Fish Sandwich

Almost any kind of fish can be sandwiched in almost any kind of bread, but in the Midwest, particularly the Ohio River Valley area between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, a fish sandwich means fried fish on white bread. In this part of the world, the popularity of fish sandwiches reflects a regional passion for fried things as well as the former Catholic prohibition against meat on Fridays and a mostly bygone tradition of angling the Great Lakes for pickerel. The Platonic ideal of a fish sandwich is found at Coleman’s seafood shop in Wheeling, West Virginia. It is as plain and simple as can be: two pieces of soft white bread holding a cluster of steaming-hot pollock fillets. The golden crust on the fish is cracker meal, thin as parchment. When you break through it, your sense of smell is tickled by a clean marine perfume. This sandwich is so right that even tartar sauce is an extra-cost option. Nashville, Tennessee, has its own gloss on the fish sandwich. The fried fish gets sprinkled with generous amounts of hot sauce and is served in such large pieces, along with slices of white bread, that it is only nominally a sandwich.

Restaurants With This Dish

Buzzards Roost


King’s Tavern


Metompkin Seafood


Doug’s Fish Fry | Upstate New York Seafood Best


Hot Stuff Spicy Chicken and Fish


Bogey’s Bar & Grill



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