The Fish Restaurant is located in Marlborough, easily located on Route 20, and it is only about 30 miles from Boston. You might think Marlboro is too far to go for dinner but it is well worth the short trip. And you could sit in Boston traffic for the same amount of time that it would take you to reach Marlboro. If you live north of Boston, it is easy to get to Marlboro by taking Route 128 South to Route 20 West. Route 20 West has plenty of shops, wine stores, restaurants, and other sights, and would make for a great spring or summer jaunt, ending with dinner at Fish Restaurant.
You will find an elegant ambiance, but is far from pretentious. You can sit at the long, well-stocked bar, or at one of the tables in the bar area. Or you can choose to sit in the dining room, at one of the tables of the large semi-circular booths. It has a capacity of around 150 people, doesn't feel over crowded and sound levels seems under control. There is a more private section of booths and tables which also can be used for large groups.
As their primary focus is seafood, they regularly send their own truck down to the Boston Fish Pier to purchase fresh fish. As the Voyiatzis family has a long history with seafood purchasing, they are very knowledgeable as to how to select and buy the best seafood. The restaurant's menu changes regularly, dependent on what seafood is seasonal and available. They also try to be sustainable, understanding that is not always easy to do. In addition, they try to purchase only organic meat, which is locally obtained if possible. Their produce also tends to be seasonal, and local when available. The most popular seafood at their restaurant tends to be scallops.
You'll find 6 beers on tap, nearly all from Massachusetts breweries, and about 11 beers by the bottle and 1 hard cider. There is a fully stocked bar and their special cocktails, priced $9-$10, are seasonal, and currently center on Winter cocktails. I started the evening with the Spanish Armada (pictured above), which is made from Torres Gran Reserva 10 year old Brandy, Fig Puree and Lustau East India Sherry. It had a prominent dried fruit and fig flavor, with some nutty elements. It was nicely balanced, without being too sweet, and I could have easily drank a few of these. I also tasted one of their forthcoming Spring cocktails, the Shy Geisha, which is made with Korean Soju. Once again, it was a well balanced cocktail, with only a mild sweetness. The Spanish Armada was a hearty choice for a cold, winter evening, while the Shy Geisha was lighter, a promise of the spring.
I was enamored with the diversity of the wine list, its intriguing blend of classic grapes and more obscure ones. They offer about 28 wines by the glass, priced $8-$19 though most range $8-$10. You'll also find over 100 wines by the bottle. You'll find plenty of Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but also intriguing grapes like Bobal, Pinot Meunier, Godello, and Gruner Veltliner. Pricing is generally reasonable, and you'll find plenty of bottles priced under $50. Wine lovers will love exploring the options on this wine list. Showing its devotion to their wine program, the restaurant's staff receives wine training every two weeks.
The menu offers plenty of choices, without overwhelming the consumer, and most of the selections are under $30. As you can see, the focus is on seafood but there are plenty of options for those who don't want seafood. Remember too that the menu changes on a regular basis, and there will likely be specials, dependent on what is available each day.
ranted before about the disturbing fact that the U.S. imports an astounding 91% of their seafood, and I have implored Americans to eat more domestic seafood. Imported shrimp is one of the largest components of this statistic. Fortunately, Fish Restaurant uses only domestic Gulf shrimp, which earns them special kudos from me. And they were good-sized and delicious, with an excellent, firm texture. The oysters and clams were very good too, each with their own unique flavor. A fine way to begin our dinner.
The restaurant possesses an admirable philosophy on sourcing, attempting to be sustainable, seasonal and local, balanced by the difficulties and practicalities of operating a restaurant. Their beverage program is also admirable, with seasonal cocktails and an intriguing and diverse wine list. Kudos to Ian for all his work in regards to the cocktails and wine. The food is prepared well, and the quality and quantity of each dish is compelling. Kudos to Chef St. Germain for his work in the kitchen, and retaining him as their new Executive Chef was a great idea. I cannot wait to return to Fish Restaurant, to check out lunch and other items on the dinner menu. It garners my highest recommendation and I strongly encourage my readers to check it out.