Fish fries are a staple of Friday nights, meaning that the crowds can be overwhelming. How to avoid those crowds? Try a place that serves fish fries all week long. Last night (Thursday) we tried a Roadfood staple, McPartlan's Corner in Amherst.
To see what else this restaurant serves, we elected to order a fish fry and another meal, in this case the fried chicken in a basket. The fried chicken came with a choice of soup or salad, and I decided to try the Italian wedding soup:
The soup was very hot, which is preferable to lukewarmness. It's easier to wait for soup to call than it is to send it back for reheating. The soup had a good flavor without being overly salty, and it had a few decent-size meatballs.
Along with the soup came a basket of seeded rye bread and crackers.
The bread was very good. If you prefer your rye bread seedless, that might be a problem, but otherwise the bread added a nice touch to the meal.
The chicken in a basket came in a basket as advertised:
I wish I could say that we had hit pay dirt with the chicken, to mix metaphors, but it was only fair. The pieces of chicken were undersized and lacking in meat. The taste was decent, but the overall amount of food was somewhat sparse. Buffalo is not known for its fried chicken dinners, so I can't really complain too much.
The fish dinners come in full and half portions. We ordered the full portion, which came with cole slaw, a beet, and choice of potato (we elected for french fries):
The fish is lightly breaded, not heavily battered, with the skin on the bottom. It was decent-tasting but nothing special. In fact, the fish from Anderson's last week had a better breading and fresher taste. Maybe it's because we had fish at McPartlan's on Thursday and not Friday. Would I eat the fish here again? Yes, because it was decent, but it was not great enough to inspire another trip.
On the way out we noticed the restaurant review clippings on the wall touting the greatness of the fish fry and realized many go back several years. Perhaps we hit an off night or perhaps the place has slipped somewhat. Again, this was not a bad meal, but it was not awesome either.
Heading home we stopped at Dicamillo's Bakery (the location on Main Street in Williamsville, not the one in Niagara Falls) and picked up three items. First was a loaf of sliced Italian bread:
It is outstanding bread and better than anything from the grocery store for certain.
We also picked up a box of Chrusciki, those light foods that seem to be designed as a way to eat powdered sugar (nothing wrong with that, of course). Very light and flavorful:
The bakery also offered Napoleans, which we had one of but did not get a picture.
If you are near a DiCamillo's location, be aware that after 6:00 PM (4:00 PM on Sunday), they offer the pizza slices and donuts at 40% off, which is a good deal.
We were ready to head home but saw this sign on Main Street near Transit Road:
Who could resist the temptation? We did not have a burger from Bill Gray's, the Rochester-based restaurant that has started expanding westward, but we did try the ice cream from Abbott's, which was located inside Bill Gray's. The selection is not as great as found at other locations, like the one the September RF tour stopped at, but it still has some good flavors. Below is a shot of the chocolate custard in a dipped waffle cone:
That was enough for one night. Although McPartlan's was not as great as we had expected, there are other places to try in the coming weeks.
<message edited by Buffalo Tarheel on Mon, 03/29/10 11:41 AM>