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Fish Type: Cod     Price: $11.00

Overall, I would barely recommend this Fish Fry.

Fish Score: Good
Potato Score: Good
Tartar Score: Excellent
Bread Score: Poor
Miscellaneous Score: Good

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Comment: Highs and lows. Ebbs and flows. Ups and downs. However you describe fluctuation it’s undesirable at a Fish Fry. On Friday consistency is king and the best places have no problem churning out plate after plate of flawless fish. It’s a hallmark of the greats and after two impeccable visits we had Mickey’s Tavern on the verge of joining that exclusive club...HAD being the operative word.

While the fish at Mickey’s this time around was far from a total bust, it was also miles away from the excellence we expected. On our other visits the cod was billed as a “Proper Fish Fry” but today it was listed as “Uncle Frank’s Fish Fry.” While we can’t be sure if the name change indicates a different preparation there was definitely a difference in the taste.

Regardless of the name, Mickey’s Fish Fry is a 2-piece affair. While the “Proper” version was salty and robust, Uncle Frank must have a restricted diet as the sodium quotient was dialed down significantly. The batter was still light, and satisfyingly crispy, but really suffered from the lack of seasoning. In addition, the cuts of cod were less than pristine and without the full-bodied batter it was hard to ignore its shortcomings.

Mickey’s knows fries whether they’re Sexy, Super Sexy, or just the regulars that come with the fish. This batch was fried to perfection and all-around alluring. Mickey’s also has a talent for tartar and while this cup wasn’t as zippy as we’ve become accustomed to it was no slouch either. Perhaps Uncle Frank has an aversion to zest as well?

You won’t find any bread with the fish at Mickey’s, but some of their scrumptious slaw makes an appearance. The vinegar-based blend is plenty pungent with subtle bits of heat here and there. There’s some spice in that there slaw!

When it comes to Fish Fry variability is public enemy #1. If you have a great fry somewhere you want it to be the same each and every time you go back and that wasn’t the case with this visit to Mickey’s. Overall, we still recommend this Fish Fry, but not quite as highly as we did previously. Hopefully Uncle Frank gets a little more proper next time around.
1524 Williamson Street
Madison, WI 53703

(608) 251-9964