Monday, October 20, 2014

Ted Peters Smoked Fish
1350 Pasadena Avenue South

St Petersburg, FL 33707

A landmark since 1951, Ted Peters still packs in newcomers as well as seasoned veterans who are second and third generation customers. Anyone who has been in the area has been drawn in by the aroma of the smokehouse located next door to the restaurant.  You are offered your choice of outdoor seating on picnic tables and benches where sun shades are available to keep the sun at bay; or you can dine inside where air conditioning affords the summer visitors much relief while dining.
The menu features smoked salmon, mahi mahi, mackerel and mullet as the featured entrees; these can be purchased as a lunch with just the fish, or the dinner which is served with coleslaw and German potato salad.  They offer a delicious smoked fish spread in a sandwich or as an appetizer served with saltine crackers. They also offer, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, chicken sandwiches, or hot dogs.  Top your meal off with a bowl of clam chowder and a slice of key lime pie. To quench your thirst you can enjoy beer, wine, sodas or a frosty cold mug of Root Beer with free refills on non alcoholic beverages.
As a first time customer I was offered a sample portion of the coleslaw, German potato salad and the smoked fish spread by our server, Sue.  As coincidence would have it, Sue was acquainted with both my brother and sister in law, but nonetheless her quality service was not only shown to me but to the other tables she was assigned.  She was eager to explain what each fish dish entailed, and as I was served my dinner she also instructed me on how to remove the backbone from my smoked mullet.  Truly our dinner was enhanced by her attentive and courteous service.
I chose the Mullet dinner which came with the coleslaw and German potato salad. Sue told me that my fish portion was larger than usual since it was the time of year they put on weight in preparation for breeding.  Truly my fish portion took up the entire plate and I was eager to try mullet for the first time.  Mullet is a staple fish in Mediterranean cooking. However, I had not heard of it until this trip to Florida.  I was learned that the local fishermen catch an abundance of this fish but that a good portion is frozen for export.
My fish was succulent, fresh and had a nice amount of fat along the backbone, the flesh separated easily from the bones without much effort.  My brother and sister in law are not big fish eaters, so they enjoyed a hamburger and watched me while I devoured every inch of my fish.   The smoking was done to a tee and did not overpower the taste of the fish, it enhanced the flavor.
You can dine in or take out, they are open Wednesday –Monday 10:30-7:30pm, and closed on Tuesdays, prices are modest ranging from $5.59-$20.99.  Ted Peters was featured on an episode of Diners, Drive Ins and Dives a testament to the popularity of this diner.   If you find yourself in St. Petersburg, follow your nose and get ready for a real treat. Remember, cash only, no credit cards accepted.

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