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“Excellent food, except for marionberry pie” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Mc Grath's Fish House

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Mc Grath's Fish House
12501 SE 2nd Cir, Vancouver, WA 98684
(360) 514-9555
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Ranked #117 of 513 Restaurants in Vancouver
Cuisines: Seafood
Restaurant details
Moscow, Idaho
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Excellent food, except for marionberry pie”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2014

Busy Saturday evening at the restaurant. We were seated promptly and serve was great. My steak turned out perfect and the razor clam dish was excellent. Daughter chose the McGrath's Irish nachos as a meal and they were done well. Dessert was good although the marionberry pie was only microwaved. The berry portion was heated but the crust was very raw.

Visited May 2014
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60 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Turlock, California
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Good food, great price”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2014

In town on business and stopped in for a business dinner. Friendly service, good seafood cooked as ordered and at a more than reasonable price. I had the Teriyaki Mako Shark and it was decent. I recommend!

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
148 reviews 148 reviews
58 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 88 cities Reviews in 88 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
“McGrath's Fish House”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2014

McGrath's is a must every time we are in Vancouver. The restaurant is a classic and incomparable when it come to West Coast seafood in my book. I'm a Flatlander, but do know good fish and shrimp when I get it. I've tried all the big names up and down the California coast, but nothing comes close. The shrimp and cod are great. The salads are huge and very fresh as is the seafood. The service is extraordinary and friendly. The waitresses and waiters will take the time to explain menu items in detail and with knowledge of their preparation and quality. We asked our waitress about their steaks and she said that seafood was their specialty and the steaks were ok. One of our party wanted steak and she should have listened to the waitress as the steak was dry, but flavorful. The waitress offered to take it back, but it wasn't her fault that our friend didn't listen to her advise. The grilled chicken was very good, also. The atmosphere/ambiance is great and the place it exceptionally clean. Staff are vacuuming and sweeping all the time. The prices were very reasonable and service excellent.

  • Visited April 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Washington
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Too Many Holes in the Net for McGrath's Fish House”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2014

In brief: Great seafood restaurant decor combines with average-to-below-average food, skimpy portion size, slow service, and overworking the staff to produce a might-as-well-go-somewhere-else conclusion.

Some details:

Let me begin with the fact that we arrived right at the beginning of their last open hour of the night. I don't think this should make any difference, but it may have been a contributing factor.

Here are the good things about the visit, before we begin to dig: The decor was truly nice; the drink size was quite generous; the prices were not outrageous; the waitress, while overworked, had a consistently nice attitude.

Okay, here we go:

My wife ordered the steak with "all-you-can-eat shrimp." Steak: 30% gristle with nothing more than average flavor. For a small steak, that means that she needed to depend on the shrimp. Here's McGrath's definition of all-you-can-eat shrimp: You get a small group of them on the plate. When you ask for more, you wait 15-25 minutes for a small plate of additional shrimp. When you ask for even more, it is another 15-25 minutes to get it. Although my wife could easily have eaten more than the truly small order sizes, the restaurant was about to close, and the marginal shrimp weren’t worth the wait anyway.

I ordered what appeared to be a great choice: hazelnut-encrusted cod. Wow! I love both the nuts and the fish. Read on.

There was a joke going around several years ago that McDonald's restaurants, which at that time has signs like "Over One Billion Sold" over their golden arches, were about to go out of business. Why? Because their one cow was almost used up. I was reminded of this as I cut into the cod.

While the hazelnut encrustation was just as advertised, the cod inside the crust was paper-thin. No, that’s not fair. It was about as thick as a potato chip. All of it. I assume they took one cod for the day, used one of those deli slicers that can make a 6” pile of super-thin ham slices from a ¼” original slice, and made cod paper. I left very hungry.

We both got baked potatoes; both were very small. Although the accoutrements (butter, chives, sour cream) were normal-sized, we only needed a little of them to smother the pathetic potato. BTW, the potato tasted great!

The waitress’ attitude was nice but, overworked as I assume she was (the alternative hypothesis is that the was on a predictable, separate 15-minute break after each brief table visit), the service was painfully slow. This contributed to the 15-25-minute delays for each all-you-can-eat shrimp order. Each such small order took one to two minutes to consume.

I think all of these things are easily fixed. Maybe the restaurant, which has several locations, will begin to see things from the customer’s perspective and become a place to visit with consistency in the future.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
60 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Love it!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2014 via mobile

McGrath's is a great place for tasty seafood. While a bit spendy, it is a good place to eat. You won't be disappointed.

Visited June 2013
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