Sep 19, 2022 - Food and Drink

ğŸŽ£ Catch of the day: Windward Passage

Perch. fries, asparagus, a lemon and tartar sauce on a plate on a wooden table
A Windward Passage fried perch dinner. You're gonna need a bigger plate. Photos: Alissa Widman Neese/Axios

👋 Alissa here. As someone who grew up in a Lake Erie town, there's no delicacy quite as nostalgic as a deep-fried perch dinner.

  • Sadly, they aren't easy to find around these parts.

Yes, but: Windward Passage, which celebrates 50 years in business next year, has me hooked with a meal that tastes just like home.

⚓ Vibe check: Entering this old-school staple is like stepping back into an old-timey ship at sea.

  • Oars, ropes, bells and lanterns hang on the wood-paneled walls. A large helm and the wafting scent of seafood greets you at the door.

What I ate: Six big pieces of perch with fries, a salad and a vegetable for just $22. The perch breading is thin and crispy, so the flaky fish anchors the flavor.

  • I didn't need an appetizer, but the coquille St. Jacques — scallops topped with cheese, mashed potatoes and a creamy sauce — is hard to resist.

🍟 Pro tip: Order extra homemade ranch for fry dipping — you won't regret it.

The bottom line: Amid a pandemic shutdown and its owner's unexpected death, Windward Passage's fate wasn't certain in 2020. I'm ecstatic that the restaurant continues full steam ahead.

If you go: 4739 Reed Road, Upper Arlington. 4:30-9pm Monday-Thursday, 4:30-9:30pm Friday, Saturday. Closed Sunday. No reservations.

A dining arena with wood-panel walls, wooden table and booths, blue carpet and and a ship's helm on the wall
The dining area near the bar shortly before closing time.
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