Places To Enjoy a Great Fish Fry in Milwaukee
The Friday fish fry is one of Milwaukee's most cherished and distinctive traditions. In fact, visit most other cities and ask where to get the "best fish fry," and you're likely to be met with a blank stare. The Friday fish fry stems from Catholic tradition, which forbids the consumption of meat on Fridays during Lent. Fish fries became an easy way to avoid meat while enjoying a night out and eating affordably. The tradition grew from there, providing Milwaukee families an opportunity to go out to dinner without breaking the bank.
Most places in town have fish fries, and this guide couldn't possibly cover them all; but after much searching, asking and eating, here are some of the best places in the city to catch a fish fry.
And, as always, if we've forgotten your favorite or if you're willing to share your hidden gem ... share it with others by posting a comment below! Please do so!
1114 N. Water St., (414) 847-1492
Bar Louie serves up their Drunken Fish & Chips seven nights a week. Enjoy beer-battered fish, tartar sauce and tasty seasoned fries.
Black Rose Irish Pub
2856 N. Oakland Ave. (414) 763-6526
The Black Rose Irish Pub on Oakland Ave. serves Fish & Chips as part of their specialties menu. Lightly battered fish fillets are served with coleslaw and fries.
1019 N. Old World 3rd St., (414) 224-8500
Tasty baked or breaded cod fish fry, great sides and one of the longest bars east of the Mississippi.
346 N. Broadway, (414) 501-2500
Lowlands Tandem Dubbel bier-battered or potato chip-encrusted cod fry,
served with frites, cole slaw, and housemade remoulade. Also available: calamari, mahi mahi tacos, shrimp, salmon salad and more.
2608 N. Downer Ave., (414) 963-6366 cafehollander.com
This East Side establishment offers a range of fish fry selections during Lent. From sauteed seafood tacos to wild-caught grilled salmon, there's something for everyone – or you can opt for the regular cod fish fry served with frites, cole slaw, malted rye bread and homemade remoulade.
2017 E. North Ave., 414-273-5230
On Friday guest have a choice of cod, lake perch or walleye with the option of making it a dinner or sandwich. All dinners are served with coleslaw, tartar sauce, marble rye bread and your choice of french fries, fresh fruit or homemade potato pancakes.
1701 N. Arlington Pl., (414) 225-9330
Hi-Hat is a place you might not first think of when you think fish fry, but Hi-Hat fries 'em up right and with a slight twist, from open to close every Friday night. Battered cod or Milwaukee-style fried perch, coleslaw, marble rye, fries and caper mayo make for a yummy combo. Or you can try a fish sammie or Lake perch tacos.
320 E. Mason St., (414) 276-2720
Every Friday during Lent, come to Karl Ratzsch's for Bavarian breaded haddock with creamy coleslaw and a choice of potato.
Lakefront Brewery Palm Garden
1872 N. Commerce St., (414) 273-8300
The favorite of OnMilwaukee.com readers, Lakefront has one of the city's most unique fish fries. The Palm Garden offers a choice of cod, perch, bluegill, tilapia, shrimp (or a combo platter) and a choice of French fries or potato pancakes, cole slaw, applesauce and rye bread, from 4 until 9 p.m. A lovely setting on the river, polka music and tours of the brewery also are available.
340 W. Kilbourn Ave., (414) 271-3414 foodspot.com/clients/wi/milwaukee/majorgoolsbys
Serving the Milwaukee traditional fish fry only on Fridays, Goolsby's offers their guests breaded Icelandic cod fillets with coleslaw and french fries. They additionally serve a sandwich on a bun with lettuce and tomato.
Mason Street Grill
425 E. Mason St., (414) 298-3131
If you love your Friday fish fries too much for just one helping, stop by Mason Street Grill for their lunch and dinner special, which includes Great Lakes walleye, homemade tartar sauce coleslaw, fries and best of all, half-off seconds. Mason Street Grill's amber special also makes for a wallet-friendly way to wash it all down.
411 E. Mason St., (414) 225-3270
Located in Hotel Metro, the Milwaukee-Style Fish Fry is served from 5:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. every Friday and features battered or broiled Alaskan cod or pan-fried Canadian perch. Accompanied by rye bread, tartar sauce, and coleslaw.
811 N. Jefferson St., 414-273-5397
Cathedral Square's favorite Fish Fry is available Fridays starting at 4 p.m. Includes choice of fried or broiled Atlantic Cod with rye bread & coleslaw. Save money by ordering a 60 ounce pitcher of beer for the table.
Miller Time Pub
509 W. Wisconsin Ave., (414) 271-2337
Miller Time Pub welcomes their guests to try the famous Milwaukee fish fry tradition seven days a week. Their entree includes Miller beer battered haddock served with dill tartar, three cabbage coleslaw, potato pancakes, and apple sauce.