbs (yay! Chowhounds)!


                        I recently tried Groveland Tap's fish fry. They batter their white fish in Leinenkugel--I thought the batter was great, not too greasy, although the fish was so delicate it practically melted away. The accompanyments were fries (fine) and coleslaw. I know fish fries are a tradition for Lent, but I might still order their portabella mushroom sandwich if I wanted to go meatless, but healthy.

                        The Pioneer Press lists George's on Plato, which, I think is in the location of Awada's I mentioned above. I knew they'd changed their name, but I couldn't remember if they'd changed it FROM Awada's or TO Awada's. Clearly, they changed their name FROM Awada's to George's. Sorry for the confusion.


                        1. d
                          doogette Feb 24, 2007 12:50 PM

                          From the calendar section of this weeks The Catholic Spirit., I would suggest checking back intermittently as they may have posted more for next week. .http://www.thecatholicspirit.com/
                          I excised those that were this past Friday.

                          Soup supper at Sabbath House, Minneapolis — Feb. 26: Soup supper at 6:30 p.m. followed by prayer and reflection from 7 to 8 p.m. at 3228 Portland Ave. S.

                          Lenten soup supper at Holy Cross, Minneapolis — Feb. 28: 4:30 to 7 p.m. at 1621 University Ave. N.E. Soup, bread, dessert and beverage. Cost is $4 for adults, $2 for children. Sponsored by Holy Cross English Altar and Rosary Guild.

                          Fish fry at St. Anne, Hamel — March 2: 4:30 to 7 p.m. at 200 Hamel Road. Cost is $7.50 for ages 13 and older, $4 for ages 5 to 12 and free for children 4 and under.

                          1. The Dairy Queen Feb 24, 2007 04:57 AM

                            Here's an interesting one: Matty B's in downtown is doing AYCE walleye fish fries this year. Might be worth investigating.


                            1. The Dairy Queen Feb 22, 2007 10:08 PM

                              We've been talking about Mac's Fish & Chips in Roseville off and on the last couple of weeks or so, wondering if the downhill alert we had last fall was a temporary thing or what. Does Mac's do anything special for Lent?


                              1. cherrylime Feb 22, 2007 08:22 PM

                                In Saint Paul it's Obb's in Mounds Park. It's reaally fried and good. It's all you can eat and under $10 but I can't remember exactly how much. It comes w/fries, texas toast and cole slaw. They actually have it year round every friday. It's always packed Lent or not. They have a full bar including beer. No fancy beers though. I think the most exotic tap beer is Sam Adams . They might have Summit in bottles. It's on Burns just off 94 and 61. They serve it family style to big tables full of eastsiders.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: cherrylime
                                  The Dairy Queen Feb 22, 2007 10:10 PM

                                  I love Obb's Texas Toast!


                                2. f
                                  FishMPLS Feb 22, 2007 07:49 PM

                                  But there are plenty of catholics here, esp. in St. Paul. Really, let's get down to some great church recommendations. Anyone? And I don't want the enchiladas. Just fried fish, and plenty of it. I went to Holy Cross in NE a couple years back and it was sub par. It was actually baked, not fried, though it was breaded.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: FishMPLS
                                    KTFoley Feb 23, 2007 09:56 AM

                                    St. Albert's is the one that gets all the recommendations.
                                    St. Albert the Great Catholic Church
                                    2836 33rd Avenue South

                                    The last coverage I saw was for an alternate site was from 2005, so you may want to contact these folks: "Here at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Robbinsdale, the fish fry is equal parts prayer circle, social hour, and Def Polka Jam." No mention of the food quality, though.

                                    The same CityPages article, http://citypages.com/databank/26/1268..., mentioned that there were 20 different fish fry events held by local churches during lent, but neglected any hint of how to track them down.

                                    1. re: KTFoley
                                      CulinaryKate Feb 24, 2007 05:04 AM

                                      no beer at st. alberts though!

                                  2. s
                                    SLBunge Feb 22, 2007 08:08 AM

                                    It is interesting how different the fish-fry scene here is from Milwaukee where I lived for 4 years. This is not a complaint, I just find it curious. Perhaps it is related to the ethnic makeup of the immigrant in the area in the 1950s as the supper club concept took hold in the US.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: SLBunge
                                      CulinaryKate Feb 24, 2007 05:04 AM

                                      i totally agree. I'm from wauwatosa, and lent around here simply isn't the same as it was down there. It's the beer thing that gets me the most (and the major lack of potato pancakes)
                                      I think it may be the norweigan immigrants versus all the differeing immigrant groups in milwaukee that have NEVER had a problem drinking, even if it was in the church basement.

                                      1. re: CulinaryKate
                                        The Dairy Queen Feb 24, 2007 05:07 AM

                                        The one fish fry I've attended in a church basement is St. Matthews in St. Paul and they had beer. I think many of the immigrants to the Cities who were Catholics many years ago were German and Irish, so the beer shouldn't be a problem.


                                        1. re: CulinaryKate
                                          karykat Feb 8, 2008 12:07 PM

                                          I agree too. Every bar, tavern and restaurant in the OshKosh and Fond du Lac area has a fish fry with fish, cole slaw and rye bread. When I visit, it is de riguer.

                                      2. The Dairy Queen Feb 21, 2007 11:27 PM

                                        Does Tavern on Grand do a fish fry on Fridays that's any good?


                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                          SLBunge Feb 22, 2007 08:04 AM

                                          I'm not aware that they change their menu on Fridays during lent. I'll be out of town this Friday so I won't be able to drive by to confirm.

                                        2. o
                                          Orange Julius Feb 21, 2007 07:38 AM

                                          I'm not the world's biggest fan of sushi, so I'm not sure I'd get much value out of all you can eat sushi, DQ.

                                          Thanks Sven. I'll look those ideas up.

                                          1. The Dairy Queen Feb 21, 2007 07:17 AM

                                            Does all you can eat sushi count?



                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                              Danny Feb 22, 2007 12:07 PM

                                              That all you can eat deal is only on Sunday nights, so wouldn't really help for the Friday thing. (Not to mention that Sushi of Tokyo's prices are so cheap that you might still be better off ordering off the menu than paying the 19 bucks and eating all you can!)

                                            2. Sven Feb 21, 2007 06:54 AM

                                              This topic came up recently under the heading Chruch Dinners.


                                              My suggestion, skip the fish and go for the enchiladas at Our Lady of Guadalupe on Concord St. in St. Paul.

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: Sven
                                                The Dairy Queen Feb 21, 2007 07:19 AM

                                                Sven, in addition to the churches, aren't there also a lot of restaurants that offer them during Lent in particular? I think I've seen them at Glockenspiel, St. Clair Broiler, Awada's...any feedback on places like that?


                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                  Sven Feb 21, 2007 07:30 AM

                                                  Restaurants, Bars, VFW and American Legion Posts as well.

                                                  Last year had the fish at the VFW in South St. Paul, the American Legion in Northfield, and at Fabulous Fern's and McGovern's in St. Paul. All fine but nothing memorable. Although Fern's and McGovern's do win points for great beer. Fern's also offers vinegar with the fish too.

                                                  All of that notwithstanding, I'd still go for the enchiladas.

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