For many people, this time of year means Lent. And Lent brings the height of the Fish and Chips season! Expect your favorite fish joint to be busy on a Friday. Dara’s colleague at Minneapolis-St. Paul Magazine, Stephanie March, put together a comprehensive list of the best Fish and Chips in town (including your church basement).
But Dara wanted to take a different look at this, and include the places where you can enjoy a great beer. We all know that a great brew can be delicious with Fish and Chips. It’s downright British and they couldn’t be wrong when it comes to food! Wait, they could? Ok at least with Beers, Fish and Chips they know what they’re doing? Right. Here are Dara’s Top 5 Fish and Chips (Fancy Beer Edition)!
3624 W 50th St
Minneapolis, MN 55410
We’re already big fans of Red Cow. This South Minneapolis newcomer (opened in early 2013) makes a really good burger, fabulous fries, has a great beer selection, and if the line of people waiting for a table tells you anything, it’s just a darn good place to eat.
Now they’re offering up a very nice Fish and Chips. You’ll get an All-You-Can-Eat version on Fridays. They’re crisp and delicious. Plus the fries are good as we mentioned. Check out the Chips and Dip too. House-made potato chips with a really good french onion dip (so much better when homemade). The beer is a revolving door of micro brews and tap-takeovers. The most recent being Oskar Blue’s Beer out of Colorado (try the Dales Pale Ale). Good beer, good fish and chips at Red Cow! Enjoy.
858 Payne Ave
St Paul, MN 55130
Ward 6 in St. Paul might not make your cut for the Lent fish and chips. Reason? They use beef fat in the frying oil just like our Brit friends do. So as legit as they are, we like to be up front here on “Off the Menu”. So there you go. If that doesn’t fit your definition for Lent, then save this for after Easter!
That said, it’s a mean fish and chips, deep and rich (beefy almost) and delicious. Expect fish of the crispiest kind here, exactly what you want in those golden, fried pieces of happiness.
Ward 6 is a classic little place in St. Paul. A place that Dara says makes you feel good to be there. That’s the kind of place we love. A super selection of east side beers, such as Bent Brewstillery which was on last week’s show, makes the stop even better.
Pig & Fiddle
3812 W 50th St
Minneapolis, MN 55410
Just up 50th, towards France Ave. from Red Cow, is Pig & Fiddle. Lying on the Minneapolis-Edina border, Pig & Fiddle’s Head Chef Stephanie Kochlin puts together an amazing “beer focused” menu. Expect things like pot roast, braised in beer there. The star might be the Brown Ale Haddock with Pickle Remoulade. It’s crisp, well balanced and the chips (always the overlooked partner) are just fantastic. Enjoy them with Pig and Fiddle’s wonderful Curried Mayo too.
The beer list is a monster. You can try things you haven’t heard of unless you’re deep into craft brews. Dara loved the Sunday Sour Aged Ale from New Holland. A good IPA with your fish and chips would be a nice compliment and there are several to choose from. The legendary Bell’s Hopslam, local stars 612Brew Rated R or Indeed Midnight Ryder, Goose Island IPA and on and on. You’ll also find a long list of the great Belgians that are among the most revered beers in the world. A really amazing beer list awaits your appetite at Pig and Fiddle!
781 Old Highway 8 SW
New Brighton, MN 55112
To the north of Minneapolis-St. Paul is Barley John’s in New Brighton. This overlooked gem is one of the best microbreweries we have in town. They make their fish and chips with their Barley Beer. A great, crisp and yummy Fish and Chips for sure.
Also of note, is their Cask Conditioned Ales. Every Wednesday they tap special casks of House Brewed Beer. The beer is very fresh and poured by gravity alone. 100% natural carbonation. Some of the most original and delicious beers in the state. That alone makes Barely John’s worth a road trip.
221 Cedar Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55454
Here’s number one according to Dara. If you’re one of the biggest fans of this state’s beer scene, you’ve already been to Republic. They have one of the great beer lists, not just in Minnesota, but in the country. It’s almost a special community of beer lovers and that alone makes it worth checking out.
The food is also great. The fish and chips is really beautifully done and as good as any. You’ll get more fresh, local, and high-end ingredients than you usually find in bar fare. It might be “beer drinking food” but it’s really, really good food too.
But what makes it number one, again, is the beer. Remember, this IS the fancy beer edition! You’ll want to really study the beer menu. Broken out by types from Ale to IPA to Stout and more, there are some 60 drafts to choose from. We’d recommend you go with the flight to start with, 6 oz. pours of any four beers. Add the fish and chips and it’s a Friday night that doesn’t need Lent to get you to Republic!