The first time I heard about Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House, I had to give my head a shake. A tourist in an online forum was recommending it to another tourist. “Best fish ‘n’ chips!” they said.
My eyebrows raised. Bayers Lake, you say?
“They very well could have good fish ‘n’ chips, but I would never recommend that a tourist spend any time in Bayers Lake.”
Why? – inquired the tourist. It didn’t seem like a crime ridden sort of place.
This is why:
Said tourist must have been from the suburban hells of Southern Ontario or Alberta, because the lovely view of Empire Theatres, a box restaurant and several parking lots somehow did not offend their aesthetic sensibilities. This is Nova Scotia, and fish ‘n’ chips tastes best on the boardwalk dammit!
And yet I kept hearing things about Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House, which prompted me to visit.
Yes, it’s in a strip mall in Bayers Lake.
And yes, it must be awfully convenient for people who live in Clayton Park.
But I was here for quality product.
As we approached the counter, the staff announced they had run out of clams. I figure that’s a good sign, if anything. I ordered a two-piece fish ‘n’ chips with coleslaw (extra $0.75). Here is what I got:
Okay… so this might be the best fish ‘n’ chips I’ve ever had.
We ended up getting 3 pieces because these particular portions were on the small side. Fine by us!
The fries tasted really fresh. They needed some seasoning, but that is easily remedied with a salt shaker.
The batter was crispy, yet somehow it clung onto the fish which was moist and flaky. Everything was not-too-greasy, and sat happily in my stomach. Perfect grease. Perfect flavours. The coleslaw was green and creamy but also quite fresh and balanced. A small size was larger than expected. It was totally worth the extra $0.75 and could very well be the best coleslaw I’ve had so far on this quest. The only drawback was the tartar sauce, which was the packaged stuff.
I forget the price, and the menu on the web site is too blurry to read, but I think it was somewhere around $9.50 for a 2pc fish ‘n’ chips. This is in the same ballpark as Evans Fresh Seafood. Not the cheapest, but in my opinion – totally worth it. Life is too short to save money on poor fish ‘n’ chips. Especially considering the correlation between deep fried food and life. Speaking of which – Fredie’s also serves Newfie fries and Newfie poutine!
I am totally partial to places where you can eat your fish ‘n’ chips outside. At Freddie’s you can, as they have tables set up around the exterior of the limited seating restaurant. The friendly staff will bring your food out to you. This is better than nothing, but just remember what your view will be like!
… totally worth it.