Friday, June 27, 2008

The Pike

The Pike
1836 E 4th St
Long Beach

The Pike was voted the best fish and chips in Long Beach. I'm always leery when a restaurant is named the best in any city? Why? Well it could be like being the tallest midget or the smartest Cal State Long Beach graduate; you maybe the tallest midget but you're still a midget or you maybe the smartest Cal State Long Beach graduate but you still graduated from a second rate, glorified JC. Is The Pike the best fish and chips because Long Beach is lacking in good fish and chips places?

So I decided to see what they hype about The Pike's fish and chips is all about. First and foremost, this is really a bar that serves food. And it's a DIVE bar. Look up the word dive bar in the dictionary, LB grads, it's that very thick book with definitions of words, and you will find a picture of The Pike. I went right in the middle of happy hour and the bar was full. There are about 8-10 tables and a long set of picnic tables in the middle of the room, as you walk in.

I got the fish and chips, $9.99. The fish is cooked to order, so expect at least a ten minute wait. The fish and chips arrive and they were right out of the fryer, huge, hot, and smelled wonderful. I take a bit and find that the fish is sole, but the reason for the size isn't the fish but the batter. There were four large pieces of fish but I bet they didn't add up to half of pound of fish. The batter is very crunchy but very greasy too. I felt a little sick after eating them. The best fish and chips in Long Beach? If so, then Long Beach is really hurting for fish and chips!!!! Though the tartar sauce is very flavorful and tangy, exactly how tartar sauce should be.

Service is below average. I sat down and they really don't have any servers. The bartenders are responsible for taking orders at the tables. So if the bar is full, you maybe waiting a while, which I was. The server was ok but he did something strange. The coleslaw and tartar sauce are chilled in a cooler behind the bar. The server took out the coleslaw and tartar sauce put it on the counter where servers pick up the food. The coleslaw and tartar sauce were left on that counter for at least five minutes. Why couldn't he pick up the order, get the coleslaw and tartar sauce and then drop them off at my table? So when he came out with the fish and chips, I asked for another tartar sauce and use that. I didn't touch the coleslaw or chips.

I would not go back to The Pike again. The fish and chips are hardly the best in LB and it's a dive bar.