$13 at Fish City Grill on Buffalo Speedway

Where

: Fish City Grill, 5172 Buffalo Speedway, 713-668-0197

What $13 gets you: An even crappier version of T.G.I. Friday’s

Stepping into Fish City Grill, I had no idea the place was a chain. Turns out, there are locations throughout Texas, including in Katy and Sugar Land. I was impressed by the tall ceilings, rough-brick walls, sleek bar and cushy teal-colored booths. And the menu didn’t look half-bad.

I asked the waiter to recommend a po’ boy – shrimp, catfish oyster, chicken or crawfish (all $6.99), but he dissed them all as “a sloppy mess.” That took me by surprise, so I took a couple more minutes to look over the menu. When he returned, I asked which of the two specialty items he preferred: oyster nachos ($6.49) or Serafin’s fish tacos ($8.99). Without any hesitation, he advised the tacos.

Recommended? Uh, no.

I’m not sure that the fish tacos at Fish City Grill are even tacos. The silly presentation included a pinwheel of four tortillas rolled like cigars emanating from a pile of bland, mushy rice. It was accompanied by a plastic cup of bacon ranchero sauce that tasted more like thousand island dressing. One bite into the enchilada – I mean, taco – and the pico de gallo and grilled tilapia dumped onto the plate.

If this was the non-messy meal, I couldn’t help but wonder about those po’ boys. But you’ll have to let me know, because I won’t be back to find out for myself.

Bonus point: At least one refreshingly honest waiter. – Todd Spivak

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