A few weeks ago, while perusing the Twittersphere, I stumbled upon a mention of a fish market in town called Billingsgate Market. What?!? There's an over 100 year old family run fish market in Calgary? How did I not know this information for the past 9 years of living here? So obviously I had to check it out as soon as possible. That day finally came yesterday and it was well worth the wait!
My lovely friend Lindy joined me for this foodie adventure and we decided to bike to their location in the Stadium Shopping Centre at the intersection of 16th Ave and 29th St NW (by the Foothills Hospital). As it turns out we were able to bike there entirely on bike lanes/paths! Very convenient for cycling folks like myself and I personally like to attempt to pre-burn the calories I'm about to intake... especially when it's deliciously deep-fried. Ha! They do not, however, have any bike racks which was easily solved by locking up on a parking lot sign post that was just outside the market.
We walked in to a much larger store front area than I expected. Billingsgate has a wide selection of frozen and fresh seafood as well as a variety of canned and packaged goods for every whim of a seafood craving anyone could possibly have. Amazing... but we were here for lunch so we tried to focus on the restaurant side of the market. Next time I'm bringing a different pannier bag that doubles as a cooler to bring home some treats from the sea though!
Both of us had pre-checked out the menu online but when the time came to order it was still tough to choose. One item that was not hard to choose was what to drink as they are licensed and carry a few options from Village Brewery! We ended up going all in and ordered a lot more food than two people should eat but justified it by biking there... that's logical, right?
First up was some candied salmon! Oh my - if you're a fan of this stuff this place is where you should be getting your fix. It's like butter with sweetness and has a fantastically soft salmon taste. Paired with the Blacksmith ale... so good!
Only a few minutes passed before all our food made it to our table... and it was quite the spread.
Here's our lunch breakdown:
I had the Panko Fried Oyster Burger and Crispy Clam Strips while Lindy chose the Great Grandpa Bertie's Famous 2-piece Fish & Chips and Homemade Crab Cakes.
We tucked in and everything was cooked perfectly and although deep fried it didn't taste greasy by any means. These folks know what they're doing here!
The fish and chips were hefty portions of halibut with a light batter while my panko oysters were quickly fried to keep the centres soft and I tasted a bit of the sea in there (aka yum!). The clam strips were great with the traditional seafood sauce (could've used a bit more sauce though) and the crab cakes were crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and had a bit of a spicy kick to them that was a tasty surprise.
Long story short - we loved it all and am looking forward to my next visit! Buck-a-Shuck Sunday... and it's Lobster season... I foresee a Sunday visit soon!