Rusty Gull is a pub in North Van with a view of Burrard Inlet. Close to Lonsdale Quay.
I have been to this pub on a number of weekday evenings as I visit this part of town on ocassion. The menu has a good range of basic pub types foods including some tasty pizzas - one of which I had on special and it was good. There are also pastas, burgers etc. All good food NOT out of the Canada Health Guide.
I like the atmosphere here although jam night was a bit loud for my tastes - but others seem to enjoy it. I don't remember being over-charged for a pint of beer, but them maybe I never noticed!
I have always found the service to be brisk and reasonably efficient. It's a pub and the service, food and atmosphere to match. I walk about 10 minutes to get there so clearly think it's worth it. Whether you do is up to you. If you change your mind on the way in, you can always purchase some wine/beer from the outlet right by the front door and head right back out.
I'm not sure what sort of crazies they were hiring for staff in 2008 that got them such bad reviews, but I've been to the Rusty Gull a few times and enjoyed myself.
The food is good (esp. the fish and chips), the service is good considering how busy it usually is, and the prices were maybe a teeny bit high, but not that bad, really.
My only complaint would be the inconsistency in the music volume - sometimes the live music is just the right level - you can still talk and hear the musician - sometimes you have to yell at each other over it. That's annoying, but not a deal breaker.
My last visit there was really good. It was a Friday, it was busy as hell, and yet our server kept on top of things really well. She let us know an hour beforehand that a table of ten might need the area we were in, and was polite about asking, so we were happy to accommodate if the need arose (it didn't, though).
If you want quiet and cheap - cook something at home. If you want some good, free, live music and good food - you'll have to pay up.
I went in and sat at the bar, then waited ten minutes or more to be served because the (sloppily dressed) bartender had his head buried in a newspaper. Finished my first (flat) beer and then waited yet another ten minutes before I called out asking for another beer (which was an inconvenience to the bartender judging by his attitude). The place was quiet, but that's no excuse for being so inattentive and rude!
For pub food, this has to be one of the best ones out there. They have some amazing chefs here who have whipped up award-winning recipes that will make you forget the greasy slop you have at most pubs. Wide selection, top-quality food. It's that good. Now of course we aren't talking 'haute cuisine', but I truly mean it when I say that this is the pinnacle of pub food - their burgers, especially, are to die for.
The rest of the pub? Not good. At all. Dead-slow service, the place is poorly set up, far too dark, and has a tendency to bring in loud and extremely awful bands.
During the daytime, this is a fantastic place for lunch - no annoying bands, and the large windows at the back bring in lots of natural daylight, making the place look quite nice. Couple with the fantastic grub, and this is a top-notch lunch spot. However, when night comes, and it gets dark... meh... over-crowded and noisy.
Go for lunch, the food is definitely worth it, and the less-busy lunch hour means the service is actually decent enough. Just don't go at night, it's just not worth it.
We like coming to the Gull. It is close and convenient and has a nice feeling.
Service: While I'll agree the some of the servers can get stressed out many others are wonderful. I have learned if you treat people with some kindness and like human being and not like slaves you will often get the same kindness and respect back. I like the servers. Remember: Some of these people have to deal with a few bad apples, who are drunk, and perhaps create most of the problems themselves. Personally, I couldn't deal with drunk fools.
Drinks: The bartender is awesome! He is experienced and knows what he is doing. I've had him make me several special martini's that he just created off the top of his head. DELICIOUS! He's nice, efficient, and makes a nice Ceasar!
Food: For a pub, it is very good. I've had a variety of appty's and sandwiches here and they have all been very fresh and tasty. Have yet to try brunch here though. A nice selection.
Ambiance: I like it here. We come in pretty early when it's more quiet, have a few drinks, and some food. Watching a Canucks game on the big screen is great. They often have live music I have heard.
This is an awesome pub with awesome live entertainment and friendly service. I frequent the pub on a regular basis and always have a good time. The live entertainment is amazing, so dont let the previous reviews deter you from visitng. Go and check out the Gull, especially for the open mike and reggae nights. They are the best nights going.
I frequent this pub whenever possible. The servers are amazing and know their regulars by name and what they like to drink, for the most part. The live music (for free I might add) is consistantly great. The food...well damn it's a pub...but have you had the nachos? There is usually a feature beer and something going on, weather it's reggae or open jam, wing specials or create your pizza night. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, the staff top notch and the prices within reason. My Fave on the North Shore :)
I think the previous reviews were a little harsh. Come on, let's remember this is a pub. Food in a pub shouldn't be compared to a fancy french restaurant. The food here, is solid and yummy. The website shows they have a nice selection with a variety of items. It's not all fried food. The previous comment about the lighting and the fact that it is noisy-come on, please. It's a bar. I don't like noise all that much either-so I go early for a drink and a bite and then bail. You could do the same. That's your choice. Lastly, the service is great. Working in the service industry is hard. They are very friendly and do a great job. It's a great local pub!
The food was decent, and the servers are pleasant enough, but extremely slow. Whenever you need to order you'll have to flag them down on go and tap them on the shoulder for service. The most recent time I went I decided to order a few import pints, as opposed to domestics. Until then the highest price for such a pint was 6.75 (tax incl). The Rusty Gull blew that away with a wopping $7.82 per pint. When I said to the waitress she must've rang the taxes in twice, she showed me on the computer that the price was infact that, AND that there was an even more expensive pint they served for $8. My (4) beers cost me nearly $32. The MOST EXPENSIVE pint in the lower mainland (by over a dollar). I hope the manager or owner reads this and sorts it out, and quit trying to get rich overnight.
We went for an early dinner on Saturday. The place was really quiet, only a few customers. Server is sitting in front chatting with a (customer?). Everything was ok until one of my group complained that he did not get mushrooms he asked for. Server proceeded to point them out and "accidentally" touched the food. Food was sent back and we were not charged for it. But they charge you for every single thing they put on your burger. And server got a bit hostile when asked about the charges. Food is not that great, pretty close to frozen dinner.
I live 1/2 block away from "The Gull" and love the burgers and the wings. I pick up offsales all the time, and have enjoyed the bands immensely. The problem is the service. My husband and I went in to eat, and a waitress was half sitting half lying on a bench with her shoes off. Gross. To make matters worse she brought her staff meal over to the booth behind and above us and proceeded to stretch her gross shoeless feet out to dangle above my head while I ate. I didn't notice but my husband did and complained. We were brushed off with a discount. We went back a few nights later for open mike night and my husband attempted to apologize for getting angry, and the waitress actually started yelling at him in front of customers and other staff! This bothered me for days so I went back in one afternoon to speak with a manager. First the dumb waitress tried to tell me she was the manager, then finally the "bar manager" came over. I told her I was appalled by the treatment we got, that I have been a waitress and under no circumstances to you yell at a customer. When I stated that this is a restaurant and I don't expect to eat next to a waitresses bare feet, the waitress actually sneered "this is a neighborhood pub". I don't care what you call it, unless it's your backyard I don't want to see your feet while I eat! Then the "manager" proceeds to tell me she's a good waitress!!?? but has had other complaints and is on Ritalin and will be spoken too??!! Whatever, I will now walk another three block to go to Sailor Hagar's if I want pub grub Too bad I'll miss the great music and they'll miss all my $$$.
We went for an open mike night which was actually pretty good. We arrived before it was busy and went out to the patio. Waited about 10 minutes and finally got tired of waiting and went to the bar to get a pitcher of beer. We moved inside and asked for another pitcher from a server about a half hour later. She proceeded to bring the wrong kind of beer to the wrong table. We had waited for over 20 minutes by that time and decided enough was enough. One of our party went to the bar and commented about the poor service. The bar manager became hostile and we decided that it was time to leave. Would not go back to this place if you paid me.
I agree with the last review, my husband and I live in the area and have been going there for many years.
Decent food, but great live music most often, I love the jam and reggae nights.
I have not been there in a long time, the service has gone right downhill, one is completely at the mercy of what kind of a day the server is having which 9 out of 10 visits is very bad.
I've never seen a staff texting (whoever) so much whilst working, no wonder the waitresses aren't around ever.
Shouldn't they be looking after clients instead of making everyone feel exposed to their loud yelling or whatever?
Most servers are extremely rude, the ol' Gull used to have really great service staff who never acted this way and knew when not to be intrusive.
I've met the owners before and they seem very nice, can't understand why they don't fix the problem.
Meanwhile I've been going elsewhere.