Way Back Whensday

(on hiatus through January)
(back next Wed.)
(when it’s February)

Until then,

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Way Back Whensday

On a quest for KC’s perfect fish and chips – 75th Street Brewery

Tonight, we hit 75 Street for fish and chips.
Wow.
I didn’t know The Pitch had an award for Best Fish & Chips, but I can see why these guys took the cake in ’06.
First, KC is lucky to have a place like 75th Street Brewery. Their beer is grand and I want to drink it all day long.
Second, their fish and chips are grand as well.

Let’s get to the scores:
1) flavor: 8, just what a fish batter should be: beer-laden, dark brown, and lip-smackingly good.
2) crispiness: 9, maaaad crunch!
3) fish:batter: 9, 3 small, but thick pieces of cod perfectly wrapped in just the right amount of batter.
4) batter’s ability to retain crisp: 7, incredible. this is a really high score and i swear i put on 1/4 of malt and still got a crunch.
5) oil:food: 8, only a couple finger-wipes necessary.
6) lack of fish slime: 10, cooked to perfection.
additional info:
sides: fries (not chips), very tasty, but not really fat chips. a very small side of basic and not-too-mayo-heavy-slaw, and a very light and tart tartar.
price: 10.95.

we enjoyed a bowl of onion dill soup before (yum) and my fish and chips went down most famously with a big pint of Abbey Ale, served just slightly below room temp. goddamn, this was a good meal.

ok. we’ve got quite a few more places to hit. i’ve got my tracking sheet up here for your reference. so far, 75th Street is the place to beat (and i think it’s going to be hard). oh, not to mention, 75th street has boutique fish and chips! in addition to the standard cod dish, they serve a $16 plate of Alaskan halibut and a creole catfish varietal.

[and they’re kid-friendly:
grr.]

On a quest for KC’s perfect fish and chips – 75th Street Brewery

On a quest for KC’s perfect fish and chips

I am looking for Kansas City’s perfect plate of fish and chips. I’m not anywhere close to having Irish/English blood in me so can’t claim any native knowledge about what a fish and chip should be, but I’ve had the pleasure of dining on fish and chips many days in a row in various spots in Dublin and London. No doubt, this is a highly subjective endeavor. But let me tell you what I’m judging in my fish and chips and the scale I use:

1) flavor of batter 1=bland 10=i would eat this batter from the bowl
2) crispiness of batter 1=like bread 10=the perfect crunch
3) fish to batter ratio 1=wholly unbalanced, either too much batter or too much fish – i’ll detail which 10=the golden ratio of fish to batter
4) ability of batter to remain crispy after i douse it in megatablespoons of malt vinegar 1=sog 10=malt-flavored crisp remains
5) (probably the trickiest to get right in a fried dish) ratio of oil to food 1=oil visible in pools
Additional Info I’ll provide
side dishes) i’m not grading these but will note my opinions on slaw and tartar served
price) again, not grading because i’d gladly pay more for good food than be served faulty fish and chips

The scale represents what I don’t and do like in a fish and chip. some peeps may like their dish a little less crunchy. I like mine to snap. so take all that with a grain of salt (and malt).

I received a couple of suggestions for fish and chips a couple of weeks ago when i posted about the idiots answering the phones at Mcfadden’s. A while back, Sarah contacted IrishKC for his insight into the matter. Acting on one of those suggestions, we went to The Gaf Saturday night for fish and chips. First: Since McBride’s (the good one by the Speedway and former home of my favorite KC fish and chips) went under, weve been desperate for good fish and chips and a somewhat passable simulacrum of an Irish pub. The Gaf’s clientele (at least on this particular saturday night around 5:30) was blissfully older (60+) and we felt at home as soon as we walked in. Sarah said it reminded her of her favorite hangouts in downtown Milwaukee (which must be experienced to be understood, and is truly a compliment). Let’s get to the fish and chips:

1) flavor: 8, lots of black pepper and quite tasty. more of a pan-fried chicken batter when it’s all said and done.
2) crispiness: 4, not a lotta crunch.
3) fish:batter: 4, much more fish than batter. not a bad thing. the gaf uses haddock and the dish comes with two massive fillets, lightly battered.
4) batter’s ability to retain crisp: 1, i use lots of malt and the fish just couldn’t hang.
5) oil:food: 9, very good job at hiding the fry-i-ness of the dish.
additional info:
sides: chips, which were thick and tasty fingers of fried taters. a very small side of mayo-heavy slaw (tasty, but very mayo-centric), and a yummy tartar.
price: i think the dish was 9.95, but i can’t remember. we always order an extra fillet and split the dish…i’ll try to remember this for our next stop.

Overall, an enjoyable fish and chip and The Gaf’s atmosphere made it all that much more likely we’ll be back again.

If you have any suggestions for good fish and chips in Kansas City, please comment below.

In other news,

Both of my brothers bought Rock Band this weekend. We couldn’t play the guitar at our house because it wasn’t working out of the box. I found out I can’t sing worth a hoot (though I wanted to be good at it). I’m picking up the drums rather well. My arms are crazy tired. Just when we were done for the night, we unlocked ‘Sabotage’ and had to rock that shit hard. We started a band and named it Toothy Vag. And, to my ex-Poynt’d Styk bandmates – you can create your own rocker avatar…Johnny Starr lives on in Toothy Vag! (Sarah’s got a pic which she should have available soon – he looks awwwwesome!)

On a quest for KC’s perfect fish and chips

Porcupine quill soup

Mine fine and brilliant wife has been blogging quite a bit lately. Being a savvy blog reader, you will likely enjoy her ramblings.

I hate myspace. But it seems as though it’s a necessary evil in order to remain a part of contemporary 1st world, civil society. Why do I hate it? Poor load times, poor design, poor security. (For example, show me a profile set to private and I’ll have any photos in the profile for you in less than 30 seconds.) Yet why do I deem it necessary? Because last night I logged in for the first time in a couple months and found 3 messages from old college/high school/middle school chums that I haven’t spoken with in ages. And that’s pretty cool. And I try, try, try to direct to this webpage anyone who happens upon my myspace page…but it must be much easier just to click “Send Message” and wait 10 minutes for the messaging form to load then it is to click a hyperlink and be rewarded with much more content and fun. In summary, myspace, you suck, but I thank you for reuniting me with old homies. But don’t turn your back because I’d just as soon shank you in the kidney than login to you.

Speaking of things I hate (and why not? I’m feeling frisky today): IM at work. Let me rephrase that: work IM. I actually really like having the ability to IM while I work. I use google chat via gmail like a mofo and find it convenient and helpful in many ways (thank you to noah for providing me AIX support!). I hate, however, having to use work IM. When I receive non-work IM (while at work), I don’t feel the need to respond right away. It’s during the day, I’m marked available, and my friends should know I’m working and will get to them when I can. But, when I receive a work IM while at work – I have to stop whatever I’m involved in, which typically equates to a total stoppage of any flow (a constipation of my work-product bowels, if you will) to read and respond (most times with nothing more than “OK”). With my boss on the East Coast, it’s no wonder we rely so heavily on IM – but if we were all in the same office, there’s no way in all of corporate-dom we’d communicate in such a non-productive fashion.

The last thing I hate: the comments at kansascity.com. Good lord, for every intelligent comment on a story, there are 5 others that are racist or retarded (usually a combo of both). I don’t really have a solution to this one. I supposed I’d rather have access to that one good comment than none at all, but damn I hate wading through that bullshit to get there.

This has been your morning bitch session. Check in tomorrow when I take on: Cerner layoffs, cold weather, and anal fisting (I think there’s a song in there waiting to be written).

Porcupine quill soup