Saturday, March 9, 2013

London bound, and F and I find ourselves in transit on a Friday.  We’re in Detroit waiting.  It’s a nice, clear night for flying.  We’re hungry, though and want a good meal before we climb into our 31x 21 inch cuboidal spaces for the next 7.5 hours. 

Me: “Are you hungry?”

F: “Yes.”

Me: “What are you hungry for?”

F: “It’s Friday.  Fish, of course”

So, we head off down the concourse looking for our meal.  A sports bar looked promising, but It was quite a ways off.  If you’ve flown through Detroit you know the airport is a mile long straight hallway with 78 gates. 

We passed by a National Coney Island Dine with a sign that screamed Lenten Special.  Not one, not two, but three different fish dishes.   We opted for this place. 

As with most airport eateries, we were efficiently seated.  Drink orders were taken before we made a dent in our booth cushions. 

A quick perusal of the menu revealed this to be a likely greek influenced place.  Big, fat greek salads, gyros, etc.  But, we weren’t here for all that.  We were here for fish. 

The three dishes were battered Alaskan cod, Battered Wahoo and a fried fish wrap of some sort.  We gave the wrap a miss.   The photo stimulated more questions than appetites.  We stuck with more classic dishes. 

Felix had the wahoo.  Well-seasoned, though a bit dry.  I had the cod, also, well-seasoned.  Mine was very good.  Crunchy, flaky and moist inside.  Fries were good once we salted them.   Condiments were limited to tartar sauce and ketchup.  They were sparing with the tartar sauce and we could have used some vinegar, but overall good. 

Also, included was a salad.  It was fresh and some point earlier in the day.  Homemade greek dressing made up for the not-so-fresh feeling.

We had great service by a pleasant and tastefully tattooed woman.  I always wonder about the type of tattoos people choose.  Hers were John Lennon lyrics in the shape of hearts and peace signs. 

The biggest surprise was the cost.  9 bucks per!  Exactly the same price as in the  church basements and fellowship halls.  Minus the $5 beer and tip and we’re out for under 20 bucks at an airport!  You even get the added ambience of high efficiency and TSA recordings. 

Afterward, I found the “Religious Reflection Room” and thought about having F teach me about the Stations of the Cross, but it seemed there was a TSA meeting letting out and the room was kind of full. Who knew?

More from some random pub in London.  Watch this space. 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Stations of the Fish

TRIGGER WARNING: My son F again. This time, he has decided to take off his IV of sarcasm, and has instead decided to inject himself with The Serum of Blasphemy. If you know my son, you should expect to mourn at his funeral, as he is probably about to be cremated by a divine fire. Or turned to salt, because God sometimes did that, too.
He claims that this makes sense if you know the Catholic Stations of the Cross, which he does since he went to a Catholic Elementary School.  We paid for this.   I guess we should be aware of what I’m buying, because this makes minimal sense to me.  Alas, caveat emptor.  And with that….

Stations of the Fish

1: The Consumer (S/he who is great and powerful and donates greatly to charities) decides on The Fish Fry (The Charity, that which is accepting of money in exchange for food).

2: The Consumer is led by (or betrayed by) signs pointing to The Fish Fry.

3: The Consumer is accosted for monetary funds by The Fish Fry.

4: The Consumer is denied immediate nourishment by The Fish Fry Attendants (those who worship The Consumer for the assets that They may hand out).

5: The Consumer is silently judged as a stranger in A Most Holy House.

6: The Consumer is welcomed, and given The Plate (that which conveys nourishment).

7: The Consumer takes up his Fish (Fried or Baked, it is the true Primary Consumption of The Consumer)

8: The Consumer is helped by The Fish Fry Attendant to decide between Baked Potato (That that is a whole potato, and sliced once) or French Fries (That that is a potato sliced and fried)

9: The Consumer meets The Women (Those with two X chromosomes) of The Fish Fry, as they help The Consumer decide between Coleslaw (The cabbage shredded and blended), Applesauce (An apple that is pureed and sweetened), or Mac & Cheese (Cooked flour and water  that is Cheesed).

10: The Consumer has taken his fill, and eats of it.

11: The Consumer promises his money to The Fish Fry next week, in exchange for more of The Fish.

12: The Consumer entrusts His Friends (Those that know and fear The Consumer, and trust His/Her guidance) and The Fish Fry to each other.

13: The Consumer dies as A Lutheran (That that is the religion of The Consumer), and is reborn as A Catholic (That that is the religion of The Fish Fry).

14: The Consumer returns to His/Her Home (That that is the residing place of The Consumer).

Thursday, March 7, 2013

St. Andrews, Upper Arlington, A Reprise

First a big shout out to Maureen at ColumbusBestBlog  for telling people about our blog and bringing us lots of new visitors. I hope you all take a chance and explore your local Catholic Church’s offerings. Next week Z and I will be visiting St. Michael’s if you want to join us.

We are a family with teenagers. Because of this, our schedule is frequently entirely out of our control. I am sure that Z’s director had not considered the Lenten season when she scheduled opening night of the school play on a Friday during Lent. This seriously crimped our style when it came to selecting our fish fry location. We were limited based on needing to have Z at her school by 6 pm for the evening performance of “Our Town”. Taking this into consideration we decided to revisit a previous location that is right down to the street from her school with the added benefit that they started serving dinner at 4:30.

It was off to St. Andrews in Upper Arlington. Our last visit to St. Andrews was two years ago so it was about time we checked to see if they had made any changes.

Because we were constrained for time we were part of the early bird crowd. And yes, that does mean what you think it means. My little family and what seemed like the entire congregation’s senior citizens. We were one man down as T was stuck at home waiting for a repairman to finish his job. He was kind enough to review the fish offerings at Giant Eagle that night and will post that soon.

The three of us easily found parking due to the early hour, but we found that St. Andrew’s had still not marked entrance to the fish fry very well. Fortunately, for us there were other people making their way in, so we could follow behind. Once you were in the door, menus were clearly posted with lots of different options. Fish dinners both baked and fried, $9.00 for dine in and $8.00 for takeaway (takeaway does not include drinks or dessert) There is also an adult mac and cheese dinner and a pizza dinner for $8.00, dine in, and $7.00, takeaway. Children’s dinners are $4.00 and the nice lady who took our money and order was nice enough to ask my kids if either of them was under 12. That received a derisive look from them and left me wondering if she needed her prescription for her glasses checked.

The sides offered by St. Andrew’s are baked potato, French fries or a sweet potato, green beans, coleslaw or salad and a dinner roll, dessert and a drink. 

We all tried the fried fish and the lady in the serving line raved about the green beans (she was right!)  and coleslaw.  F and I had sweet potato and Z had fries.

There was a huge offering of condiments including hot sauce! I mention this because I had never seen it until we went to St. Stephen’s two weeks ago and here it was again.  They also get bonus points for little cups of brown sugar for the sweet potato.

Once we had our food we made our way into the dining area and joined a table with an elderly couple. This was a lovely bonus and we had a delightful conversation with them over dinner. The three of us learned a lot about the area and the local catholic schools.

The fish was very good and plentiful. I’m not sure if it is because we ate early but Z and I were unable to finish our fish that night. The sweet potato was very good and I finished mine off. F remembered that he really doesn't like sweet potato and switched with his sister. She loved it and F said the fries were good.

The slaw was not great, rather watery tasting. The green beans were very good, though. Good firm texture and flavor; no memories of high school there.

F had a cupcake for dessert and said it was good while Z and I, gave dessert a pass for the evening.

We had an enjoyable meal, both in food and company. If they could make one major change they would have better signage on the outside. Definitely worth the trip and make sure you look for a table with other people so you can make new friends.