Growing up, "The Pier" was the nice restaurant in town. It's right next to my middle school, so sometimes if we had half days, we would walk over to the Pier and have some lunch. It was some of the first times I remember buying something on my own. Before then, the only time I could purchase anything would be by way of my parents or a friend's parents. But being able to walk to a restaurant and purchase a meal with my own money was empowering in some way. It made me feel like a grown up.
I was recently in town and decided to pay this restaurant a visit. Located on 12th Street, right along the Ohio River, you probably wouldn't know it was there if it wasn't known in the area. There's a large gravel parking lot. When you walk through the front doors, you are immediately met with a dark, stale smokey bar area, through which you pass to get to the dining room. If you're not familiar, this is probably unconventional.
I think they go for a sort-of seafood theme, but paired with the murky Ohio River does not leave the best visual. But the menu does have a mix of comfort foods, sandwiches, pastas and more. I decided to go with the fish sandwich. One note here, be careful if the server asks whether you want fries or onion rings. That's an upcharge. The default is chips. Also, the water here is awful. AWFUL.
My parents both got the cream turkey special. After a little bit of a wait, our dishes came out. I was surprised to see my fish sandwich came with fries. I asked about it; the waitress said they messed up and I got fries for free.
My sandwich was quite tasty. Some beer-battered cod, tangy tartar on a fresh bun is one of my favorites. And they are HUGE portions. However, as I went to dive into my second part of my sandwich, I found a hair. I can't say for sure who's it was, but if you know me, you know that's a sure-fire way to make me end a meal. I don't have a very strong stomach when dealing with food. I'll try anything, as long as I know it's clean, that is. I ended up throwing the rest away. I wish I hadn't found that, because I really did enjoy the sandwich.
Unfortunately, the same couldn't be said for my parents' meal. They had hardly any chicken, and their meals were cold. Mine was fried, so they probably scooped theirs and waited on mine. Whoops. My parents won't be back - spending that much money on average food, or even worse than average for them, isn't worth it.
It'll always have certain memories for me, though, and I hope the food and business picks up because I don't want to see this place go under.