Beginning on Ash Wednesday and continuing from the following Friday every Friday until Easter you can find great fresh fish and other seafood at fish fries held in Catholic churches, fire halls and community buildings all over the greater Pittsburgh area. Fried fish sandwiches are the primary mainstay of these popular Lenten fish fries, but you’ll also generally find other seafood and non-meat items such as pierogies, shrimp, clam chowder, crab cakes, haluski, coleslaw and macaroni and cheese. Try a different fish fry each Friday!
The best place to start when searching for a new fish fry to try is the annual Parish Fish Fry Guide published in the Pittsburgh Catholic. This popular guide provides details on Lenten fish fries hosted by nearly 100 parishes in Allegheny and surrounding counties of Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Another great resource is this free map of Pittsburgh Lenten Fish Fries created by Hollen Barmer.
Fish fries in Pittsburgh aren’t limited to Catholic churches. Many other churches offer fish dinners this time of year, as do some volunteer fire departments, area restaurants and community organizations. In Collier Township, for example, the Presto Volunteer Fire Department hosts several Friday Fish Fries for eat in or take out. CNH Javor Hall, located at the corner of East and Foreland Streets on Pittsburgh’s North Side, will be selling fish and shrimp dinners every Friday during Lent. Check WPXI’s Fish Fry Guide and KDKA Fish Fry Guide 2012 for additional listings.
If you don’t want to limit yourself to Fridays, then Pittsburgh restaurants with a good fish sandwich include the Original Oyster House in Market Square downtown, Benkovitz Seafood and Wholey’s in the Strip District, and McGinnis Sisters locations in Monroeville and the South Hills.