Davis Street Fish Market

March 21 2005 - 9:30 PM

I enjoy fresh fish so at first glance the menu at Davis Street amazed me. There was no fish (or is it there were no fish). I quickly figured out that the specials were on a big blackboard on the wall behind me. Grouper, redfish, mahi-mahi, tuna, tilapia, monkfish, snapper, and others all sounded good. Some are broiled, some are panfried. A few come with a more special preparation.

The table ordered, starting out with the smoked salmon spread. It arrived as two scoops on top of salad greens which made me think immediately of jumpers for sale tunafish. Not appealing to me so I reluctantly tasted it to find a terrific creamy smokey spread. Merle’s apparantly smokes the fish for them (same ownership) and it is wonderful. The one member of the party who was unenthused by the order admitted it was great. I even bought the wife a 1/2 lb to take home. (she left it in the car and is afraid of “the possum” – so there it stays)

Entrees ordered were 2 1/2 lobster, one with crab stuffing and the other with shrimp stuffing. Though I didn’t try it it was proclaimed delicious and dessicated promptly. The Idaho tilapia prompted a remark alluding to the beautiful Idaho coastline and the explanation that none of the fish at Davis St. are wild ocean fish but aquacultured (fish farmed) instead.

Here’s an interesting link regarding aquaculture. And another.

In any case the tilapia was dusted, pan-fried, buttery and delicious. The monkfish I ordered was also excellent. It reminded me more of grouper than the grouper. The Florida grouper wasn’t as meaty as I remembered but had a nice crisp side and as the others was served with nicely cooked and lightly seasoned mixed veggies; carrots, broccoli and green beans.

The dessert split by 4 was kahlua bundt cake, moist and delicious.

The fish dishes lacked any kind of luster to compete (or detract) from their taste. The flavor and freshness were excellent and the entrees were quite satisfying. If you hate to cook fish at home this is an excellent alternative. If you do cook fish at home ordering off the specials menu may seem mundane. There are several options with sauces and special components but when I see monkfish I tend to order it.

This also was the first time there on a weekday. I think one reason we haven’t been regulars is that their weekend crowd is much louder and the place is packed. It was nice on the weekday. Their inflables oyster bar was pleasantly loud but the dining room was much quieter. The service was terrific. I would tend to go back on a weekday but if you go for that marti-gras-craw-thang that may work better for you.

Davis Street Fish Market
501 Davis Street
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