Fish Type: Cod (AYCE) Price: $9.00
Overall, I would not recommend this Fish Fry.
|Fish Score: Fair|
Potato Score: Good
Tartar Score: Excellent
Bread Score: Poor
Miscellaneous Score: Excellent
Comment: The Friday after Thanksgiving is always an interesting proposition. Most people are feeling guilty about eating too much with the family and the last thing on their minds is piling on a Fish Fry. While I don’t necessarily feel guilty about it I try to pace myself during the holidays to make sure I still get my Fish Fry in every Friday. Since Thanksgiving was on a Thursday it was a little more difficult this year. We had two Thanksgivings to attend on Thursday and by the time Friday night rolled around I had eaten turkey for three meals in a row and about reached my limit. Since most of the delicious Thanksgiving goodies come from Mom’s stove I was more than ready to have something deep fried from a real restaurant. I heard that Gus’ Diner in Sun Prairie had a pretty good Fish Fry and that it was AYCE so I was ready to give them a shot.
We arrived at the 50’s style diner about 7pm and had no trouble getting seated right away. The diner was pretty vacant but there were a few groups of people scattered around, a few of which were enjoying the Fish Fry. The only choice for the AYCE Fish Fry is Cod which comes with choice of potato and a trip to the salad bar for $9. We put in our order with our friendly young waitress and headed to the salad bar immediately. For a diner this was a very nice salad bar. It was clean and all the items looked and tasted very fresh. The coleslaw was available on the salad bar and was pretty decent and was a fine start to the Fish Fry.
We finished our salads and the fish was on the table shortly after. The Cod was served steaming hot but unfortunately it didn’t taste great. It had a thick and kind of greasy batter. The fish itself was slightly heavy and not flaky which resulted in a kind of mushy texture. This is usually the case when restaurants get frozen, pre-breaded filets and just drop them in the fryer which is never as good as a ‘homemade’ Fish Fry. When you get fish like this it is usually hit and miss, one piece tastes fine and the next is nasty. This was exactly the case at Gus’. I attribute this to a lack of quality control because the chef does not actually see the unbreaded fish so he has no idea what is underneath. When places make homemade batter they see each piece of fish before it is battered and can weed out the bad pieces. At least that is my take on it.
The French fries were crinkle cut style and covered with season salt (Lawry’s) which made them very good. The tartar sauce was also very good and our waitress had no problem with bringing us a couple extra servings. What was surprising was the fact that we didn’t get any sort of bread with the Fish Fry, although there was a side of green beans this in no way suffices for a lack of bread.
Overall this was a decent Fish Fry but with so many other great places out there I just can’t quite recommend it, even if it is AYCE. The service was great and the prices were very reasonable. The establishment itself was very nice and they have a broad menu of other things which looked quite good. We will be back to try some of their other food but as of now I really would not come back specifically for the Fish Fry.
630 North Westmount Drive
Sun Prairie, WI 53590