Fish and Chips at Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House (Revisited)
Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House
8 Oland Crescent (Bayer’s Lake)
Rating: Good/Some Good
(Rating Scale: WTF, Meh, Good, Some Good, Right Some Good!)
I originally reviewed Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House in 2014, at which time I declared: “Okay… so this might be the best fish ‘n’ chips I’ve ever had”. Since then, I’ve largely considered it to be some of the best fish ‘n chips in Halifax.
But lately I’ve been dredging up this repressed memory… one where I returned to Fredie’s only to have a mushy and under-cooked fish ‘n chips. I dealt with this incongruence through denial and selective memory. But it’s time to confront my demons! It’s time to revisit Fredie’s Fantastic!
We ordered a 2pc fish and chips ($11.50). The batter was texturally perfect; there was no excessive mushiness, greasiness, flakiness or crunchiness.
But there also wasn’t much flavour.
I excitedly asked LuShark how she liked “the best fish and chips in Halifax”.
“Meh.” she said.
I can’t explain it. It had technical merit. There was love put in it…
It just didn’t make our jaws drop.
The fish itself was moist and flaky, snug in the crispy batter. The only thing missing was a bit of seasoning… and maybe some accompaniment. Coleslaw is not included and Fredie’s still doesn’t have house-made tartar sauce, instead supplying those branded plastic tubs. There were bottles of Heinz vinegar on the tables, but we settled on a squeeze of the provided fresh lemon.
The hand-cut fries played a fine supporting role, but we preferred them drenched with gravy and dressing as Newfie Fries ($7). This was actually our favourite part of the meal, which we washed down with some Birch Beer and Pineapple Crush.
Is Fredie’s over-rated? I don’t think so. This is a well executed platter of battered fish and hand-cut fries. What failed to win us over was a lack of seasoning and flavour enhancers – easy fixes.
Fredie’s remains a seafood haven in a wasteland of box stores and fast food, and a beacon of light for homesick Newfoundlanders. I hope my next visit will elicit the same reaction as my first visit:
“…best fish ‘n chips I’ve ever had…”