One of the newer Stuart Restaurants, Tin Fish, was not what I would have expected. In my mind, I imagined a sit-down happenin’ sort of place, only with seafood. You know, casual but modern, a server for every table. But that’s not how it was at all. When we arrived to eat with family, I was surprised to find that it was actually cafeteria-style dining: order at the front from a menu on the wall, grab your own drinks and plastic ware, pick a table, and wait for somebody to run your food out to the appropriate table number. Interesting.
Interesting, but not bad. Not the best seafood I’ve ever had, but not bad, either. There’s a dining area with table and booths, a more dimly lit bar, and a covered outdoor patio which is where we elected to feast. The menu seemed vast at first glance, but after a quick perusal, I became a bit worried. It was definitely a seafood restaurant. In fact, they had almost nothing but. I was growing concerned that I would be stuck with the one vegetarian item on the menu: a cheese quesadilla. Because that’s what I want when I go out to eat: cheese slathered between two tortillas that I could have made at home for much less. But as usual, I asked where my two favorite kinds of fish came from (mahi and Salmon) and discovered, to my surprise and delight, that the mahi was indeed locally caught. Honestly, I didn’t expect it from a restaurant like this.
So I partook of the mahi fish tacos, blackened (because you can get them grilled or fried, too), and was disappointed to find them so little blackened they were hardly tan. While the fish was well cooked and moist, it was not well seasoned. However, the tomatoes, cabbage, white sauce and cheese added some decent flavor. The taco duet, complete with waffle fries seasoned with a tasty Cajun style seasoning and cole slaw with red wine vinegar instead of mayo was filling enough and the price wasn’t bad, either. The two of us spent less than $15.
My husband had the conch chowder. It was just the right amount of spicy in a tomato broth with onions, potatoes, diced tomato, etc. It was perfectly seasoned with a balanced ratio of broth to filling. He thought the fish tacos were comparable to most of the other fish tacos in town, I thought they were under-seasoned.
The service was good. We were greeted pleasantly when we arrived, the employees were friendly when they delivered our food and checked to see if we needed refills. Even the owner of the branch was behind the counter taking our order. Over all it was a pleasant experience and we wouldn’t be averse to a repeat visit. Tin Fish is a good place for a quick meal at a decent price.