Phat Fish

Sometimes you just fancy fish and chips right?

The Vietnamese Kitchen in Salamanca was an institution and when it closed its doors I admit I lamented the end of a cheap feed after a couple of Friday night drinks.

This Girl hadn’t crossed the threshold since.

Flicking through the Entertainment Book Phat Fish caught my eye. I said to Boozy Friday Lunch Friend, ‘What about Phat Fish at Salamanca? It’s more than just a fish and chippie – they have fancy meals and starters.’

He replied, ‘Is there wine?’

And immediately answered himself, ‘Stupid question in retrospect…’

Phat Fish does indeed have a fully stocked bar which is what is expected of at fancy fish and chip place. Fish and chip place doesn’t sound right either but neither does seafood restaurant. It’s part of a contemporary breed of eatery – casual eating for peeps who like a craft beer or a Chardonnay with good food. BOOM.

Phat Fish has the standard outdoor seating you expect of a Salamanca venue. We were willing to face the Tassie winter at lunchtime and sit outside but when we went inside Phat and saw the lovely green tiles and booths we decided to enjoy the aesthetic!

In the spirit of casual eating you order and pay before you eat.

What we ate:

  • Crispy prawns with horseradish marmalade, $16.50
  • Cajun popcorn fish with jalapeno cream, $15.50
  • Beer battered chips with aioli, $7.50
  • Friend haloumi taco, $8 and
  • Panko crumbed white fish taco, $8

Tacos were both good options – tasty and the service is consistent with the competitors. They are perfectly acceptable light meals. The prawns had enough heat to make them interesting. The Cajun popcorn fish couldn’t hold its own in comparison. It could do with some heavy-handed seasoning. The chips definitely passed muster. In retrospect I hadn’t really thought through the fried food thing and I might have enjoyed a salad in the mix but it really depends on your mood. There are also main meal options if you’re of an age where the flexibility of your arteries matters. Boozy and I are in denial.

There’s alternatives to fish including vego options. There’s no dessert. Repeat. There’s no dessert. For the third time. This venue does not have a dessert menu…cocktails notwithstanding.

But there are some sweets options within walking distance – Honey Badger, Nutpatch or Van Diemen’s Land Creamery at Constitution Dock.

Wine prices are competitive. We drank the Pipers Brook Vintage Sparkling. I happened to be in the local off-licence the other day and spied it retailing for $37. It’s good value at Phat Fish in the context of Salamanca mark-ups: $12 per glass or $55 per bottle.

Interesting menu option worthy of note. They do a Phat Mess for $65 per person. You need a minimum of four people, 48 hours-notice and probably a deposit. It pretty much reads like a mass of seafood including oysters, clams and crab, served on newspaper with baby potatoes and corn, perfect for a long-haul afternoon of eating and drinking.

They’re located at 61 Salamanca Place Battery Point.


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