Well, I nearly forgot to rate this establishment as we take it for granted. After 15 years of dining here, the Epifano boys have taken this dining experience from Montreal Quality Bistro Chic, to a finely organized Fish Dining Experience. Being of Portuguese heritage, no one can do fish like the Portuguese ; but I must admit, these boys have been in the business a long time first as retail fish mongers and then added their dining establishment back in 1999.
It is the place to go for fish in Ottawa, bar none. Their menu is varied with all the normal fare, plus they dream up daily specials as well. Not to bore you reading this review, I will tell you my favourites and some special requested items off menu they prepare for us and our family. When we have family over from the U.S., Brazil, Portugal, or Montreal, or celebrating a special occasion,...this is the only place we hang out in, period. Hard to believe they are not from Portuguese heritage, but this place just gets it right. Here's some innovative items you should ask for off menu ;
1. Portuguese French Fries ; deep fried calamari tentacles or small octopii, drizzled with lemon over, and served with either a side dish of Piri Piri sauce or Frank's Red Hot. Try It.
2. Tuna ; nice slab just seared & served with a balsamic salad on the side. Think of it as 'Sushi Calabrese'. Damn good !
3. Tony's Boulie Base soup : OK, so not my concoction, but my favourite soup. A meal in itself choc full of luxury fish and shrimp.The broth is to die for. Tony's Mommy was the author.
4. Smelts ; Another favourite. Just eat them like fries. My 2yr old grand daughter can eat half the plate by herself ! A little lemon, a little salt, one 'Beau's', .... and leave me alone.
They have a nice wine selection, feature 'Beau's' & other popular draft and bottled beers, nice daily fresh desserts, and YES, for all us hardy souls, frozen Grappa as a digestif.
Ask any Construction worker or local business people where they dine for fish or bring take out home, and they can tell you. Merivale for fish. Let's go and bring the kids and gramps.
OH, OH, I nearly forgot ; It is warm atmosphere full of positive energy, ... at no charge. Did I mention they have take out ?
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