Ford’s Fish Shack in South Riding


by Stefanie Gans, Dining Editor


25031 Riding Plaza, Suite 150, Chantilly;

B. and E. Dudzinscy/

On a Wednesday night at 8:30, there was a 45 minute wait for a table. The second location for Ford’s Fish Shack fulfills an obvious need for a place to grab dinner and a drink after Vintage 51 left the Market Square shopping center last fall. 

But not all is going swimmingly. The over-the-top nautical theme feels forced and kitschy—a sea version of TGI Fridays— with wall paintings of cheery dock scenes and 3D buoys dangling above. 

A flounder arrives in a crust of potato slices. Why grill a fish, then wrap it, if you’re not hiding quality? Two spears of woody, out-of-season asparagus and diced tomato are the only sides for $24. A dry red velvet whoopie is not any better and neither was the pair sitting on the other side of the communal table we shared, going over divorce papers.


(June 2013)