One of the benefits of living in a city right on the ocean is the direct access to plenty of fresh seafood. It is basically a crime if you do not enjoy some delicious fish when you visit Halifax! And you can’t go wrong with a feed of fish n’ chips, aka deep-fried, battered, comforting goodness. Almost every restaurant in town offers their own version, but how do you know whose is best?
These locations specialize in fried fish – as in fish n’ chips are the staple of their menu, not an after-thought. They are all family-owned and are each unique in style and setting which is perhaps what makes them so good!
Find out for yourself by trying out one of these five fantastic fish n’ chip shops:
My favourite thing about U-pick is right there in the name! Here you literally get to hand-pick each element of your meal. Choose your fish (from 8 different kinds including cod, salmon and pollock), your coating/cooking style (batters include beer, tempura, crunchy, etc), then your side and sauce (being a condiment-lover, I love the variety, including chipotle ketchup and honey lime dill mayo).
Tailor your meal to your mood! You will have to visit several times to try all the different combinations, but something tells me you won’t mind. Located in the Truck-Side Food Truck Court in Burnside.
4. Evan’s Seafood How to get there: 2 Ochterloney Street, Dartmouth Located in downtown Dartmouth (Alderney Landing), Evan’s philosophy is to “keep it fresh and local”. Veteran fisherman, Evan d’Entremont and his family manage the business and with a boat and processing plant in Pubnico, NS, you can be sure that this seafood is as fresh as it gets. Evan’s even partners with Schoolhouse Gluten-Free Gourmet to offer a GF breading option so that everyone can enjoy their fare (even their lobster poutine and fries are GF!).
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Don’t let the business park strip mall location fool you – this place is worth the drive. I know several people for whom this is their “go-to” and The Huffington Post listed it as one of Halifax’s best restaurants in 2014!
They are a bit hidden, tucked behind Jungle Jim’s just off the main Bayers Lake drag but even the Fonz managed to find them (photo evidence on the website). You can get a two piece fish n’ chip meal here for only $8.49 from Monday to Friday 11am to 2pm.
2. Willman’s Fish n’ Chips How to get there: 5644 Kane Street, Halifax Willman’s has been around since 1946, so they must be doing something right! This bright and busy spot is located in the historic Hydrostone district, giving you a double-dose of heritage, and their outdoor patio on the corner of Kane and Isleville is great for people-watching in the summer. Willman’s Fish n’ Chips are some of the most affordable in town.
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Although I have never visited, I have had many people tell me Phil’s is their favourite fish spot in the city. This family-owned restaurant started as a small shop on Purcell’s Cove Road, then moved to a larger location on Quinpool Road in 2003.
Their large (two pieces of fish) looks huge and they offer delicious-looking spinach salads (with oranges and sliced hard-boiled egg, among other fresh veggies) or grilled/poached salmon if you’re looking to skip the traditional greasy, breaded fish n’ chips meal.
How to get there: 6285 Quinpool Rd, Halifax
Obviously these are just a few of the fantastic fish n’ chip options in Halifax – I would never have enough stomach space or time to write about them all! But hopefully this motivates you to get out and try a lesser-known or new-to-you location and support some hardworking local families. Long live the deep fryer!
Photo 1: Evan’s Seafood (Sydney Daoust and Ingram Barss)