We had dinner here last night.
It is a nice cozy restaurant as others have mentioned. Tables are nicely spaced so you are not too close to other diners. A couple of tables had problems with the sun being right in their eyes while they were dining and the restaurant did not seem able to anything to rectify the situation. I found the menu very limited and for that reason alone I would not go back. The menu is almost all fish dishes with just a couple of other items on the menu. The server brought an order of bread to the table to share with just 2 small pieces of bread. We decided to start with an order of mussels in a tomato sauce. The first one I had was absolutely disgusting. It had gone bad. I said to my husband that he was on his own as I could absolutely not eat this dish. The first mussel that my husband had was pretty good but the second one he had was the same as mine. Definitely past it’s best before date. We called our server over and returned the dish. He offered to give us another but we declined. If 2 out of 3 mussels are bad what are the odds that the mussels in the kitchen are any better? We decided to share the curried squid instead. It was a generous serving and decent but I found the breading a little too heavy for my liking. My husband had the special of the day – halibut with a mango beurre blanc and vegetables. I had fish and chips. My husband really enjoyed his halibut. It was beautifully cooked and the sauce complimented it nicely. My fish and chips were a very generous serving but it came on such a small plate that it was impossible to cut the fish without getting food all over the table. Come on. Use a decent size plate. The fish inside was nice and moist but the batter had areas that were raw and not cooked. The chips are large and not the small fries that I like. They were not crispy on the outside and the inside was very mealy. We were 2 hours over dinner as the food was coming out of the kitchen very slowly.
We would not go back because I find the menu very limited and the food was just average.
We chose Fishworks for a Christmas Eve family dinner with our sons and made reservations for 6pm. It’s a cosy little restaurant, with a display of fresh oysters on ice as you walk in the door, nicely decorated in muted tones and decor. Wait staff seated us promptly and were efficient and personable, neither too intrusive nor too distant for requests during our meal. By the time we left at 7:30 the restaurant was packed.
We ordered 4 of their Parallel 49 Ugly Sweater stouts which were rich, sweet, creamy dark milk stouts, a nice start while we perused the menu. Starters were a half-dozen freshly shucked oysters for me, crab cakes with a wasabi aioli for the wife, and crispy curry squid with cucumber raita and salmon Carpaccio with a garlic-ginger sauce for the boys. Each was delicious and forks were passed around the table to share the different tastes.
Mains were Haida Gwaii lingcod with a spicy and crispy seared skin; grilled prawn linguine carbonara with a raw egg in the middle for stirring into the hot pasta; a lovely seafood paella; and halibut poutine (seriously). All the starters and mains were excellent, very creative, rich and elegantly presented and some of the paella and carbonara came home with us in doggy boxes. We were too full to entertain dessert. Total tab was $208 including tip for four. Not cheap eats but an excellent special occasion dinner spot that we thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend.
For those looking for fine dining along Lonsdale Ave. in North Van, there are now more choices than there was just a few years ago. Fishworks is great. I and my wife ordered Lobster Bisque, Fresh Oysters by the dozen, Honey Mussels in Coconut sauce, Ahi Tuna Tataki, and Artic Char. Everything was very good (I would actually rate the food at 3-3/4 stars, so I rounded it up to 4), and prices were reasonable. The service was friendly and non-intrusive, and the ambience was excellent, with nice, creative, but uncluttered decor.
Quite a few other guests ordered their special of the day -- Spanish Paella. It looked great to us, and I hope they still have it on our next visit, which is a week from now!
My sweetie and I are oyster lovers. They're supposed to do good things for your-ahem-"mood" Well, after two dozen oysters each on our very first visit to this welcome addition to the lower lonsdale eatery choices... we were in a fabulous mood.
The server, if he isn't related to the owner, should become an honorary family member. A well spoken, fully awake, professionally mannered young man who gave us just the right amount of service without calling us "guys" even once. In fact, even the server who wasn't serving our table kept an eye on the table and it was just professional service with no ego, no swagger, and no pushiness.
After the oysters we had a rest, my man had the sablefish and I had a hankering for fish n chips. Everything tasted delicious, even the coleslaw. To drink we had martini's, a bottle of Prosecco, followed by a delicious Gewurtz,finished off with a taxi.
When we were leaving, both the servers thanked us for our business and told us we were a pleasure to serve (we are). This is the kind of customer appreciation that brings people back. Dinner was $250 including tip, not including the taxi home.
Yes, we overdid it abit, but I have to have a good reason to go to yoga 5 times a week, don't I?
One word of advice to the owner... make your sign more prominent, it's almost invisible, we were looking for it and passed it 3 times until we saw it.
I joined two friends here for lunch. I had heard that it was a good restaurant for seafood; but my impression was that it is nothing special. I had the bouillabaisse; the positive was that it was loaded with shellfish and fish, but the taste was not there. Both my companions had the lobster bisque and rated it very good. One had the albacore tuna sandwich and rated it mediocre, the other had the salmon and rated it good. Overall it was a pleasant lunch, but the restaurant did not give me a reason to return.
We went to Fishworks for our two year anniversary at the end of August, and it was the best place for a romantic, unforgettable experience. I had an immaculate dining experience. We had a great service by a young, witty lady. They have amazing wine selection: we chose from the special wine list, a great Pinot Noir from New Zealand. The food was delicious! I had the Lobster Bisque soup to start with, which was by far the best thing I have ever had! My fiance ordered the Wild Halibut specialty dish, and he loved it so much that he ate everything on his plate. My Trout was an done perfectly. We treated ourselves with an amazing dessert: Berry Crumble with homemade ice-cream. The atmosphere was vibrant and full of energy. I will definitely return!
I was actually at the restaurant a few months ago, but recently discovered this site, hence a delayed review. I have eaten in many great restaurants - here, across Canada, and Europe - and this gem ranks in my top 10 for one simple reason: the best halibut I have ever had .. . . yummy!
If the halibut is a yardstick, then I am sure that most the other items on the menu are top notch.
We went back to Fishworks with the mother-in-law, to try something different off their menu.
For a light starter the ladies had two different scallop dishes. The fusion of tastes were absolutely excellent & the scallops simply melted in your mouth. Incredible. Recommended.
For main courses I ordered smoked sockeye, whilst the ladies ordered (farmed) sturgeon. Unfortunately, the waiter returned 5 mins. later to tell me there was no more sockeye. Consequently, I ordered the halibut. Unfortunately, the same thing happened 5 mins. later. Now very disappointed that the waiter hadn’t bothered to enquiry of the chef what exactly was exactly still left on the menu at 7pm on a Saturday night, I defaulted to fish & chips ! Again he returned 5 mins. later to announce the sockeye was back on the menu ! A curious turn of events, nevertheless it all worked out OK in the end & the sockeye was superb. Again, there was a complex mix of flavours which worked well. We were reticent about having sturgeon, a protected fish, until we were told it was farmed & sourced from Egmont on the Sunshine coast. That too tasted delicious – a dense, white meat, a cross between steak & chicken.
A crisp Marlborough, NZ cabernet sauvignon went very well with the meal though it was a pricey $36. The very hoppy, Driftwood draught beer for ‘starters’ was equally good. There is an adequate selection of wines & beers.
Our waiter was extremely friendly & helpful, though could do with being a little more clued-up as to what was on the menu.
We booked to ensure we got in, as the place can get busy.
The surroundings are bright, clean & adequate.
The food & drink are still a little on the pricey side. The quantities may initially appear small, but are adequate & filling. The food is presented well & the flavours are excellent. What a great treat.
Popular seafood restaurant for a good Saturday night out
Submitted Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Initially wasn't sure whether this place would live up to expectations, but went on a busy Saturday evening & had a great time.
The restaurant was clean, well lit, airy & vibrant. It was popular & open plan, possible to hold a conversation without loud music or other distractions.
The menu seemed somewhat limiting, focusing on salmon, trout & shellfish, as you might expect. Don't go if you want an extensive range as an alternative to fish - spag.bol., chicken & beef are the only alternatives. I went for the salmon wellington, the name of which seems a bit of an oxymoron, however it's a cullinary term reflecting the fact the salmon was cooked in phyllo pasty ! Nevertheless, although the portion seemed small, it was perfectly cooked & was a well thought out dish, all of the favours complementing each other. The quantity was sufficient in the end. Others in our party had the carbonara & paella, which were equally well presented & tasted good.
The white wine we selected complemented the food, although the mark-up was significant (total price $40). Unfortunately this seems to the norm in Canada, despite the entry level prices already being stupidly over-inflated by BC Liquor's mark-up. Canadian's you really are getting ripped off on alcohol prices - 2x the majority of western countries - disgraceful. It's almost as if the Canadian & Provincial governments are afraid of anyone having a good time.
An acceptable diverse selection of beers.
Service was solid, prompt & efficient.
Value was OK, though probably a little over-inflated by a couple of dollars.
Conveniently located in Lower Lonsdale.
Good for a change. I'd go back sometime in the future to sample something else when the menu's updated.
Excellent seafood with incredible prices. I tried their dineout menu. Glad that I made reservation. Wholly, the place was crowded. However, from the time we got there until we left, we were not hurried, and we were there for a while. The food was fresh, and delicious. I targeted the scallop dish with the pork belly. What an excellent combination! The wine list is extensive, and the wait staff is well trained. Nice interior.For special occasion, and frankly anytime, I will crave seafood, I will come back. I look forward to my next trip to Fishworks.
Found the restaurant by accident, just walking around with MIL. Decided to walk in and try something light. It was the Ahi Tuna Tataki. I can only rate it as excellent. The wine suggested by the waiter was well suited. Went back again with a friend she ordered the clam chowder soup and I ordered the gnocci with prawns. Her soup was very good, not to salty. My dish would have been really good if I had liked gnocci, which I now realize I don't, sauce was to salty, the prawns excellent. I found my dish too expensive, and we both complained about how cold it was in the restaurant. The place is nicely decorated without being overdone. Casual yet classy. Service good, parking - lacking. Would definitely try it again.
This is the first restaurant I've attended since completing the Dirty Apron Cooking School Bootcamp last fall. Learning a few things about professional cooking made me picky. We selected Fishworks to entertain an out-of-town guest who liked fish conveniently located. I was pleased with the service and the food. Would return.
The Crab Cakes were adequate, but the Tuna Tataki: superb. A special of the day was Sturgeon. I never tasted sturgeon before, but knew that my Daddy dynamited sturgeon in the Winnipeg River, gaffing them into shore for his sled dogs, so I was curious about their flavour. Perfectly done, with a crispy skin. New potatoes, beans, an asparagus spear with a mysterious Hollondaise-like sauce base.
Mona's Sablefish was soft and flavourful. My bites of Jennifer's Cornish Game Hen were superb.
After only one experience, I recommend this place for its food and our waiter, a beautiful dark-skinned man of indeterminate race who slid smoothly between tables and filled water glasses effortlessly.
Go there on a weeknight. Watch for the girl with a brooch in her hair. Artists.
I like the ambiance and food was great. Alhough the dish I ordered - Lobster Raviori - was a bit weak on lobster fravor, the dish my husband ordered - today's special, Halibut - was awsome. Although it's a bit pricy - may be norm for seafood - I like this place. I probably go there again for special occasion.
We decided to try this relatively new last night and all four of us thoroughly enjoyed our evening. We were welcomed at the door by great host and as soon as we were seated, a hostess was there to ask if she could get something for us. The service by the staff was fantastic. We started our evening with a Caesar salad, house special salad with spotted prawns, Manila Clam Chowder, and Mussels. All of the starters were great. One of our group didn't care for clam chowder, but when she tried some of the Manila Clam Chowder, she stated that it was the best chowder she ever tasted.
For a main course, the two ladies had the halibut with caramelized onions while we had the Ruby Trout and Scallops. As with the starters, the dishes were all done to perfection.
We found the complete evening an exceptional experience and plan to return. Great addition to the North Shore restaurant scene.
We love fish, so spending my birthday at Fishworks seemed like a good choice. It absolutely was! This was a "lick your plate" meal experience. The four of us started with an assortment of oysters: fresh, cold, delicious; followed by the mussels: a little heat of chilies, and refreshing lemongrass, broth requiring more bread to sop up the goodness!I had the Ruby Trout for dinner, what a beautiful creation. Congratulations to the chef!Our plates circled the table.Each dish was a delight of flavour and texture. We got a really nice bottle of wine, which was recommended by our waitress. Staff was professional and knowledgable. We loved the decoration, it is simple, yet very elegant. The dessert selection was told by a staff, we had tried the chocolate brownie with vanilla-pistachio ice cream. It was a pleasure to be there on my special day. Thank you Fishworks!
I took our friends there earlier tonight after I have read the second review in a local Newspaper. Also, my neighbor was raving about the place, he had been there several times since they have opened. I can tell you that it is an awesome place, the lights are dimmed, and everything is clean and new. The decoration is elegant, very careful to details. The arts are perfectly matches with the location; it illustrates multiple scenes around the neighborhood.
The hostess took our coats, and we followed her to our table, to a perfect spot beside the window. The place was full, and we noticed that it was a bit noisy because of the vaulted ceiling. This hasn’t bothered us.
When our server arrived to the table, she told us the specials in a professional manner. We ordered the fishworks chilled platter for 4 of us. It was delicious. I tried their Lobster bisque which was beautifully done as well. I was impressed that a decent bottle of wine priced as low as $ 24.
For my main, I had the whole Trout wonderfully cooked, and tender, plus stuffed with tasty “goodies” inside. My partner had a Halibut, and some fancy French fries, which were light and crispy. The food presentation is beautiful. It was a remarkable experience.
We already made a reservation for lunch, we want to try their “famous “crab cake burger.
Fish Works has great street appeal. The place was bustling as we entered the restaurant. The service was the highlight of the restaurant, the girl who greeted us was friendly, welcoming and attentive as was the waiter, but that is where the positives end.
Frankly, the food was awful. Crab cakes that tasted like dried out bland canned crab with very average sauces. "Find the lobster" Bisque (lucky to get two tiny pieces) with what tasted much like; could that be - Campbells tomato soup?
Clam linguine with garlic wine sauce. Hmmm, definitely lacking in all departments. Linguine was served completely dry and flavorless. Certainly did not taste as if any wine was used in the sauce (completely lack-lustre). Creamy scallop risotto - scallops were nice and well cooked. However, for $24, six scallops does not make up for the terrible risotto. The rice was much like microwave instant rice with peas tossed through - no creamy texture, very dry.
Do not recommend. Would have loved to have had a good culinary experience like other reviewers but certainly did not. We are not overly fussy or critical, but the best part of the evening (apart from the company) was the coffee we had when we got home.
I was really hoping that this restaurant would be a great one. I'm sorry to say that the food was a HUGE disappointment.
I ordered a martini to start and it was served in a glass that had two huge chips on the side. I decided not to make a fuss and just drank from the other side of the glass.
To start, we ordered the Lobster bisque and the Fishworks chilled platter ((Albacore Tuna Tataki, Oysters , Prawns, honey Mussels, Manilla clams, fresh Horseradish, Mignonette, House prepared cocktail sauce). The lobster bisque was alright but tasted more like Campbell's Tomato Soup. The only item on the Fishworks chilled platter that was decent were the raw oysters and prawns. The mussels and clams didn't taste very fresh and were a tad dry. The tuna tataki was presented in a way that I've never experienced. It was two blocks of tuna that didn't look like it had been seared at all. It was simply two huge blocks of raw tuna that had a very strange texture.
For the main course, I ordered the Linguine and Manilla Clams served in a white wine garlic sauce. My date ordered the fish and chips. Both main courses were flops. The linguine was tasteless and I suspect it had been heated up in the microwave as it came out a tad too piping hot. The fish and chips were probably the worst of all the items we ordered. The fish was over cooked and the fries looked like they had been pre-fried and then re-fried. Also, there was way too much salt on the fries (to the point where it tasted bitter).
Service was decent and it is a nice cozy restaurant... I guess that's the only positive aspect of this establishment.
My date and I both agreed that we will not be returning.
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