TWIN TOPS FISH CAMP
4574 South New Hope Road
Tues Thru Saturday
Fish Camps are a Gastonia thing. There are six of them within a two mile radius - dining rooms the size of bowling alleys, rows of deep fat fryers, family sized booths that easily seat eight and plates piled high with fried fish, often catfish with or without the bone. Locals swear the bone-in catfish is sweeter, has more flavor. But you gotta have the patience to deal with the bones, all those bones.
The first fish camp was started by Luther Lineberger down by the Catawba River. He started of cooking for the "boys" he worked with at the mill. They caught the fish. For a fee Luther cleaned and cooked them. Lineberger's is no more though. It's now the Mayfair Fish Camp.
Which is why I ended up at Twin Tops. Another reason too. Everyone I asked about fish camps pointed me to twin tops.
The meal was all you can eat. I went for the fried perch this time. All I could eat was about two thirds of what came on the first plate.