We are always looking for somewhere new to eat…for some variety in our local restaurant selection. So when a new restaurant opened up a couple of weeks ago, we called our friends Charlie and Karen and with Karen’s sister Jean, we headed off to Loudon for a new dining experience.
This is Z Fish House on US Hwy. 11 in Loudon Tennessee. This building has been occupied by at least 3 different restaurants in the 6 years that we’ve lived in the area….
When we arrived, the parking lot was full and we ended up parking in the bank’s parking lot across the street. As we left, a couple of police cars were leaving the restaurant’s parking lot. Laurie asked one of the officers about the food at Z Fish House and he told us that it was all good and that he’d tried about everything on the menu!
The restaurant was full when we arrived and we had to wait a few minutes. By just observing the waitresses and their somewhat disjointed efforts to take care of the diners as well as those trying to pay for their meals, it was obvious that they were understaffed…
As you can see, the restaurant is plain and simple…no pretenses. Of course, the key is caring about the customer’s experience and the food itself. The employees were indeed caring, worrying about keeping the customers happy despite the delays and disjointed service.
A couple of us ordered “Z Soup”, a bowl of New England Clam Chowder. ($6.00) It was very good…perhaps not the best I’ve ever had, but very competent indeed. I would order it again.
The restaurant seems to be a family affair. The owner/chef was originally from Long Island and later in life he spent about 14 years in Key West Florida cooking for various restaurants. His step-daughter was our waitress.
Charlie ordered the fried shrimp dinner. ($12.00) You could order the shrimp on a sandwich, grilled or fried. It came with a generous side of tasty black beans and rice… Charlie said he couldn’t finish his last shrimp and he offered it to me. It was very nice and I would order the shrimp dinner myself without hesitation…
Now…it’s a little weird but the name of the restaurant…Z Fish House…and the menu do conflict a bit. There are 3 fish/seafood entrees that can be served as a dinner (as shown above), as tacos, as quesadillas or as a sandwich. There is also a catfish dinner. Basically, there are 3 kinds of fish available plus the shrimp… On the other hand, there are 8 burgers available and 4 dinner salads as well as a few sides.
Laurie as well as Karen and Jean ordered the Fried Catfish Dinner. ($10.00) This dinner came with 2 giant catfish fillets in a nice batter, a pile of spicy French fries and some terrific coleslaw! This meal also includes 2 big hush- puppies…which were initially left off this order. The waitress corrected the error by bringing a basket to the table that contained 5 hush-puppies.
The catfish was really enjoyable! It came with the spicy dipping sauce on the right as well as the tartar sauce on the left. The fries were good but it would be a positive move if Z Fish House offered a choice of ‘spicy seasoned’ or ‘regular’ French fries for those who are spice/heat adverse. The hush puppies were nice as well.
The other fish options on the menu were the Mahi Mahi ($10.00) or the Salmon ($10.00). Either option is offered grilled or blackened. The Mahi Mahi was my choice and it came with those tasty black beans and rice. The filet was blackened nicely and cooked perfectly.
Some might think that I ordered a relatively healthy meal so I could avoid straying too far from my slow progression to shed additional weight. Not so fast! I’d seen the size of the Fried Catfish orders going to other tables and I knew that Laurie would never be able to finish both of her fillets or all of her spicy French fries. I was correct and I had to ‘help her out’ with her meal… plus I picked up one of those extra hush-puppies and Charlie’s spare shrimp.
We also took home a piece of Z Fish House’s Key Lime Pie…a 5th Generation Conch recipe. ($5.00) Laurie liked it a lot but it was a little too sweet for me. The other dessert offering on the menu is the Double Chocolate Brownie. ($6.00) It comes with fresh strawberries and a Godiva white chocolate sauce. Sounds great!
OK…This is not a fancy restaurant and the seafood/fish menu is a bit limited. They have been pleasantly surprised at their business volume to date and service suffers a bit for it. They told us that they are making adjustments to deal with that issue. Despite any glitches or issues, Z Fish House hit at least a “Triple” during our first visit! We will be back soon!
Z Fish House is located at 846 Mulberry Street (US Hwy. 11) in Loudon Tennessee. Phone Number: 865-657-6200. As of this point, this restaurant doesn’t appear to have a website or to be on Facebook as of yet.
Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…
Thanks for stopping by to try out a new restaurant with us!
Take Care, Big Daddy Dave