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Fish Type: Bluegill     Price: $15.50

Overall, I would highly recommend this Fish Fry.

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

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Comment: When I heard the Laurel Tavern started doing bluegill on Friday I took notice. There has been a resurgence in popularity for the pintsized fish recently due to places like Toby’s Supper Club and Dexter’s Pub doing such a fine job with it. More and more people are asking where the can find it, and more and more places are stepping to the plate with their own unique offerings. Since I knew the Laurel has an amazing walleye I figured their new ‘gill would fall right in line with it. I was right.

First things first, the bluegill at the Laurels is eeekspensive, coming in at a whopping $15.50! That said, the portion is on the large side (9 fat pieces), but that is still getting up there. Before the fish comes around, a cup of the Laurel’s homemade slaw shows up looking like it’s all that…and it is. This stuff is rich and creamy, and incredibly tasty. Everything in it is in perfect balance and you’d be hard pressed to find many better slaws out there. There is also an option to substitute a cup of clam chowder or a salad, but those who know stick with the slaw.

After the slaw showed it took a good 15 minutes for the fish to arrive, but it was as hot as can be when it did. The bluegill was superb and featured a breading was on the thick side as far as breadings go, but had a ton of flavor. The copious seasoning suppressed the bluegill taste for the most part, but still resulted in a harmonious flavor sensation.

There are a few different tater options at the Laurel and I settled on the regular hash browns over the French fries or the hash browns O’brien (the Obies have cheese and green pepper instead of cheese and onion and I wanted nothing to do with the green peppers). The regular hash browns came in a regular portion and were well fried. The thick shreds appeared to be grated in-house and tasted fine, but were nothing really special.

Well-seasoned fish usually needs a sassy tartar to balance it out and that is just what the Laurel delivers. Their thick and creamy version complements the bluegill to a ‘T’ and really spread the taste sensation across the palate.

Last on the list was a fresh and crusty roll that improved upon a standard dinner roll, but not by much.

I had a sneaking suspicion that the Laurel would do bluegill justice and I have to say I was dead on. While it is super expensive, it is pretty much justified and I didn’t leave felling ripped off or anything close to it. Overall, we highly recommend this Fish ry and certainly won’t hesitate to drop another 62 quarters on it. It’s well worth every Washington.
2505 Monroe Street
Madison, WI 53711

(608) 270-3600