Saturday, February 10, 2007

Scotty Simpson's Fish and Chips

Stopped into Scotty's for a take-out fish and chips tonight. I eat fish and chips for the fish with its crispy coating and Scotty's is the best I can remember since the heyday of Susie Q on Woodward in Royal Oak. Scotty's coating is thin, crisp, flavorful and not greasy at all. The fish seems to be of good quality. This is the real thing - I can't recommend it highly enough.

The cole slaw is pretty good, just cabbage with a mild, not-too-vinegary coating, the non-creamy kind. The tartar sauce is not great in my opinion. I think it tastes of Miracle Whip. Three minutes at home to make a Hellman's and relish sauce is a better idea. The chips didn't make it home successfully. They appear to be fresh-cut spuds but after 20 minutes in the car they were just limp and soggy. They're probably better in the restaurant.

Finally, the cook is a pretty hands-on guy. I didn't mind too much that he barehanded the fish fillets through the batter and into the frier. I did think that using a ice cream scoop and a bare hand to make a mound of cole slaw is a bit much. And the cole slaw is in a bowl on the counter and he uses his index finger to wipe down the inner sides of the bowl. Then he handles money with the same hands. He does wear a clean towel around his waist and wipes his hands often on it.

The tab was $9.75 for a large piece of fish and three smaller ones (good! more coating!) with chips, cole slaw and tartar sauce. Next time I'll just get the fish and probably the cole slaw. The menu also offers perch and chips. That might be worth trying.

Scotty Simpson's is at 22200 Fenkell, a couple blocks west of Lahser, in Detroit, on the north side of Fenkell. 313-533-0950. Tu-Th 11 - 8. Fr 11 - 9. Sa 2 - 9. Su 2 - 7. Closed Mondays. The restaurant seats about 15 or 20. The menu features, for a good reason I'm sure, a leaping marlin on the cover.

Note that the Blarney Stone on Woodward near 11 Mile serves fish from the Susie Q recipe. They do a good job, but not what I remember of Susie Q. I think the Blarney fish is a little greasy and the fish is maybe not as high quality as I'd like.

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