I apologize for the delay in getting the latest fish fry news out to the deep batter deprived masses. I was unable to attend a fish fry on March 15th, so I’ve included a few guest reviews below. I hope to post a review of the March 22nd fish fry at St. Martha’s in Okemos in a few days! Until then…
A review from NEAR…
When not able to go to a fish fry, my friend T has ordered take-out fish and chips from Kewpee’s restaurant in Downtown Lansing. While it’s not technically a fish fry, this locally fried fish has made a good impression on her.
She tells me, “The dining experience was excellent. The fish is perfectly battered and the dill tartar sauce is fantastic.” When it comes to the sides she said, “The fries were perfect and the coleslaw was delish.” She also noted that, “The staff is always friendly and food is always ready when I pick it up.” So if you can’t make it to a fish fry and you are near Downtown, give Kewpee’s fried fish a try.
A review from FAR…
My friend G lives in Apex, North Carolina. While this is not the part of the country normally associated with Lenten fish fries, G wanted to let me know that the local Catholic church (St. Mary Magdalene) puts on a great dinner. Browsing a few of their recent bulletins, I see they served 650 meals on one of the first Fridays in Lent! And G confirms, “It is HUGE. In fact, the only downside is that you have to wait quite a while for your food because it is so crowded and popular.”
G’s husband B said the halibut was very good. G and her kids have enjoyed the mac and cheese. She notes, “Apparently the Knights of Columbus had a contest a few years back for the best mac and cheese. Now that is the recipe they use at the fish fry. It is heaven! Also, the coleslaw is nice and vinegary, just how I like it.”
In fact, this fish fry is so sweet they even have their own website where they take pre-orders. For real! You can visit it at www.lentfishfry.com So, if you find yourself in North Carolina next Lent, this sounds like a fish fry not to miss!
In the heart of Lansing, on a sunny Friday afternoon, we found the largest fish fry crowd of the season at St. Casimir. Driving into a neighborhood and approaching the parking lot at 800 Barnes Ave, we began to realize the enormity of the fry. We saw a full lot and cars parked end-to-end along side streets. Thankfully we just had to go around the block to Sparrow Street to find some on-street parking right across from the front doors of the church/school complex. We walked around back to enter but you can also come in on the Sparrow street side.
The meal is served in the school gym and tickets are sold in the hallway. When we arrived at 5:30 there was quite a long line going down and around into a hall of lockers. Buying our tickets and meeting up with friends, we got in line and waited about 20 minutes to get our plates. There were many families and people were friendly though you may want to get there earlier if you are very hungry. There is also a take-out option which had a much shorter line for the same price. The meal is all-you-can eat and fortunately seconds are available right in the gym so you don’t have to get back in line :)
There was baked and fried fish as well as fried smelt with a light breading. There were also fries, coleslaw, and roles. Cheese pizza was also available. Water, punch, lemonade and coffee came with the meal and pop and a variety of desserts were available to purchase. It was neat to see so many young people and Boy Scouts helping to serve and sell the desserts. There was even a dessert tray going around the gym so you didn’t have to leave your seat for something sweet.
All of the food tasted good. We learned this was one of the larger turnouts this Lent and my friends and I thought the convenience of having this right in the heart of city probably contributed to the crowd size. Though we had to wait a bit, it was a good time. There were many families and a sense of community. If you don’t feel like venturing far for good food and company, check out St. Casimir’s Friday fish fries.
Check out this article in the Lansing State Journal about the monthly fish fries at the Charlotte American Legion
Speeding down I-69 last night there was some doubt about whether we’d make this week’s scheduled fish fry at St. Mary’s. Eeek! Unforeseen shopping contingencies led to a time crunch to make our date with fish. We were staring the possibility of a fish McBites right in the face. Fortunately, the excellent driving skill and optimism of my sister-in-law got us all to the fry with time to spare. We were not disappointed!
As we arrived just shy of 7pm we saw a pretty full parking lot. St. Mary’s is located just off exit 60 of I-69. Take the exit, head west, and turn when you see the large KofC Fish Fry sign. When we got there, I ran into the hall to see if they were still serving. I was greeting by a friendly volunteer manning the ticket table and assured there was plenty left (fish… and people dining). Good thing, because we were hungry! This all-you-can eat fish fry was only $8 and included a shrimp option (for $2 more). We went with fish only and enjoyed ample amounts of fried cod (baked was also available).
The fish was served with a delicious, more creamy than vinegary, coleslaw that appeared to be homemade (though I forgot to confirm it). We also got applesauce and some pasta shells and cheese. Rolls and cornbread were available. Both of us thought the cornbread was excellent – not too dry and flavorful. Coffee, water, and lemonade rounded out the beverage options. Desserts were available to purchase. One thing that stuck out about this fry was that we ate our meal on real plates with real silverware. I am sure it made for more clean-up for the KoC men but it really made it feel like a homemade dinner.
People were all very friendly even though it was the end of the night. We observed many families eating. Booster seats and a high-chair were available. There were several round tables with condiments and folksy fish centerpieces on each one. Even though we got there late, no one made us feel we needed to rush and a good number of people were still there when we left. Stopping by for last call at St. Mary’s was a pleasant dining experience and I recommend this fish fry in the heart of Eaton County!
Last Friday I braved the aftermath of a snow storm and went out to the fish fry at St. Thomas Aquinas in East Lansing with a friend. We decided to get there a little before 5pm and caught the Early Bird special, dinners for $7.50. The church was easy to get to, just south of Saginaw Hwy, and there was plenty of parking. We entered the doors near the gym and were able to pay for our meals and walk right into the gym/dining hall.
I was a little surprised to hear basketballs as I approached dinner, but soon saw that the gym had been divided with tables set up on the kitchen side and the other side open for kids to play with basketballs. This could be great for families with kids who want to play while adults socialize, but some may not like the echoing of bouncing balls while they try to talk and eat. So be warned. I only saw one ball veer close to the beverage table but the dividing wall of folded bleachers generally made me feel I could eat without hearing anyone scream “INCOMING!”
The line moved very quickly. I got the fried fish and there were a number of side dishes including fries, mac ‘n cheese, coleslaw, fruit cocktail, rolls and lemonade, punch, coffee, and water to drink. I am not sure if the fish was all-you-can eat but we were asked to take one side each. Ketchup and tartar sauce were also available.
The seating was at long cafeteria tables arranged in rows, picnic table style. We had no problem finding a spot and even when people starting filing in, there seemed to be ample space. People were friendly and there were a number of families there. The lower price, early start time, and room for kids to play definitely make this an ideal fry for families to check out
Check out this article on local fish fries. Currently more updated than what I have on this site… though I still had the scoop… er… spatula? on this one :)
Fried fish lover? It’s your time of year by Kathleen Lavey
I plan to try the fish fry at St. Thomas Aquinas in East Lansing this week. This Friday is also the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter (February 22). As St. Peter was a fisherman, I assume he would approve of a fish dinner to celebrate. It is also particularly appropriate to celebrate the feast right now, as we enter the final days of Benedict XVI’s pontificate and pray for his successor. So take some time before you dig into those delicious fillets to thank God for the fish – and the fishers of men he has given us throughout the centuries. Pray for the Bishop of Rome and Christian unity.
For more information about the meaning of the Feast read: Chair of St. Peter: Bishop’s teaching seat, not king’s throne
St. Peter, pray for us!
For the first Friday of Lent I headed out to the Knights of Columbus Hall in Lansing. I had heard this was an excellent fry and it did not disappoint. This fry was characterized by a variety of fish and healthier options.
The hall is near the airport on the northern outskirts of town. The location didn’t seem to keep anyone away. When we got there, about half an hour after the start, the main parking lot was already full and we parked in an adjacent dirt lot. We could smell fried fish when we got out of the car.
Entering the building we were directed to a bustling banquet room just to the left of the entrance. We purchased our dinners and headed to the buffet. Seating was at long tables – a great chance to make new friends! It was crowded but we were able to find a spot for our group of four. A volunteer even brought a booster seat for the toddler in our group.
The buffet was all-you-can-eat and included the greatest variety of fish I have ever encountered at a fish fry. There was baked perch, baked cod, fried perch, fried cod, and fried smelt. The buffet also included baked potatoes, french fries, mac and cheese, coleslaw and roles. Milk, water, and coffee were available for free. Other beverages and dessert options available for purchase. The Knights were eager to serve us and happy to give as little or much as we wanted.
I tried the baked perch, fried cod, and smelt. The baked option was lightly seasoned with a pleasant taste. The fried cod was very good. I had never had smelt before, but assured by the former Yoopers with me that it was worth a taste. I gave it a shot and was pleasantly surprised by this flavorful little fish. The Mac and Cheese was a big hit with my 18-month-old nephew.
We enjoyed the family-style dining and even got to join with everyone in singing happy birthday when a cake was brought out to the dining room! There was also a 50-50 raffle.
On the down side, it would have been nice to have a dessert option included with the meal (though I suppose it is Lent after all :) ). Overall this was a great experience. If you are looking for variety, want to enjoy some baked fish at a fish fry, or want to support a worthy cause check out the Knights of Columbus!
DETAILS: Knights of Columbus Richard Council #788, 5300 N. Grand River, Lansing, MI – Every Friday During Lent 5-7:30pm – Adults $9, Kids 5-12 $4, Under 5 eat for free – Take-out available
Lent has begun and with it comes the first fish fry night of the year! Tonight I’ll be checking out the fry offered by the Knights of Columbus Richard Council #788, 5300 N. Grand River, Lansing. I’m excited to see what the Knights have in store. Check back later for a review! If you are in town stop by the fry between 5-7:30pm. Adults $9, Kids $4, Little Kids $Free. Find the details on their website: http://www.kofc788.org/Article.aspx?ArticleKeyID=2091
Hope your Lent is off to a good start! Enjoy your fish today!