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Issue Date: March 2009


Fish Fries - Saints Constantine & Helen Cathedral


Doug Trattner
We’ve all stumbled into a higgledy-piggledy fish fry where it seems as if method is a prayer away from descending into madness.

Often, the best-case scenario is an organized chaos that works because it always has. So to see the execution at Saints Constantine & Helen Cathedral is to see a Lenten fish fry executed with crisp precision. Lines move briskly, thanks to experienced parishioners, a large commercial kitchen and a progressive payment system that accepts credit cards. It also doesn’t hurt that this fry takes place in a large, modern gymnasium capable of handling 300 hungry souls.

The prize at the end of the line is freshly fried walleye, cod or shrimp served with crunchy fries, refreshing slaw and all the ketchup and tartar sauce you can fit on a tray.

Skip the leaden macaroni and cheese in favor of spanakopita, a flaky phyllo pie with spinach and feta cheese.

You see, St. Constantine is a Greek Orthodox church, and that means irresistible desserts such as galaktaboureko (a lemony custard), fresh-baked honey cookies and nut-filled baklava with more layers than a celebrity wedding cake. It also means guests can stroll over to the “taverna,” grab a glass of Greek wine or beer and savor the sounds of live Greek folk music. 3352 Mayfield Road, Cleveland Heights, (216) 932-3300, stsconstantine.com; Fridays during Lent, 4:30 to 8 p.m.; $9 to $12, depending on choices. Sides, desserts and beverages are extra.

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