Imperial Fish Market is a favorite of a FOY (Friend of Yoso), he swears by the Fried Snapper here. I arrived at the shop located on Euclid just at opening time.
When they say, "you buy - we fry" they're not kidding! A good variety of fish and other seafood is displayed in a large case.
I placed my order with the older gentleman at the register.... he hollers out the order, one of the young men grabs the fish I ordered and passes to another young man, who asks me "plain or spicy" (need I really say how I ordered it?), dredges the fish in what looks like a cornmeal based breading.
And I go and check out the hot sauce collection.....
And for me to file away that they carry Crystal Hot Sauce and Camellia Beans for future reference. My order was ready with a pretty quick turnaround. As I grabbed my package, the gentleman pointed to the dispensers and told me to, "make sure you get some sauce and ketchup."
Staring at the package sitting next to me on the drive home, I wondered how our lunch would stand up after the twenty minute or so drive home. Taking the package to the dining table, I opened up the paper bag, and opened up the paper covering our lunch.... and was met with two slices of wheat bread!
Wheat bread? What was this, health food????
Nah.... after pushing aside the bread I saw my Two Piece Fried Red Snapper Basket ($8.99):
The fries were straight from SYSCO-land, not that I expected otherwise. The cornmeal breading held up well from the trip home. It was on the thick side, quite gritty, but still crisp. Even though I ordered the breading spicy, it was quite mild, and needed a good dose of hot sauce. The filet itself was dry, and tasted on the fishy side, not a good sign for a usually mild flavored fish.
I also ordered a two piece basket choosing Sand Dabs as the fish:
I haven't seen Sand Dabs much in San Diego. The Sand Dabs were much better than the snapper, moist and mildly sweet. Of course we had to contend with bones and such, but this wasn't bad.
I also got an order of Deep Fried Okra ($3.99):
Like the other items, the breading was very thick and gritty, not necessarily a bad thing, but the okra was underseasoned and the flavor of stale oil was prominent. Not good eats.
Imperial Fish Market
494 South Euclid Ave
San Diego, CA 92114