Wednesday, May 29, 2024 May 29, 2024
72° F Dallas, TX

The Business Lunch: Go Fish Ocean Club

Bold flavors and a glamorous new setting transform owner Mike Hoque’s original Go Fish into the king of the high seas.
photography by Kevin Hunter Marple

WHY GO FISH: We’d been having fun with our cheeky waiter throughout our meal at Go Fish Ocean Club. “Crab cakes? Come on, you can do better than that,” he said with a wink as he steered us from the ubiquitous appetizer toward the spicy tuna tataki roll with pickled jalapeños. Drinks seemed to magically replenish themselves. Empty plates were deftly cleared. Special requests were met with a smile and appetites sated. As we concluded our lunch and declined dessert—much to our waiter’s chagrin—he reappeared with a round of cards for the table, offering a free bottle of wine upon our next visit. “Because you know you want to come back,” he explained. The wink had returned.

And he was right. There’s much to love at owner Mike Hoque’s latest seafood endeavor, an upscale addition to his burgeoning restaurant empire which includes downtown’s Dallas Fish Market (named one of the best seafood restaurants in the U.S. by Bon Appetit) and the casual chain Fish Express. His latest is a reimaging of the original Go Fish on Belt Line Road in Addison. This new incarnation is more glamorous: overhead lighting mimicking a modernist coral reef, curvy walls, an expansive two-level space. It’s a handsome room that showcases chef Tiffany Derry’s ambitious offerings.

WHAT TO EAT: Heed the advice of our waiter and skip the usual starters like crab cakes and pink pepper dusted calamari. They’re fine interpretations. Better are the sushi rolls. Both the aforementioned spicy tuna roll and tropical shrimp tempura roll dazzled, the latter a soothing blend of cream cheese, avocado, crunchy shrimp, and sweet eel sauce with pineapple. Entrée choices are seasonal. On my last visit, our table devoured expertly battered fish and chips, rainbow trout with caper butter sauce, and seared scallops topped with an acidic, tangy combo of fennel and grapefruit beurre blanc. One of my favorites was the open-faced tuna niçoise sandwich: a lovingly balanced blend of seared Ahi, asparagus, olives, and chopped egg, all simply dressed in a creamy dressing. Served with a side of rich but not-too-buttery lobster bisque, it was a perfect lunch offering. And though dessert was declined, I’ve seen the future: a fragrant bananas foster prepared tableside in all it’s flambéed glory. Our waiter with the wink was right about our inevitable return. I hate being a forgone conclusion.