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Dec 7, 2008 06:25 AM

Jfoods visit F.I.S.H. (Port Chester) - Very Good Potential

The Jfoods met some friends at FISH in Port Chester and they will have to return to give a better review since friends were late and they needed to hurry through dinner. Firstly, Jfood will mention that the approach to the restaurant is a little dicey but thankfully Jfood had his Garmin and just kept going. Upon arrival, thankfully there was valet parking and Jfood went inside to check it out. It looked like a great place so Jfood went out and gave mrs Jfood the thumb’s up. When they walked in they smiled as who was sitting waiting for his table but the Jesse James of 2008, Richard Fuld, ex-CEO of Lehman.

The restaurant’s décor is lively. A nice bar with cool high chairs and a couple of 2-tops, and two dining rooms seating about 50-60 patron. Low lights give a nice sense of relaxation.

Once seated the table ordered three salads and Jfood ordered the Cioppino with shrimp, mussels and calamari steamed in a spicy tomato-lobster broth for appetizers and three special wood roasted whole snappers and one Spicy Tuna Flatbread with wasabi mascarpone, pickled ginger, chives and ponzu spritz for their entrees.

The salads arrived and the Caesar was great and the others were very good (lots of raw onion in one of them so be careful). The Cioppino was fantastic, and it was large enough for an entrée. There was lots of calamari, about four shrimp, three mussels and tomatoes.

When the entrees arrived, two of the people who ordered a salad and the fish laughed a little because the snapper came with a nice portion of salad on the plate in addition to some fingerling potatoes. The fish was still on the bone as expected (two were ordered headless), but the chef left it in the oven a few minutes too long and it was a bit dry and both the Jfoods thought it was underseasoned. The fingerlings were very good and Jfood, who had the soup for an appetizer enjoyed the salad. The flatbread with spicy tuna was the hit of the entrees. Yes it was large enough for an entree. There was a nice layer of chopped tuna spread across the flatbread. The tuna had a nice background of wasabi, the ginger and ponzu gave nice flavors as well. It was the hit of the entrees.

The party had dessert in the bar (since they needed to turn the table) that was very nice and they had a selection of the chocolate tart, the pecan tart and the key lime all with some vanilla gelato. Jfoods favorite of the bunch was the chocolate tart and the gelato was smooth and wonderful. He could not taste the pecan tart (nut allergy) and the key lime did not do much for him.

So Jfood will withhold a real review until he has a second visit and he could have a more leisurely dinner at the table. He should also mention that the personnel all receive exceptional marks from the valet to the coat check to the MOD to the bartenders, runners and servers. They all receive 10’s. Many other restaurants Jfood has visited could learn from the staff.

Oh and for those interested in who the Fulds had dinner with, wouldn’t you know that David Stockman and wife showed up. Great! The CEO who ran Lehman into the ground having dinner with the indicted ex-CEO of Collins & Aikman. But if you think about it where better for two corporate piranhas to have dinner than a restaurant named FISH?

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  1. I like F.I.S.H...........I've been maybe 5 or 6 times......and the seafood has always been super fresh (even on Sundays)......It seems the chef really takes pride in obtaining the best line-caught fish.......

    The service has never been a hit for us......there always seems to be some sort of hiccup......whether it be a mistake or an " I don't really care" attitude......but the good food usually makes up for it......

    It is an interesting journey to get there......just when you think you're lost and are finally ready to turn around it seems that you pull up in front of the restaurant......

    If i saw Fuld there I would have asked him to pick up my bill......I mean, ya know....after 2007's 45 million dollar salary and 22 million dollar bonus......I think he coulda hooked me up....

    1. jfood i find it so interesting that you are just getting to FISH. it has been one of mrs. special and my faves for years. the pizzas are incredible, flatbread included. and the salads never miss, although the beets and goat cheese is a little small. but the mussels and fin fish and all the other seafood selections are always fresh as can be, and always on point. i urge you to go back again soon, i'd like to read your real review. another plus of FISH is that the fish is all harvested from eco friendly sustainable sources, and thats just good to know that there are owners out there that care about where their product is coming from.

      9 Replies
      1. re: sparkyspecial

        jfood ABSOLUTELY is going back, maybe even next week with CT friends.

        if he came across as not liking the fish, absolutely not. the fish was extremely fresh, but the chef kept the snapper in the wood oven a little too long. and can you imagine an entire flatbread covered with tuna and wasabi...great dish.

        when the jfoods were eating dessert in the bar several pizza were being consumed. they looked fantastic.

        1. re: jfood

          Jfood Just to keep the food theme going...It would have been nice if
          Fuld and Stockman (hereafter known as the Piranhi) were joined by Jack Grubman, another winner.

          1. re: docooker

            It was okay. Artie's in City Island is better.

            1. re: dolores

              who's running to city island??? i'll take FISH any day of the week. but, FYI, i have eaten at arties and the food is really good.

              1. re: sparkyspecial

                Running? It's no farther than X20 and I go out of my way to eat there.

                The food is okay and the parking is free at FISH, that was about it.

                1. re: dolores

                  no, the food at tarry lodge is just okay. the food at FISH is very good to excellent. but, thats just my opinion.

                  1. re: sparkyspecial

                    What does Tarry Lodge have to do with FISH? I was comparing the overall experience of FISH to Artie's and Artie's wins, hands down, evey time.

                    1. re: dolores

                      i was just talking about a local restaurant that people seem to be enchanted with. but again, i agree artie's is very good. just a little bit of a haul for me.

                2. re: sparkyspecial

                  jfood's w you Sparky. Believe it or not people live north of FISH and the extra 25-30 probably is not worth it. Why it was even brought up still baffles jfood.

        2. I've been meaning to go there, and even tried twice - both times for lunch, which was silly. Have any reviewers here tried non-fish dishes? My husband doesn't do any fish or seafood (I married him anyway), and while he's perfectly happy as long as there's one thing he can eat, I fuss vicariously and do hope there are good and varied options for the non-fishy types.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Mrs.Sean

            I live in the area and have eaten at F.I.S.H. many times. Their pastas are delicious, and even their hamburger was very enjoyable when I had dinner there one night and craved a burger. One thing to point out.....when you order the tuna on flatbread, make sure they are baking it in their brick oven. Once for lunch, I noticed quite a difference because the oven wasn't being used.

          2. "the approach to the restaurant is a little dicey"

            Brought a grin. The route gives new meaning to "off the beaten track."

            Back when F.I.S.H. was a Portuguese seafood house (Pearl of the Atlantic) , and the decor was pure film noir, we dubbed the place "Cape Fear." Totally ramschackle. Actually, "Pearl" had fantastic bourbon soaked lobsters -- and lobster pots stacked in the parking lot -- plus a live Harpist serenading the room! Totally bizarre but unforgettable.

            Though I haven't been to F.I.S.H. in a couple of years (stands for "Fox Island Seafood House"), it's totally 180 degrees away from the old joint. Sleek and upscale. Creative cuisine. Lively bar. Yes loud and crowded, and one of Port Chester's pricier places, but still worth it. It's great in the summer, at sunset, dining on the outdoor terrace as the fishing boats crawl back from the Sound on the Byram River. (And no harpist anywhere to be heard.) You're right:, a lot easier from Ct. than City Island. With a far more funky approach... tho CI has its share of noir, too.