In Downtown Orlando's trendy Thornton Park district, this casual dining spot aims to be urbane. It caters to locals, but it's loud enough and casual enough to welcome kids wearing mouse ears. With the general ambience of a city sports bar—including flat-screen TVs on all the walls (but renovations planned)—Cityfish dispenses basic, well-prepared, fresh fish, most of it simply grilled, blackened, Parmesan-crusted or fried (your choice). Once guests select the fish and
preparation, they also choose to have it served in a sandwich, on a Southwestern salad, or plated with smoked-bacon succotash, red bliss potatoes, and jalapeno hushpuppies. The appetizers reveal creative twists introduced or improved by Orlando's homegrown celeb-chef Greg Richie, who took over the kitchen in late 2013. Examples are flash-fried crispy pickle slices with smoky Bloody Mary aioli, and buffalo shrimp. The big patio filled with tables shaded by large umbrellas is a great place to spend a few unhurried hours in cool weather.
May 22, 2011
I have mixed feelings about Cityfish. There are things I really liked about the place and then there are things that annoyed me. So for the worst first, I ordered their famous lobster roll. A few minutes later, the waitress returned to announce, "Sorry, we're out of that". The same was true for what my wife ordered as well. The only fresh fish they had were salmon, monk, and trout. And the really strange thing was none of these were on their
fresh fish board. It gets stranger though. One of the employees climbed up and started changing that board but he didn't add the three fishes they had and only removed one from the list of like six up there. All this was just before noon on a Monday so obviously, a trip to the local fish market in the a.m. was not on their to do list. This place is very casual. Think Red Lobster as a sports bar. And drinks are the stars. Beer and mixed drinks were dirt cheap. Peppered Bloody Marys were 4 dollars. The food was good . . . what they had. Deep fried gator bites were fun with a dipping sauce. Clam chowder and gumbo soup were equally good. Fish portions were huge. I ordered the trout as a sandwich (oh yes, I almost forgot we were told we both couldn't order the trout as they didn't have enough for two orders) thinking it would be less food, only to get a hoagy bun filled with fillets. If you want a very relaxed, fun meal or a place for a few drinks, Cityfish will fill the bill. If you are like me and read menus in advance, you might be disappointed by their lack of selection. I admit that on one visit, that might not be their norm but if that is true, it is still the experience I walked away with.