One of my favorite things to do after a day of fishing on a charter is visit a restaurant that cooks up your fresh catch. For the most part, I fish with friends or family, so cooking up fish after the day on the water can make it a long day. With that said an alternative to cooking fish at home is to bring fillets to a restaurant that will cook them for you. Here is what you need to know about a catch and cook restaurant. 

How Do Cook And Catch Restaurants Work

A restaurant that offers the option to cook your fresh catch is no different than any other restaurant. In fact, they, too, will offer their own fish options on the menu. However, understand that restaurants offering this type of service are often located in coastal regions along the East Coast. Here is what to know about restaurants cooking up your fresh catch. 

The Meal Comes With Preparation Options And Sides

One of the best benefits of a hook and cook restaurant is that they will give you options when it comes to preparing your catch. 

For the most part, restaurants will offer three different cooking methods for the fillets. These are likely to be grilled, blackened, or fried. 

In addition to the preparation of the fish, you can expect to select bread and dipping sauces from various sides. 

Fillet And Debone Your Catch

Importantly, you can not expect the restaurant to clean and remove the bones from your fresh catch. Without question, you need to arrive with a bag full of freshly cleaned fillets. 

The restaurant does not have the time to fillet fish before cooking. Instead, they need the fillets ready to throw in the fryer, on the grill, or in the oven. 

The Fish Must Be In Season And Fresh

I think it is funny that restaurants that offer this service need to note that the fish must be in season and fresh. 

Unquestionably, the thought of freezing or allowing fish to sit in the fridge for days before considering a hook and cook is baffling. The point of this type of service is to provide some relief after a long day of fishing. 

With that said, make sure that you visit the restaurant on the same day as you go out fishing. 

Who Should Take Advantage Of Hook And Cook Restaurants

Having fished in all different locations across the United States, I have taken advantage of hook and cook restaurants a dozen times. Utilizing this service is not always necessary. Here is when you should consider a hook and cook restaurant. 

While You’re On Vacation

By far, the number one reason to bring your fresh catch to a restaurant for preparation is if you’re on vacation. 

No matter if you rent a boat or hire a captain, it can become challenging to cook fish while out of town. The challenges include the lack of a kitchen, the cost to buy all of the seasonings and sides, and the time. 

Rather than dealing with the hassle of cooking, visit a hook-and-cook restaurant while vacationing. 

When Fishing With A Large Group Of People

I recently was on a fishing charter with a large group of people. Rather than visiting a hook and cook, we all went back to someone’s house to prepare and cook the fish. 

I’ll admit, it would have been better to visit a restaurant. By the time we got done fishing, cleaned up, prepared the sides, cooked the fish, and did the dishes, it was exhausting. 

A substantial amount of work goes into food preparation, especially for large groups of people. In order to have a better social experience, I recommend utilizing the services of a catch-and-cook restaurant when you’re with large groups. 

How To Find A Cook And Catch Restaurant Near Me

I’ll admit it can be a challenge to locate hook and cook restaurants. In some cases, restaurant websites do not specifically mention this service. With that said, I suggest searching online for cook and catch restaurants near me. 

Next, scroll through the list of options that are in your vicinity. Importantly, if the restaurant doesn’t specifically mention offering hook and cook, I suggest calling before you show up. 

Visit A Cook And Catch Restaurant

After a long day of fishing, I suggest taking advantage of hook-and-cook restaurants. You will be better able to socialize with your friends and family while the restaurant is cooking up the fresh catch. Lastly, mix and match the methods of preparation to determine what you like best.