Cajun French: la sacalait (la sak-a-lā) – perch (white)
Friday Night Fish Fry is a big event in Michigan’s UP and we wanted to enjoy the festivities. These are not your regular restaurant menu items. You find a fish fry at local churches, VFW Halls, bars and various organizational benefits. It was not until we reached Rapid River that we were able to enjoy this UP tradition.
Rapid River is one of many small, rural towns in the UP. There are no grocery stores in the community yet there is a pub and restaurant, both offering Friday Night Fish Fry. Our goal was to go someplace that did not normally serve fried fish, so the Fish Fry was truly a Friday night event. They offer fish on their menu but it is not the fresh fish sold for the Friday Night Fish Fry. Besides Rapid River Pub sounded more fun than the restaurant. And it did not disappoint.
Laurie ordered the perch basket and John had the combination shrimp and perch basket. Both were excellent. The fish was crispy on the outside and juicy and tender inside. The shrimp were large, crispy and fresh. Being from south Louisiana, Laurie was hesitant about the shrimp, but they did not disappoint. The dinner came with sides of cole slaw, baked beans, sweet potato fries and a roll. More than enough food to keep us happy. Add a cold brew and dinner was complete.
The pub has a back section more like a restaurant which works well for families. The Friday we went, there were many families enjoying the fish fry. We chose to sit in the main section to enjoy the camaraderie of the locals. The pub had such a welcoming atmosphere we decided to return on Sunday for pizza and beer. Our Friday night server told us about their BLT pizza and John had to have one. Laurie was trying to figure out how it was made.
On our return trip, there were four of us. The couple with us ordered a pepperoni and mushroom pizza; we ordered the BLT pizza. We did not taste the pepperoni and mushroom pizza, but it looked delicious. It was full of mushrooms and slices of pepperoni. They said it was excellent. The BLT was just like a BLT sandwich except it was on pizza crust. The crust was slathered with mayo, to John’s liking! Pieces of bacon on top the mayo then cubed tomato and shredded lettuce on top. The pizza was unique and very good. A little too much mayo for Laurie, but she endured for John. Again we all added cold beers and we were happy.
We recommend Rapid River Pub not only for its pub food and beer but also for the interaction with locals. Everyone is welcoming and made us feel at home, which we were for a week. If in Rapid River, MI stop by and enjoy the local pub – pizza, beer and especially Friday Night Fish Fry.