Saint Peter's Catholic School Fish Fry = Heavenly

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I'm not normally one to voluntarily hang out in a church, but for a good fish fry, I'll do just about anything. So, when folks kept telling us (the fish fry fanatics) about the awesome fish fry from a catholic school, we decided to give the 'ole parish a shot.

The school is located just northwest of Middleton - it's about a 10 minute drive from Madison's west side. It's easy to find - just follow the long line of cars making their way down the narrow two-lane road that is Highway K. Finding a parking spot proved tricky, and figuring out the correct entrance into the place proved even trickier.

Once inside, we were shocked to find a long line (it had to have at least 150 people in it), but that shock was quickly one-upped by the most shocking thing I've ever seen in my life: a beer stand... IN A CHURCH SCHOOL... ...I'm just sayin'...

We ponied-up our $11 for a fish ticket, and then got into line. This is what the line looked like after we'd been there for about 10 minutes or so.

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As we were buying our first beverage, I asked the friendly vendor how long we might have to wait in line - I figured it would take at least an hour or so to make our way down to the basement. His response was startling - "I'd say this is a one beer line."

I was starting to like this place. I liked it even more when I stumbled across this gem, compliments of a first grade student at the school:

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Definitely a unique combination of aspirations! The line did indeed move quickly - within minutes, we were making our way down the first flight of stairs and after another 10 minutes or so, we were in the basement and ready to be seated. The dining area was packed, and it's 100% "family style" - you're placed at a table with 8-10 other folks, where you all share food from heaping plates of goodness. Here's the dining area:

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Just after I finished taking that picture, we were led to our table, where we discovered a gigantic plate filled with steaming-hot deep fried cod, along with massive bowls of fresh crinkle cut fries, baked potatoes, colesalw, green beans, and homemade bread. This was going to be a dangerous evening.

I helped myself to a few pieces of cod, some fries, some green beans, and a piece of bread:

sp_fish.jpg

The fish was divine. I keep saying things like "top 3 fish" or "top 5 contender," but this was quite possibly some of the best fish I've ever had. It was served absolutely piping hot - the beer batter was perfectly applied and delightfully flavorful. The fish itself was unreal: tender, flaky, firm, meaty, moist, and absolutely superb. As good as any fish I've had anywhere, and it was all you can eat, and it was a bargain at $11.

The fries were good as was everything else; but the fish was definitely the star of the evening. Oh - the service was excellent as well. As soon as any plate or bowl was nearing empty, a volunteer would swoop in and replace the empty plate or bowl with a brand new, pile of food - be it fish, fries, beans, or whatever.

And just when I was ready to burst at the seams thanks to all of that heavenly fish, the volunteers stopped by (as if on cue) with slices of homemade strawberry cake for dessert. I swear I heard angels on choir.

Saint Peter's was definitely a WIN. The only downsides? The basement setting isn't big on ambiance, there weren't any old fashioneds, and there wasn't a baked fish offering. Oh, and they also only do the fish fry once a month on "non lent" months, so it requires some advanced planning.

But those are all very minor/petty complaints - the fish was out of this world, the price was more than fair, and the service was top notch. 5-stars all the way around. Now, if they could find a way to do a "Sunday morning fish fry," I might just be enticed to go to church every so often...

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...seriously? I think they're trying to make light of the whole "here's a beer while you're in church" thing. But whatever - it all works, and it works really well. Kudo's to St. Peter's!!!

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This page contains a single entry by Steve published on February 13, 2010 2:25 AM.

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