Tony’s Fish & Oyster Cafe

Daily Special

It’s literally been over 4 years, since I last visited Tony’s Fish & Oyster Cafe. You can read my post back in the day here. Anyways, when my aunt came to visit, my parents took her to Granville Island and I decided to head over during lunch to join them. They decided to eat here since it is right at the entrance and we shared a variety of dishes including the Daily Special which comes with Fish and Chips and a cup of clam chowder. The fish was cod and the deal came to around $10.

Calamari Platter

Next was the Calamari Platter which comes with deep fried calamari served with coleslaw, a side of pilaf rice and homemade cocktail sauce. These were well seasoned and I loved the cocktail sauce which was strong in horseradish.

Seafood Platter for Two

The Seafood Platter for Two is great for seafood lovers and comes with crab claws, scallops, prawns, deep fried oysters, mussels, Tony’s Famous Cod and kennebec fries or rice pilaf. We went for the fries this time. All the seafood was very fresh. The fish is also a great size and the batter is thin and light while the fish is moist inside.

The Seafood Platter for Two also comes with a side of coleslaw.

Overall, Tony’s is a great spot for seafood in a more casual home style setting. This place gets super busy at lunch time as its a major tourist spot. Looks like the tour buses bring them here so be sure to arrive earlier than 12pm. Although it is a tourist spot, we did find that the food is overall quite good. Service was also quite friendly.

Pros:
– Great seafood
– Reasonable price for the size

Cons:
– Can be quite crowded inside
– Long waits when tourist buses are present

Price Range: $15-25/person

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food:3 Service: 3 Ambiance: 2.5 Parking: 2.5 Overall: 3

Tony's Fish & Oyster Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Bistro 101 @ Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts

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For our squad lunch a few weeks back, we visited Bistro 101 at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts on Granville Island. During lunch hours, the 3 course set menu is $25 and you can view this online before you go. They change it up every month, so unfortunately, I don’t have the exact names of the dishes. The culinary students who train here get to work in a real life setting in a restaurant. All the food is cooked by the students and even the servers are students. It’s a pretty neat concept!

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The interior of the restaurant is actually quite nice (I forgot to get a picture), but it’s actually pretty much fine dining. The students learn to correctly place the cutlery and how to pour water and wine in the glasses. The view from our table was the catering kitchen, so we got to see some chefs prep for their cooking.

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Complimentary Artisan Bread

We were served two batches of complimentary artisan bread. Each piece of bread was a bit different. My favourite was the cheese balls since they were fluffy and full of cheese flavour. We also enjoyed the flatbread type cracker which had a variety of seeds and grains. Crispy!

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Amuse Bouche – Raw Beet Juice Shooters

Shortly after, we were served a platter of Amuse Bouche, which we were not expecting. They were Raw Beet Juice Shooters topped with a slice of strawberry. (No alcohol in it by the way!) I was hesitant at first since I’m not a fan of beets, but it tasted surprisingly good and refreshing!

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Goat Cheese Salad

StevieD got the Goat Cheese Salad, which he thought was a bit odd. There was a lot of goat cheese, but also some fruits. He said the cheese was too strong for his liking and he thought the fruits didn’t go too well with the dish.

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Lamb Meatballs

The rest of us got the Lamb Meatballs. The meatballs were wrapped with eggplant slices and topped with cheese. A marinara sauce was placed under for dipping. These were actually pretty good and the lamb wasn’t too gamy.

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Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin

Everyone at the table except for me got the Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin for their entree. We found the piece of beef to be rather small, but it’s probably because of how expensive beef is now. The ones who asked for medium rare had their beef cooked more to a medium. I guess we can’t complain too much since the students are still in training. Beef was still very tender and flavourful.

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Pan Seared Halibut

Since I wanted to try something different from everyone else, I got the Pan Seared Halibut. This came in a light miso broth with an abundance of vegetables. The skin was crispy and the fish was cooked to moist. Very delicious!

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Tiramisu

For dessert, some of us got the Tiramisu, which had a strong coffee flavour. The mascapone cheese was smooth and the cake was moist.

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10 Layer Chocolate Cake

For myself, I got the 10 Layer Chocolate Cake. It came with a scoop of mango sorbet. The cake layers of mousse and was rather dense, but I really enjoyed it. If you love chocolate, this is perfect. The sweet and sour flavour from the mango also complemented the chocolate flavour very well.

Overall, we were quite pleased with Bistro 101. The portions are a bit smaller than what I remember in the past, but you still get pleasantly full for $25. Our server was a bit shy, but you could tell he was probably just really nervous. Overall, I think it’s pretty good for a restaurant run by students. Worth to give it a try and the price is quite reasonable for a 3 course menu.

Pros:
– Reasonable price for 3 course menu
– Ambiance is pretty nice

Cons:
– Service is a little slow because student run
– Food consistency can be a little off sometimes

Price Range: $25

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 3 Service: 3 Ambiance: 4 Parking: 2 Overall: 3

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Go Fish

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It was a sunny day after work and with the extended summer hours in place, we finally got to try Go Fish. Go Fish is located just off Granville Island in a little wooden shack. It’s quite the hidden gem, since it’s not in your typical tourist area of Granville Island. I had no idea that this area even existed! They have some seating at the shack as well as some long wooden tables near the parking lot.

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You order at the shack and they will call your name when your dish is ready. Service was hip and friendly.

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Fish & Chips – cod

Of course we came here for what they are famous for, so we got the Fish & Chips. The best part is that the fish come in dim sum boxes! I am a sucker for these gimmicky details.They have various portions, and we chose two pieces with coleslaw and fries and added an additional piece. You can also choose from cod, salmon, or halibut. We went for cod and the fish was moist. The fish is battered with their homemade Granville Island beer batter and I found it crispy without being oily. It is served with tartar sauce, as well as a Pacific Rim coleslaw, which was seasoned very well. I normally hate coleslaw, but I found myself eating this up! As for the fries, they were crispy and I liked these much more than Pajo’s.

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Overall, I was extremely satisfied with Go Fish. Prices are comparable to Pajo’s and other fish and chips spots. It may be one of my favourite fish and chips spots now! I found the fish less oily than Pajo’s. Plus, you get a beautiful view of Granville Island’s fisherman’s wharf while eating here. Definitely a hidden gem!

Pros:
– One of the best fish and chips spots in Vancouver
– Great scenery

Cons:
– Line ups when it’s sunny and closer to dinner time

Price Range: $10-15

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 4
Service: 3
Ambiance: 3
Parking: 3
Overall: 4

Go Fish Ocean Emporium on Urbanspoon

The Sandbar – DOVF 2015

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Wok Charred Albacore Tuna

For our work’s squad lunch, we went to The Sandbar restaurant in Granville Island. It’s part of the Sequoia group of restaurants, like Seasons in the Park and they offered the $28 lunch menu during the Dine Out Vancouver Festival. Most of us started off with the Wok Charred Albacore Tuna for our appetizer. The tuna was crusted with sesame and lightly seared so the middle was still raw. Very fresh and combined with the pickled ginger, it was very refreshing. It also came with a wasabi aioli, but it lacked any wasabi flavour. The dish also came with some crispy wontons to eat with the tuna, which gave the whole dish a very Asian flare.

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Seafood Hot Pot

For the entree, I chose the Seafood Hot Pot, which came with loads of seafood! It include bok choy, salmon, snapper, clams, mussels, prawns, and even a scallop. All the seafood was really fresh and it came in a red coconut curry broth. The broth was a very thin consistency soup and was very aromatic in coconut flavour. There was barely any spice, but it was perfect for dipping the complimentary bread into.

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Wood Grilled Steelhead Salmon

A got the Wood Grilled Steelhead Salmon, which had a very nice char to it. It came on top of some bok choy and coconut jasmine rice, which sat above the tomato fennel broth. A said it was very delicious.

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Chocolate Oatmeal Brownie

For dessert, some of them got the Chocolate Oatmeal Brownie, which came with a creme anglaise. They said this was a bit sweet though.

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Lemon Cheesecake

For myself, I chose the Lemon Cheesecake, which came with a raspberry coulis and strawberry. The cheesecake was light and not too sweet. Not bad!

Overall, we were all very pleased with our lunch. I find that their Dine Out menu doesn’t showcase a lot of their best dishes, but it’s a good price at $28 to check it out. I found it interesting that most of their menu threw in some Asian ingredients as well. Service was friendly and efficient. Our food came out quickly, but at a good pace, which was perfect since we wanted a quick lunch. Ambiance is also great, especially when you get seated outside. There’s heating lamps and you get a beautiful view of Vancouver.

Pros:
– Reasonable prices for seafood dishes
– Beautiful views of Vancouver

Cons:
– Parking at Granville Island can be difficult during busy hours
– The Dine Out menu doesn’t showcase their best food

Price Range: $25-35

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 4
Service: 4
Ambiance: 4
Parking: 3
Overall: 4

The Sandbar Seafood Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Edible Canada (Dine Out 2014) & Earnest Ice Cream

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I know I’m months late for my Dine Out 2014 posts, but I’m going to write them anyway! For my first dine out, I went to Edible Canada with J. Edible Canada is located at Granville Island, and is well known for promoting local food. The Dine Out menu was for $28, with some menu items offered at an additional cost. We also chose to get the BC VQA Wine Pairings, which was an additional $16. I can assure that you’ll be pretty filled up by the end of the night!

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Bartier Scholefield Sauivignon Blanc 2012, Bartier Bros. Unoaked Chardonnay 2012

The wines that came with our appetizers were white wines. Each dish comes with a specific wine pairing that is supposed to match your dish. I’m not a wine expert, so I won’t comment too much about them, but we did find that all our wines suited the dishes quite well.

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Crispy Humboldt Squid – shaved fennel, radishes, squid ink aioli

J got the Crispy Humboldt Squid, which were cut into strips, rather than the typical calamari style we often eat. The squid were very tender and the batter was light and well seasoned. It also came with a bit of squid ink aioli which was a nice touch.

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Fried BC Mountain Scallops – lamb offal, brown sugar & bacon, baked beans, cornbread

For myself, I got the Fried BC Mountain Scallops. I had originally thought that they were “typical” scallops, until the waitress warned me while taking my order that they were really lamb offals or testicles. Feeling adventurous that day, I ordered it anyways. Turns out they were quite delicious! They were tender and had a slight chew, and were lightly breaded and fried. It came in a pan of baked beans which accompanied the “scallops” really well.

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Bartier Bros. Merlot 2011, Market Red 2012

For our main pairing, we were given red wines. Perfect, since we were both having dishes with meat.

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Grilled 6oz Canadian AAA Filet Mignon – bouquetiere of vegetables, bone marrow butter, root vegetable pave

J added an extra $20 for the Grilled 6oz Canadian AAA Filet Mignon. It was cooked to medium-rare as requested with a beautiful pink interior. The meat was tender and juicy.

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Seared Lois Lake Steelhead – Fraser Valley winter kale, wild boar bacon, roasted Hazelmere Farm sunchokes

For myself, I chose the Seared Lois Lake Steelhead. I like to order fish when I dine out, since I can never cook fish well. This was absolutely delicious! The steelhead was so moist and the skin was seared beautifully. I normally don’t like to eat the skin on fish, but I devoured this! A must order! It also came with some kale, which was lightly seasoned and made a great side of veggies.

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Whiskey Cream a la Zack Shave, Venturi-Schultze Brodenburg #3

Lastly, for our desserts, we also got some dessert wines. For my dessert, I got a Whiskey Cream, which I found extremely strong! It’s like a creamy coffee cream flavour, but the whiskey itself was very strong so I felt like you had to really sip on this.

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Canadian Butter Tart – macerated raisins, Chantilly cream

J got the Canadian Butter Tart, which he said was quite good.

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Bacon Ice Cream Sundae – ginger brownie, walnut crumble, dulce de leche, whipped cream

I came here looking forward to the Bacon Ice Cream Sundae. Unfortunately, you needed to add an additional $2, but I did it anyways. Edible Canada is known for their bacon ice cream, but I was actually slightly disappointed. It was delicious after the first spoon, but halfway through, I found it too sweet. It’s filled with a lot of dulce de leche, and along with the brownie, it’s just too sweet for my liking! The bacon and ice cream is a nice pairing though, just because you get a bit of saltiness and sweetness. Still, I don’t think I would order this again.

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Edible Canada also has a retail store next to the restaurant. They sell a variety of local goods. They essentially sell Canadian gourmet foods here, although they focus mainly on BC goods. One local goodie they sell are Earnest Ice Cream products! So of course I went home with a jar of Whiskey Hazelnut Ice Cream. Quite pricey for ice cream since it came to around $10. That was already after using a 10% coupon that Edible Canada provides you on your receipt after you’ve dined with them. However, the ice cream is pretty damn good. I don’t know if I would pay that price for my every day ice cream though. Probably a nice treat once in a while! For those that don’t want to trek all the way to Earnest Ice Cream, you can now shop at after your meal at Edible Canada!

All in all, Edible Canada was a nice casual restaurant with quality food. I like how they use local ingredients, so you know that you have the freshest ingredients. Service was average, but as usual, you can’t expect much during Dine Out, since it’s always busy. They did their regular check ups, so I was quite pleased with that. To add on, we were late for 30 minutes, and they still took us in and didn’t rush us out, so we were very happy with that. Looking forward to coming back again!

Edible Canada at the Market on Urbanspoon

Earnest Ice Cream on Urbanspoon

Granville Island Brewing Taproom

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After water-biking at Granville Island, J and I were thirsty and walked by the Granville Island Brewing Taproom. I’ve never been here, so we decided to grab an afternoon drink to quench our thirst.

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The taproom was quite packed, but we luckily found a seat by the bar. You basically just walk in and find a seat wherever you like. Pretty much like any pub. In the back, you can see all the machines brewing the beer.

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They have a tasting map with the 8 different beers they have. I’m not a huge fan of beer, so I honestly had no idea what I was ordering. I did however go to a beer tasting event before, so I learned a little, but still not enough to call myself an expert (not in close actually).

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Hefeweizen, Raspberry Ale, Small Batch

They had a special going on where you could try 3 different kinds of beer on tap at around $9 I think? The glasses are around half the size of a normal pint, but it’s perfect if you want to try different types of beer. I chose to try the Hefeweizen, which was described as a unfiltered wheat ale, and is vaguely tart with light clove and banana flavours and aromas. It finishes crisp and dry. I definitely tasted the banana flavours to it, which was quite interesting, but I did find it to be a bit dry, like it said. Next I tried the Raspberry Ale. I keep seeing this advertised around Granville Island, and because of it’s pink colour, I always assumed it would be a girly beer. I believe it’s only available during the summer as it is a seasonal ale, and combines premium malt and hops with Fraser Valley raspberries. It is well-balanced with raspberry colour, aroma and finish. It tastes like fresh raspberries, without being too sweet, and is refreshingly tart with enough pale malt character, so it tastes like an ale, and not a wine cooler. This was definitely one of the sweeter and fruitier beers, and probably my favourite out of the three. Last but not least, J chose the Small Batch, which we were told was basically a dark ale. It was super bitter! Definitely not something I would drink normally, and it left a bitter aftertaste in your mouth.

If you want to try out different beers at a decent price, the taproom at the Granville Island Brewing is the perfect place to go. It gets quite busy during the summer afternoons, and I would assume it’s even busier during night time.

Granville Island Brewing on Urbanspoon

Tony’s Fish & Oyster Cafe

Cup of Granville Island White Clam Chowder

Salmon Burger – Pan-fried salmon with cajun spices & homemade tartar sauce

Tony’s Famous Fish & Chips (Cod)

We went boating this summer at Granville Island, which was so much fun! After that, we wanted to grab something to eat, and we ended up at Tony’s Fish & Oyster Cafe. It’s located right at the entrance to Granville Island, and it’s pretty packed. We had to wait a bit, and even then, we only got to sit by the bar, which was pretty cramped with the number of us. I wasn’t too hungry, so decided to get the Cup of Granville Island Clam Chowder. Funny thing was, I just had the clam chowder at Ceili’s Pub recently, and sadly, I thought the one at the pub was better… Not that this one wasn’t good, but it lacked ingredients and just wasn’t amazing or anything. I’ve had better, and the one at Ceili’s actually had tons of clams and vegetables. I found this one to be overpriced for the portion, and the lack of ingredients. This is definitely a tourist restaurant so it makes sense for their price.

Tony's Fish & Oyster Cafe on Urbanspoon

Afghan Horsemen

Horsemen’s Special Platter (Appetizer) – Hummus & Sabzi Mast, Salata with Feta Cheese, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread

Horsemen’s Special Platter (Main Dish Combination of Meat & Veggie Platter) – Boneless Chicken Shish Kebab, Lamb Shish Kebab, Lamb Shoulder, Baked Rice, Baked Eggplat, Dolmah (cabbage roll), Pakawra (batter fried potatoes), & Chaka (sour cream & yogurt dip)

Kabuli Palaw – Baked rice topped with Kabuli (sauteed carrots, raisins & almonds), served with spinach, cauliflower, potato, and your choice of meat

Vegan Plate – plate of baked rice with Kabuli topping (sauteed carrots, raisins  & almonds), Dahl (lentil stew), cauliflower, Salata & Pakawra (battered fried potatoes), with a vegetarian sauce dip

Dolmah – Cabbage leaves stuffed with rice, tomatoes & herbs, then baked to perfection, Served with Chaka (sour cream & yogurt), & our special veggie sauce

K introduced me to Afghan Horsemen, which I thought was a pretty funny name to be honest. I didn’t really know what to expect, since I did not know what Afghans really ate. I just assumed it would be something similar to East Mediterranean food, which was pretty true. K wanted to try out eating in the actual “Afghan Room”, so we rounded up a group of friends and reserved the room ahead of time. It’s pretty cool with all the cushions, low tables, afghan decorations, and dim lighting. After eating for a while though, my body got kind of sore though, since sitting cross legged and such isn’t as ideal when you’re trying to eat. A little cramped up too with the amount of people we had.

Anyways, J and I decided to try their platters, since we wanted to try a variety of their food. We got the Horsemen’s Special Platter, which came with appetizers that include Hummus & Sabzi Mast, Salata with Feta Cheese, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread, and a main dish combination of meat & veggie platter, with Boneless Chicken Shish Kebab, Lamb Shish Kebab, Lamb Shoulder, Baked Rice, Baked Eggplat, Dolmah (cabbage roll), Pakawra (batter fried potatoes), & Chaka (sour cream & yogurt dip). It’s prepared for two people, and a lot of the servings are divided to serve two, but it was still a lot of food! Should have probably shared it between three people to leave a bit of room for dessert. The Pita Bread was still warm and it was actually really good. It wasn’t too oily and was extremely soft. I really enjoyed the Sabzi Mast, which I’m still quite not too sure what it is, but I think it’s some sort of Spinach dip. The Hummus was good as usual too, but I found the Sabzi Mast to be my favourite dip. Our appetizer also came with a Greek Salad, which I disliked, since it’s got feta cheese, and I’m not a big fan of that. C, however loved it, and she devoured it for us! As for the actual main platter, the meat were all well cooked and delicious. My favourite was the Lamb Shish Kebab, as it was cooked extremely tender. The Chicken Shish Kebab was also pretty good, with lots of flavours. The Lamb Shoulder was tender and it was a huge piece between the two of us! C loved our Baked Eggplant, and since both J and I hated eggplants, that was perfect. The Baked Rice was a lot, and we couldn’t even finish it. It’s for sure a special type of rice, of which I’m not aware of its name, and it also had a special seasoning to it. It smelt good and tasted full of herbs though. The Dolmah, which are basically cabbage rolls, and I’ve tried those at Greek restaurants, was probably one of our least favourites. It just had a funny taste to it (which I beleive were the herbs), and the cabbage was also a little tough for me. Our favourite sides, were probably the Pakawra though. They were potatoes that were deep fried, but they actually didn’t taste too oily! The batter was really thin and it was fried to a very interesting texture. Good stuff! As for the other dishes, I never got a chance to try them, but everyone said that it was pretty good!

Anyways, service was great, with our server coming in to check on us. The room only allows us to stay for around 2 hours though, since everyone seems to want to reserve the room. Apparently, there are also supposed to belly dancers on certain nights and times. That would’ve been really cool. The room is shared with a few other guests though, but the tables are separated so you can still have your own conversations. Would I come back again though? Probably not in a while. I feel like this is a place to go try out for an experience, but it’s not necessarily food that I would enjoy eating often – at least that’s what I think personally. Go check it out if you haven’t though, since it’s a pretty cool experience with some interesting food!

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