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Southern Fried Catfish in So Cal, without having to go to the south!

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Where in So Cal can I find good southern fried cornmeal catfish? Those from the south of the country know what I'm talking about.

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  1. Johnny Reb's, on Chapman in Orange. (They have other branches, including one in Victorville. I have never been to any of the other branches.)

    4 Replies
    1. re: Das Ubergeek

      yup, the absolute best. from a guy who was raised in alabama. i know my catfish. i think the secret is they seem to fry it in the same fat as teh chicken. the crust is really crisp and meaty, the fish stays moist and is not at all muddy like you get with some catfish.

      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Johnny Reb's has locations in Bellflower, Orange and Victorville. The Long Beach location is currently closed after a fire. For more info about Johnny Reb's Southern Roadhouse, check out its web site:


        1. re: Das Ubergeek

          What ever happened to Soul Folks downtown? They had amazing fried catfish (and fried chicken, and spaghetti, and...)

          1. re: Das Ubergeek

            Johnny Reb's catfish is good, and so are their moist and tender hushpuppies (when fresh) and their flavorful greens. Other dishes can also be rewarding, but I don't care for the pork ribs, for example.

          2. The Blue Marlin West in Palmdale does a authentically delicious version.

            Blue Marlin West Restaurant
            3135 Rancho Vista Blvd, Palmdale, CA

            1. Not sure where you're located but all the previous suggestions listed are quite far from me. Closer to the westside (in order of personal preference) are Creole Chef, Gumbo Pot, and Uncle Darrows.

              3 Replies
              1. re: TracyS

                We went to Creole Chef for the 1st time a few weeks ago and loved it! The fish had a lot of cornmeal and was very good, but the item I liked the best were the fried shimp. We will be going back.

                1. re: TracyS

                  I've tried Uncle Darrows & Gumbo Pot, and IMHO, They both insult Southern/Cajun Creole cuisine! They suck!, Where's Creole Chef...after recommending the previous two, how good can Creole Chef be?

                  1. re: Ollie

                    Creole Chef is right here.

                    Your mission is to visit and report back :-).

                    Creole Chef
                    3715 Santa Rosalia Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90008

                2. The Village Idiot used to have southern fried cornmeal catfish. I can't remember for certain if I saw it on the menu the last time I was there, but I think I did? Not sure *how authentic it is, but it certainly was good the one time I had it.

                  1. The D.U.T.C. Grill in Gardena serves catfish for breakfast, lunch and dinner! Their jambalaya is good and they also make fried chicken using the Golden Bird recipe.

                    The OP might want to browse the Soul Food place map for possibilities:

                    BTW Soul Folks is no longer in the DPH database - R.I.P.

                    D.U.T.C. Grill
                    14903 S Western Ave, Gardena, CA 90249

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Will Owen

                      "Boring city ham"? At Cracker Barrel (unfortunately, no locations in California) you must order true country ham, if you want ham instead of farmed catfish. My procedure is: have country ham, grits, biscuits, and red-eye for your meal and then pick up a couple of packages of thin ham slices to transport home in the ice-chest in your car. I try to maintain a minimum quota of three packages in my home-freezer at all times, but I'm currently eating through number two, so it looks like a trip to Arizona will be necessary this weekend.

                      Getting back to Southern California, I've only had country ham once -- onest -- at Johnny Reb's, my favorite local Southern joint, and it's a evil thing, even for this rebel boy. (I grew up in California but lived most of my life in the South.) Sorry, but I can't recommend it to no Yanklees.

                      Cracker Barrel Old Country Str
                      21611 N 26th Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85027

                    2. New Orleans in Hermosa Beach has some really great authentic Cajun & Creole food.The place is small and the owner is a gem. She makes a catfish Po Boy and catfish Cajuned (blackened, fried, or grilled). The seafood gumbo is deliciuos and we split the bowl.

                      New Orleans Cajun Cafe
                      140 Pier Ave, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254

                      1. A few weeks back a group of us went to M&M Soul Food on Centinela (there are a bunch of other locations as well) and the Fried Catfish was easily the best entree of the bunch. The portion was huge and the fish was breaded in a spicy/crispy cornmeal. I couldn't recommend it enough.

                        The place also has great greens, mac and cheese, short ribs and many of the other down home/soul food staples.

                        1. Harold & Belle's knows how to fry!

                          Harold & Belle's Restaurant
                          2920 W Jefferson Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018

                          1. It isn't traditional but the fish sandwich at Gulfstream (CC Mall) fits the flavor profile. Pan fried grouper. Beautiful piece of quality fish today at lunch with a bit of remolaude and slaw.