Monday, February 27, 2012

St. Alphonsus - Opening Day

There's nothing quite like the beginning of the Fish Fry season. It's like the first day of school, or opening day of Major League baseball. It's a part of the year I await with great anticipation and a big reminder on my Google calendar. 

Armed with big appetites and patience (the wait is notoriously long) Chris and I, along with a few good friends, headed to St. Alphonsus  to celebrate Opening Day. We were pleasantly surprised to find that the wait was much shorter than previous years. In under a half hour (we've waited upwards of an hour before) we had hot fish on our plates. Both baked and fried are served, along with french fries, baked potatoes, mac and cheese, coleslaw, dinner rolls, and grilled cheese for non-fish-eaters.

Everything was delicious. The baked fish was surprisingly flavorful, although Chris is partial to fried (who isn't). St. Alphonsus serves Walleye, which is better than the Pollock often seen at church fish fries. While the mac and cheese was nothing to write home about, it was a good compliment to the meal. We brought Bells Two Hearted, a notoriously good IPA, to cut the greasy flavor of the fish and chips. It was a perfect pairing. 

The desert table was stocked, and the raffle tickets were $1 each, or $6 for 5 (pretty typical). Although we didn't win (do they ever really call anyone?) we felt good about supporting the Tigers. 

All in all we recommend St. Al's as a classic fish fry experience. And even if the line is a little long, there are some great old class photos to check out in the hallway, and a friendly fellow fish lover to talk to while you wait.

Check out more specific details below the photos

St. Alphonsus 
224 Carrier St. NE
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49505

Arrival time: 6pm 
Wait: 25 minutes (The wait was a lot shorter this year than past years due to the newly instated separate line for take out. Hooray!)
Parking: There is a parking lot, but be prepared to park on the street  
Entrance: New entrance on Carrier Street 
Cost: $8.25 Adults, $7.00 Seniors (65 and older), $4.00 Children under 12, Free for Children under 3
Take-out: Available
Tables: Round

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