The Daily Ccatch: Fresh fish in the North Eend has never tasted so sweet

by Beacon Staff • March 28, 2007

in the North End, may be lined with quite a few Italian restaurants, but many have a formal atmosphere that serves as a college student repellent.The Daily Catch, however, a small seafood restaurant almost at the end of the road, is a change to the usual Italian restaurants with dimmed lights and Andrea Bocelli songs playing in the background.,Hanover Street, the main thoroughfare

in the North End, may be lined with quite a few Italian restaurants, but many have a formal atmosphere that serves as a college student repellent.

The Daily Catch, however, a small seafood restaurant almost at the end of the road, is a change to the usual Italian restaurants with dimmed lights and Andrea Bocelli songs playing in the background.

The restaurant, which seats less than 25 people, bustles with the energy, sound and smells that you would expect only from a real Italian kitchen. The menu is written up on a big board, and it boasts several kinds of appetizers, eight kinds of pasta dishes, six kinds of fish, shellfish and lobster.

The Daily Catch serves every pasta dish in a frying pan, instead of an actual plate.

The Tossed Garden Salad ($4.50) was fresh and zesty, with big slices of cucumber and sweet red peppers. The Broiled Haddock ($16.75), seasoned with butter and garlic and topped with a cheese and bread topping, was a juicy piece of fresh fish that could satisfy the hunger of anyone looking for a hearty dish.

The Small Plate Fried Calamari ($9.25) is a good choice if you're not too hungry. It was very crisp and, according to restaurant reviews online, one of the best in town. The Phantom Gourmet gives their menu a 9/10 overall.

If you want to try something new, order the homemade black pasta with any combination

of fish or shrimp, starting with an average price of $18.

And in case you decide to play it safe, you can always order good old Fish and Chips for $13.50.

While the food at The Daily Catch is wonderful, the restaurant itself leaves something to be desired. The entire establishment is no bigger than the average

Emerson College dorm room, leaving

very little space for anyone other than the waiter to move around without bumping into something.

The two-person tables are placed right next to each other in several rows, so if you're going with only one friend, chances are you will be sitting elbow to elbow with some stranger eating there.

The open kitchen-which is too close to the tables-can be a distraction

if you go during busy dinner hours, as cooks tend to bang the frying pans around quite often and the strong smell of greasy fish will linger on your clothes and your hair once you get out of the restaurant.

Because of lack of space and staff (a waiter and two cooks), water is served in plastic cups and soda is served directly from the can.

The Daily Catch is not the average restaurant in the North End, and not for those who are accustomed to chains like the Olive Garden and Bertucci's.

But if you're willing to sacrifice

some comfort for a plate of good calamari, the restaurant is truly a catch.

The Daily Catch, 323 Hanover St.