Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Roller's at Flying Fish
8142 Germantown Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19118
You should know
Brian and I wanted to grab a late dinner. It being Good Friday, Brian wanted fish; I wasn't sure of a good, local seafood place. So he plugged "fish" into his portable GPS unit, and we got this Chestnut Hill address.
We got there about 15 minutes before they were set to close, and I was dressed in jeans and sweats; these two things made me a bit wary, but the menu looked good and so did the prices.
When we got there, there was a ton of meter parking across the street. Fortunately, 2-hour parking ended at 6:00 PM, so we could park for free while we ate.
The restaurant was empty, and, as I said, it was about to close, so I figured the staff was ready to go home. Instead, they were incredibly gracious and welcoming, reviewing the pros and cons of the different tables and commenting on the different specials.
Brian and I each ordered a glass of wine (Riesling for me; chardonnay for Brian). I got an appetizer in lieu of an entree: lump crab nachos ($10.75). Brian got broiled tilapia with cranberries, pecans and ruby grapefruit ($17.75).
The food was delicious. My nachos were covered in a gooey crab-and-cheese mixture, with a healthy scoop each of salsa (almost more of a pico de gallo) and guacamole. The chips, which had been lightly toasted, were very, very salty, but the attentive waitstaff kept my water glass full at all times. Brian was happy with his tilapia, though he said all that fruit just slightly overpowered the flavor of the fish.
The waitstaff were constantly coming over, not in an annoying, hovering sort of way, but in a very friendly manner, chatting with us, making sure we didn't want for water or rolls, and trying to talk us into a cup of coffee or a dish of gelato (which we had to decline -- we were stuffed). At one point, Paul Roller himself came out, joked about us sitting at a table with no tablecloth, and noticing that Brian and I were both wearing outfits in support of our alma mater, chatted for a few minutes about college basketball. We reasoned that either the staff was very bored, or the restaurant is not doing so well. From what I've found out online, it appears to have been the former.
The only downside of the evening was when the bill came. I know, I know. But while the price of our food was quite reasonable, the price of my wine nearly doubled my tab. These things happen, I understand that, but if I had known about it going in, I might have opted for tea.
Go... but get a soft drink.
Again, the food was amazing, the prices were reasonable, the staff was attentive and friendly, and I kind of want to try that gelato, but I'm not a huge fan of having my wine cost as much as my meal. Next time, I'll be getting tea or soda, and stopping for a beer elsewhere on my way home.
The rest of the Internet
Robin at Ponderings and Pawprints remembers working at Roller's.
Beth Terry at Fake Plastic Fish has given up plastic. After reading about other bloggers who have made the effort to go plastic-free for a year, or leave minimal ecological footprints, she set four goals, involving preservation of natural resources, lessening pollution and landfill fodder, improving health, and educating. And once a week, she tallies her plastic waste, sorting it by recyclable or not, and by whether she bought it before or after this project started.
Now, I'm not about to give up plastic altogether, but her blog has given me plenty of food for thought, and a list of ways to start cutting back. Look it over, and consider trying even one.