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Fish Type: Bluegill     Price: $14.00

Overall, I would not recommend this Fish Fry.

Fish Score: Poor
Potato Score: Poor
Tartar Score: Poor
Bread Score: Good
Miscellaneous Score: Fair

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Comment: How could something that sounds so right, turn out so wrong? I mean, you have Fish Fry - great, and you have movies - amazing. How can putting those things together possibly fail? It seriously doesn't seem possible, but the Catch and Reel at Breese Stevens is a total flop.

Obviously, I think the concept of C&R is great, but Fish Fry is 100% about execution, and man, balls were dropped all over on this one. For starters, I knew we were in trouble as soon as we got in and I saw the heat lamps under the tent. Unfortunately, we were already committed to the evening so I was hoping my gut was wrong...of course, the only thing wrong turned out to be what went in it. C&R has cod and bluegill available as well as very expensive beers (I'm talking $6 Bud Lights), and since I was feeling brash I went for the $14 bluegill (I could also see the cod was just pre-battered fillets so I was hoping for something at least half way fresh).

As you can probably guess, they were seemingly expecting an army to show up so they set to frying the fish well in advance. Of course, experience would tell you that as long as the oil is hot you could fry to order no problem (especially with the amount of people actually ordering and the number of fryers they had), but experience was not on their side. As it stood, our order sat under those lamps for god knows how long and the fillets were stiff and cold by the time we got them. It was absolutely god awful. I'm not exaggerating when I say it was probably the worst fish I've ever had, and for $14 I felt sick to my stomach. Even lukewarm would have been a luxury and the hard fish and mushy breading had me calling it quits less than half way through. There were simply no redeeming qualities to the fish and while I know they want to be prepared for an onslaught, this was ridiculous. The fryers were right there, and they could have easily met demand by frying fish on an as-ordered basis.

Even with the fryers present there were no fries to be found and the potato salad that sat in looked every bit as bad as it tasted (which went ditto for the coleslaw). It was a mess. Dragging things down even further was the packets of Kraft tartar. This stuff is the definition of a pre-sealed nightmare, and sealed the deal on this rotten meal. The roll wound up being the best part of the Fry and even that tasted like it hadn't been fresh for the better part of a week.

While Blues Brothers on the (surprisingly tiny) screen remains a classic, the only blues I had were thanks to the abysmal Fish Fry. The smart thing to do would have been to stop at LJ's across the street before and fill up there then head over for the movie after, but alas we weren't smart this week...if we ever attempt it again, that's what we'll do. Overall, we don't recommend this Fish Fry, and in fact, if we had such a rating I'd say it was highly not recommended. Too bad too, The Big Lebowski is coming up...
917 East Mifflin Street
Madison, WI 53703

(608) 622-1414