Restaurant Review – January 2007

Napa Valley Marketplace Magazine Restaurant Review January 2007
Napa Valley Marketplace Magazine Restaurant Review Photo Go Fish

Go Fish
By “The Elusive Epicurean”

With a name like Go Fish, you have a pretty good idea of what you’re getting into, and since I don’t heed my doctor’s orders, and consume far less fish than is recommended in this year’s federally sanctioned food pyramid, I knew I had to choose my dining companion with care. Joining me on this excursion, then, was my best friend of 15 years, who, true to her Asian heritage, loves fish in all its forms, whether it be on her plate (raw or cooked), or as a repeating motif throughout her home and fashion accessories.

If you’re not in the mood for fish, you will be once you walk through the door. With mounds of fish on ice behind the counter, and the blue, white and mustard colored mosaic tiles on the floor; it was like I was back in college in Seattle running around Pike’s Place Market. The sense of awe-inspiring abundance you get at Pike’s Place is evident when you open the menu. It is massive, even if you ignore the sushi, which we did, preferring to come back another time to hit the sushi bar.

We started with the Fish & Chips, which was on the starter menu, but could have been a meal unto itself. The fish were whole fried smelt, served as you’d expect with tarter sauce, while the extremely yummy chips were not as you’d expect, being the size of toothpicks. I loved them.

As for our entrees, my fish-loving friend chose the Miso Marinated Black Cod with Shiitake Broth ($24), and I envied her choice. The broth was rich and tasty, and the cod moist and delicate. Fortunately, she is very petite and eats little, allowing me to poach freely from her plate towards the end of the meal.

I went the Choose Your Own Adventure route, and decided to order my fish “my way,” which means that Go Fish allows you to choose your fish, your method of cooking, and your sauce. Fish selections—such as California Wild King Salmon, Petrale Sole from Half Moon Bay, and Wild Sturgeon—change often, and you can have your fish sautéed, wood grilled, or steamed. Sauce selections include Tomatillo Avocado Salsa, Lemon Caper Parsley Butter, and Sesame Garlic Vinaigrette. If you show up at Go Fish tomorrow, though, and don’t find these things on the menu, don’t shoot this writer. Something better will have come along to take its place. (The fish ranged in price from $19-$28.)

In the end, it was Opah, Sautéed, in the Ginger Curry Butter. The Opah, which comes from Hawaii, was chosen because I’d never heard of it, and I liked the name. (This is why I never win at the racetrack.) My server also confirmed it was one of her favorites. The Ginger Curry Butter paired well with the dense, meaty fish, and the combination is definitely one that I would recommend to those among you who are usually fish averse.

Since the aforementioned federally sanctioned food pyramid requires that we eat our vegetables, too, we ordered the vegetable of the day, Sautéed Sugar Snap Peas, plus an order of Vegetable Tempura. The peas were all you could ask for—fresh and crisp. The tempura was as it should be, lightly breaded and fried, not heavy and greasy. My fish-loving friend was happy.

We ended with a Bread Pudding that completely undid all the work we’d done eating our fish and vegetables. It was worth it. (Desserts $7-8)

In conclusion, Dear Reader, listen to your government—and me—and go eat some fish. (Hold the bread pudding.) Your heart will thank you.

Go Fish, 641 Main Street, St. Helena | (707) 963-0700 |


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