Waiting to sit at yet another one of Florida’s smallest hole in the wall, locals only location, the Fish Shack. You stand in the parking lot or along the storefront sidewalk and wait for one of the two waitresses to come out and yell your name. For those of us raised in Florida, that really is nothing new. We do it all the time, East and West Coast. For point of reference, the Fish Shack is smaller then the ORIGINAL Frenchy’s in Clearwater Beach (if you have ever been there) but we heard the food in this place is some of the best in Pompano Beach, so we had to give it a whirl! If you didn’t have GPS, know the area or are a local – you would never find it! Even with GPS, we had to circle the block to be sure we had the right spot.
The Fish Shack is flanked by a neighborhood mom & pop convenience store and a fellowship ministries, playing loud Christian contemporary music while someone is burning it down at the other end of the parking lot! I am dying laughing…yet, we wait. They don’t give you wait times at the Fish Shack. In fact when you ask, you’ll literally be told, “we don’t give wait times, it’s impossible” but in actuality, you don’t wait long. Besides, we went on a Friday night at the height of dinner time, so we expected this and it became fun. Everyone stands around, talking and hanging out and it almost begins to resemble a bit of a neighborhood block party.
As it turns out, the food was exactly what we had hoped for and worth every bit of finding the Fish Shack, waiting, etc etc etc…
The two waitresses were adorable and hustled to keep all 22 seats filled and happy as clams! They seem to have figured out a way to keep it humming along without anyone feeling rushed. They are super kind, and move people around as necessary to accommodate diners, but it is made clear it isn’t meant to be an imposition, so it is entirely your choice. Everyone generally goes with the flow, after all you just stood outside getting to know fellow diners and a sense of camaraderie occurs.
Ambiance is what it is, super kitschy and a wee bit cramped but no one cares. Somehow it works. Besides, you come for the good seafood, that without a doubt is cranked out consistently plate after plate! From fried, blackened, grilled…everything is as it should be. There were dishes available for those not interested in seafood but I didn’t see any of those come parading out of the kitchen. They even have a “Hook & Cook” option, that includes two sides! So they obviously know what’s up.
The pricing is what it is and pretty much like anywhere else in town but given what you get, it is worth it. You can expect to spend somewhere between $80 and $100 for appetizers, entrees and drinks for two, including tip of course. The portions are nicely sized, no-one walks away hungry and certainly for the budget minded individual, there are options. The Fish Shack doesn’t have a website, so don’t bother looking – although there must be a “Fish Shack” in Texas and someone accidentally linked it to the Pompano Beach Fish Shack Facebook page. Don’t be confused, unless you plan to drive to Texas. However, they are on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fish-Shack/755711144455024 and just about everyone who has ever eaten there has written a rave review, including myself!
Besides when a place is this cozy, it has to be good for multiple reason, 1. They would be out of business in no time and 2. You literally see every single dish as it goes by so there isn’t much room for error.
Bottom line, if you are wanting a romantic private dinner, this isn’t the place…but if you want seriously good fresh Florida seafood cooked how you like it, ability to “kick back here” and enjoy a few laughs – you found your spot at the Fish Shack!
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Go in love,