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Mar 5, 2012 05:05 PM

Fourth and Sea Fish & Chips - destination worthy onion rings and milkshakes [Petaluma]

Everything was excellent here ... fish, chips, tartar sauce, coleslaw.

The onion rings get the award though for best of the best. The fresh, real onion rings had a light, tempura-like beer batter. A nice small cup of house-made ranch dressing came with them.

The shakes were a thing of beauty, not overly thick and tasting of dairy pureness. I had the coffee shake top notch. I think they sell soft serve ice cream as well

The same light batter was on the generous pieces of fish. Thick slabs of fries had a nice potato taste.

The coleslaw was wonderful. This is what I think of when dreaming of coleslaw classic.

I had the special of the day which was any oyster poor boy. The plump fried oysters were on a nicel toated bun that had a layer of slaw and dabs of excellent house-made cocktail sauce. This ... thank goodness ... came with those omg great onion rings. The poor boy was good, but that fish is the thing to order.

Very simple decor. Orange fast food booths, a few nice sea related photos on the doors. The staff was very pleasant. I'm a little sorry now that I didn't take home the house made clam chowder.

We were going to stop by the new Greek place in town across from Whole Foods, but it was closed on Sunday. This was an exceptional second choice.


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      1. Count me as a detractor. Found the fish & chips greesy and overpriced on my two visits.

        12 Replies
        1. re: Civil Bear

          Do you have a place to recommend for fish and chips?

          The new Greek restaurant, The Athenian which is across from Whole Foods has fish and chips on the menu, but it will be a while before I get to that because there is a lot more of the Greek dishes I want to try.

          I stopped by Fourth and Sea today and got a cup of clam chowder, a cup of house-made chili and a chocolate dipped soft serve cone. They were doing the usual brisk business.

          Their take out menu says 'ask about our desserts', so I did.They are listed on the menu to the left of the counter where they take orders. A yelp poster clued me in that they have deep-fried Twinkies. They also have a few sundaes. Not on the menu are the ice cream sandwiches made with cookies.

          This isn't organic, pedigreed soft serve coated in name chocolate.However, I liked the crackle when I bit into the coating. Suddenly I was seven years old again. The regular cones are topped with what seems like a foot of soft serve. Kid sized cones are also available.

          The clam chowder was fine. It was mainly potato based, but the potatoes were tasty. It comes with a bag of oyster crackers.

          The chili is made with ground beef and no beans.What I liked about the bite I've had (it is dinner tonight) is it doesn't taste of chili powder.Cheese and onions are available with it.

          For hhc: Someone took calling the toilet "the throne" seriously. The seat was painted gold. There were heavy gold mirrors and a chandelier. The walls are painted whore-house red ...notthat I've seen such a place except in movies.

          1. re: rworange

            >>"Do you have a place to recommend for fish and chips?"

            I like Betty's in Santa Rosa and Pig & Whistle in SF. Barbara's Fish Shack is also quite good, even with the higher price tag. I was born in eastern Canada where there are Fish & Chips shacks on every corner. Although the quality isn't always much better than at Fourth & Sea, they are usually more of a bargain.

            1. re: Civil Bear

              Fish in Sausalito has very good fish and chips, albeit at a very high price.

              1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

                Red's Java House, on the other hand, has moderately good fish and chips, albeit at a very low price.

            2. re: rworange

              Flying Fish Grill in Half Moon Bay.

            3. re: Civil Bear

              I agree with Civil Bear. Very disappointed in the food and won't be going back. The F&C at Lucas Wharf was a good order of magnitude better.

              That said, our waitress at Fourth & Sea was very sweet and the restaurant was spotlessly clean and appealingly retro.

              Now if they could just find a cook who knows how to fry seafood half as good as any seafood joint on the Gulf Coast.....

              1. re: chilihead2006

                >The F&C at Lucas Wharf was a good order of magnitude better<

                Didn't Lucas Wharf in Bodega Bay become Dee's Bayside Deli (with poor reports including mine) a few years ago?

                1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

                  Regarding Lucas Wharf, the operative word is "was" but many folks have likely tried the F&C there in the past.

                  Regarding Fourth & Sea, I just don't understand why a place specializing in fried seafood does such a mediocre job of it. It's not rocket science, but does require a cook who's tasted good fried seafood somewhere. Along the US Gulf Coast, pretty much everyone knows how to fry seafood. For whatever reason, such simple skills just don't find their way here short of going to a high end joint like Fish in Sausalito. Fish is very good, but for Pete's sake do we really have to fork out $30 for F&C?

                  Fourth & Sea doesn't even rise to the level of mediocre. I'd go back if it were just mediocre.

                  I'm beginning to wonder if some of the more prolific posters here are paid shills.

                  FWIW, since moving to the Petaluma area last October, our favorite haunts are Afendi and Namaste.

                  1. re: chilihead2006

                    Afendi and Namaste are excellent. However, I keep going back to Water Street Bistro, one of my favorite lunch places anywhere.

                    1. re: chilihead2006

                      Fish & chips at Fish is only $23 including tax, so more like $21 normal menu price :-)

                      1. re: Malcolm Ruthven

                        $21 is still too much to pay for fish and chips.

                      2. re: chilihead2006

                        Maybe the quality of the frying varies. Fourth and Sea is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner, so they probably have a number of different cooks working the fryer.