St. Pius - 3310 S. Grand Avenue, St. Louis

Wayfinding/Greening:
(4 out of 4 Fishes)

Signs on Grand Avenue and only one entry to fish fry. Line can back up at times, but paying first and getting your order ticket keeps line moving fairly effectively. Real plates and silverware! May be one of the few fish fries to use real plates.
We got there early at 5 and there was already a full house and about a 10 minute wait in line. Easy menu signs while you wait in line and as you get your food. Could be a little more efficient with serving, such as some churches where sides are selected when you pay, but a faster line would overwhelm the dining area. Still the class of fish fries with real plates. It was so nice to have a cup of coffee in a real cup (2010).
About a 15 minute wait in line when we got there at 6pm.  The line was out the door on the sidewalk, but it moved fairly quickly.  Although it was crowded, we were still able to find seats easily.  St. Pius doesn't have much wayfinding, just one menu sign.  And the ordering / payment table was very low profile.  I almost thought that it was just a raffle ticket table and almost didn't pay.  But they did have the most important sign - a sign welcoming Friday Night Fish, which is always great to see!  Also, one of the best parts of St. Pius is the real plates, silverware, and coffee cups.  St. Pius has some of the best fish fry coffee, and it tastes even better out of a real cup! (2014)

Food:



Very good Cod, maybe not the best, but very high ranking. Homemade desserts and very good sides. Other entrees included baked cod and fried catfish. Sides included cole slaw, mac and cheese, potato salad, and green beans.
Nothing has changed our minds here. Cod is still very good. Although my piece and the kids, which were from different batches, were a little inconsistent. Cole slaw was excellent. Desserts were varied from store bought to homemade.
My cod was excellent.  Even better than the last time we came.  Potato salad and cole slaw were top notch.

Value:



$7 adult plate includes two sides, dessert, tea and water - everything! No kids menu, but half plate for $3. $2 beer, $3 Schafly's, $0.75 soda.
Prices haven't changed and have even gone down for drinks. $2.50 Schafly's, $1.50 cans of beer, $2 wine. Dessert, tea, and coffee include. Fair trade coffee is pretty good especially in a real cup. Also $1.50 mac cheese/applesauce combo for the "toddle" plate. For our family of five, $22.50, not including a Schafly's.
For our family of five it was $28.  $8 for adult plates and $4 for kids plates.  A great value.  Although portions have changed I think.  Adult plates come with one piece of Cod, the kids a half piece.  I think adult plates used to be 2 pieces of Cod.  Still plenty of food, but if you have a hungry child, you may want to consider the adult plate if they eat a lot.  Schafly beer has gone up to $3.
With an additional kids option of mac and cheese for kids, our family of 5 was only $25!  Could that really be right?  A good value.

Atmosphere:



Great and friendly service. Volunteers are quick to clear your plates. Live music most Fridays. Hall has a nice feel with a stage area and although somewhat small, doesn't feel cramped.
Atmosphere has always been a strong suit, with a coffee house style vibe with the cozy surroundings and live music. Attentive and friendly staff to help clear plates and trays.
St. Pius really outdid itself tonight.  The music was fantastic!  Solos, instruments, and even a fish fry song!  A great fish fry atmosphere.  The volunteers are fantastic with plenty of help clearing tables.
There's no better place to be on a cold winter night than a fish fry at St. Pius.  A steamy cup of coffee  (in a real cup) and lovely irish music - doesn't get much better.

Overall:
4 out of 4. The standard for fish fries! Maybe not the highest ranking cod, sides, or atmosphere, but very high ranking in all categories. Everything is well done. Who else uses real plates!
Well, revisiting St. Pius after three years, the question was - "Would it still rank number #1?" And although I'm biased (I'm not going to change too drastically especially with a sign welcoming Friday Night Fish), it is still the preferred fish fry for the FNF family. Real plates, music, and the real coffee cups (did I mention the coffee cups) make you want to stay and linger, except for the guilt of knowing there is a long line of people waiting for a seat. The only downside to St. Pius is that it has become a victim of its charm. The larger crowds are threatening some of coziness and stretching the facilities. So come early!
Are we biased toward St. Pius (they are the closest to where we live and they have a Welcome Friday Night Fish sign) - of course we are!  But rightly so!  Great food, atmosphere, and value show why St. Pius is ranked as Friday Night Fish's top fish fry.  Our most recent visit only confirmed what we already knew.  A great fish fry evening!
Can you ever go to St. Pius too often?  Never.  We weren't going to go tonight, but with the icy weather moving in, we decided to stay close to home.   We got there early (5:15) so didn't have to wait in line.  The food was great tonight, the live music started up close to 6.  The coffee rivals some coffee houses.  Can't ask for more from one of the best fish fries in the region.

Reviewed 3/2/07, 3/12/10, 3/7/2014, 2/20/1015

Other Reviews and Fun Links for St. Pius:
If you know of other reviews or links, please share via the comment section below!
Reviews
2012 Ladue News Review of St. Pius
2011 Feed Me In St.Louis Blog Review of St. Pius
2010 Riverfront Times Review of St. Pius
2010 The 13 Blog Review of St. Pius
2008 No Meat for You Blog Review of St. Pius

Videos/News Articles
2012 KSDK Video about St. Pius





8 comments:

  1. Thank you,volunteers, for all your time and effort! Yea for real plates!! ;-}

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  2. It's a great deal at St. Pius's Fabulous Fish Fry. We even have our very own song describing the great meal. Thanks for the 4-fish rating! Come back and enjoy the food, music and comaraderie - again and again?

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  3. St.Pius is the highlight of my Lenten Fridays !!
    This years "Weekly Specials" are a great addition. Thanks to you all !!!

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  4. As good as any fish fry I have been to in St. Louis. Music is great. Plenty of food for $7.

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  5. We were also at St. Pius this Friday. YUM!!! Love the real dishes...not plastic. Only waited about 10 minutes. Loved the music.

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  6. Worth any wait. Food was great, I had catfish. Full meal with real china was super. Music was wonderful addition.

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  7. St. Pius Fish Fries have it all! Great food, live musicians and singers, lots of fun for kids...a real family affair, well organized, great variety of homemade desserts, meals served on real china...just a super night out!

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  8. Three sides offered in 2011, not two as stated above.

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Year End Reviews

Sometimes it is hard to compare fish fries from year to year. Comparing that Cod from 2014 to 2008 can be a little tough. With that in mind, below is a yearly re-cap for each of the following years. We got a little busy in 2015, so never finished a year end recap, so sorry!

2016 Year End Recap
2014 Year End Recap

Fan Poll Winners - Best Fish Fry

Every year Friday Night Fish hosts a fan poll to crown a yearly fan favorite Fish Fry. It's a two step process with Round 1 selecting five finalists, and Round 2 voting from the final five to crown the yearly fan champion. So get ready every year for the annual poll and get your supporters voting for your favorite fish fry! We had some voting "irregularities" in 2014, so we discontinued the poll (for now).

For a recap of past winners see Past Fan Poll Winners.

Past "Fan Poll-Favorite Fish Fry" Winners:
2014: First place tie: Christ, Prince of Peace, Ballwin; Saint Mary Magdalen, Brentwood; St. Ferdinand, Florissant
2013: Saint Mary Magdalen, Brentwood
2012: St. Rose Philippine Duschesne, Florissant
2011: St. Pius, St. Louis
2010: St. Gerard Majella, Kirkwood